Raisins are high in calories & sugar!

Raisins are healthy foods, despite their high sugar content. Even people with diabetes and people who want to lose weight can eat reasonable amounts. A serving of raisins has 85 calories and 18.5 g of sugar!

Are raisins high in calories?

Raisins have approximately 300 calories per 100g. A handful has 85 calories. Moreover, 1/4 cup has 124 calories and 1/2 cup has 247 calories. All raisin varieties (seeded, or seedless golden/dark raisins) have a similar calorie content.[1]

Most calories of raisins come from sugar. Raisins are low in protein, while they have negligible amounts of fat.

Raisins have about 37% more calories than grapes.

How many calories are in raisin-based foods?

Favorite foods containing raisins have a much higher calorie content. These foods are high in calories, as they’re packed with added sugar and fat. You should eat them only in moderation. Especially if you want to lose weight.

per 100g
per serving
% DV
(2,000-calorie diet)
raisin pie25137719%
raisin bagel26835118%
raisin tart29034817%
raisin cookie4011809%
raisin muffin2341367%
raisin bread2741186%
golden seedless
dark seedless
seeded raisins296844%
Calories of common foods with raisins.

Can calories in raisins make you gain weight?

Raisins are healthy. They have a great nutritional value. In fact, a serving of raisins a day supports weight loss. As raisins are high in fiber, they promote satiety. Furthermore, they fight obesity, as they increase the antioxidant status of the body.

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However, eating too many raisins can make you fat. We gain weight when we consume more calories than we burn.

Most noteworthy, raisins can make you gain weight when eaten with other calorie-dense foods, like nuts (e.g. almonds, walnuts, pistachios), seeds, or grains (e.g. oatmeal). Even healthy calorie-dense foods can make you fat…

What’s the sugar content of raisins?

We have to consume raisins in moderation because they are high in sugar. They have 65 g of sugar per 100g. A serving has 18.5 g of sugar.

In fact, raisins have almost 3-4 times more sugar than grapes. Hence, we can consume much higher portions of raw grapes than raisins.

Also, raisins may contain added sugar. Sugar is added to make raisins sweeter. In addition, sugar is really cheap. Food companies add it to make their products heavier! Always take a close look at the nutrition facts label of products.

You’ll find a wide variety of raisins with no added sugar on Amazon.

What’s the main type of sugar in raisins?

Raisins have two types of sugars. They’re 53% fructose and 47% glucose.

Fructose has to be metabolized by the liver. It isn’t instantly used by the cells as energy as glucose does. Hence, fructose does not acutely raise blood glucose. Foods naturally high in fructose are good for people with diabetes because they may aid glycemic control.[2]

However, consuming extremely high amounts of fructose can be dangerous for health. It may promote non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Processed foods containing high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) are the main sources of fructose in a standard Western diet. Excessive consumption of HFCS may increase the risk of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.[3]

Can people with diabetes eat raisins?

Actually, despite their high sugar content, people with diabetes can eat reasonable amounts of raisins. They can eat 2 tbsp of raisins or other dried fruit, such as dates, or blueberries. This small portion contains about 15 grams.

Raisins are high in fiber, fructose, and other compounds that prevent spikes of blood sugar. In fact, raisins can improve insulin sensitivity, and reduce postprandial glucose response.[4,5]

Always consult your physician before changing your diet.

How much sugar is in other raisin-based foods?

All foods containing raisins are high in sugar. Better avoid consuming too much raisin bagel, bread, pie, tart, or cookies. In most cases, these foods are high in added sugar.

sugar (g)
per 100g
sugar (g)
per serving
raisin pie18.327.5
raisin tart18.121.7
raisin cookie47.621.4
raisin bagel14.118.5
raisin muffin9.75.6
Sugar content of favorite foods with raisins.

Are other dried fruits richer in sugar?

Raisins have a medium sugar content as compared to other popular dried fruits. Dried pineapple and cranberries have the highest amount of sugar, while dried prunes and apricots have the lowest amount.

sugar (g)
per 100g
sugar (g)
per serving
goji berries45.612.9
Sugar content of common dried fruits.

Is sugar in raisins bad for you?

Overconsumption of added sugar is bad for you. It has been linked to obesity, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, inflammatory diseases, cardiovascular disease, fat accumulation in the liver, decreased insulin sensitivity, increased uric acid and high cholesterol.[6]

It’s highly recommended to consume less than 25 g of added sugar a day. But, as sugar is added to sodas, sweets, and processed products, people who follow the standard American diet probably consume much higher amounts. Cutting down sugar isn’t easy. It interferes with the reward system of the brain.[7,8]

So, you should avoid raisins containing added sugar, or any other raisin-based food. On the other hand, raisins without added sugar are good for you. They’re good sources of antioxidants, vitamins (e.g. vitamin B6), and minerals. like iron, calcium, and potassium.

How many raisins can I eat a day?

Healthy people can safely consume a handful of raisins, while people with diabetes can eat up to 2 tbsp of raisins a day.

The best time of the day to eat raisins is after exercise. Raisins are a great post-workout snack. The sugar of raisins helps replenish muscle glycogen stores. Consuming sugar after strenuous exercise is beneficial for muscle recovery.