Turn your kitchen into a battlefield against carbs! Be prepared for creating, experimenting, and eating your fantastic treats and sweets on keto.
Being able to navigate our way around the kitchen to make delicious foods is what our end goal is. From baking to cooking, we need the right ingredients to really push the flavors to the next level and really help us love what we eat. From flour substitutes to sugar substitutes, we’ll cover all of the things you’ll want to have in your kitchen if you plan to make your keto diet a successful one. Cooking keto can be a challenge, but with a cooking arsenal at your fingertips, and a delicious range of recipes to choose from, you shouldn’t be dreading saying “What’s for dinner?” You should be looking forward to the delicious flavors you can create from so little.
So, what sugar substitute is best for keto? What are the best keto friendly flour substitutes? And, what are the best keto brands overall? Discover our recommendations below.
Cooking Flour Substitutes & Additives
ANTHONY'S ALMOND FLOUR
DELICIOUS, AESTHETIC, FINE-GRAIN
Since we can’t use all-purpose flour (or many other types of flour) on a ketogenic diet, we still need something that we can bake delicious cakes, cookies, and treats with. Almond flour is a fantastic alternative to regular flour, giving us much more fats, much fewer carbohydrates, and only a little bit of protein.
While it does take some experimenting to get used to, this will be a staple in all things baked when it comes to keto. I use Honeyville because it gives the best aesthetics, taste, and texture that I’ve found.
ANTHONY'S COCONUT FLOUR
HIGH QUALITY, AFFORDABLE PRICE
Similar to almond flour, this will be a staple in our kitchen also. Many times a recipe will call for a mixture of the two, being that coconut flour has a much higher absorptive property than almond flour. They work extremely well together, but don’t be fooled; coconut flour can stand alone and taste fantastic all the while.
Also used as a thickener, coconut flour can have many uses in your kitchen. Besides having a much lower count of omega-6’s, many people tout the health benefits of coconut. Trust me, this one’s not worth passing up!
NOW PSYLLIUM HUSK
FIBER WITH A DELICIOUS WHOLE-WHEAT TASTE
From taste to texture, psyllium husk can be a fantastic ingredient to have around the kitchen. It’s extremely absorptive, adds that flavor of whole-wheat, and even gives a texture similar to that of whole grain flour.
So, when you’re making bread, muffins, donuts, or tortillas – psyllium husk can really give you that extra texture and flavor you need. That taste that subtly comes through as a baked wheat effect, while giving the realistic texture of using real flour.
Although it doesn’t rise as much, it is certainly an ingredient I’ve been using more and more as I see and taste what I can create with it. Don’t leave this one out of your pantry!
BOB'S RED MILL XANTHAN GUM
THICKENS ANYTHING WITH A TINY AMOUNT
This strange substance is vastly used in molecular gastronomy (the science of physical and chemical changes of ingredients in cooking), but is also quite well known in the keto world too.
Mainly used as a thickener, this (net)carb-free substance will last you a long time. Just a small amount will last you months and months. You use quantities that are ¼ teaspoon or less in most cases, and it’s well worth the money buying up-front. From thickening stews to making ice cream, xanthan gum will be an irreplaceable ingredient in your low-carb kitchen.
JAY ROBB EGG WHITE PROTEIN
REALISTIC TEXTURES WITH NO ADDED FLAVOR
From cakes to breads, protein powder can add a consistency that will compliment most things you want flour in. Although we need to watch our protein, we don’t use too much when we use it – which means it all evens out with the fats.
Grab a pound and it’ll last you 6 months or more. It’s not an ingredient I use on an everyday basis, but when I need it, it’s always in the back of my cupboard waiting for me. Quality protein is key, and this one fits the bill in all the quality control tests.
Sweeteners & Sugar Substitutes
NOW FOODS PURE ERYTHRITOL
PLENTY OF SWEET, WITHOUT THE CARBS
Not all erythritol is created equally. NOW brand promises non GMO ingredients are used in the process of making this fantastic sugar substitute.
Although nutrition labels say that it has carbs, our body doesn’t have the enzymes to break down this source of sweetness. About 90% of the erythritol passes through our digestive system and is excreted without us even noticing it was there.
STEVIA CLEAR LIQUID EXTRACT
NATURAL SWEETNESS THAT PACKS A PUNCH
Stevia has been hailed as the greatest sugar substitute in the last decade.
From lowering blood sugars in diabetics to lowering cholesterol and blood pressure, Stevia is something we should all include in our diet. It has proven health benefits and a glycemic index of 0.
SWERVE SUGAR SUBSTITUTE
EASY 1 TO 1 SUBSTITUTION TO SUGAR
This is a baking mixture that puts together erythritol with oligosaccharides (usually coming from chicory root). This helps with the cooling sensation that is sometimes tasted when baking with erythritol alone.
If you’re making something sweet and you’re not sure how much to put in, you can treat this exactly as you would sugar. It’s made for easy measurements and little confusion – and tastes just as great as the real thing.
IDEAL BROWN SUGAR SUBSTITUTE
DELICIOUS CARAMELIZED FLAVORS MADE LOW CARB
Brown sugar is one of the hardest things to replace while on a ketogenic diet. Well, now we can!
