Low-Carb Foods
 

Low-Carb Foods – What to Eat

Are you wondering what low carb foods to eat? What do you have for breakfast for example? And what can you have instead of pasta or bread?

It’s possible to eat great, amazing food until you are satisfied… and still lose weight. On this page you can learn how to do it.

Here are the contents, choose a section or just keep reading below for all of it.

Food Lists

Specific Low-Carb Guides

Eat This, Not That Guides


Video Course

How to Eat LCHF Video Course

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Eat All You Like

  • Meat: Any type, including beef, pork, game meat, chicken, etc. Feel free to eat the fat on the meat as well as the skin on the chicken. If possible try to choose organic or grass fed meat.
  • Fish and shellfish: All kinds: Fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel or herring are great. Avoid breading.
  • Eggs: All kinds: Boiled, fried, omelettes, etc. Preferably organic eggs.
  • Natural fat, high-fat sauces: Using butter and cream for cooking can make your food taste better and make you feel more satiated. Try a Béarnaise or Hollandaise sauce, check the ingredients or make it yourself. Coconut oil and olive oil are also good options.
  • Vegetables that grow above ground: All kinds of cabbage, such as cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage and Brussels sprouts. Asparagus, zucchini, eggplant, olives, spinach, mushrooms, cucumber, lettuce, avocado, onions, peppers, tomatoes etc. Learn more
  • Dairy products: Always select full-fat options like real butter, cream (40% fat), sour cream, Greek/Turkish yogurt and high-fat cheeses. Be careful with regular milk and skim milk as they contain a lot of milk sugar. Avoid flavored, sugary and low-fat products.
  • Nuts: Great for a TV treat instead of candy (ideally in moderation). Learn more
  • Berries: Okay in moderation, if you are not a super strict or sensitive. Great with whipped cream.


Low carb foods

Read the nutrition label in the grocery store.
No more than 5% of carbohydrates for a food is a good rule of thumb.

LCHF-mat2-vibr-ffffff-648

Drink on Most Days

  • Water
  • Coffee: Try it with full-fat cream
  • Tea

 
View shopping list for beginners



For Special Occasions

You decide when the time is right. Your weight loss may slow down a bit.

  • Alcohol: Dry wine (regular red or dry white wine), whisky, brandy, vodka and cocktails without sugar.
  • Dark chocolate: Above 70% cocoa, preferably just a bit.



 

Avoid If You Can

  • Sugar: The worst. Soft drinks, candy, juice, sports drinks, chocolate, cakes, buns, pastries, ice cream, breakfast cereals. Preferably avoid sweeteners as well.
  • Starch: Bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, French fries, potato chips, porridge, muesli and so on. Wholegrain products are just less bad. Legumes, such as beans and lentils, are high in carbs. Moderate amounts of root vegetables may be OK (unless you’re eating extremely low carb).
  • Margarine: Industrially imitated butter with unnaturally high content of omega-6 fat. Has no health benefits, tastes bad. Statistically linked to asthma, allergies and other inflammatory diseases.
  • Beer: Liquid bread. Full of rapidly absorbed carbs, unfortunately.
  • Fruit: Very sweet, lots of sugar. Eat once in a while. Treat fruit as a natural form of candy. Learn more

badfood
 
View list of things to clean out from your pantry
 

Watch Out for
Fake Low-Carb Products

Be very skeptical of special “low-carb” products, such as pasta or chocolate. Unfortunately these products usually work poorly. They have prevented weight loss for loads of people. They’re commonly full of carbs once you see through the creative marketing.

Bad FoodThere are dozens of companies trying to trick you into buying their “low carb” junk food, full of starch, sugar alcohols, flour, sweeteners and strange additives.

One of the largest such companies was recently fined 8 million dollars for shamelessly lying about the carb content of their products.

Two simple rules to avoid this junk:

  • Don’t eat “low carb” versions of high carb stuff, like cookies, bars, chocolate, bread, pasta or ice cream – unless you are SURE of the ingredients (perhaps from making it yourself).
  • Avoid products with the words “net carbs” on them. That’s usually just a way to fool you.

