Foods Rich in Carbohydrates 

Carbohydrates are necessary for good nutrition. They are macronutrients found in many foods and some beverages. Carbohydrates are commonly found in plant-based goods, such as grains. But there are other carbs as well, such as those that manufacturers add to processed foods as starch or added sugar, usually to enhance the taste.

Not only do carbohydrates keep us healthy, they provide plenty of energy for our cells to function. The carbohydrates are turned to glucose, which is the fuel that powers us. Carbohydrates also serve as an excellent tool for staying healthy, as whole fiber has been shown to protect against diseases, such as diabetes and cardiovascular problems.

Carbohydrates can also be a great help in the battle of the bulge. The fiber in carbohydrates can help make you feel full, and that means you eat less. Though there are some who claim a no-carb diet works wonders, that kind of diet can only be sustained for a brief period of time. Our bodies actually need carbohydrates to fuel the natural things we do, such as moving or simply breathing. But just as too little carbohydrates can spell disaster, too many carbohydrates can cause problems as well.

List of Foods Rich in Carbohydrates

If you are heading to a healthy diet, foods rich in carbohydrates should be added with cautions. By understanding how many carbohydrates are in certain foods, you can avoid eating too many of them. The list below tells you how many carbohydrates are in some of the most common foods we consume every day.

Bread Products

Portion Size

Carbohydrates (gm)

Cooked Pasta

1 cup



1 plain


Baked Potato

1 10oz


Two-Layer Cake

4-inch square


French Fries

1 large portion



1 whole


Macaroni and cheese

1 cup


Fruit Yogurt

1 serving


White Bread

1 slice

20 to 23

Hamburger Bun

1 regular size

25 to 30

Cooked Rice

1 cup



1 medium



1 whole


Corn on the Cob

6 inches


There are also plenty of foods that have a moderate amount of carbohydrates, anywhere between fifteen to twenty grams per portion. These often fill you up but don't give you too many carbs, so they are suitable for snacks. A few examples are cornbread, cantaloupe, grapefruit and other fruits, cow's milk, peas, mashed potatoes and hummus.

How Many Carbohydrates Do You Need?

Now that you know some facts of foods rich in carbohydrates, how many carbs can you have in one day? That depends upon your individual needs, but a good rule is to take in between 45 and 65 percent of your daily calories as carbs. For someone on a standard 2,000 calorie diet, that means you need between 900 and 1,300 calories in carbs, or about 225 to 325 grams per day.

How to Choose Carbohydrates

But you don't just need a certain number of carbohydrates - you need to make sure you have a balanced diet, too. By choosing carbs wisely, you can make sure that your carbohydrate intake is as healthy as it can be.

  • Eat fruits and veggies. Look for fruits that are whole, raw, and without added sugars. Try to eat your veggies and fruits raw, rather than going for purees or drinks. These drinks are often with added sugar, and that's what you don't need. Whole fruits and veggies are loaded with fiber and can help you feel full, which means you will eat less.
  • Eat whole grains. Whole grains are great sources of carbohydrates and fiber, as well as nutrients and minerals that your body needs. Refined grains are often stripped of the best of the nutrients, including potassium and magnesium. By going with whole grains, you are not only putting something more natural into your body, you are making the carbohydrates work harder for you by keeping all those good vitamins and minerals.
  • Go low-fat with dairy. When you want to get carbohydrates from dairy, you are also at risk of getting too much fat. Avoid this by indulging in low-fat or fat-free varieties of milk and other dairy products. Also keep in mind that many dairy products have added sugar. Check the label to make sure you are getting something that is as natural as possible.
  • Have some legumes and beans. Beans, peas and lentils are great sources of carbohydrates without any added sugars or fat. In fact, legumes contain no cholesterol and plenty of vitamins and minerals. They also contain protein, which can make a very healthy substitute for meat. In fact, legumes and beans can do a world of good in your diet.
  • Limit added sugars. Remember that added sugar really has no benefits for your health, so you should avoid it whenever you can. In fact, too much sugar can have a very adverse effect. So look for carbohydrates that are in their purest form, as to avoid added sugars every chance you get.

Remember that carbohydrates can be a great way to create a healthy, balanced diet. Don't fall for the diets that say you don't need carbohydrates! You might be fine for a few days, but then the side effects can start to have an impact. Approaching your diet from a well-balanced perspective can help ensure that you get the right amount of carbohydrates for your body.