From French toast to coffee cake muffins, Ideal Brown will help you get the flavor profile you want so badly – without the carbs. Made from Xylitol, this is a low glycemic index sweetener that can be used just like erythritol, stevia, or Swerve.
Nuts & Seeds
FATS AND CRUNCH COME TOGETHER
As one of the highest fat nuts available to us, macadamias are the perfect way to get in fats while having a change in texture.
From sprinkling into cream cheese to baking them into brownies, macadamias will be an awesome addition to any nuts you already have.
WALNUT HALVES & PIECES
GREAT TOPPER FOR ANY SALAD
Close to macadamias in the fat content, walnuts will be the second nut we take a look at.
With a softer, more decadent texture, walnuts will be great for sprinkling on top of things that we want to add creaminess too. While these do have a small crunch factor, they are also extremely soft and creamy when you bite into them – which make them the perfect substitution for macadamias for both price and fats.
PERFECT ADDITION FOR ANY BREAKFAST
Complimenting almost perfectly with any breakfast recipe, pecans offer a delicious, sweet and salty combination.
Almost buttery in flavor, you can sprinkle these over any baked good for a better final product.
Pecans go extremely well with maple, so if you’re thinking about pancakes, waffles, muffins, or cupcakes – pecans will be your friend when you whip out the low-carb maple syrup.
NATURAL RAW ALMONDS
AFFORDABLE WITH A GREAT CRUNCH FACTOR
A delicious, crunchy, and great way to add texture you need to pretty much anything. I love sprinkling toasted almonds over green beans or spinach salads and adore making my own almond butter.
Being able to flavor your own nut butter is something we all take for granted, but with some experimentation, you’ll be making your own specialty nut butter for a fraction of the price.
BOB'S RED MILL FLAXSEED MEAL
GREAT TASTE FOR A GREAT PRICE
Flax is practically a fiber supplement that’s full of fats and delicious to boot.
Used in combination with, or as a substitution for almond flour, flaxseed can be used in pretty much any baked goods. Having a hearty and earthy flavor, this can complement any of the bread or muffins you want to make to taste “whole grain”. Definitely, something that’s a must-have in your cupboard.
BOB'S RED MILL CHIA SEEDS
Like Flaxseed, Chia seeds are a high fat product that is practically carb-free. These seeds are small and hard when you begin (like sesame seeds), but can soak up liquids and become soft, gooey, and delicious.
These little seeds are one of the most nutrient dense foods around and are packed full of micronutrients like calcium, magnesium, and phosphorous. Not only are they nutritious, they’re packed full of antioxidants to help fight those pesky free radicals in your body. Plus, they’re a great source of plant-based protein, which means it will drastically help with appetite when eaten.
Made into puddings, brownies, and even cookies, chia seeds are something that you should keep around for those times you’re in the mood for something softer and gooier than normal.
Fats & Oils
ORGANIC EXTRA VIRGIN COCONUT OIL
GREAT HEALTH BENEFITS WITH A LOW PRICE TAG
Besides having health benefits such as fat burning, immune system boosts, lowering of cholesterol, and hunger control, coconut oil tastes great and can be used in almost every recipe you try.
It has a high heat point so it can be used to cook with, and it has a natural sweetness so it can be mixed into any dessert you can think of. Coconut oil is a staple in most people’s households, and it should be one in yours, too!
GRASSFED ORGANIC GHEE
GREAT DAIRY-FREE BUTTER SUBSTITUTE
Also known as clarified butter, ghee can withstand much higher temperatures than butter and can be used in any dairy-free diet. It has the same nutritional qualities as butter, but it has no lactose or casein which makes it the perfect butter substitution for anyone who’s sensitive to or allergic to dairy.
Used in many traditional Indian recipes, ghee is a great addition to your kitchen pantry – but if you have no need for the dairy-free aspect, then grass-fed butter will do the trick.
Extracts & Flavorings
OOO FLAVORS FRUIT COLLECTION
DELICIOUS FRUIT FLAVORS WITHOUT THE CARBS
Fruit is one of the biggest things people miss while in keto.
Since fruit is generally looked down on and not generally good for consumption, we have to find other ways to get this sweet and delicious flavor into our baked goods. From “banana” bread muffins to “apple” pie, fruit extracts will help us get the flavor we want without the high-carb content of fructose.
Use coupon code RULEDME for 15% off your purchase.
OOO FLAVORS DESSERTS
ADD UNIQUE TWISTS WITHOUT THE EXTRA CALORIES
For the times you’re looking to spice a sweet dish up, these will come in handy. Use them in shakes, mug cakes, or baked keto dishes.
From cinnamon roll to cornbread to maple syrup, we’ll be able to really take our breakfasts and desserts to the next level without having to add excess calories or carbs.
Use coupon code RULEDME for 15% off your purchase.
RODELLE PURE VANILLA EXTRACT
QUALITY FLAVOR WITH AN AFFORDABLE PRICE
Quality vanilla is something that all of us should have in our kitchen.
It makes the final flavor of all baked goods just that much better. Don’t waste your time with the imitation vanilla that leaves a chemical taste when you take the food out of the oven – invest in something that will really give your taste buds something to be excited about.
Looking for something else? Head over to our recommended keto products page for more suggestions on the products we and the community use!