Read more about fake low-carb products
 
 

Eat Real Food


LCHF Foods

Focus on eating good quality, minimally processed real food. Ideally the food you buy shouldn’t even have a list of ingredients (or it should be very short).
 

How Low Carb is Low Carb?

It’s called Low Carb, not No Carb. So how much carbs can you eat in a day?

The answer is that it depends. But as a rough guide stay under 20 grams per day for maximum effect, and everyone who wants some benefits of low-carb eating (like effortless weight loss) should probably aim for at least staying under 100 grams of carbs per day.

Here are three examples of how a low-carb meal can look, depending on how many carbs you eat per day:

Learn about how many carbs can be appropriate for you
 


 

Low Carb Needs to be High Fat

A proper low-carb diet always means you get a lot more energy from natural fat (like butter or olive oil, etc.).

The body has two main sources of energy: carbs and fats. Take away most of the carbs and the body switches to burning fat for energy. This can come from your fat stores or the fat in your food.

This is why some smart people call low-carb diets “LCHF” (Low Carb, High Fat).

How much fat should you eat? As much as you need to feel satisfied. Whatever else the body burns it will take from your fat stores, as you lose weight. Eat much more fat than you need to feel great and it will slow down your fat loss. Eat too little fat and you’ll feel tired and hungry.

So how much fat should you eat? As much as you need to feel satisfied and great. Eat when you are hungry. Stop when you are satisfied. Then repeat. It’s that simple.

Learn more about the benefits of eating fat until satisfied

 
 






Low-Carb Breakfasts


Skaldeman omelet

Breakfast is a great time to eat low carb. Who doesn’t love eggs & bacon? And there are so many more options – delicious, fast or both.

Here are 4 + 4 of our low-carb breakfast favorites, followed by even more fantastic options. Click the images below for the full recipes.
 

Four super simple egg breakfasts

Classic Bacon & EggsClassic Bacon & Eggs4.6 out of 5 stars5 star76%4 star13%3 star5%2 star2%1 star2%1748 ratings1748 Strict low carbStrict low carbFat73%Protein26%Carbs1%0 g carbs / serving Beginner 12 m0 minutes preparation12 minutes cooking timeBoiled eggsBoiled eggs4.3 out of 5 stars5 star67%4 star13%3 star10%2 star2%1 star5%283 ratings283 Strict low carbStrict low carbFat72%Protein27%Carbs1%1 g carbs / serving Beginner 6 m0 minutes preparation6 minutes cooking time

OmeletOmelet4.5 out of 5 stars5 star72%4 star13%3 star8%2 star4%1 star2%759 ratings759 Ketogenic low carbKetogenic low carbFat75%Protein23%Carbs2%2 g carbs / serving Easy 5 + 10 m5 minutes preparation10 minutes cooking timeScrambled EggsScrambled Eggs4.4 out of 5 stars5 star69%4 star16%3 star7%2 star3%1 star3%856 ratings856 Ketogenic low carbKetogenic low carbFat67%Protein24%Carbs1%1 g carbs / serving Easy 2 m0 minutes preparation2 minutes cooking time


 

Four more great options

Bacon Lettuce and Tomato with Oopsie BreadBacon Lettuce and Tomato with Oopsie Bread4.6 out of 5 stars5 star74%4 star14%3 star7%2 star2%1 star1%2390 ratings2390 Ketogenic low carbKetogenic low carbFat86%Protein11%Carbs2%2 g carbs / serving Easy 5 + 10 m5 minutes preparation10 minutes cooking timeCauliflower Hash BrownsCauliflower Hash Browns4.6 out of 5 stars5 star74%4 star14%3 star6%2 star2%1 star2%974 ratings974 Moderate low carbModerate low carbFat78%Protein11%Carbs9%1 g carbs / serving Medium 5 + 15 m5 minutes preparation15 minutes cooking time

