Carb Counts for Cantaloupe

Cantaloupe Nutritional Information

Young woman holding cantaloupe
A ripe cantaloupe is wonderfully fragrant.. Tetra Images - Jessica Peterson/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images

Cantaloupes are the same as muskmelons (or musk melons, if you prefer). They are very high in nutrients and relatively low in sugar compared to some other fruits.

How to Choose a Ripe Cantaloupe

How can we tell whether a cantaloupe is ripe when choosing one in the store?  There are several signs to look for:

Color: The skin under the mesh should be a light orange or cream color: green indicates an unripe fruit.

Stem End: The stem end of the cantaloupe is will either have the stub of the stem or an indentation.  What you really want to find is the indentation, which means that the fruit was picked when it was ripe.

Blossom End: The other side of the cantaloupe from the stem end is the blossom end.  If the fruit is ripe, this side will be fragrant and will "give" slightly when you press on it.  If it is rock hard and has very little smell, it is likely to be unripe.

A cantaloupe will continue to ripen for a few days after it is picked, but if it is still hard, has a stem, and very little fragrance, it is likely have a disappointing flavor.  When it is not in season and likely to have been shipped a long distance, it is less likely to have been picked when ripe.

Also, always choose melons which are free of nicks or other damage, which are ways for bacteria to get into the fruit (see below for more safety tips).

Carbohydrate and Fiber Counts for Cantaloupe

  • ½ cup cantaloupe, cubed: 6 grams of effective (net) carbohydrate plus 1 gram of fiber and 26 calories.
  • 1 medium wedge of cantaloupe (1/8 of a medium melon, which is 5 inches in diameter): 6 grams of effective (net) carbohydrate plus 1 gram of fiber and 23 calories.
  • I small cantaloupe (about 4 and 1/4 inches in diameter): 32 grams of net carbohydrate, plus 4 grams of fiber and 150 calories

Glycemic Index for Cantaloupe

One study of cantaloupe had an average glycemic index of 65.

More Information about the Glycemic Index

Glycemic Load of Cantaloupe

  • ½ cup of cantaloupe, cubed: 2
  • 1 medium wedge cantaloupe (1/8 of melon, 5 inches in diameter): 2

More Information about the Glycemic Load

Health Benefits of Cantaloupe

Cantaloupe is an excellent source of vitamin C, vitamin A, and beta-carotene (just half a cup of cubes or balls contain half of what you need for a day in these nutrients). It is also a good source of potassium, and contains significant amounts of B vitamins and other vitamins and minerals.

More Information About Cantaloupe at Calorie Count Plus.

Cantaloupe Safety

There have been instances of food-borne illnesses associated with cantaloupe. You can leave a whole unripe melon on the counter for a couple of days to encourage ripening, but then put it in the refrigerator, being careful to avoid it having contact with other foods.

  It can be stored in the refrigerator for about 5 days.

It is generally recommended to wash the cantaloupe prior to cutting into it, using plain tap water and a vegetable brush.  Then cut off the stem end, which is where most of the bacteria tend to collect, and throw it away.  Wash the knife after cutting cantaloupe before using it on other foods.

More Carb Profiles of Foods:

Sources:

Leroux, MarcusFoster-Powell, Kaye, Holt, Susanna and Brand-Miller, Janette. "International table of glycemic index and glycemic load values: 2002." American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Vol. 76, No. 1, 5-56, (2002).

USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 28.

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