It’s no secret that staying within the limits of the keto diet can be super hard. In order to kickstart ketosis, where your body burns fat instead of carbs for fuel, you can only have 20 to 50 grams of carb a day. And cooking for yourself at home can make the process so much easier (though there are some solid takeout and dining options out there too when you’re in a pinch). If you’re tired of eating the same things over and over, you can try mixing it up with different keto side dishes.
You may need to rethink traditional add-ons that you make for a meal, though. “Pasta salads, certain vegetables, fruits, and grains are often served as side dishes,” says Amber Pankonin, RD, a certified executive chef and the owner of Stirlist. “They are easy to prepare, affordable, and ingredients are fairly accessible. However, they can be high in carbohydrates.”
Low-carb veggies, such as leafy greens, broccoli, and cauliflower prepared with fats such as avocado, olive oil, and nuts are your best bet, according to Amy Davis, RDN, a nutritionist with Fresh Communications. “These ingredients are nutrient-dense options that supply gut-friendly fiber and heart-healthy fats while keeping the carb count low,” she adds.
Need some inspo in the kitchen? Here are 25 keto side dishes selected by registered dietitians that will help you keep the carb count low and complete your lunches and dinners in a healthy way.