LCHF PancakesLCHF Pancakes4.5 out of 5 stars5 star70%4 star15%3 star8%2 star3%1 star2%1651 ratings1651 Moderate low carbModerate low carbFat76%Protein18%Carbs6%10 g carbs / serving Easy 5 + 20 m5 minutes preparation20 minutes cooking timeLow-Carb FrittataLow-Carb Frittata4.6 out of 5 stars5 star77%4 star12%3 star6%2 star2%1 star2%1110 ratings1110 Ketogenic low carbKetogenic low carbFat79%Protein19%Carbs2%3 g carbs / serving Easy 5 + 35 m5 minutes preparation35 minutes cooking time


 

More low-carb breakfasts

  • Leftovers from last night’s dinner
  • Coffee with cream
  • A can of mackerel and boiled eggs
  • Avocado, salmon and sour cream
  • Cheese with butter
  • Boiled eggs mashed with butter, chopped chives, salt and pepper
  • A piece of brie cheese and some ham or salami (or a full breakfast tapas plate)
  • High-fat yoghurt with nuts and seeds (and maybe berries)

All Low-Carb Breakfasts

 

The no breakfast option

plateDo you NEED breakfast on a low-carb diet? No.

On a low-carb, high-fat diet you’re likely not as hungry and you don’t need to eat as often. Skipping breakfast is perfectly fine if you’re not hungry. Perhaps you’ll only have a cup of coffee.

In fact skipping breakfast is a popular version of intermittent fasting. This can really speed up weight loss… and type 2 diabetes reversal. As a bonus you’ll save time and money.

Are you feeling brave enough to skip breakfast?

Read more about Intermittent Fasting





 
 

Low-Carb Lunches and Dinners


 
Low-Carb Lunch and Dinner

Suggestions for low-carb lunches and dinners:

  • Meat, fish or chicken dishes with vegetables and a rich full-fat sauce. There are many alternatives to potatoes, such as mashed cauliflower.
  • Stews, soups or casseroles with low-carb ingredients.
  • You can use most recipes in cookbooks if you avoid the carbohydrate-rich ingredients. It’s often a good idea to add fat (e.g. butter, cream) to the recipe. Or check out our full low-carb recipe site.
  • Drink water with your meal or (occasionally) a glass of wine.

 

Recipes

Low-Carb PizzaLow-Carb Pizza4.4 out of 5 stars5 star66%4 star17%3 star10%2 star3%1 star1%2062 ratings2062 Strict low carbStrict low carbFat70%Protein27%Carbs3%6 g carbs / serving Easy 5 + 25 m5 minutes preparation25 minutes cooking timeHamburger Patties with Creamy Tomato SauceHamburger Patties with Creamy Tomato Sauce4.5 out of 5 stars5 star70%4 star17%3 star6%2 star2%1 star2%1394 ratings1394 Ketogenic low carbKetogenic low carbFat75%Protein24%Carbs1%2 g carbs / serving Easy 20 + 15 m20 minutes preparation15 minutes cooking time

Pesto Chicken Casserole with Feta Cheese and OlivesPesto Chicken Casserole with Feta Cheese and Olives4.4 out of 5 stars5 star68%4 star15%3 star10%2 star4%1 star1%1673 ratings1673 Ketogenic low carbKetogenic low carbFat76%Protein21%Carbs3%7 g carbs / serving Medium 15 + 30 m15 minutes preparation30 minutes cooking timeSalmon Tandoori with Cucumber SauceSalmon Tandoori with Cucumber Sauce4.2 out of 5 stars5 star61%4 star16%3 star9%2 star7%1 star4%152 ratings152 Ketogenic low carbKetogenic low carbFat84%Protein13%Carbs3%8 g carbs / serving Easy 5 + 20 m5 minutes preparation20 minutes cooking time

All Low-Carb Meals


 

Instead of potatoes, rice and pasta

There are many ways to replace potatoes, pasta and rice that result in far fewer carbs. Here are four of the most popular options.

