Keto fast food
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One of the most difficult aspects of eating a ketogenic diet can be eating out.

If you forget your keto-friendly lunch at home one day or find yourself starving without time to cook, it can feel impossible to find a fast food option that won’t kick you out of ketosis and stall your weight loss.

If you follow our founder @dranthonygustin a quick keto meal can just be a side of bacon with some cold brew coffee!

Bacon + coffee = keto fast food!

A post shared by Anthony Gustin DC, MS (@dranthonygustin) on

Not everyone has access to amazing bacon and coffee, but we have good news:

You can eat keto anywhere (yes, even at fast food places) as long as you know what and how to order.

This keto fast food guide will show you exactly what’s available at the top keto-friendly fast food restaurants, how to order and how many carbs each option contains so you can eat out confidently.

We’ll cover:

Remember that you should eat real, whole foods most of the time. Keto isn’t healthy in and of itself; it’s what you put into your body that determines whether you’re healthy or not. But these options can allow you to remain in ketosis even if you’re in a pinch.

Before you dive in, we’ve put together a FREE keto meal plan for you so you don’t have to resort to kicking yourself out of ketosis with carby fast food. Click here to get the keto meal plan for free.

The Top 13 Keto-Friendly Fast Food Joints

Most of these restaurants are available just about anywhere. Whether you’re out with friends or on a road trip, here are the best places to scope out for your low-carb fix.

Subway

You can find a Subway just about anywhere, and although it’s a sub shop, any of their sandwiches can be turned into a salad, instantly slashing the carbs.

What to Order

Choose a sub option, make it a salad, add cheese, focus on low-carb vegetables, and pick a low-carb dressing from below.

Just keep in mind some sub options are higher carb than others. Here are the lowest carb options with cheese, black olives, green peppers, lettuce, spinach and pickles as the veggie options (no dressing yet):

Keto fast food

Subway also has a useful Nutrition Calculator so you can plan ahead.

Chipotle

Many people love Chipotle for it’s focus on sustainability and fresh food. If you’re one of those people, you’ll be happy to learn that t’s very easy to eat keto at Chipotle!

What to Order

Order a salad bowl! And don’t be fooled by the name — you can make yourself a hearty salad here that will satiate your hunger. Start with: 

Keto fast food

Choose from any of their meats:

Keto fast food

Add any of these low-carb additions (you can ask for double meat, although they may charge you extra):

Keto fast food

To plan ahead before going to Chipotle, check out it’s Nutrition Calculator.

McDonald’s

McDonald’s is a classic for quick and cheap fast food, and it’s no enemy to the low-carb diet if you just toss the bread.

What to Order

Pretty much all of the breakfast sandwiches sans bread are fair game, including:

Keto fast food

For a morning caffeine boost, add a black coffee.

For the rest of the day, any grilled chicken sandwich or burger without the bun or ketchup will work. Here are some of the lower carb options:

Keto fast food

When you ask for no bread, they’ll usually serve these in a bowl with some lettuce and a fork. Some places might not know what to do if you order “bunless,” but just order and toss the bun if needed.

Stay away from the hot cakes, hashbrowns, burritos, and oatmeal. Chicken nuggets are off limits, as the breading makes the carb count rise quickly.

And the fries are obviously a no-go.

For more, see McDonald’s Nutrition Calculator.

Burger King

Stick with burgers, cheeseburgers, grilled chicken sandwich, Whopper, or Double Whopper without bread or ketchup. Some of the other sandwiches, like the Farmhouse King, creep up in carbs without lots of customization.

Options include:

Keto fast food

For more nutrition info, see Burger King’s Nutrition Calculator.

Arby’s

Arby’s is known for its roast beef, but they have a variety of meat options and many of them can be ordered sans bread for a low-carb alternative.

What to Order

Many of the sandwiches are good without the bun. Here are your options:

Sandwiches:

Keto fast food

Sliders:

Keto fast food

Salads:

Keto fast food

Salad dressings:

Keto fast food

Pair any of these breadless sandwich or slider with a side salad for a bigger meal.

See Arby’s Nutrition Calculator here.

Taco Bell

To save money and get what you want at Taco Bell, stick to sides! Then you don’t have to pay for taco shells just to throw them out.

