KETO DIET FOOD LIST

What can you eat and what can you not eat if you want to be on a ketogenic diet.

THE
BASICS

70%

High Fat

25%

Moderate Protein

5%

Low Carbs

What does a keto diet look like?

A ketogenic diet (keto diet not to be confused with a low carb diet) will vary, depending on an individual’s goals. However, the focus should basically be on eating high fat and cutting the carbs.

 

A keto diet will usually be:

  • Low Carbohydrate
  • Moderate Protein
  • High Fat

In one 24 hour day

Net Carbs

When followed correctly, a ketogenic diet is a very nutritious and rewarding diet.  When hearing about the notorious “standart” keto diet, you hear all the things you CAN’T eat. True, but the foods that you can eat are in a class above.

Let’s break down the foods into basic groups, to find the keto diet foods you can count on and which ones are a staple for my keto lifestyle.

NOTE: No bread, No grains, No Starch, No Rice

But there are many keto foods that you can eat, so let’s focus on the good. We’ve listed all the foods that you can have on the keto diet, this list is ever growing, so it is important to know how to calcualte your macros.

Foods to Eat

You should base the majority of your meals around these foods.

  • Meat: Red meat, steak, ham, sausage, bacon, chicken and turkey.
  • Fatty Fish: Such as salmon, trout, tuna, and mackerel.
  • Eggs: Farm fresh eggs are the best.
  • Butter and cream: Look for real butter and real cream when possible. Pay attention to the net carb count.
  • Cheese: Unprocessed cheese (cheddar, goat, cream, bleu, swiss or mozzarella.
  • Nuts and Seeds: Almonds, walnuts, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, etc.
  • Healthy Oils: Primarily extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil and avocado oil.
  • Avocados: Whole avocados for freshly made guacamole.
  • Low-carb veggies: Most green veggies, tomatoes, onions, peppers, etc.
  • Condiments: You can use salt, peper and various healthy herbs and spices.

FATS

Not all fats are created equal. Some fats are better for you and it’s vital to the keto diet that you fill you plate with the options to help you successfully reach ketosis and ultimately your weight / health goals.

How much fat should I be eating?

Keto diet, 75% of your daily calories should come from fat.
Modified Keto Diet, 40-60% fat from calories.

Can I eat too much fat on keto diet?

Yeah, you can overdo it.  Keto is high fat, not eat all the fat.  Fat contains more calories than protein or carbs.  Too much fats in the keto formula makes your body work harder for that weight loss.

GOOD FATS

Coconuts

Coconuts and coconut oil is popular with my keto diet. It’s a natural MCT, and a type of fat that my body can absorb easily.  Plus some dishes just taste way better when you cook with coconut oil.

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Rich in fats, olive oil has also been linked to improved heart health, because of it’s ability to fight free radicals, reduce inflammation and lower blood pressure.

Real Butter

Butter is the villain, unhealthy, artery-clogging good for nothing.  WRONG! Real Butter has come out in research as the champ, completely opposite to it’s bad reputation. Butter is also rich in micro nutrients and fatty acids.

Avocados

Avocados should have a big “S” on the front of them.  The excellent source of heart-healthy fats and they also provide a huge dose of fiber and essential vitamins and minerals.  I eat an avocado almost every day.  Avocado oil is a great for some dishes.

Nuts

High in healthy fats, plant-based protein, and fiber. Pistachios, walnuts, almonds, pecans, cashews, and Brazil nuts are all great for low-carb, high-fat keto diet.

Fatty Fish

For a healthy ketogenic diet, try to include fatty fish into your diet like salmon, tuna, anchovies, and sardines.  Rich in high quality protein, omega-3 fats, and vitamin D. Baked or grilled, wild caught or store bought the combos are endless with fish.

MCT Oil

Medium-Chain Triglycerides (MCT) are a fat that is most likely missing from your keto diet.  Some foods like coconut, full fat dairy can supply a hearty dose a more concentrated supplement is available.  I prefer the supplement, since I don’t always have foods with MCT in them.

Cheese

Cheese oh cheese. This is one of my go to snacks as well.  Good high-fat, option for keto with hundreds of types of cheeses you can eat.

Though you gotta pay attention, some nutriet varies depending on the type of cheese, and imitation cheese is not cheese.

NOT SO GOOD FATS

Even though there are alot of good keto fats, and it makes up the majority on a keto diet, not all fats are good for your health.  EVEN, EVEN if they fit you macros for the day.  Stay away from the following ones.

Artificial Trans Fats

Known for increasing heart disease risk.

