With the New Year fast approaching, as usual, many of us are considering undertaking a new healthy eating regime for weight loss.
The Keto Diet is a popular choice among many but is often seen as bland and lacking in tasty food options by the uninitiated. Keto diet foods need not be either of these.
You can find nutritious and tasty low-carb foods in most nearby supermarkets that will help you get healthy and lose weight.
Take a look at our guide on delicious keto diet foods that will change your diet for the better and for life.
Low Carb Vegetables
Not all vegetables are made equal on the keto diet. You need to be sure that you are choosing less starchy veggies to keep your carb count low. Luckily there are lots of tasty options out there. Let’s look at some of the best choices you can make.
Cauliflower is the holy grail of low-carb vegetables. You will want to start buying it in bulk because you can use it on everything. It is the ultimate keto diet food.
Cauliflower has around 4.5 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams making it super low-carb, but it also has starchy properties. It makes an excellent replacement choice for bread, pizza, and rice.
Want a pizza? Make the base out of cauliflower. Are you missing rice? Mince up cauliflower in a blender, instant rice replacement.
If you mash it up with some butter and salt you will be hard-pressed to tell the difference between mashed potatoes. Make sure you broil the head of cauliflower a bit before boiling. This really seals in the starchy flavor.
Cauliflower is low in carbs, low in calories, cheap, and easy to come by making it a great keto diet food choice. It is the perfect keto food.
Now lots of people turn their noses up at spinach without realizing its incredible health benefits and versatility.
Firstly, spinach is bursting with minerals, especially those that can become more depleted on a keto diet. Specifically magnesium and iron which is great for the gut. Eating spinach will help keep your digestion regular without the need for bran.
It is also rich in vitamin C, K, and A, all vitamins essential in the smooth running of a healthy body. Vitamin K in particular can help with strengthening your bones and there are few sources richer in this than spinach.
What’s even more, spinach is full of phytochemicals that help maintain healthy eyesight and can help reduce age-related macular degeneration. This will help keep your vision better for longer.
Spinach also tastes fantastic in smoothies, salads, or on (cauliflower) pizza. It is particularly tasty when served as fresh leaves. It goes really well in bacon and eggs in the morning. Try it out.
There is a reason Popeye’s muscles grew big when he ate it. Spinach is the best!
The humble mushroom is one of the best foods you can eat on the keto diet, and it is a great meat replacement too.
Mushrooms are very low in carbs averaging around 3g per 100g. This may vary from variety to variety so be sure to check with your carb counter.
The great thing about mushrooms is they can be so very tasty when cooked. Sauté them in butter (completely allowed on the keto diet) or better yet grill them dry in a griddle pan. Add a bit of lemon juice afterward and enjoy!
There are lots of different varieties and all have their own delicious flavor.
Shitake mushrooms are smoky in taste and almost impossible to overcook. They just get even more flavorsome.
Portabello mushrooms are rich in meaty flavors and juicy to match. They are huge and can make a great hamburger replacement if you want to eat less meat.
This luscious South American pear is an absolute godsend when it comes to eating a healthy keto diet. Technically it is a fruit, but we will gloss over that for now.
Indulgent and rich in healthy fats the avocado is high in fiber and nutrients especially potassium. This is another mineral that tends to get depleted on a keto diet when you drink a lot of water. Bananas would normally be a great source but as they are a big no-no, avocados make a great replacement.
They also make for a fantastic flour replacement in brownies. No, really. They are fudgy and delicious. Just be careful with the portions!
Avocados are made up of healthy monounsaturated fats which can be great for your heart health and can even help reduce LDL cholesterol levels in the blood.
Low Carb Meats and Fish
One of the best parts about eating a keto diet is that you can stop feeling guilty about eating fatty meats. In fact, there are many myths surrounding this style of eating.
You should still be sensible and make good nutritious choices with your food. Calories still matter in the long term if you are trying to lose weight.
But you can also enjoy meat and fish, especially the fattier cuts, without the guilt.
Yes. There are few diets that would actively encourage you to eat bacon. Keto is one of them. It is impossibly delicious and there are not many people who can resist the sounds and smells of bacon cooking.
A large part of the fats in bacon are unsaturated making it a healthier choice for your cholesterol levels. Bacon is high in fat, reasonably high in proteins, and contains barely any carbs.
As bacon is a processed food you do need to make sure you are buying quality. Try buying from a local butcher or the deli counter at your supermarket. It is better to buy good quality meats. If you can buy it nitrate-free, all the better as this is a healthier option
Good quality beef steak is considered something of a staple food on the keto diet. Most people look at steak as an indulgent meal and not one that should be considered healthy, but they are wrong.
The problem with eating steak comes with all the sides. Mashed potatoes, chips, and rich sugary sauces are constant companions when eating out. In actual fact, the steak on its own, without BBQ sauce or sides, is good for you.