Low-Carb Cauliflower MashLow-Carb Cauliflower Mash4.3 out of 5 stars5 star65%4 star15%3 star10%2 star3%1 star4%652 ratings652 Moderate low carbModerate low carbFat78%Protein15%Carbs7%6 g carbs / serving Easy 10 + 5 m10 minutes preparation5 minutes cooking timeCauliflower Rice – An Essential LCHF Side DishCauliflower Rice – An Essential LCHF Side Dish4.4 out of 5 stars5 star64%4 star17%3 star10%2 star6%1 star1%548 ratings548 Moderate low carbModerate low carbFat83%Protein4%Carbs10%5 g carbs / serving Easy 5 + 15 m5 minutes preparation15 minutes cooking time

Butter-Fried Green CabbageButter-Fried Green Cabbage4.5 out of 5 stars5 star72%4 star13%3 star7%2 star3%1 star2%761 ratings761 Liberal low carbLiberal low carbFat80%Protein5%Carbs12%7 g carbs / serving Easy 5 + 15 m5 minutes preparation15 minutes cooking timeBroccoli and Cauliflower in Cheese – A Great Low-Carb Side DishBroccoli and Cauliflower in Cheese – A Great Low-Carb Side Dish4.4 out of 5 stars5 star67%4 star16%3 star9%2 star4%1 star1%402 ratings402 Moderate low carbModerate low carbFat72%Protein19%Carbs9%8 g carbs / serving Easy 5 + 12 m5 minutes preparation12 minutes cooking time

All Low-Carb Side Dishes

 

Other simple sides

  • Salads made from above-ground vegetables, perhaps with some kind of cheese. Try out different kinds.
  • Boiled broccoli, cauliflower or Brussels sprouts.
  • Vegetables au gratin: Fry squash, aubergine and fennel (or other vegetables you like) in butter. Add salt and pepper. Put in baking dish and add grated cheese. Bake at 225° C (450° F) until the cheese melts and turns golden.
  • Vegetables stewed in cream, e.g. cabbage or spinach.
  • Avocado
  • Vegetable spaghetti can be used instead of pasta. Learn how to make it

All Low-Carb Side Dishes
 

 

Dining out or meals with friends

Dining Out

  • Restaurants: Usually not a big problem. You can ask to have potatoes/fries switched for a salad. Ask for extra butter.
  • Fast food: Doner kebab can be a decent option (avoid the bread). At hamburger chains the hamburgers are usually the least bad option. Avoid soft drinks and fries, obviously. Drink water. Pizza toppings are usually OK, and the stricter you are the less of the pizza crust you will eat.
  • Nuts or cheese are good “emergency food” when there are no other adequate options to be found.
  • If you eat strictly everyday it’s less of a problem to make a few exceptions when you are invited out. If you’re not sure what will be served you can eat something at home before you leave.

 


 



 

Low-Carb Snacks and Desserts

On a low-carbohydrate diet with more fat and a bit more protein you will probably not need to eat as often. Don’t be surprised if you no longer need to snack. Many people do well on two or three meals per day.

If you always get hungry between meals you’re probably not eating enough fat. Don’t fear fat. Eat more fat until you feel satisfied.

Here are quick options if you want to eat something right away:

  • Rolled-up cheese or ham with a vegetable (some people even spread butter on cheese)
  • A piece of cheese
  • A boiled egg from the refrigerator
  • Canned mackerel in tomato sauce
  • Babybel cheese

Snacks

Olives and nuts may replace potato chips as snacks. Here are more options:

  • Mixed nuts Learn more
  • Sausage: Cut it in pieces, add a piece of cheese and stick a toothpick through them.
  • Vegetables with dip, Try cucumber sticks, red, yellow or green peppers, cauliflower, etc.
  • Cream cheese rolls: Roll some cream cheese in a piece of salami, prosciutto/cold cuts or a long slice of cucumber.
  • Olives
  • Parmesan cheese crisps: On a baking tray, form small piles of grated Parmesan cheese. Heat in oven at 225°C (450°F). Let them melt and get a nice color (be careful – they burn easily). Serve as chips, perhaps with some dip.