So stay away from these. Artificial Trans Fats such as cakes, cookies, pastries, biscuits, crackers (all the good stuff) are a form of hydrogenated fat.

Also it’s misleading if you do add it to your keto diet, if the food is less than 0.5g of trans fat will get labeled as 0%.  Those sneaky petes.

Processed Meats

Such as deli meats, sausages, salami, hot dogs, and smoked meat.

I actually like and eat all of these meats, except hot dogs. While they technically are keto desired foods, you need to be careful what you are selecting.  For instance, instead of grabbing the pack of turkey meat on the rack go to the deli section and select a good premium turkey and they will slice it up for you.

Fried Foods

Deep fried foods are to be avoided at all cost ... BUT

Foods fried in bad oil and heavy batter are definitely not keto friendly. At all.

That doesn’t mean you can’t have fried foods.  Search our recipes for fried foods. Basically, it’s a mixture of parmesan cheese, pulverized pork rinds seasoned to your liking, egg wash and fry in Olive Oil.  It’s not the exact same, but it’s a great alternative.

PROTEIN

Protein is 25% of the macronutrients (“macros”) found in the perfect formula for the keto diet.

Meat and Poultry are considered the staple protein for a ketogenic diet.  Good meat like steak, pork, lamb, etc. and poultry like chicken, turkey, etc. have no carbs.

%

Good Fat

%

Protein

%

Net Carbs

Meat and Poultry are a great source of high-quality protein. Essential to help keep your muscle mass while doing a low-carb or keto diet.  If you don’t get enough protein, then your body will turn to lean tissue to meet our protein needs.  I like chicken the best.  (not to be confused with fasting)

It’s easy to meet your needs of protein by eating meat.  Eating meat isn’t the only way to get protein into your keto diet.  It’s just the easiest, and my opionion the most tastiest.  Vegetarians, vegans and pescetarians can follow this keto lifestyle too, High in fat and moderate in protein.  Replacing the protein with an additional low carb protein that meets your individual lifestyle.

Meat-Eater

Eggs, Cheese, Chicken, Nuts, Steak, Pork, Bacon, etc

Vegetarian

Eggs, Cheese, Nuts, keto friendly Tofu, Greek Yogurt

Pescetarian

 Cheese, Nuts, Tuna, Salmon, Shrimp

Vegetables

Vegetables are the key to a sucessful keto diet.  You need those vitamins, good fats, and good carbs.  Certain types of vegetables only though, lets not get too crazy.

The rule is simple

ABOVE GROUND = GOOD
BELOW GROUND = NOT SO GOOD

Let me break it down for you, it’s actually quite simple.

Above Ground Vegetables

Root vegetables, grown under the soil. They contain more carbs in nature and should be avoided or added in moderation.  Stay away from Potatoes and Sweet Potatoes.

Carbs in above ground counts are based as net carbs for 100 grams, which equals a 3 and a half (3 1/2) ounce serving size.

  • Spinach – 1 net carbs
  • Lettuce – 2 net carbs
  • Asparagus – 2 net carbs
  • Avocado – 2 net carbs
  • Olives – 3 net carbs
  • Cucumber – 3 net carbs
  • Cabbage – 3 net carbs
  • Zucchini – 3 net carbs
  • Eggplant – 3 net carbs
  • Cauliflower – 3 net carbs
  • Kale – 3 net carbs
  • Broccoli – 4 net carbs
  • Green Beans – 4 net carbs
  • Brussel Sprouts – 5 net carbs
  • Green Pepper – 3 net carbs
  • Red Pepper – 4 net carbs
  • Yellow Pepper – 5 net carbs

Below Ground Vegetables

Root vegetables, grown under the soil. They contain more carbs in nature and should be avoided or added in moderation.  Stay away from Potatoes and Sweet Potatoes.

Okay, the bad ones.  Well in moderation if you need to increase your carbs for some reason, you can add portions of these.  Just like the Above Ground the net carbs are for a serving size of 3 and a half (3 1/2) ounce serving size.

  • Corn – 18 net carbs
  • Carrots – 7 net carbs
  • Onion – 8 net carbs
  • Beetroot – 7 net carbs
  • Rutabage – 6 net carbs
  • Parsnip – 13 net carbs
  • Potato – 15 net carbs
  • Celeriac – 6 net carbs
  • Sweet Pototo – 17 net carbs

I’ve never heard anyone tell me to avoid vegetables.  However, on a keto lifestyle, there are veggies that can keep you for your low carb goals.

SUMMARY

There are lots of vegetables that are low in carbs and fit in the keto diet. It’s best to choose non-starchy, high-fiber options for your vegetable choices.

