Trying new diets can be tough: all those things to avoid, to eat more of, new ingredients to buy. It’s enough to drive anyone bonkers. But there’s one way of eating that’s been gaining momentum lately — the ketogenic, or “keto,” diet and its keto recipes.
The ketogenic diet is one of the most effective that I’ve come across and one of the more straightforward (as opposed to easy!) to follow. In a nutshell, when you’re on a keto diet, you eat a very low-carb, high-fat diet. That means goodbye pasta and bread, hello cheese and oils. It’s pretty much the opposite of what we’ve been taught our entire lives. But it works.
What makes the keto diet work so well is that, with little glucose from carbohydrates in our bodies, we have to burn something else — fat — for energy. The keto diet can cause the body to burn fat quite quickly (hurray!).
But even if you’re not trying to lose weight, the keto diet might appeal to you. By limiting sugars and processed grains, you lower your risk of type 2 diabetes. Eating an array of heart-healthy fats, like nuts, olive oil and fish, can decrease your risk of heart disease. And while some people stick to a super strict keto diet, with 75 percent of their diet coming from fat, 20 percent from protein and just 5 from carbs, even a less intense, modified version can help you reap the keto diet’s benefits.
But eating keto doesn’t mean eating just any kind of fat or stuffing your face with ice cream. Instead, it’s about mindfully choosing foods that are high in healthy fats and low in carbs. If you’re not sure where to begin, have no fear. There are some really delicious, good-for-you keto recipes out there that are begging to be eaten.
25 Keto Recipes
Looking for a way to add in extra healthy fats and protein to your diet? These fat bombs have you covered. They’re made from avocados, which are loaded with monounsaturated fats and vitamins, along with protein-packed eggs. Use homemade mayonnaise to make these extra healthy.
Photo: KetoDiet Blog
Do keto recipes include bread? Yes! Satisfy your bread cravings with this keto-friendly recipe. This loaf is made with gluten-free, low-carb almond flour that’s light and fluffy thanks to a great tip about separating the eggs.
Get a load of veggies and cheese with this ingenious keto recipe. You’ll dry out the cauliflower, then bake it into “bread” slices that get stacked with cheese; use a high-quality, organic cheddar here. It’s worth it!
Photo: Kirbie’s Cravings
This low-carb chicken pad thai is one of the best keto recipes for replacing Asian takeout. It’s got all of the flavors that come with normal pad thai, like ginger, crushed peanuts, tamari and chicken, but all served up on spiralized zucchini instead of carb-heavy noodles. Best of all, you’ll have this one on the table in just 30 minutes.
The beauty about the keto diet is that sometimes you just haven’t eaten enough fat in the day, and so you chow down on “fat bombs” to make up the deficit. These chocolate bombs are one of the yummiest ways to do that. Just mix butter, cream cheese, cacao powder and a small amount of sweetener for some chocolatey goodness that’ll do your body good.
Grass-fed butter is a terrific way to add quality fat into your diet. Plus, it’s full of health benefits: this type of butter is anti-inflammatory, better for your heart than standard butter and full of MCTs, which boost your immune system.
But if you’re not ready to eat a stick of butter solo, just make these cinnamon bombs. By simply adding vanilla extract, cinnamon and sweetener to your butter and letting them cool, you have a little treat that’s full of healthy fats and tastes like frosting.
You’ll often find keto recipes calling for mayonnaise. But why waste your money on store-bought varieties that are filled with ingredients like canola oil when you can make your own at home? You’ll be surprised by how easy mayo is to whip up at home, and it lasts until your eggs expire!
Photo: Dr. Axe
Potatoes and gravy are total comfort food — and luckily, there’s a keto version. These are made with cauliflower, which is quite low-carb, particularly when compared to potatoes. Made with cream, butter, rosemary and parmesan, this mash is creamy, full of flavor and smooth. You’ll finish it all off with a stock-based gravy, that would be perfect on a roast, too.
Fortunately, keto recipes can also include quiche. This one looks fancy, but it’s effortless to put together. With just a handful of ingredients, including high-protein eggs, lots of cheese and zero grains, it’s awesome for serving at brunch.
Everything is better with cheese — including zucchini. This low-carb, high-cheese gratin replaces potatoes with fresh green zucchini and makes a perfect side dish or light main dish.
