This keto food list is full of the keto essentials we recommend you keep stocked in your pantry & fridge as they will quickly become items that you use all the time. This is by no means a list you need to rush out and purchase all at once. It is more an overview of staples that we use on a regular basis.
We have included some links to specific products that we love and that may not be available in a regular supermarket. We hope you find this helpful!
This keto food list includes a lot of things. Please don’t feel overwhelmed by this. It is designed to give you an idea of the types of foods you can consume. You will find you slowly collect some of these items as you progress on your keto journey.
Another point I would like to make is that this keto food list is just a guide. We see a lot of people thinking keto has to include certain foods. This is definitely not the case. Keto works best when you find the keto that works for you. For some that involves bulletproof coffee, for others it involves eating bacon every day and some even do keto vegan.
Check out our Keto Beginners Guide – Keto grocery tips and Keto Beginners Guide – The ultimate Keto kitchen must haves for further information around getting started on a ketogenic diet.
Keto Food List
This keto food list includes the best keto options for the following staples:
- Fats and Oils
- Fruits and Vegetables
- Sauces and Condiments
- Baking supplies
- Nuts and Seeds
- Herbs and Spices
Fats and Oils
When you start a ketogenic diet it can be really difficult to understand which fats are healthy and which are not. We have been taught our whole lives that saturated fats are bad for us and cause cholesterol. This research has since been proven wrong. If you are interested in understanding more about how we got this so wrong, we would recommend reading Nina Teicholz’s The Big Fat Surprise.
If you are interested in understanding the best cooking fats and oils further we can recommend this article, Healthiest Cooking Oil: An A-Z Guide to Dietary Fats
We recommend cleaning out your pantry of all the vegetable oils and replacing them with healthy fats like lard, coconut oil, olive oil and avocado oil.
Best Keto Healthy fats and oils
- Lard – Lard is clarified fat from pork and it is solid at room temperature. We love to use lard to cook vegetables like asparagus and spinach, as it adds an incredible flavour to those vegetables.
- Coconut oil – Coconut oil is predominately a saturated fat made from the flesh of the coconut. When looking for coconut oil make sure its extra virgin cold pressed. Coconut oil should be solid at room temperature.
- Extra Virgin and Light Olive Oil – Extra virgin olive oil is great to use for salad dressings and we like to use the light olive oil for cooking and making homemade mayo.
- Avocado Oil – Avocado oil is similar to olive oil and is liquid at room temperature. It’s great to use for dressings on salads and is also heat stable so good for cooking with as well.
Dairy can be a food group that many people have food sensitivities to. During our keto journey we have experimented with dairy free for a few weeks at a time. We now try to limit our dairy intake to 1 serve a day. It is easy to include dairy in every meal as it’s delicious and it is a really good way to add fat to a meal.
We try to choose the best quality products that we can fit into our budget. Look out for grass-fed dairy products or organic where possible. Also ensure you purchase the full fat variety and check the nutrition information and ingredients to ensure the product is keto-friendly.
Best Keto Dairy Choices
- Butter – Here at Have Butter will travel, we obviously LOVE butter. We love to use it to cook up some veggies, adding flavoured butters to our steak and to make hollandaise sauce.
- Sour Cream – We always have a tub of sour cream in the fridge as we love to add it to chilli and tacos. It’s a great way to add some fat to any Mexican dish.
- Pure cream/Double Cream/Heavy whipping cream – We are very lucky in Australia to have double cream. This stuff is over 50% fat and is delicious to have with a few berries when you are craving something sweet.
- Feta Cheese – Feta is great to add to salads as it adds a lovely saltiness.
- Cheddar Cheese (Sliced/Block/Grated) – Cheddar cheese or any of the other block cheeses, like monterey jack or colby, are great to have in the fridge for a snack. Often Dan will grab a slice or two of cheese if she is feeling hungry between our normal meal times. We also like to have cheese slices on hand to make cheese crackers and taco shells.
- Cream Cheese – Cream cheese is another great cheese to have in the fridge and we like to make keto cheesecake, cheesecake bites and jalapeno poppers with it.
- Haloumi – Haloumi is a greek style sheep’s and goat’s cheese. It is salty in flavour and is delicious pan fried or deep fried.
- Cottage Cheese – Cottage cheese is generally lower in fat and higher in carbs than lot of other cheeses. We enjoy it with some seed crackers for a quick and easy lunch.
Again, we like to purchase grass-fed, pasture-raised or organic where possible, for the highest quality meat. Choose fattier cuts of meat where possible, for example chicken wings or thighs over chicken breast. Eating the fat from the meat can be a real challenge when you first start a keto diet. We have been taught to avoid the fat for so long it feels very strange to actually eat it.
We have enjoyed experimenting with different cooking methods like slow cooking to cook the fattier cuts of meat. The key thing when buying your protein is don’t be afraid of the fattier cuts. Another bonus is they are usually cheaper as well.
Check the nutrition information and ingredients on products like sausage to ensure they are keto-friendly.
Best Keto Protein Choices
- Eggs – Eggs are a great keto option. We love eggs and aspire to have our own chickens one day. Wouldn’t that be fun? Dan loves a fried egg for breakfast and when we eat out for breakfast we love to have poached eggs. The most important thing with eggs is to eat both the yolk and the white. Please, no egg white omelettes here. The yolk is so nutritious and also full of flavour.
- Chicken – When choosing chicken, the wings and the thighs with the skin on are excellent keto options. We love this chicken and mushroom dinner using chicken thighs and we also love to roast a whole chicken in the oven.