Recipes

Low-Carb Pancakes with Berries and Whipped CreamLow-Carb Pancakes with Berries and Whipped Cream4.5 out of 5 stars5 star70%4 star15%3 star8%2 star3%1 star2%1651 ratings1651 Moderate low carbModerate low carbFat76%Protein18%Carbs6%10 g carbs / serving Easy 5 + 20 m5 minutes preparation20 minutes cooking timeSnack TapasSnack Tapas4.4 out of 5 stars5 star69%4 star14%3 star8%2 star5%1 star1%219 ratings219 Ketogenic low carbKetogenic low carbFat76%Protein20%Carbs3%4 g carbs / serving Easy 10 m10 minutes preparation0 minutes cooking time
Cheese PuffsCheese Puffs4.3 out of 5 stars5 star65%4 star15%3 star10%2 star6%1 star2%256 ratings256 Ketogenic low carbKetogenic low carbFat80%Protein18%Carbs2%0 g carbs / serving Easy 1 + 10 m1 minute preparation10 minutes cooking timeLow-Carb Coconut and Chocolate MousseLow-Carb Coconut and Chocolate Mousse4.2 out of 5 stars5 star58%4 star18%3 star12%2 star6%1 star4%322 ratings322 Liberal low carbLiberal low carbFat78%Protein6%Carbs16%16 g carbs / serving Medium 10 + 10 m10 minutes preparation10 minutes cooking time

All Low-Carb Snacks and Desserts

Note

Please note that eating when you are not hungry – e.g. when snacking if front of the TV – will slow down weight loss. The options above are simply less bad for your weight than regular high carb snacks.
 
Learn more about the benefits of only eating when hungry
 



 
 


 

Low-Carb Bread

Low-Carb Bread

 
 



 

 

 



 

More Recipes

All Low-Carb Recipes

 



 

Next

Keep reading about How Low Carb Works

 



 

Improve this page

Do you have any suggestion – big or small – to improve this page?
Anything that you’d like added or changed?
 
Comment below or e-mail me at andreas@dietdoctor.com.

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68 Comments

  1. rafeef
    i have been doing it but my weight kind of got stuck and i'm not losing more weight what should i do ?
    Reply: #52
  2. Hi Rafeef!

    Read our 18 best tips for weight-loss here:
    http://www.dietdoctor.com/how-to-lose-weight

    Good luck! :)

    i have been doing it but my weight kind of got stuck and i'm not losing more weight what should i do ?

  3. Kim McG
    I am happy to have found this site as I have recently realized that for me LCHF needs to be a permanent shift in my lifestyle, not a temporary weight loss strategy. What I am wondering is whether this eating style is safe for my children. I have a 14 year old daughter and a 12 year old son. Neither of them are naturally thin and I see them being drawn to high carbohydrate foods like addicts. I would like to steer them in this direction, but I am a little unsure Ann's am concerned that their pediatrician might not be well informed about this topic. Most doctors still have the low fat mindset. I would appreciate your feedback. Thanks
  4. Gail
    I'm new to all of this but was wondering if Jim #23 ever got an answer to his question? I am in the same boat with the cholesterol and heart...
  5. Michael
    Hello, I started on the LCHF diet. One of the big concerns I have is the content of trans fat on many products (e.g. cheese, creams). Could you please comment on the effect of trans fat as it relates to the LCHF diet? Thank you
  6. Asdaa Kotani
    i would highly appreciate some feedback here, i follow your diet and wanted to know if something has carbs but it is neither fiber or sugar then what would it be ?
    example Garlic has 45g of Carbs but only 3g in fiber and 1g in sugar so what is the rest and would t be healthy then.

    same apples for Oysters?