Keto Dairy

Can you have dairy products on a keto diet?  Yes and no, but let’s find out.

Keep this in mind when eating or incorporating dairy into your keto diet.

Some dairy products are loaded with carbs and sugars in the form of lactose. Some dairy products are loaded with protein and fat which is good for getting into ketosis. But don’t go crazy.

Here are diary products you should include in your keto diet.

1 Milk

I don’t include milk into my keto diet, I find it upsets my stomach. For this reason alone I avoid milk.

2. Cheese

I eat lots of cheese. Most cheeses are low in carbs or zero carbs.  My favorite is Provolone and colby jack, making them the perfect inclusion into my keto diet.  When choosing a cheese, you should choose a higher fat like swiss, feta, parmesan, or cheddar.

3. Butter …. mmmmm

I eat lots of butter too, on steaks on low carb breads, etc. I consider this one the healthy fats for keto.  Real butter, not a margarine spread. You can cook with it, bake with it, spread with it, and it’s zero carbs.

4. Cream

Rich healthy fats found in cream. Sour cream or cream cheese, watch the serving size and the carb count, but yeah include them.

5 Yogurt

Full fat yogurt like greek yogurt is a great addition to a smoothie and a great source of protein.

Foods To Avoid

Any food that is high in carbs should be limited or replaced with a low carb substitute.

Here is a list of foods you need to stay away from for an effective ketogenic diet.

  • Sugary foods: Soda, fruit juice, smoothies, cake, ice cream, candy, doughnuts, cookies, etc.
  • Grains or Startches: Wheat based products, rice, pasta, cereal, etc.
  • Fruit: All fruit, except small portions of berries like strawberries.
  • Beans or Legumes: Peas, kidney beans, lentils, chickpeas, pinto beans, etc.
  • Root Vegetables and tubers: Potatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots, parsnips, etc.
  • Low-fat or diet products: These are highly processed and often high in carbs, ie protein bars.
  • Some condiments of sauces: These are the ones that you know contain sugar and unhealthy fat, i.e. ketsup
  • Unhealthy fats: Limit your intake of processed vegetable oils, mayonnaise, etc.
  • Alcohol: Due to their carb content, may alcoholic beverages or spirits can throw you right out of ketosis in an instant.
  • Sugar-free diet foods: These are often high in sugar alcohols, which can affect ketone levels in some cases. These foods also tend to be highly processed.

Let’s answer some ???s

When starting out with the keto diet, your best bet is to do as much research online as you can. There are different approaches by different types of individulas. Find what works for you, and make sure you consult a physician.

Is the keto diet a fad diet?

The ketogenic diet is very different from the “LOW CARB” diet fads that you are used to hearing about. The keto diet or a true low carb diet is not a short term “fix”. The keto diet is for people who want to change their lifestyle and stick to it for the long haul. 

With that being said, doctors have been looking to the keto diet to assist with the treatments working along with other treatments for many years.

Do I have to count calories or track macronutrient intake on the keto diet?

I don’t count calories, I only count total net carbs per day.  However, when you are starting out I do believe that it is a good idea to have a general sense of how much you are eating and to help track your eating habits. This could be helpful if issues arrize and you need to share this with your physician. Also keep track of your energy levels, I noticed high energy levels and still do.

Remember the keto diet is basically a Carbohydrate restrictive diet, so you will need to be in tune with your carb intake.  Once you know the formula for figuring Net Carbs you shouldn’t need to meticulously measure out any foods if you’re sticking to keto friendly foods.

What kind of supplements do I need on the keto diet?

Supplements are not required for the keto diet. However, always talk to your physician.  I noticed some issues with going #2 and some muscle cramps.  After talking with my doctor, I found that I needed Magnesium Glycinate and Potassium supplements.  There are some supplements that can be extremely beneficial and enhance a proper ketogenic diet like MCT OIL, BHB Sals,

Will I have to give up Alcohol on the keto diet?

Nope!

While you are restricting carbs, this will cetainly be hampered by drinking a six pack of beer. There are keto friendly alcoholic beverages (like vodka and flavored water).

Stick with pure spirits, which have minimal carbs. NOTE: alcohol affects me alot faster on ketosis than normal. Meaning I am a cheap date.

Is the keto diet good for everyone?

No. Not every diet is ideal for everyone.  Nutrition is not black and white.  Listen to your body to find out the right balance for you.  Ultimately, the best way to find out if it’s good for you is to try it.  Find out what ketosis is.

The keto diet is for people who want to lose weight, improve cognitive function,k reduce the rist of certain diseases, improve blood glucose balance, and improve insulin sensitivity.