List Of Low Carb Foods

by Aimee Stock


This is not an all-inclusive list and is geared more towards the induction phase (or phase 1) of a keto or low carb diet of about 20g of carb per day. 12-15 grams of these carbs should ideally come from vegetables. Aim for 3 meals a day with two small snacks, eating every 3-4 hours or so.


Low carb meal with hands holding red plate


While all fish are acceptable low carb foods, here are the more recommended varieties you should consume a few times a week.

  • Flounder
  • Herring
  • Salmon
  • Sardines
  • Sole
  • Tuna
  • Trout
  • Cod
  • Halibut


There are no net carbs in poultry. Here are just a few to choose from.

  • Cornish hen
  • Chicken
  • Duck
  • Goose
  • Pheasant
  • Quail
  • Turkey
  • Ostrich


Although shellfish does not contain any net carbs, oysters and mussels are higher in carbs so limit to about 4 ounces per day.

  • Clams
  • Crab
  • Mussels
  • Oysters
  • Shrimp
  • Squid
  • Lobster


Meat is an excellent, no net carb source of protein. One serving equals approximately 4-6 ounces.

  • Bacon*
  • Beef
  • Ham*
  • Lamb
  • Pork
  • Veal
  • Venison

*Avoid added nitrates and added sugar, (especially present in bacon, ham and processed deli meats), as this will increase carb counts.


Enjoy any style of eggs and feel free to get creative!

  • Deviled
  • Fried
  • Hard-boiled
  • Omelets
  • Poached
  • Scrambled
  • Soft-boiled

Healthy Fats

Olive oil

Fats and Oils:

Consuming a healthy amount of fat is an important part of any low carb or keto diet.

A few important notes:

While there are no carbs in these products, the recommended daily intake for added fats is 2-4 tablespoons daily. Do not allow any oils to reach overly high temperatures when cooking, and use olive oil for sautéing only. Walnut or sesame oils are great to dress cooked veggies or salad, but not for cooking.

  • Butter
  • Mayonnaise – make sure it has no added sugar
  • Olive oil
  • Vegetable oils – Cold or Expeller Pressed
    • Canola
    • Walnut
    • Soybean
    • Grape seed
    • Sesame
    • Sunflower
    • Safflower

Acceptable Sweeteners

Womans hand holding Stevia packet

Limit your sugar substitutes to no more than three packets a day. One packet equals 1 gram of net carbs. Some popular options include:

  • Sucralose
  • Saccharine
  • Stevia

Acceptable Beverages

Sparkling water with lime

Pay close attention to what you drink, as beverages are often a major source of hidden sugars and therefore, carbs. It is important to drink at least 64 ounces of water a day, especially when beginning a low carb or keto diet. Drinking enough fluid aids in weight loss and is essential to good health.

  • Clear broth/ bouillon (no added sugar)
  • Club soda
  • Cream, heavy or light
  • Decaffeinated or regular coffee and tea*
  • Diet soda (be sure to note the carb count)
  • Flavored seltzer (must say no calories)
  • Herb tea (without added barley or fruit sugar added)
  • Unflavored soy/almond milk
  • Water – at least eight 8-ounce glasses per day including:
  • Filtered water
  • Mineral water
  • Spring water
  • Tap water


Cheese board

Keep in mind that cheese does contain carbs, about 1 gram per ounce, so limit your intake.

  • Parmesan, grated
  • Goat, chevre
  • Bleu cheeses
  • Cheddar
  • Gouda
  • Mozzarella, whole milk
  • Cream cheese, whipped
  • Parmesan, chunk
  • Swiss
  • Feta


Woman holding market vegetables

Nutrient-dense, high-fiber vegetables are a must on a low carb or keto diet. Aim for 12-15g of net carbs from vegetables per day and measure salad vegetables raw.

  • Alfalfa sprouts (raw)
  • Chicory greens (raw)
  • Endive (raw)
  • Escarole (raw)
  • Olives, green
  • Watercress (raw)
  • Arugula (raw)
  • Radishes (raw)
  • Spinach (raw)
  • Bok choy (cooked)
  • Lettuce, average (raw)
  • Turnip greens (cooked)
  • Heart of palm
  • Olives, black
  • Radicchio (raw)
  • Button mushroom (raw)
  • Artichoke (marinated)
  • Celery (raw)
  • Collard greens (cooked)
  • Pickle, dill
  • Spinach
  • Broccoli rabe (cooked)
  • Sauerkraut (drained)
  • Avocado, Haas
  • Daikon radish, grated (raw)
  • Red/white onion, chopped (raw)
  • Zucchini (cooked)
  • Cucumber, sliced (raw)
  • Cauliflower (cooked)
  • Beet greens (cooked)
  • Broccoli (cooked)
  • Fennel (raw)
  • Okra (cooked)
  • Rhubarb (raw)
  • Swiss chard (cooked)
  • Asparagus (cooked)
  • Broccolini (cooked)
  • Bell pepper, green, chopped (raw)
  • Sprouts, mung beans (raw)
  • Eggplant (cooked)
  • Kale (cooked)
  • Scallion, chopped (raw)
  • Turnip (cooked)
  • Tomato, small (raw)
  • Jicama (raw)
  • Portobello mushroom (cooked)
  • Yellow squash (cooked)
  • Cabbage (cooked)
  • Green beans (cooked)
  • Bell pepper, red, chopped (raw)
  • Leeks (cooked)
  • Shallot, chopped (raw)
  • Brussel sprouts (cooked)
  • Spaghetti squash (cooked)
  • Cherry tomato
  • Kohlrabi (cooked)
  • Pumpkin, mashed (cooked)
  • Garlic, minced (raw)
  • Snow Peas
  • Tomato (cooked)

Herbs and Spices

Herbs and spices on a black board

Herbs and spices are a great way to enhance the flavor of your food. There should not be any added sugars.

  • Basil
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Cilantro
  • Dill
  • Oregano
  • Tarragon
  • Parsley
  • Chives (fresh or dehydrated)
  • Ginger, fresh, grated
  • Rosemary, dried
  • Sage, ground
  • Black pepper
  • Garlic

Salad Dressings

Homemade salad dressings

Read labels carefully if buying commercially prepared dressings, or even better…make your own! We’ll be including recipes soon 🙂

  • Red wine vinegar
  • Caesar
  • Ranch
  • Lemon juice
  • Bleu cheese
  • Lime juice
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Italian, creamy

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