What to Order

Order a side of lettuce, side of beef, side of chicken, and side or two of guacamole, then combine for a quick and cheap meal.

KFC

Just one medium-sized piece of fried chicken here is around 8-11 carbs (no bueno). But if you still have a craving for some chicken, there are a couple of grilled options.

What to Order

Keto fast food

There’s one option for a side here:

Keto fast food

Wendy’s

Wendy’s is another burger-heavy place, so like the others, you can make do without kicking your body out of ketosis by removing buns.

We couldn’t find specific nutritional information for Wendy’s items, but you might try asking a staff member if they can provide it.

What to Order

 

Keto fast food

 

Extra tips:

  • Order any burgers from the value meal and chop the patties into a Caesar salad.
  • Order an extra chicken fillet on any sandwich.
  • Order the grilled chicken patty with cheese and bacon on top.
  • They have whole eggs! Try ordering a bunless burger with an egg on the side.

Carl’s Jr / Hardee’s

Carl’s Jr and Hardee’s are owned by the same company, so they have similar menu items with different names. Thankfully, there are plenty at both.

What to Order

You can do any of these burgers (except the Teriyaki Burger) in a lettuce wrap, just nix the bun, ketchup and tomatoes if applicable.

Carl’s Jr. has the advantage of the Lettuce-Wrapped Thickburger in both ½ and ⅓ pound sizes.

At Hardee’s, you can just order the Thickburger sans bun for the same.

Keto fast food

Keto fast food

Hardee’s breakfast options:

  • Low-Carb Breakfast Bowl: 660 cals, 52g fat, 38g protein, 10g carbs, 2g fiber

For extra fat, add bacon and/or guacamole. For some extra veggies, get a side salad but don’t use the dressing.

See Carl’s Jr Nutritional Calculator and Hardee’s Nutrition Calculator.

Jimmy John’s

Even though Jimmy John’s is a sub shop, like Subway, any sandwich option can be ordered without bread. Just order it as an “Unwich” and you’ll be good to go with a low-carb lunch or dinner.

The only downside is Unwiches can be pretty pricey for the lack of bread. But you can order “Slim” Unwiches too, which still give you a good amount of substance for a lower price.

What to Order

Any of the sandwiches as Unwiches, but here are our top recommendations:

Keto fast food

Keto fast food

Keto fast food

Sides here are chips or cookies, so stick with the Unwiches only.

See Jimmy John’s Nutrition Calculator here.

Jersey Mike’s

Another sandwich place where you can nix the bread (order it as “in a tub.”) Plus, their meats are sliced to-order, so you’ll know they’re fresh.

What to Order

All of their Cold Sub sandwiches are good “in a tub,” but quite a few of the Hot Subs can be high in carbs, and especially stay away from the BBQ Beef (with 38 carb grams!).

Here are the best high-fat/low-carb options:

Keto fast food

You can see Jersey Mike’s Nutrition Facts here.

Five Guys Burgers

You can order any of the burgers with a lettuce wrap or order it as a “salad” option. All of their toppings are virtually no-carb too, except for the BBQ sauce, ketchup and relish.

Keto fast food

Keto fast food

See their Nutrition Information here.

In-and-Out Burger

The simple menu at this place and the easy low-carb options make it perfect for keto fast food. Anything can be ordered “Protein Style” where the bun is replaced with lettuce.

What to Order

Keto fast food

You can also order your burger Double Meat, 3×3 (three beef patties), 4×4 (four beef patties), Animal Style (mustard-cooked patty) without the bun.

See their Nutrition Info here.

Tips for Eating Keto Fast Food Anywhere

If you’re in a food desert or don’t come across any of the above places while traveling, never fear. Here are some quick tips for making meals keto at any place on the road:

Keto fast food

DIY Keto Fast Food

Fast food options are convenient, but remember the healthiest choice is almost always homemade.

Thankfully, it’s easy to make keto versions of fast food at home. Here are some recipes to try:

Keto Breakfast Tacos

Portobello Bun Cheeseburgers

Celeriac Everything Fries

Cheesy Broccoli Meatza

BBQ Pulled Beef Sando

Curry Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Brown Butter Buffalo Bites

INFOGRAPHIC: Low Carb Fast Food Options 

Yes, You Can Eat Fast Food on Keto

The ketogenic diet is all about reducing carbohydrate intake and increasing fat intake so your body can go into ketosis, using fat for fuel (and thus burning it).