Meat is a great source of protein and contains next to no carbohydrates. It is rich in minerals and B vitamins.
As with bacon and any meats you choose to eat on keto, you should try and buy the best quality you can. Grass-fed meats are a great choice. Talk to your local butcher for advice on which are the best quality meats.
Salmon is a fatty fish which means it is high in omega-3 fats. These fats can lower the insulin levels in your body and even help to reduce insulin sensitivity. As this is the overall goal of a ketogenic diet this makes salmon the perfect keto diet food.
In fact, the American Heart Association even encourages you to eat fatty fish at least once or twice a week to benefit from the omega-3 intake.
There has been scientific evidence that fatty acids like omega-3 can help in the battle against dementia in older age.
Not to mention that salmon is delicious especially when slow-roasted in a buttery sauce with thyme and lemon.
Low Carb Dairy
High-fat cheeses and creams have long been the adversary of healthy diets in the past. Now science has finally come to terms with what our ancestors knew all along: Fats are good for you.
This is great news for cheese lovers out there as all dairy products can be a major cornerstone of any successful ketogenic diet.
Cheese has zero carbohydrates. Absolutely none. It is a perfect keto diet food because it’s high in fat and extremely satiating. This means you can go without feeling hungry for much longer.
Research by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests that eating 1 and 3/4 ounces of cheese a day could lower your type two diabetes risk by nearly 10 percent. Other benefits include lowering your LDL levels and reducing blood pressure.
That said cheese is also extremely calorie dense, so you need to be careful of calorie control when you are consuming it.
Homemade cheese sauces are back on the menu. And nothing beats a hunk of cheese as a quick healthy snack when you want to stave off the hunger and keep losing that weight.
Butter and Cream
Both of these foods have been consigned to diet hell for years due to their high-fat content. Many thought that they were major contributors to poor heart health and disease. Recent research has shown this not to be true at all.
They contain trace amounts of carbs but high levels of saturated fats making them a great ketogenic choice.
Enjoy adding butter back into your diet with meats or fish or simply use it to cook within the frying pan.
Cream is another great way to consume good quality fats in your diet. It makes a great substitute for milk in coffee and teas, which has surprisingly quite a few carbs.
Full fat plain Greek yogurt is a tasty addition to any keto diet. It is a little higher in carbs than the other dairy options, so you do need to consume it in moderation.
Greek yogurt similar to the other dairy options can help control your appetite and keep you feeling fuller longer. It is also extremely healthy for your gut as it is filled with healthy bacteria.
The healthier your digestive tract the more vitamins and minerals you will be able to absorb from your diet. So eating tasty Greek yogurt regularly is a win-win for everyone.
Other Tasty Keto Diet Foods
We have looked at the main areas of your diet and with a good amount of low-carb vegetables, meats, and dairy products you can cook up some amazing keto-friendly recipes.
But sometimes you might fancy something a little different or perhaps just a healthy snack. The good news is that you can still find healthy snack foods whilst eating a keto diet.
Fruits are usually an absolute no-go on the keto diet due to their extremely high fructose sugar levels. However, berries are the exception to this rule.
Strawberries and raspberries are deliciously low in carbs coming in at around 7g per 100g of carbohydrate. That means in a small amount you can enjoy these delicious berries as part of a meal, a tasty dessert, or as a healthy snack.
As a bonus, they are chock-full of antioxidants which are thought to protect against lots of different diseases.
Nuts are full of healthy fats and one of the perfect keto diet foods. They are high in fiber and they also help to reduce your appetite, filling you up on only a small portion. Great when you are just starting a keto diet.
This is important as nuts are also high in calories so it is important to keep track of how many you are eating if you want to lose weight.
Not all nuts are equal however and not all nuts are good for a ketogenic diet, so make sure to track them with a counter.
Some of the best options are Pecans, Almonds, and Macadamia. Macadamia nuts in particular are deliciously creamy and full of healthy fats. It does not take many of these nuts as a quick indulgent snack to sate your appetite.
The humble pickle is an amazing keto diet food. Low calories and sugar, pickles are a great pop-in-the-mouth snack when you need it or on the go.
However, it is essential that you buy sugar-free pickles. Store-bought pickles tend to add sugar to the water making them not an option.
The best solution is to buy some mini-cucumbers and pickle them up overnight. They will be ready to go the next morning and will make a tasty snack for any keto dieter.
What Foods Can I Eat on a Keto Diet?
Lots! Eating a ketogenic diet doesn’t have to be hard or lacking in nutrients or taste. As we have shown you there are lots of food options available to you and most are pretty tasty.
Keeping your carb count low does not mean you have to miss out on enjoyable meals or foods. It is even possible to enjoy keto diet foods when you are eating out.
Did you enjoy this article? If so, why not read more about the ketogenic diet on our blog?