  7. FTe
    Why this generalization with beers?
    Beer: Liquid bread. Full of rapidly absorbed carbs, unfortunately.

    There are many of beers available today with low carbs. E.g. in Finland Koff Lite contains < 0,5 g/100 ml. Based on that I would say that it is quite ideal beverage for low carb people.

    Reply: #58
  8. Hi FTe!

    Have you read this article?
    http://www.dietdoctor.com/low-carb/alcohol

    :)

  9. KAREN
    i have been on LCHF for 6 months now but I still do not understand how to calculate my Macros. Can you provide a video on this subject to help me out? right now, I eat lots of fat and moderate protein and under 10 grams of carbs.
  10. FTe
    Hi Peter,

    Yes, this is actually supporting my thoughts. The lightest beers contain ~ 1,7 g/0,33 bottle. What comes to alcohol as such I understand the point but I have faced a lot of writings where e.g. vodka and other spirits have been interpreted as good but beer is disaster.

    Reply: #61
  11. Hi Fte!

    You could question if alcohol is good at all. ;-)

    In my view if you are moderate drinker then this is not a big issue, if you choose a dry wine, spirits (without sugar) or beer with a low amount of carbs. If you drink more than a moderate drinker then perhaps that is a bigger problem than the carbs you are consuming. ... so I agree with you things must be put into the right context.

  12. 1 comment removed
  13. Elizabeth
    What about fruit like berries? For a sweet
    Dessert and with whip cream ? Or chocolate sugar free pudding?
  14. Kristoffer Thorirsson
    Hi.

    This post seems to be a godsend! However, what I read here seems to contradict information elsewhere for someone who suffers from (NAFLD).

    I don't have an issue with being strict, I just need to know what foods to eat and what foods not to eat.

  15. ll
    what about brown bread??
    Reply: #67
  16. mary
    I've tried so many diets that I can't even remember them all. This weight loss diet program just surprised you with their results, enticing exercise and activity that doesn't bored at all. It is simple and easy to follow and it works. The science behind it makes you feel safe and supported by facts not just hype and sales jargon. I highly recommend this diet over all the others claiming to be the best on the market right now.The amazing part is I've lost 37lbs of my stomach fat on this diet plan. I can't urge you enough to try it out for yourself.

    http://diet-today-web.blogspot.com/2016/07/what-is-th2-fodmap-diet.html

  17. Johan
    what about brown bread??

    No! :)

  18. Carol
    I have a high sugar reading of 6.3 in June last December it was 6.1, I have to go for another blood test in December, the normal reading is 6.0 I live in Spain and I wondered if the readings are the same in the UK? I have lost 5kgs in 7 weeks by cutting out cakes chocolate icecream all sweet stuff and sugary drinks etc.
    Can I eat a little bread ( brown) I only eat ki Wi fruit, a apple or pear wich I was told to. She said a small potatoe, no rice no pasta, I feel so much better. now I have lost my weight with my healthy diet.
    I also drink 2 litres of water a day, herbal infusions but I don't drink Alcohol.
    Please could you give me some advise please about what cars to eat.
    I go for another blood test in December, my Gp said if the reading goes up to 6.5 I will have to go on medication.
    Thankyou Carol.
  19. Donna
    When calculating our carbs are we to count total carbs or net carbs (total minus fiber)? For example: 1/2 avocado = 6g carbs 5g fiber. So do we consider 1/2 avocado 6g or 1g carbs? I'm loving the LCHF lifestyle. Feel great but not really losing much weight and wonder if I am miscalculating my carbs. Thank you!
    Reply: #70
  20. Hi Donna!

    We do not count the fiber.

    When calculating our carbs are we to count total carbs or net carbs (total minus fiber)? For example: 1/2 avocado = 6g carbs 5g fiber. So do we consider 1/2 avocado 6g or 1g carbs? I'm loving the LCHF lifestyle. Feel great but not really losing much weight and wonder if I am miscalculating my carbs. Thank you!

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