It’s not healthy in and of itself; it’s a vehicle for fat loss. What you eat on the ketogenic diet is what makes it either healthy or not healthy.

That’s why it’s important to eat whole, real foods. However, sometimes that feels impossible to do, especially when you’re traveling or in a rush.

One way to avoid needing to opt for unhealthy options is to make sure you’re meal prepping every week. We’ve made that easy for you by creating a keto meal plan: Click here to get the keto meal plan for free.

But if you must eat fast food, rest assured that there are some ketogenic fast food options out there.

Use the above options to guide you during your next fast food run, and don’t be afraid to get creative and customize.

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Responses (28)

  1. Why don’t you add Chic-a-filet. I’m a diabetic and believe this fast food place is great. No access to most of the other restaurants you mentioned.

  2. Wendy’s in New Zealand do a no carb burger. All the burger wrapped in iceburg lettuce. Easy to eat and filling. Not sure if they do it else where but it’s a standard menu item.

  3. If you are eating keto you need to leave out the fast food….also some taco bell’s put oats in their meat so I wouldn’t recommend eating their meat. Maybe do a little more research about where you want to eat and don’t take posts like this at face value because different fast food places have a varied menus in different country’s or even states.

  4. Backyard Burger is another good one. Their burgers have actual cheddar cheese & not the processed american cheese. U can or without bun too – they make it with a lettuce “bun”.

  5. Newman’s ranch dressing at McDonald’s has a lot of carbs. Hardee’s will make a burger wrapped in lettuce also

  6. Chipotle I order a bowl, do extra fajita veggies, meat, salsa, cheese, sour cream, guacamole, and extra lettuce. I really make them add the veggies and remind them of the rice and beans I am not getting. 😆

  7. Red Robin… all beef and chicken burgers come as a lettuce wrap (careful of sauces as always) and toy can get bottomless steamed broccoli.

  8. Chic-fil-a has salads, use dressings in moderation and squeeze lemon juice for more moisture. It’s a bit of work, but scrape most of breading from chicken. chop and add over the salad like a chicken Caesar. Be careful with coleslaw.

  9. Thank you for putting all of this information in one place. I have printed pages 5-17 and will keep in in my phone.

  10. Freddy’s Burgers makes a great lettuce burger. They even wrap it in paper to help it edible with your hands.

  11. Chic fil a also has grilled chicken nuggets. I believe they can only be ordered in store. They make them special so they are gluten free

  12. Hardees can make any of their burgers low carb. They wrap them in lettuce and leave out the bun and they are delicious!

  13. A&W PAPA BURGER or GRANDPA BURGER…..ate there a month straight once, and lost a ton of weight….

  14. BGR The Burger Joint also has an awesome romaine lettuce wrapped burger and a ton of low carb topping options. Real cheese too.

  15. Grilled Chick Fil -a marinade has sugar in it so be careful. If we go there I get a side salad & cut up 4 grilled nuggets. Bring your own dressing or blue cheese on the side

  16. I am not sure what you would eat at Chic Fil A? I looked up their grilled nuggets and one of the ingredients is sugar. I was so sad.

  17. Hardee’s will do any of their menu sandwiches as a lettuce wrap. I get their chicken club when I find myself there. Also, Jimmy John’s does have one side item that’s keto friendly: their pickles!

  18. Grilled chicken nuggets at Chick-fil-a. Chick-fil-a should’ve been at the top of the list!

  19. Freddy’s Frozen Custard and Steak Burgers is another one. They will put any of their burgers or hot dogs in a lettuce wrap for you. They are good too!

  20. Ok people! I’m going to give this keto thing a try!!! Hope it works. I’m at 190 lbs. Need to loose 40 lbs. I wonder how long it will take? ♥️😁♥️

  21. Eat Mcdonalds bacon ranch salad several times a week. The Mcdouble
    Is cheaper than the double cheese burger. Remove the bread from the
    and give it to the birds.It works just need to make the right food
    choices, approching 50 lbs weight loss

  22. Man this is awesome, so glad to know there is a sandwich shop that does lettuce wraps. All you need to add is chic-fil-A and clarify Hardies is Carl’s Jr for the people in here.

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