Wednesday, April 9, 2014

4 Quick & Delicious Low-Carb Snacks for Keto Dieters

4 Simple Low-Carb Snack Ideas for the Ketogenic Diet

Blue Diamond Habanero BBQ Almonds
Habanero BBQ almonds: Nuts of the Gods.
Laziness Rating: 10/10
Delicious Rating: 5 stars based on 1 review

Calories: Varies
Net Carbs: Under 5g each
Recipe Type: Snack
Prep Time: 01 min

You'll rarely find recipes with a coveted 10/10 laziness rating. Pretty much every meal requires at least a little bit of preparation. But today, we've hit a new low. If you're like me, you probably hate chopping, mixing, and stirring ingredientsEspecially when all the food just ends up in your stomach in a matter of minutes anyway. But since the following foods are snacks, rather than actual recipes, they require nothing of youno effort, time, or preparation. Congrats, you've officially reached the pinnacle of gastronomic apathy. Here are 4 delicious and super-lazy snack ideas that have been essential during my last 12 months (and -62 lbs) on the ketogenic diet.

1. Blue Diamond BOLD Flavored Almonds

Habanero BBQ almonds bag
Sometimes I pour several gallons
in a tub & just swim with them.
Let me start by saying that I find plain almonds to be disgusting. They're bland and have a weird texture. So if you're like me, you may have dismissed the idea of snacking on almonds long ago. But I'm here to tell you that the BOLD flavored almonds from Blue Diamond are a fucking culinary masterpiece.

I buy these almonds every week by the pound (literally 16oz bags) and eating them has become the highlight of my day. Each almond is covered liberally with flavored dust that sticks to your fingers when you eat them. They sort of remind me of those flavored pretzel pieces from Snyder's; they're just as tasty, except low carb, high fat, and high fiber.

Blue Diamond apparently offers a bunch of different flavors, which is great if you want to mix up your snacks a bit. Try them all until you find your favorites. I highly recommend the Habanero BBQ, Jalapeno Smokehouse, and Wasabi & Soy Sauce flavors. Each serving is 28 nuts (a decent handful) and has 23 net carbs, depending on the flavor:
  • Habanero BBQ | Jalapeno Smokehouse170 cal; 15g fat; 6g protein; 2g (net) carbs
  • Wasabi & Soy Sauce | Honey Dijon170 cal; 15g fat; 6g protein; 3g (net) carbs
Just be careful not to devour too many in one sitting. The calories and net carbs can add-up very very quickly (170 calories x 6 handfuls = destroying your daily MFP goals). But trust me when I say they're worth every single calorie and carb inside them. You can find these in various sizes and flavors at most grocery and convenience stores. But the bulk sizes are a much better value than the cans. You should just buy the 1lb bags directly from Amazon.

Blue Diamond Almond Flavors
BOLD almonds - try to catch them all. I've still never spotted the Honey Dijon flavor in the wild.

2. Cheese Sticks, Cheese Blocks, Cheese Slices, & Cheese Spreads

Pepper Jack Cheese
Delicious Pepper Jack Cheese
Seriously, cheese has got to be one of the easiest, tastiest, and most ubiquitous low-carb/high-fat foods on the planet. Most cheeses have nearly zero carbs and the high fat content makes it a perfect snack for staving off hunger during the day.

And while cheese should ideally be stored in a fridge, it can actually be kept at room temperature for days without spoiling. Though it may get a little "sweaty" after a while. That makes it perfect for work, day-trips, or even traveling overnight. Just toss some cheese in your purse, clutch, backpack (or fanny pack, if that's your thing) and unwrap when you're ready. Or if you forgot to pack a low-carb snack, just stop by any convenience store or gas station to pick some up. It's almost guaranteed they'll have some mozzarella or cheddar cheese in the coolers. Jackpot.

Some of my favorite cheese variations are:

3. Quest Protein Bars

Quest Chocolate Brownie Nutrition Facts
Quest Chocolate Brownie Label
Quest Bars are a fan-favorite with members of the /r/keto community and keto diet Facebook groups. They're high in protein and very high in fiber. In fact, looking at the label for the first time may scare you a bit. The Chocolate Brownie Quest Bar, for instance, has 24g of carbohydrates. But luckily, 19g of those 24g come from dietary fiber. That means it only has 5g of net carbs. Nice.