This keto recipe is a double win. Not only is it low-carb and creamy, but you just dump all the ingredients into the crockpot and let it works its magic. With herbs like rosemary, oregano and thyme all making an appearance and juiced chicken thighs as the protein, this is one stew you’ll make over and over again.
Photo: Gal on a Mission
12. Fathead Nachos
Keto recipes that include nachos?! Oh yes. You’ll begin by making the fat head tortilla chips first. Did I mention you’ll use two types of cheese for this step? Delicious. Next, you’ll load them up with a meaty sauce and finish them off with your favorite toppings, like guac, salsa or sour cream. While these make a delicious snack, they’re frankly filling enough to share as a meal.
Can you really make a gluten-free, low-carb macaroni and cheese that tastes good? The verdict after trying this keto recipe is yes! Cauliflower, that magical vegetable, stands in for macaroni here, but it’s really the cheese and kefir that make this one stand out.
Kefir is a fermented milk-like drink that’s rich in probiotics and great for your gut. We’ll also use sheep and goat milk cheese, which is a smart option for people who are lactose intolerant or just want to vary up their cheese. You’ll love serving this, and your family will love eating it.
Why top a burger with cheese when you can stuff it instead? You’ll envelop each patty (your choice of turkey or beef) with a mixture of cheeses, garlic and jalapeño, then grill or broil to perfection. Each bite is better than the last.
Photo: Spend With Pennies
These keto muffins are a bit labor intensive, but they’re a delicious way to kick off the day. Made with coconut flour, butter, cream cheese and fresh blueberries, you’ll never believe they’re gluten-free when you see how light and fluffy they are. A crowd favorite!
16. Keto Oatmeal
Hemp hearts are rich in fat, and oatmeal is a great way to use the healthy ingredient. This collection of hemp-based oatmeal recipes has seven different variations to get your breakfast fix in. I especially love the pumpkin pie and maple walnut versions.
This juicy chicken has so many rich, delicious flavors happening at once that your taste buds will get a workout. You’ll mix spinach, artichokes, garlic, cream cheese, mayo and two types of cheese into a creamy paste, spread it all over the chicken and bake. Bubbly, cheesy goodness awaits after just 40 minutes, with little hands-on time.
For a complete keto recipes list, we must include pizza — and this is the ultimate keto white pizza. It’s got a crisp crust, white sauce, juicy chicken and fresh spinach. If you’re following a keto diet, this pizza is a must-have for weekend nights.
Photo: How to… This and That
This keto recipe is just as simple to make as a normal loaf of zucchini bread, with no crazy ingredients necessary. It’s full of warm flavors, like cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg, plus it freezes well. Great to have for breakfast or as a snack.
Anything tastes good when it’s stuffed between these cheesy shells! These are so simple to make: it’s just baked cheese! Stuff these with your favorite meats, veggies (bell peppers and onions are great here), taco fixings and, of course, more cheese!
Photo: Homemade Interest
I love the low-carb take on traditional burgers: smaller patties nestled into portabella mushroom buns. These are simple to make and are made using a grill pan on the stove, so you can enjoy them year-round.
I don’t want to ruin the secret ingredient for this keto recipe, but suffice to say, it makes this mousse deliciously creamy! It’s ready in just minutes, perfect for a last-minute dessert or late night chocolate craving.
23. Thai Beef Satay
Marinating the beef in this keto recipe infuses it with an impressive amount of flavor in just 15 minutes. While that happens, you can quickly mix together the peanut sauce and accompanying salad for this Asian-style weeknight meal.
Photo: Low Carb Maven
If you’re missing traditional burger or sandwich buns, these keto-friendly buns will hit the spot. Using a stick blender, the dough is ready in seconds, and then they’re finished off in the oven for fluffy buns that are just begging to be topped with your favorite meats and cheeses.
25. Vegan Alfredo
This rich and cheesy alfredo is not just keto and low-carb, it’s vegan, too! You don’t need to be vegan to appreciate how smooth and creamy this saucy favorite can be when made with almond milk, cauliflower and nutritional yeast. Keep it low-carb by serving over zucchini noodles.
Photo: Dr. Axe
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