Not sure what to eat on a low-carb diet? We have two simple ways for you to get started.
You can sign up for the free two-week low-carb challenge. There you will find a complete guide, including daily menus, easy shopping lists, daily emails to keep you on track, and more. Or…
Just read on for some simple tips as well as a sample 14-day menu plan.
Helpful tips for cooking and meal preparation
Eating low-carb, high-fat includes getting back to wholesome, real, unprocessed food. Some have even called it vintage eating. If you like to cook, you’ll find delicious meals below to make for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Not so sure about doing a lot of cooking? Here are some helpful tips to make it easier:
Take a break from breakfast: If you’re not hungry, feel free to skip breakfast and just have coffee (with some milk if you want it). Many people find that within a few days of eating low-carb, high-fat meals, cravings and hunger decrease significantly. This can make it easy to skip a meal, perhaps especially breakfast. Skipping a meal is cheap, fast, and might increase the diet’s effectiveness for weight loss and diabetes. See intermittent fasting
Make bigger lots: cook two servings and save the second for lunch the next day. Now you only need to cook once per day!
Freeze leftovers: Most of the recipes freeze well, too, so you can make up a casserole, divide it into smaller serving sizes and then freeze some to warm up later for a meal. Perhaps you don’t even have to cook every day?
Repeat favorites: Crazy about scrambled eggs? Love steak? You can eat ’em everyday. We have more than 700 low-carb recipes with a huge variety of ingredients and flavours so you never will get bored. If, however, you find a couple of meals that you love and you find easy, feel free to eat them as often as you like. You will get the same results.
Basic no-cook plates: Away from a kitchen or not wanting to cook for a meal? Sliced deli meats, cheese, and vegetables with dip make an easy lunch. Or boil up a dozen eggs and keep them ready in the fridge to grab for lunch or snacks. A can of tuna or salmon, with some full fat mayonnaise and vegetable crudités, is a simple lunch. Smoked oysters, sardines, herring with raw veggies or a salad are other easy no-cook choices.
Who should NOT do a low-carb diet?
A low-carb diet is safe for almost everyone. Rapid weight loss or dramatic changes in blood sugar, however, may require extra support and knowledge for people in three specific situations:
Taking medication for diabetes: If you take insulin or other diabetes medications, learn more
Taking blood pressure medication? Learn more
Breastfeeding? If you are nursing a baby, learn more
Disclaimer: While a low-carb diet has many proven benefits, it’s still controversial. Most importantly, you may need to adapt pre-existing medications (see above). Discuss any changes in medication and relevant lifestyle changes with your doctor. Full disclaimer
This diet plan is for adults with health issues, including obesity, that could benefit from a low-carb diet.
Remember: water and salt
When eating a strict low-carb diet, make sure you drink enough fluids – water and/or sparkling water are the best choices. Make sure you are getting enough salt, too. When you’re starting out, drink one to two cups of bouillon each day or add more salt to your food; doing so can minimize the initial “low-carb flu”.
Variety – hundreds of low-carb recipes
Don’t like something specific in the 14-day plan above? Feel free to switch any meal to other low-carb meals. We have hundreds of low-carb recipes to choose from, here are some of the possibilities.Low-carb breakfasts
Premium low-carb meal plans – including shopping lists
Do you want more than 100 extra weekly low-carb meal plans and menus, with shopping lists and easily printable recipe guides? Check out our premium meal plan tool, available with lots of other bonus material with a free trial membership
Here are examples of the low-carb meal plans you can get. There are also quick and easy, budget-friendly and many more options. These meal plans require a free membership trial to view.
Keto: Quick and tasty brassica mealsCruciferous vegetables, also known as brassicas and “cole crops”, such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage and Brussels sprouts, are truly a low-carber’s best friend! They are the perfect replacement for starchy ingredients such as potatoes, rice and pasta. You can turn them into everything from mash to pizza crusts – true keto magic! Did we mention that most of them are super cheap, environmentally friendly and packed with nutrients, too?
This quick and easy meal plan keeps you below 19 net carbs per day. Enjoy meals such as our popular Keto Brussels sprouts and hamburger gratin and Italian keto chicken parmesan with cabbage pasta.
For simplicity start by making Keto egg muffins for the week’s coming breakfasts to save precious time each morning. Vary the ingredients to your liking. On the weekend you will indulge in luxurious Keto eggs benedict on avocado and round off the week with a tasty turkey plate.
Full meal plan →
Keto: Dairy free #4No dairy? No problem. Eating keto and dairy-free at the same time is quite popular. This week’s meal plan is not only dairy free but also ketogenic and it will help you stay below 20 grams of carbs per day.
Full meal plan →
Team Diet Doctor: Karl Naïm's international foodie favoritesKarl’s meal plan is well-balanced and does not include breakfasts, except on weekends. That’s because he uses intermittent fasting to promote greater fat burning after his morning work outs. This eating plan is recommended for people who like to cook, appreciate diversity over convenience, and love to use fresh produce.
Full meal plan →
A low-carb diet for beginners Low-carb foods
For everything you need to get started – meal plans, shopping lists, daily tips and troubleshooting – just sign up for our free 2-week low-carb challenge.
Get more awesome low-carb recipes, free video courses and low-carb news updates like over 500,000 people:
Here are a few common questions about this low-carb diet plan. For more things that you may be wondering about, see our full low-carb FAQ.
These recipes provide too much food for me. Do I have to eat all of it?
No. Our servings are in general designed to provide enough food for most people. If you feel satisfied and not hungry before finishing, it’s a great idea to stop. Especially if you want to lose weight, try to only eat when you’re hungry.
Any leftovers can be shared with others or saved for later. If you regularly find our servings too large (perhaps if you’re a fairly small person), feel free to reduce the amounts in the recipes!
As long as you follow the meal plan and only eat when you are hungry, your chances of losing excess weight should be good. You probably don’t need to count calories on this diet. Reduced appetite is a common experience and you may even burn around 300 more calories per day.
I’m still hungry after eating some meals. What should I do?
Feel free to add more of any low-carb, high-fat food. The easiest way is to just add more fat to your meal, like butter, olive oil or mayonnaise. Top 10 ways to eat more fat
What if I’m hungry between meals? Can I snack?
Many people stay satisfied on a low-carb, high-fat diet, vastly decreasing the need for snacking. If you’re regularly hungry and need to snack, you may first want to make sure you’re reducing carbohydrates adequately. If so, you should probably eat more at the meals, more fat and enough protein.
However, if you really feel the need to snack occasionally, here’s our low-carb snacks guide
I don’t eat meat/dairy/[insert excluded food]. Can I still eat low carb?
Yes. Just eat other low-carb foods. You can even eat a vegetarian low-carb diet, or a dairy-free low-carb diet, or an egg-free low-carb diet.
For more, have a look at our low-carb foods guidelines
Can I drink alcohol on a low-carb diet?
Yes. But make sure to choose low-carb drinks, like dry wine or whiskey. Full low-carb alcohol guide
Full low-carb diet FAQ
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Do you have any questions about or comments on the low-carb diet plan? Let us know in the comments below.