Just started following a low carb diet and looking for some keto friendly spices? In this post we’ll share all the ones you can have and enjoy when on a ketogenic lifestyle
There are a few spices that can add an extra kick to your low carb meals and help you spice things up in the kitchen (sorry for the pun!). I have always been a huge fan of spicy food and love when my dishes have extra flavor from these spices.
These spices will not only give you more flavor, they also help in weight loss! Some of the most popular options include chili powder, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, ginger root and many more. Try them out for yourself!
What is a keto diet
The ketogenic diet is a low carbohydrate and high fat diet that has become popular in recent years.
Basically you heavily restrict carbs, have a moderate protein intake and opt for higher fat meals. This in turn makes your body run on ketones instead of glucose.
The basic spices everyone on keto should have on their pantry
The great thing about spices spices and seasonings in general is that they are a great way of adding flavor and a kick to keto meals.
If you are looking for the most have keto friendly spices this is it.
The top spices everyone should have stocked on their pantry if they are following a low carb diet are:
- Onion powder
- Garlic powder
These 5 spices are great for savory dishes as well as for desserts. If you are just getting started and are stocking your pantry this list is where you should be starting from.
Other popular low carb and keto friendly spices and herbs
If your kitchen is already stocked up with salt, pepper, onion and garlic powder and cinnamon and you are ready to explore more keto spices then you can get more creative.
Single herbs and spices are almost always low carb and almost all have zero carbs. I made a list with some of the most popular dried herbs and spices that are a great addition to any kitchen.
- Black pepper
- Ground mustard
Looking for more spice inspiration? Check this post with the best Fall spices.
Low carb liquid seasonings
Now that you have some low carb dry herbs and spices that make your ketogenic meals more fun is time to stock up on some liquid seasonings. I love to use soy sauce to make Asian inspired dishes and vinegars are also a must on my pantry.
Vinegars add an interesting acidic note to most dishes and make them shine so I highly advise you get some on your next trip to the supermarket. If I had to pick my favorite vinegars I would probably choose apple cider vinegar (because ACV is da bomb) and balsamic vinegar.
- Soy sauce
- Apple cider vinegar
- Balsamic vinegar
- White wine vinegar
- Rice vinegar
- Pickle juice
- Lime juice
Oils and fats
A good herbs, spice and seasonings cabinets should also include some good quality olive oils. Not only they are great for cooking but they are also great to season salads.
Remember that on a keto diet you are trying to bump up for fat intake while reducing the carbs. One of the ways you can bump up your fat intake is by adding more good quality oils to your meals. Bulletproof coffee is a great example of this. A turmeric latte with coconut oil it’s also another great example.
- Avocado oil
- Coconut oil
- MCT oil
- Olive oil
- Macadamia nut oil
When picking oils for your keto spice cabinet make sure you are staying away from low quality vegetable oils such as corn and canola.
Seasoning salts to have on a regular basis
Seasoning salts are a great way to add more flavor and reduce the number of dry herbs and spices you’ll need to purchase. This was my secret when I had a tiny kitchen with almost no pantry space. Seasoning salts are also one of my favorite keto friendly spices.
As always, make sure to read the label before purchasing so you are sure your seasoning salt only has salt + spices and no other weird things.
My favorite seasoning salts are:
- Garlic salt
- Onion salt
- Lemon pepper salt (SO GOOD!)
- Cilantro salt
Spice mixes: Are they keto?
The short answer is: It’ depends.
Some seasoning blends are keto-friendly seasonings and are made using only dry herbs and seasonings. However other spice blends are made with sugar or include in the mix some anti-caking agents, additives and corn starch.
If you want to use some store-bought spice mix or rub I highly advice you read the ingredients and check the nutritional information to make sure they are working with your nutritional goals.
But if you love cooking mixes remember you can whip up your own seasonings in almost no time and with almost no effort.
And what about keto taco seasoning? Can it be low carb
In my experience taco meat spice mix is one of the most difficult ones to purchase. The most popular brands have cornstarch and brown sugar added to the mix which brings their carbs up. I also hate when something that should be keto has hidden carbs in the mix.
However, it’s a spice mix that’s SO easy to make at home and you can make sure it’s free of added sugars.
How to make a taco meat seasoning that’s low carb
- 4 Tbsp chili powder
- 2 Tbsp cumin
- 2 Tbsp table salt
- 2 Tbsp paprika
- 1 Tbsp pepper
- 1 Tsp oregano
- 1 Tsp onion powder
- 1 Tsp garlic powder
- 1 Tsp chili powder
Place all the ingredients in a mason jar and shake until combined and you are all set. You can store your homemade taco seasoning in your pantry for up to 3 months and have it ready to last minute keto tacos.
What about everything but the bagel seasoning?
Great you ask! This famous Trader Joes seasoning blend is one of my favorites to have on a keto diet. It has:
- Sesame seeds
- Dried garlic
- Dried onion
- Poppy seeds
- Sea salt flakes
And that’s it. It’s not expensive at all and while not available at your local grocery store it’s also fairly easy to find.
I love this seasoning when I make homemade keto bagels and also on chicken recipes and to add some fun kick to salads.
Where to buy the best spice, herbs, oils, salts and dry rubs
The great thing about spices is that you can find them at almost all grocery stores and also on Amazon.
When possible I like to experiment with Trader Joes (looking at you everything but the bagel seasoning) and also with Whole Foods and even my local farmers market.
Make sure the spices you are purchasing are fresh and from organic sources to get the most out of their nutritional benefits.
Remember that the perfect seasoning doesn’t exists and that what’s most important is that you play up with the spices, dry rubs and herbs you already love to create some magic keto meals.
Spices are honestly the best way to make healthy food taste even more amazing and boost their health benefits. As always make sure to always double check the nutrition label to ensure the ingredients are clean and work for you.