- Beef – We have always enjoyed eye fillet, but since starting our keto journey we have began looking for the fattier cuts of beef. We have used osso bucco, short ribs, porterhouse and scotch fillet. One of our favourite beef dishes is beef stroganoff. Check out how we cooked all of the different cuts in the beef box we ordered from Mount Moriac Beef
- Pork – The best fattier cut of pork is pork belly. What’s not to love about pork crackling and the delicious fat that is in the pork belly. We love to have this on a Sunday night with some kim chi.
- Fish – We have never been big fish eaters, but we do enjoy having canned tuna with some mayo for lunch and also love keto tuna casserole. Other good fish options are salmon, white fish and shrimp.
- Cured Meats – Ham, salami, chorizo, bacon, pancetta. Some people think keto is all about the bacon. Whilst we do love bacon, we also enjoy other cured meats. We love to add chorizo to our chilli and to make salami crackers to have with dips.
Fruit & Vegetables
When looking for keto friendly vegetables and fruits there are some things that are great ketogenic options and some fruits and vegetables that you will want to avoid.
The general rule is that vegetables that grow above the ground are the best options when eating low carb. Leafy greens are the lowest carb choice, like baby spinach and rocket (or Arugula for our US friends). Avoid starchy vegetables like potato, sweet potato, carrots and corn.
Fruits are going to be limited to mainly a handful of berries. Berries like strawberries, blueberries and raspberries are good in small quantities.
When choosing your fresh produce buy organic where possible. There are some vegetables that are much better to buy organic if you can. Check out the Dirty Dozen and the Clean 15 for some great advice.
Best Keto Fruit and Vegetable Choices
- Salad Greens/Lettuce/Spinach
- Fresh Herbs
- Berries – Strawberries, Blueberries, Raspberries
Sauces & Condiments
The main tip with sauces and condiments is that you will need to be vigilant with checking the ingredients and nutritional panel for these. Many are full of sugar and carbs, but you will sometimes be rewarded for checking and find a product that will fit your macros.
The great thing about sauces and condiments is that they increase the flavour of your food. Apple cider vinegar, mustard and mayo is great to use in dressings and on salads. Be aware that some of the sugar free sauces will be using sweeteners that may not agree with you.
Best Keto Sauce and Condiment Choices
- Apple Cider Vingear (ACV)
- Worcestershire Sauce
- Fish Sauce
- Tabasco/Hot Sauce
- Reduced Sugar Tomato Sauce
- Tomato Passata/Puree
- Tomato Paste
- Sugar free Maple Syrup
- Zest Byron Bay Recipe Bases
Once you start to dive deep into keto blogs and pinterest you will discover that someone has made a keto version of almost all of your favourite foods. Some of our favourites include keto pizza, keto brownies and keto cheesecake.
The ingredients listed below are some of the favourite substitutes used to create these delicious keto versions. Some of these baked goods are even better than the original. Well, pretty close anyway.
Best Keto Baking Choices
- Sukrin Sweetener (Stevia, Erythritol, Xylitol)
- Baking Powder
- Baking Soda
- Almond Meal
- Coconut Flour
- Xantham Gum
- Cacao Butter
- Cacao Powder
- Psyllium Husks
- Oat Fibre
- Dark Chocolate
- Vanilla Extract
Nuts and Seeds
Nuts are a good keto snack. When starting your keto journey it is handy to have a handful of nuts with you to snack on if you get hungry. Nut butters are also a really good snack to easily carry around with you. We like to take some with us when travelling, just in case we get hungry and there are no keto options available.
Best Keto Nut and Seed Choices
- Coconut – Shredded/Desiccated/Flaked
- Nuts – Almonds, Pecans, Walnuts, Macadamia, Brazil
- Nut Butters – Coconut, Almond, Macadamia, Peanut
- Nut Milks – Almond, Coconut, Macadamia
- Coconut Cream
- Seeds – Pumpkin, Chia, Sesame, Pine Nuts, Hemp
Herbs and Spices
We love to use herbs and spices to “spice” up our meals. They are a great way to add flavour to any meal. Adding a spice rub to your steak and making up a taco spice mix to add to ground beef are excellent ways of using spices. Don’t be afraid to get creative and have some fun with spices.
Best Keto herbs and Spices Choices
- Himalayan Pink Salt
- Black Pepper
- Ground Ginger
- Onion Powder
- Garlic Powder
- Dried Oregano
- Cumin Powder
- Cayenne Pepper
- Bay Leaves
- Smoked Paprika
- Chilli Powder
- Spice Mixes – Curry Powder, Southwest Seasoning, Pumpkin Spice, Adobo
Other Keto Food Products
These are products that fit the keto banner, but don’t quite fit into any of the other categories. Things like fermented vegetables, drinks, crackers and pork rinds.
- Olives – When choosing olives try and find ones that are not stored on vegetable oil. These ones are in a salt brine.
- Cucumber Pickles
- Essentially Keto Bars
- Aromatic Bitters
- Slendier Konjac Noodles
- Pork Rinds
- Seed Crackers
- Low Carb Bread
- Canned fish – Tuna/Sardines/Salmon
- Bone Broth Concentrate
- MCT Oil Powder
- Collagen Powder
- Sparkling Mineral Water
So there you have it our keto food list. We understand it’s a comprehensive list and we have taken 2 years to build our supplies up. I am sure our essentials keto food list will be slightly different to yours, but that’s the beauty of keto, there are endless options, unlike many other diets that seem very restrictive.
What is on your keto food list that isn’t on ours? We would love to see what we have been missing out on. Make a comment below of the items we are missing out on and we will make sure to give them a go.
Disclosure: The above post may contain affiliate links. We may earn a small commission from purchases made through these links, at no additional cost to you. Everything we recommend on our website are products we use and love. Thank you for supporting Have Butter will Travel and allowing us to share our low carb experiences with you.