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20 Keto Lunch Ideas That'll Make Sticking to the Diet Easier

Low-Carb, High-Fat Recipes

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If you want to stay committed to a diet, having plenty of options that you actually like is key. It’s especially important with the keto diet, since you have to mind your macros carefully in order to reach or maintain ketosis. These recipes can all make sticking to the diet easier since they can be prepped in advance and toted to work. More importantly, they won’t bore your taste buds.

Photo: Starcevic / Getty Images

Pickle-Brined Keto Fried Chicken

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When the fast-food cravings hit, you've got options. (Here's how to order at Starbucks and Chipotle.) This fried chicken will also do the trick. You'll brine chicken thighs in pickle juice, bread them, and fry them in avocado oil until they're golden and crispy.

Get the recipe: Pickle-Brined Keto Fried Chicken

Photo: The Wicked Noodle

Keto Cuban Sliders

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Sandwiches aren't off-limits. For these Cuban sliders, you'll turn a Fathead dough into cheesy skillet bread that looks tasty enough to win over carb enthusiasts. (This low-carb bread is another keto option.)

Get the recipe: Keto Cuban Sliders

Photo: Cast Iron Keto

Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, and Keto Calzone

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With the right subs you can make Italian dishes ketogenic—even something as doughy as a calzone. You'll just have to incorporate low-carb flours (in this case almond and coconut) since fatty meats and cheeses are already a given.

Get the recipe: Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, and Keto Calzone

Photo: Gnom-Gnom

Low-Carb Sausage and Pepperoni Pizza-Stuffed Peppers

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Another Italian-inspired option, these roasted peppers are piled high with meat lover's toppings. Good luck ever going back to quinoa-stuffed peppers. (Check out our keto meal plan for beginners.)

Get the recipe: Low-Carb Sausage and Pepperoni Pizza-Stuffed Peppers

Photo: Kalyn's Kitchen

Zucchini Noodles with Pesto

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Yes, keto lunches without meat or dairy exist. Case in point: this zoodle bowl that's full of healthy ingredients. Zucchini, tomatoes, and pine nuts are all high in antioxidants.

Get the recipe: Zucchini Noodles with Pesto

Photo: Evolving Table

No Bean Whole30 Keto Chili in the Instant Pot

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Once you cut out the beans, chili happens to be pretty keto-friendly. Make this Instant Pot version then top it with the works—cheese, sour cream, and avocado are all keto-approved.

Get the recipe: No Bean Whole30 Keto Chili in the Instant Pot

Photo: Food Faith Fitness

Spicy Tuna Stuffed Avocado

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This stuffed avocado recipe is an easy 10-minute option when you don't feel like playing chef. You'll just whip up the filling using canned tuna, scoop it onto avocado halves, drizzle with sriracha, and then it's ready to eat cold.

Get the recipe: Spicy Tuna Stuffed Avocado

Photo: Salt & Lavender

Cauliflower "Mac" and Cheese

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For this faux mac and cheese recipe, roasted cauliflower is drenched in a sauce with nacho cheese-level thickness. That's a big (high-) fat yes. (Related: The Best Healthy Packaged Keto Snacks You Can Buy)

Get the recipe: Cauliflower "Mac" and Cheese

Photo: Savory Tooth

Keto Grilled Cheese Sandwich

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There are a lot of things you can't eat on the keto diet, but on the flip side you get to be liberal with fats. That means this classic grilled cheese that's properly fried in a layer of butter is completely fair game.

Get the recipe: Keto Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Photo: Healthy Recipes

Keto Egg Roll Wrap

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"Egg roll in a bowl" is a keto classic. For a handheld version, try these pork "egg rolls" made by literally rolling eggs into a wrap.

Get the recipe: Keto Egg Roll Wrap

Photo: A Spicy Perspective

Instant Pot Chili Verde

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Should this chili verde be the cozy stew that you make on repeat this winter? We think yes. (Here are more awesome keto soup recipes that are low-carb but flavorful.)

Get the recipe: Instant Pot Chili Verde

Photo: Savory Tooth

Healthy Mexican Chicken Meal Prep

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For this meal-prep keto lunch option, you'll assemble chicken and eggs with fresh produce and an avocado cilantro ranch to dunk everything. You'll get a healthy mix of nutrients. Peppers are rich in vitamin C, and leafy greens and avocado are high in folic acid.

Get the recipe: Healthy Mexican Chicken Meal Prep

Photo: 40 Aprons

Vegan Keto Lo Mein

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Lo mein can be low-carb if you swap in kelp noodles. This version of the dish is also gluten-free and vegan, unlike typical lo mein. Besides being keto-friendly, kelp noodles are higher in nutrients than traditional noodles, with plenty of magnesium and iron.

Get the recipe: Vegan Keto Lo Mein

Photo: Meat Free Keto

Keto Salmon Sushi Bowl

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Sushi's a fun lunch option but also a pain to make. Cut out the rolling with this deconstructed spicy salmon roll made with cauliflower rice.

Get the recipe: Keto Salmon Sushi Bowl

Photo: Hey Keto Mama

Antipasto Grilled Chicken Salad

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If you're that guy who orders the antipasto for your meal every time you're eating out, this chicken salad will definitely appeal. You'll get a boost of calcium from fresh mozz and vitamins A, C, and K from cherry tomatoes.

Get the recipe: Antipasto Grilled Chicken Salad

Photo: Diethood

Beef Taco Meal Prep Bowls

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If you'll be on the go or eating at the office, this beef taco bowl is a convenient option. With fresh pico de gallo, avocado, and seasoned beef, it's the opposite of a sad desk lunch.

Get the recipe: Beef Taco Meal Prep Bowls

Photo: The Bettered Blondie

Jalapeño Popper Chicken Salad

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Chicken salad might be a played-out lunch option, but jalapeño popper chicken salad is a different story. This recipe has 38.7 grams of fat and 1 net carb per serving.

Get the recipe: Jalapeño Popper Chicken Salad

Photo: Real Balanced

Low-Carb Nachos

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You can't have nachos on the keto diet, but nachos made of cheese sound better anyway, right? You'll load them up with all the usual nacho fixings before digging in.

Get the recipe: Low-Carb Nachos

Photo: Peace Love and Low Carb

Low-Carb Big Mac Bites

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McDonald's fans: These little Big Macs are definitely worth a try. Each mini burger has an all-beef patty, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, and onions. (The only thing missing is the sesame seed bun.)

Get the recipe: Low-Carb Big Mac Bites

Photo: Home. Made. Interest.

Cheesy Salsa Chicken Foil Packets

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When you're feeling too lazy to chop food and can't face washing the dishes—but you're still set on avoiding takeout, make these foil packets. They're filled with chicken, cheese, salsa, and cauliflower rice, so you know you're going to like it. 

Get the recipe: Cheesy Salsa Chicken Foil Packets

Photo: All Day I Dream About Food


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