By: Mary H. Dyer, Credentialed Garden Writer
Keto is a popular way of eating that involves healthy fatsand very few carbs. If you want to plant a keto-friendly garden, you’re on theright track. Keto gardening is easy, and you can select from a long list ofdelicious keto vegetables.
Are you wondering what to grow in a keto-friendly vegetablegarden? The following suggestions should pique your interest.
Other keto vegetables include:
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Read more about General Vegetable Garden Care
Olive Garden is a chain restaurant that specializes in Italian-inspired dishes. They serve endless breadsticks and a lot of starchy pasta dishes that aren’t keto-friendly.
You can keep it low-carb here by opting for a slice of meat (or fish) and vegetable dish with a tomato or cheese sauce. Enjoy a side salad instead of pasta or breadsticks as your side dish.
Here are the lowest carb dishes you can order at Olive Garden in order from the lowest carb to highest, according to the nutrition information.
Low-carb and just as delicious.
"When you're here, you're family." That's the Olive Garden slogan for literally everyone—except, apparently, those on the keto diet, who basically sign an "I promise not to eat spaghetti for the foreseeable future" pledge.
But in doing that, do you really have to become totally estranged from your beloved fast-casual Italian chain restaurant? Not totally. While you definitely can't opt for the Never-Ending Pasta Bowl (or even just a breadstick, tbh), there are still ways to enjoy the OG on a low-carb diet.
“Since you generally want to keep your grams of carbs under 50 grams per day on the keto diet, aim to keep your carbs at any Olive Garden meal under half, or 25 grams, of your daily allotment,” says Erin Palinski-Wade, RD, a dietitian in New Jersey and author of 2 Day Diabetes Diet.
Okay, so how exactly do you make this happen when you sit down to eat at the OG? The answer is, thankfully, easy peasy: by following a basic structure for building keto-friendly meals. That includes a low-carb base, sauce, and topping choice. Stick to this formula, and you’re good to go. Here are the deets:
Put it all together. and what do you get? A whole keto-friendly meal!
Palinski-Wade says, for example, you could end up with something that looks like this: broccoli (3 grams of net carbs) topped with alfredo sauce (8 grams of net carbs) and grilled chicken breast (1 gram of net carbs). That would give you a meal that comes in at only 12 net carbs—not too shabby, right?
Stacking a low-carb base, sauce, and protein together is one of the easiest ways to enjoy the Garden on a keto diet—but you’ll still need to keep an eye on portions, says Palinski-Wade. Even low-carb bases and sauces will have a small amount of carbs that could add up if you overindulge, she explains.
However, if building your own keto creation at the table isn’t quite up your alley, don’t panic—here’s a list of meals that are already pretty keto-friendly (or can be, with a few modifications) so you can feel like you're part of the family and stay in ketosis. Win-win.
A very common vegetable to see in a keto kitchen, and for excellent reason. Broccoli is packed full of vitamins C and K and only has 4g net carbs per one cup.
Some studies show that broccoli can help decrease insulin resistance in type 2 diabetics and may also contribute to protecting against a few types of cancer. It’s a staple vegetable to have on hand!
If you’re not sure what to make with broccoli and you dislike it, consider something unique like these broccoli fritters >
Adding these to the grocery list.
Let's make one thing very clear: Vegetables, despite being carbohydrates, are good for you. YOU SHOULD EAT VEGETABLES. But if you're on the ultra-restrictive keto diet—which demands that you follow a high-fat, low-carb eating plan—you might want to avoid certain higher-carbohydrate vegetables that could potentially knock you out of ketosis.
While vegetables are among the most nutritious things you can eat, there are a few starchy and carbohydrate-dense items that can definitely throw off your keto diet—and in small servings, too. (We’re looking at you potatoes, sweet potatoes, and carrots.)
Even if you aren't on the keto diet, the vegetables that follow on this list are great for you. Many of them are rich in gut-filling fiber and they're all loaded with disease-fighting antioxidants. Plus, many of them also possess a high water content, which in addition to helping you maintain good hydration can also help you with your feelings of fullness (and thereby help you eat less at mealtime and avoid mindless snacking after mealtime. All these vegetables incredibly flavorful on their own—no ranch dressing needed—and are easy to work into healthful meals.
Feast upon them and you can even go ahead and call yourself "plant-based," even though experts still aren't entirely sure what the heck that actually means.
Instead, fill up your plate with these keto-friendly vegetables, all of which have few net grams of carbs and bring some more of the good stuff to your meals.