Looking for an awesome low-carb recipe to make that'll spice up the dinner menu?
Good news: we’ve got you covered.
Not being able to eat at restaurants and being on the keto diet don't have to be hindrances. With just a few modifications, you can enjoy Italian, Mexican, Chinese, and Indian food right at home.
And you can still eat low-carb!
Below we'll share 12 restaurant-inspired keto international recipes you can make in your own kitchen.
Growing Popularity of Global CuisineFirst, here's a fascinating stat for you: sale of global foods through grocery stores and restaurants is more than $12 billion each year in America .
In this cultural melting pot, it's safe to say that many of us enjoy international foods. We might be up for standard "American" fare like burgers from time to time, but we clearly love our Mexican, Asian, Middle Eastern, and European cuisine as well.
And contrary to popular belief, you can still eat all these foods on a keto diet if you just make a few modifications.
Keto Guidelines for International CuisineKeto dieters aim to eat a maximum of 50 grams of net carbohydrates per day . This means any food you eat, international or not, is going to be higher in fats and proteins.
It'll also help to cook foods that are high in fiber, because that can help offset your carb count (the amount of fiber in food helps determine the number of net carbs).
Here are some guidelines you can follow to make sure you're sticking to your nutrition plan.
Italian CuisineWhat to avoid:
- Bread crumbs
- Tomatoes and tomato sauces (sugar-free)
- Italian sausage
Mexican CuisineWhat to avoid:
- Tortilla chips
- Low-carb tortillas (made with coconut flour)
- Meat (chicken, beef, fish, shrimp)
- Sour cream
- Salsa / Pico de gallo
- Most likely any type of "bowl" recipe (take away the tortilla and rice and the rest of the ingredients should be good!)
- Most types of mexican salads (avoid tortilla strips, corn, and beans)
Chinese CuisineWhat to avoid:
- Rice (substitute riced cauliflower instead; see #10 below)
- Noodles (lo mein, chow fun, mei fun, etc.)
- Scallion pancakes
- Steamed buns
- Appetizers (dumplings, egg rolls, crab rangoons, wontons, etc.)
- Sauces with sugar or corn starch (better to make your own from scratch)
- Anything breaded or battered
- General Tso's chicken (see recipe #9 below)
- Low-carb veggies
- Meats (beef, chicken, pork, seafood)
- Fried wings
Indian CuisineWhat to avoid:
- Most soups
- Grilled dishes (meat and veggie pairings)
Japanese CuisineWhat to avoid:
- Noodles (udon, ramen, etc.)
- Teriyaki sauce
- Barbecued or grilled meats
- Soups (clear broths with veggies; made without noodles)
International Keto RecipesYou don’t need to go to a restaurant to get your fix of Italian, Mexican, Chinese, or Indian cuisine. Instead, send your taste buds around the world by making these keto-friendly international recipes at home.
Skip the breading and up the healthy fats, and this classic Italian dish becomes a keto superstar. There are less than 4 grams of carbs per serving, 39 grams of fat, and almost 30 grams of protein.
Not only is it low-carb, it's also gluten-free and grain-free.
Many people don't cook eggplant because they don't know how to prepare it correctly. That'll change once you try this eggplant lasagna, which uses the firm veggie in place of pasta.
Made with delicious ricotta cheese and Italian sausage, it's the perfect dish to make and eat for days because of how well it reheats.
These chicken enchiladas use low-carb tortillas but you can skip them and enjoy this dish as a casserole to further minimize the carb count. If you're craving Mexican food, this is one of our go-to keto recipes. It's packed with veggies, has 4 grams of fiber per serving, and 26 grams of protein.
4. Taco Salad
Mexican food is pretty easy to modify for the keto diet—just remove the shell or tortilla and you're pretty much good to go.
You'll find all the other classic taco ingredients in this recipe: ground beef, onions, salsa, sour cream, cheese, etc. Simply put them over a bed of romaine lettuce and dig in!
If you're craving something a little sweet and spicy, you're going to love this Thai shrimp curry recipe. It's made with yellow and green curry along with fresh ginger, fish sauce, and soy sauce.
And with only 8 grams of net carbs per serving, you can make a big batch all at once without worrying about going overboard.
6. Pad Thai
Yes, you read it correctly. Maybe not a traditional recipe, but our keto Pad Thai recipe uses Shirataki noodles, which help keep net carbs to only 6 grams per serving. Might sound too good to be true, but it's not!
Kofta is a family of meatball and meatloaf dishes that's popular in Indian and Middle Eastern cuisine. Mint, onion, garlic, turmeric, and ginger help give the beef a unique flavor while also helping to reduce inflammation and boost your immune system! These savory and flavorful meatballs will become a family favorite.
Here's a more traditional Indian curry recipe that also fits the bill for keto dieters.
One of the highlights of this dish is the use of coconut milk and coconut oil, which contain medium-chain triglycerides. MCT oil has been shown to support ketosis, which can enhance weight loss, boost energy, and improve focus.
On top of all the health benefits, it’s delicious!
With our natural sugar-free sweetener, KetoLogic erythritol, you can still enjoy the sweet flavors of Chinese takeout right at home. The version you make will be made with far fewer preservatives and way more healthy ingredients.
Plus, 31 grams of protein per serving!
This is the perfect recipe if you're making a buffet-style Chinese dinner for the whole family, or need a low-carb side dish. You'll be pleasantly surprised by how well cauliflower serves as a rice substitute.
Plus bacon, coconut oil, and fresh veggies—what more do you need?
These immune-boosting meatballs are seasoned with a delightful blend of cinnamon, Garam Masala, and garlic powder, then are gently simmered in a curry sauce that features coconut milk, red curry paste, fresh garlic and ginger, and lime juice. The combination of flavors will have your taste buds dancing.
Rounding out this list, we head down to the Caribbean for some deliciously spicy jerk chicken.
The true superstar is the creamy jerk chicken sauce made with coconut milk and an amazing blend of spices, including ground ginger, allspice, and cinnamon. Only 6 grams of net carbs per serving!