You took the plunge and decided to try the Keto Diet. Allow me to congratulate you on your decision. The next step is to stock your keto kitchen.
Understanding what you can or can not eat while doing a ketogenic diet can seem like a daunting task, so let me walk you through the process.
Although there is a slight learning curve when first attempting the Keto Diet, it’s actually quite simple once you get the basics down. Part of that includes setting up your keto kitchen.
Can I suggest that before you rush to buy anything that you do a thorough inventory of what is already in your pantry and fridge? Why invest in items you know you will eat rarely? Know you can always keep tweaking your low carb kitchen as time goes by.
Having a properly stocked low carb kitchen can help insure your success with this lifestyle. Which is why you’ll find a complete keto grocery list below.
How To Stock Your Keto Kitchen
Let’s begin with the necessary purge. You will need to be willing to get rid of a lot of the foods that will no longer serve you. Why keep them around to tempt you?
The goal is to fail-proof your kitchen for keto and that means to carb proof your pantry. And stock your keto kitchen cabinets and fridge for success.
When you get ready to do the great purge you will need to be fierce about it. It’s vital to be ruthless about this.
Start with the obvious packaged junk snacks and then move to other high carb foods. If it’s going to be a source of temptation, the food must go.
Now I understand that may not be feasible if your are forced to live with the junk food because of other members in your family.
In that case try rearranging your pantry so that the junk is in a separate location in your kitchen. This is especially important in the first few weeks of starting keto.
In time, you will notice how these foods don’t nearly tempt you as easily.
Carb Proof Your Pantry
It’s time to check the labels of all the food you will allow back into your pantry. Now is the time to read those food labels carefully to determine how many carbs PER SERVING.
I can’t tell you how many times I have been shocked to read that a serving is way less than what the average person would consider to be the case.
Remember you will be determining the net carbs counts. To do so you look for the Total Carb Grams and subtract the Fiber Grams to get the Net Carbs.
Determine to only allow back foods that are low in carbs and keto-friendly. Thankfully, there are lots of pre-packaged foods coming to market every day that fit this criteria.
Top Keto Pantry Must-Haves
Now for the fun part, restocking. On a low carb keto plan, you will be eating more fresh produce and other perishable foods. So, make sure you plan accordingly.
Next, comes the part where you need to be extra vigilant with your condiments and sauces. Unfortunately the majority will be loaded with sugar and hidden.
These hidden sugars can prevent you from entering ketosis and so you need to become a bit of a detective. Sugar likes to hide in just about everything and under the guise of names that are hard to even pronounce.
Do your homework and find out exactly what’s in all of your food. Generally, you’ll find that low-fat items are the worst offenders, because they have replaced the fat with sugar. Just steer away from anything that says low-fat.
Stocking Your Low Carb Baking Pantry
Move on to stocking your baking pantry. When it comes to using traditional baking items, most will not meet the low carb standard. This is where low carb flours have to take the place of regular wheat flour.
Notice, I did not say gluten-free. This is because not all gluten-free flours are low carb. In fact, many are made with potato or rice starch, which are extremely high in carbs. The lesson here is to remember to read your labels carefully.
I encourage you to read my favorite low carb baking tips for assistance.
The Keto Diet focuses on quality proteins instead of carbohydrates. For this reason choose the highest qualities you can afford.
Organic is best but not always feasible, so do your best to source your protein choices from reliable merchants.
As far as meat is concerned, the sky is pretty much the limit. Be willing to try new meats, as all are allowed including fowl, fish and shellfish.
Cold cuts are acceptable on a low carb diet, but avoid those containing nitrates and check the label for gluten, sugar and starch fillers.
Some people find that including low carb pre-made products help with their transition. Tread lightly here, since many of these can stall your progress. Again, use only in the first few weeks and aim to ween off.
Can I have Dairy On A Keto Diet?
If you are not sensitive to dairy you have many options when it comes to dairy products. All cheeses are permitted from the gourmet to the humble.
However, so people report that when they consume lots of dairy on a low carb diet their weight loss is hindered.
As a reminder, this is why everyone needs to customize the diet to fit them perfectly.
Eggs will be a big part of your diet, and we are talking about the real thing here. Ditch those egg white substitutes that comes in a box. Use real butter not fake margarine, as our bodies cannot recognize the overly processed oils.
Choosing Your Vegetables
When it comes to vegetables, there is an abundance of above ground vegetables you should choose from primarily.
Stick to leafy green vegetables and aim to fill you plate with these rather than higher carb options.
Embrace Health Fats
You will need to learn to embrace fat. In a low carb keto plan your body uses fat for fuel so adding natural fats to your diet makes sense.
No need not fear fat. What spells disaster is when we eat these saturated fats with a high carb diet. It’s the carbs that are responsible not the fat.
