The keto diet is growing in popularity these days, mainly due to its quick results and health benefits. It can be difficult, though, with no sugar and very few carbohydrates allowed. On the upside, you are required to take in a lot of fats.
Since the keto diet requires absolutely no sugar intake, natural or otherwise, condiments can be a bit tricky. Luckily, there are several hacks and tips for making many items in a keto-friendly manner. These include condiments and sauces, which can make your food more palatable.
Read on for some quick recipe ideas. Note that we also provide you with some useful recipe links as well for each.
1. Homemade Pesto
This basil pesto would be great with low-carb pasta and some cheese for a filling keto meal. All you need are 2 cups of fresh basil leaves, one minced garlic clove, half a cup of pine nuts, 3 tablespoons of grated Parmesan cheese, and half a cup of extra virgin olive oil.
Pulse the garlic, nuts, Parmesan, and basil in a food processor. When they’re chopped up, add the olive oil a little at a time. You may add more or less according to the consistency you prefer. Then, sprinkle salt and pepper as needed.
2. Thai Peanut Sauce
Peanut sauce can give an exotic taste to bland chicken dishes and other meaty meals. You would need half a cup of peanut butter, the crunchy kind that has no sugar, 3 tablespoons of warm chicken broth, 3 tablespoons of soy sauce, 3 tablespoons of hot sauce, and 2 tablespoons of lime juice. There are also some other ingredients, like sesame oil, fish sauce, ginger root, garlic, monk fruit, etc. However, these can be used according to your taste. 4 drops of a pineapple water enhancer would also be good.
Now, you just have to whisk these ingredients until they form a smooth paste. Store them in a jar placed inside the fridge. It’s best to let this mixture steep overnight in order to blend all the flavors together.
3. Spicy Lemon Herb Sauce
This fresh, green sauce would go well with any salad, chicken, or fish that you may want to have on your diet. You would need a shallot, a garlic clove, a bunch of parsley, a bunch of mint, a bunch of cilantro, two zested and juiced lemons, and half a cup of olive oil. Be sure to set aside some salt pepper, and red pepper flakes to season as desired.
Blend the herbs with the shallot and the zest from the lemons. Add in the olive oil and juice, then pulse the mixture until it’s smooth. Season and serve when needed. Keep it in an airtight container and refrigerated for up to a week.
4. Creamy Alfredo Sauce with Cream Cheese
Cream cheese is allowed on the keto diet due to its high fat and low carbs. This sauce would give you a nice Italian taste with each bite of your meal. For four servings, you would need a cup of heavy cream, 3 ounces of cream cheese at room temperature, 2 ounces of Parmesan cheese, two tablespoons soft butter, and one large egg yolk. Keep salt and white pepper handy, along with and any flavorings you want.
First melt the cream cheese and butter in a pot, using low heat. Add a quarter of the cream, turn up the heat a little, and combine the ingredients. Add a quarter cup of the Parmesan cheese and stir that too. Alternate these additions until you have a smooth sauce. When everything is bubbling a little, beat up the yolk and add it while whisking the sauce. Whisk until the sauce can coat a spoon easily.
Separate one egg and beat the yolk. When the sauce is hot and bubbling lazily, add the egg yolk while whisking. Turn heat a little lower and continue whisking until the sauce coats the back of a spoon about 1-2 minutes more. Adjust seasonings. Thickens as it cools!
5. BBQ Sauce
A good barbeque sauce can help you enjoy those barbeque parties this summer. It tastes sweet, smoky, and a little spicy too. You can easily tweak the recipe according to your needs.
To make a pint of this sauce, gather a quarter cup of brown sugar substitute or any keto-friendly sweetener, a quarter cup each of apple cider vinegar and white vinegar, half a cup of water, 2 tablespoons of real butter, and a can of tomato paste. You would also need one teaspoon each of garlic powder, onion powder, dry yellow mustard, salt, and cayenne pepper for a bit of kick.
Add the sweetener, water and both vinegar in a pan on medium heat. Mix it all up, and then add the canned tomato and other ingredients. Combine these until they come to a boil, then simmer for around 15 minutes.
Mayonnaise is something that has keto-friendly ingredients, but the sugar and preservatives in store-bought versions can throw you off balance. To avoid this, make your own at home. Add a large egg yolk to a little Dijon mustard and include some white vinegar and lemon juice. Throw in half a cup of any keto-friendly oil and blend until you get it all combined.
7. Mustard Salad Dressing
Add a cup of olive oil to a quarter cup keto mustard and ¾ cup of apple cider vinegar. Add some soy sauce, a tablespoon of sweetener, 4 cloves of minced garlic, and seasonings. Blend them in a powerful blender until they’re emulsified.
8. Marinara Sauce
For this easy recipe, you’d need canned tomatoes, some red wine vinegar, and a quarter cup olive oil. You can keep pepper, salt, onion powder, basil, oregano, parsley, and red pepper flakes for seasoning as needed. Simply puree the ingredients with half the tomato pulp and add the rest when done. You’ll now have a chunky sauce for your keto pizza.
9. Caramel Sauce
Keto doesn’t completely omit dessert, but sugar is out of bounds. This doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy sweet items, especially when there’s this keto-friendly caramel sauce. Simply melt a third of a cup of butter and 3 tablespoons of granulated sweetener in a saucepan on low heat. Cook it up until the mixture is golden-brown.
Next, add 2/3 cup of heavy cream and stir until you see it turn caramel. Remove the pan from the stove and mix in one teaspoon of vanilla extract.
10. Lemon Curd
All this lemon curd takes is the juice and zest of four lemons, half a cup of sweetener, 100 grams of butter, three eggs, and one egg yolk. Combine everything but the eggs in a double boiler, and then whisk them in after the butter is melted. Cook until the sauce can coat a spoon.
Being on a ketogenic diet can give you a lot of energy and help with overall health. With these condiments in your kitchen, you won’t feel deprived with the keto lifestyle.