(Total Carbs  Dietary Fiber = Net Carbs)

The Quest Bars range from 3-5g of net carbohydrates. Some of them also contain sugar alcohols like Erythritol (a kind of calorie-free sweetener). Apparently Erythritol is a better alternative to sugar than other sugar alcohols because of how it's digested. Some bars are also sweetened with Stevia, Sucralose, or Luo Han Guo. Still, all of these are better ketogenic-friendly alternatives than natural sugar. But be wary; some dieters have found sugar alcohols will kick them out of ketosis. So monitor yourself closely until you know for sure. Definitely give them a try - you can buy a ton of different flavors online.

Chocolate Brownie Quest Bar
Chocolate Brownie Quest Protein Bar - 5 Net Carbs

4. Pork Rinds (Seriously)

Pork rinds bag
Get Your Pig Skins
Pork rinds are slices of pig skin, deep fried in lard. I agree that the description doesn't sound too appetizing. And while I haven't yet had the pleasure of snacking on them myself, many other keto dieters absolutely rave about them. But I guess it would make sense; any snack related to bacon must also be delicious, right? Frito-Lay sells the Baken-Ets brand of fried pork rinds and the macros do fit the bill for a great low-carb snack. They also say "Chicharrones" on the label. Not sure what that means.
These pork rinds won't please those looking for raw/unprocessed snacks, but they definitely qualify as lazy and low-carb. So if you can get past the actual idea of pork rinds, they're a super convenient snacking option for anyone on a ketogenic or low-carb diet. Too lazy to go to the grocery store? You can buy a 6 pack directly from Amazon.

Got your own favorite low-carb or high-fat snacks? Perfect. Share them in the comments. There will be a round 2 of this post coming soon.

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  1. Dip those pork rinds in sour cream or guacamole. Heaven.

    1. Great idea! I'll definitely try that out.

    2. the spicy baconettes with a big dollop of sour cream.....OMG!!!! I have to limit myself to 1 serving which is 9 pieces with about 2 Tblsp sour cream. The macros are 10g fat, 8g protein, 1g carb.

  2. Living in Almond Country has its advantages. One is the ability to drive to the factory and buy the stuff by the case.

    1. Super jealous about that. You should sign up to beta test new flavors!

  3. I like pork rinds on occasion. The hot and spicy version is easier to stomach. Also, 'chicharrones' is just Spanish for 'pork rinds'. :) Thanks for the article!

    1. Thanks for the info; my Spanish is rusty :) Glad you enjoyed the post!

  4. Wow those almonds are AWESOME. Only tried coconut & wasabi/sou so far but will try all of them. Great snack

    1. Agreed! I think you'll definitely enjoy the Habanero and Jalapeno as well!

  5. I love Pork Rinds as a snack but they are dry so even some sour cream with garlic salt makes a delicious dip for them! I also add a little cayenne for a kick!

  6. Thanks for the article. That is awesome that you lost 62 pounds. I am trying to lose 20-40 lbs and just got started this week.

  7. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    1. Lol this made me laugh. An actual military diet is overly processed, ridiculously calorie dense goods wherein one meal contains your entire calorie allowance for the day. Then repeat once or twice more that day.

  8. ChicharrĂ³n is pork rinds in spanish

  9. Also, wouldn't pork rinds make good breading for those who want to fry up some fried chicken?

    1. I used mine, pulverized in my Vitamix,frequently. I also add it to meatloaf instead of oats or bread/Bread crumbs.

    2. also amazing as breading for eggplant when baking in slices for eggplant parm. basically adds a nice smoky crunch to anything you bread with!

  10. I'm so happy I can have pork rinds on the keto diet. I just started it and I love chips, so this is going to be a great substitute. And the almonds is good to know because I like the blue diamond habanero almonds.

  11. Chicarrones + Quac ftw. Favorite snack also almonds


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