Adding fresh nonstarchy veggies to your dinner plate is easy with these bloggers’ tips.
Whether you’re just starting a ketogenic diet or have been following it for years, chances are you’re looking for ways to make the high fat, very low carb plan work for you. It’s difficult — if not impossible — to stick with any diet if you’re not loving what you’re eating. Bloggers who advise on the keto diet know this, and they’re continually churning out inventive ways to make all your former favorites keto-friendly, all while bumping up the deliciousness factor.
The truth is that dinner might be one of the hardest meals on a keto diet. You may be fasting during breakfast if you’re on an intermittent fasting–keto hybrid diet, or if you’re not, eggs are an easy go-to. Lunch might be something that was meal-prepped on Sunday and can be thrown together in a handy container and brought to work. But dinner takes a little creativity, and can be an opportunity to sit down and enjoy your food mindfully.
You want it to be nutritious too. It’s a great time to get an extra serving of nonstarchy veggies, work in a lean protein, and include some healthy fat to round it all out. These recipes all deliver, and there’s a dessert you can eat all week to make it extra special.
Now the only question is: What are you going to make tonight?
Spice Things Up With Buffalo Chicken Tots
These make a great appetizer or can be eaten as the main item in your dinner entrée. “I’ll be the first one to say that chicken can get a little boring, but not with this recipe,” says Leanne Vogel at Healthful Pursuit, the author of Keto for Women. The bite-size pieces are coated in spices and then baked before getting a dash of hot sauce.
Per serving: 312 calories, 24.1g fat, 1.4g net carbohydrates, 22.5g proteinGet the Recipe
Pack Veggies in With Vegan Keto Bibimbap
Meat Free Keto
Meat tends to get a big emphasis in a keto diet, but when prepared well, vegan protein options such as tofu can be just as satisfying as a rib eye. You’ll also love this recipe because it really packs in the veggies — cauliflower rice, broccoli, and shiitake mushrooms — adding a nice crunch, fiber, and cancer-fighting nutrients. Cruciferous veggies like broccoli have been associated with a reduced risk of certain types of cancer, including breast and prostate, according to the National Cancer Institute. If you don’t have those veggies on hand, don’t worry: “This recipe is super easy to modify with whatever you have in the kitchen,” says the New England–based Liz MacDowell, owner of Meat Free Keto and author of Vegan Keto.
Per serving: 247 calories, 12.7g fat, 9.5g net carbohydrates, 18g protein
Put a Twist on Chicken With These Oven-Baked Chicken Breasts
Once you top chicken with spinach, sun-dried tomato, and cream cheese, you won’t look back. “People love how quick and easy this is, yet it looks fancy enough for company,” says Julia Nickerson, of Savory Tooth in Southern California. It’s also a great way to sneak in some extra fiber as well as vitamins A and C (thanks to the spinach and tomatoes), per the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).
Per serving: 480 calories, 22g fat, 7g net carbohydrates, 57g proteinGet the Recipe
Feed This Easy Keto Lasagna Bake to a Crowd
Hey Keto Mama
Another thing you might miss on keto? Pasta. But here’s an alternative. “This lasagna helps low-carbers understand that you really don’t miss pasta when you have delicious flavors to make up for it,” says Sam Dillard of Hey Keto Mama, author of The “I Love My Instant Pot” Keto Diet Recipe Book.
Per serving: 514 calories, 28.5g fat, 4.6g net carbohydrates, 21.1g proteinGet the Recipe
Get Dinner on the Table Fast With a Quick Taco Skillet
Keto in Pearls
There are so many times when dinner needs to happen in under 30 minutes. That’s when Anna Hunley of Keto in Pearls and author of the forthcoming The Family-Friendly Keto Instant Pot Cookbook makes this taco skillet. Best of all, it’s easy to make dairy free (simply omit the cheese) if needed. Slaw mix and riced cauliflower raise the fiber quotient (2.7 grams per serving) without overloading carbs, while a slew of seasonings maximize flavor.
Per serving: 268 calories, 16.8g fat, 6.8g net carbohydrates, 20.2g protein
Kick a Pizza Craving With Chicken and Arugula Keto Pizza
This pizza, from Lauren Rabadi, keto coach at Lauren Rabadi Wellness, is mouth-wateringly gorgeous, brimming with arugula and studded with baby tomatoes that have been dressed in olive oil with just a tiny drizzle of balsamic. You’ll appreciate the power of the cauliflower crust, which some people say is even better than the doughy, carb-heavy flour version.
Per serving: 459 calories, 33g fat, 5g net carbohydrates, 35g proteinGet the Recipe
End the Meal With Keto Custard Apple Tart
My Sweet Keto
There’s no reason to think you can’t have desserts. Tisa Frelih of My Sweet Keto is a fan of French desserts, like this take on a tarte normande. “It’s [usually] made with apples, though apples are out of the question when you’re strictly low-carb. That’s where a miracle ‘fruit,’ called chayote, comes in,” she says. The chayote (which is a squash) replaces the apples, and the result, Frelih says, is better than the real thing. If you can’t buy chayote in your area, you can purchase it fresh from Amazon.
Per serving: 334 calories, 24.6g fat, 6.2g net carbohydrates, 15.7g protein