Make sure you use oils high in omega 3, and avoid partially hydrogenated oils like canola, margarines and all other man-made oils.
Oils And Fats To Avoid
There are certain fats you do want to avoid. These are the hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated oils found in fast foods and margarine.
You also want to avoid seed oils because they are quite high in omega-6 to omega-3 ratio. These include oils such as canola oil, corn oil, grapeseed oil, soybean oil, peanut oil.
Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.
Keto Food List
Low Carb/Keto Vegetables 5g carbs per ½ cup cooked or 1 cup raw
- Artichoke Hearts
- Asparagus Beans (green, wax, Italian)
- Beets (small amounts)
- Brussels sprouts
- Green Onions
- Green beans
- Mixed Vegetables (no corn or peas or potatoes)
- Pea Pods
- Salad Greens
- Summer Squash
- Water Chestnuts
Meat / Protein 0g carbohydrate and 7g protein per ounce
- Tuna, fresh or canned in water
- Shellfish (shrimp, crab, lobster, etc.)
- Sausages ( look for nitrite free and gluten-free)
- Cheese: hard cheeses such as cheddar and parmesan
- Cheese: soft cheeses Muenster
- Greek yogurt, plain, full fat. Carb count should be less than 7 per serving.
- Sour Cream
- Cream Cheese
- Whipping cream
- Whip cream
- Half and half
- Olive oil
- Coconut oil
- Avocado oil
Nuts and Seeds
- Macadamia nuts
- Pecan halves
- Almond butter
- Canned tuna, salmon, crab, shrimp, sardines, anchovies
- Tomato products: canned tomatoes and tomato paste (look for the brands with the lowest carb count)
- Canned vegetables: green chilies, roasted red peppers, chipotle peppers, mushrooms, artichoke hearts, sun-dried tomatoes in oil, hearts of palm
- Chicken, beef, vegetable stock
- Sugar-free dill pickles or relish
- Mustard (no honey mustard)
- Cider and wine vinegar (use balsamic vinegar sparingly)
- Most bottled hot sauces (such as Tabasco)
- Most salsa
- Tamari soy sauce (avoid soy sauce if you are gluten sensitive)
- Mayonnaise – look for the brands with the lowest carbs or make your own at home.
- Sugar-free salad dressings
- Lemon or lime juice (1 gram of carb per tablespoon)
- Almond milk
- Coconut milk
- Diet drinks (limited amounts)
- Miracle noodle (shirataki noodle) a no calorie, no carb product
- Low carb tortillas (limited amounts and not for those who are sensitive to wheat)
Cooking or Baking Ingredients
- Whey protein powder, plain, vanilla and chocolate flavors
- Splenda or Truvia
- Erythritol , like Swerve
- Herbs and spices (but watch for mixtures with added sugars)
- Extracts (vanilla, lemon, almond, etc.) – avoid the ones with sugar.
- Broth or bouillon
- Cocoa powder which is unsweetened
- Gelatin (plain)
- Xanthan gum for thickening and binding
- Almond flour
- Coconut flour, keep in fridge
- Flax meal
- Unsweetened coconut
- Coconut milk
- Almond milk
- Pork rinds
- Beef jerky or beef stick
- Sugar free Jello
This is not a complete list but it’s a great place to begin. We encourage you to do your own research. If you are first starting this lifestyle we recommend that you keep your carbs between 20-30 net carbs. Once you meet your goals you can raise this carb count and see how your body responds.
You might also want to checkout this complete Ketogenic Diet Food List that goes into macro details.
If you are looking for a great article that can assist you on how many meals to have a day for optimal results, I recommend Low Carb Alpha’s post. Stephen does a great job breaking down the details to help you get started.
What 30 Grams Of Carbs Looks Like
Ever wonder what 30 grams of carbs looks like? It’s easy to go over your daily carb allowance if you’re not carefully monitoring both the foods you eat and your portions.
Calculate your keto macros in minutes.
Part of stocking your keto kitchen in making sure you stick to your macros.
Although limiting your carbs between 20-30 net carbs is a good general rule it’s only a guide.
In order to meet your ketosis goals you will need to calculate your macros.
The Keto Calculator will help you find the exact amount of carbs, fat, and protein you need to reach your goal weight through the ketogenic diet, whether you want to lose, gain, or maintain your weight.
Although it would cost hundreds of dollars to fully stock your keto pantry and fridge, you can get the majority of the items you'll need for $200. This would include the basic protein, vegetables, and some keto baking items. As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Although it would cost hundreds of dollars to fully stock your keto pantry and fridge, you can get the majority of the items you'll need for $200. This would include the basic protein, vegetables, and some keto baking items.
As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.