Interested in starting a low-carb diet? Here are 6 high-protein, high-fat meals you can try today!
The stereotypical bodybuilder diet usually consists of plenty of protein, a fair amount of carbohydrates, and very little fat. This macronutrient plan is where the classic 40/40/20 ratio comes from. While that tried-and-true diet has worked well for competitors and fitness enthusiasts alike, it isn’t the best strategy for everyone. In fact, some people can get into shape far easier on a much different-looking macronutrient plan. A high-protein, high-fat, low-carb diet can make the difference for individuals struggling to lose fat and build muscle using the standard approach.
In order for this nutrition method to work, you need to get over the idea that fat makes you fat. It’s just not true. A high-fat, low-carb diet can actually be a healthy, sustainable way to get into shape and stay lean year-round. Low-carbohydrate diets can be effective for weight loss because, by restricting insulin production and promoting ketosis, they limit fat storage and encourage your body to use fat as its primary fuel source.
Even if you aren’t really interested in following a low-carb diet, you may want a few meals that are primarily protein and fat. To help you spice things up and keep your diet interesting, here are six of my favorite low-carb, high-fat, high-protein meals.
Burgers are certainly great with a bun, but if you take away all that starch, you’ve got more calories to “spend” on tasty add-ons like bacon, guacamole, fried eggs, cheese, and even peanut butter! These fatty additions are a great way to make a plain burger patty taste restaurant-quality. If you add some bacon or avocado, make sure you measure and account for your total fat intake, as these calorie-dense items add up fast.
There’s really no recipe here; just use whatever amount of ground beef fits your protein needs for that meal, and then add some of your favorite high-fat ingredients to the top. To make your burger taste better, don’t cook it quite so much. Far too many home cooks grill or pan-fry their burgers to death. It’s no wonder most people like restaurant burgers better than the ones they make at home!
Bacon and eggs may be the quintessential American breakfast, but it’s hard to meet your protein needs with those items alone. To increase the protein content without getting too much fat, swap the bacon for a medium-sized steak. Almost any cut will do, but if you’re limiting your calories, stick to leaner varieties like sirloin and round.
Cook your eggs however you want! Some of the old-time bodybuilders swore up and down that raw eggs were best for building muscle and burning fat, but I don’t think the method of cooking matters much. Again, though, track the fat content of the butter, oil, or other fat you use to fry or scramble your eggs. This may be a low-carb, high-fat meal, but that doesn’t mean you can add unlimited amounts of fat.
Thanks to sugar substitutes and flavored protein powders, you can still satisfy your sweet tooth without also eating a lot of carbs. Here’s a recipe for one of my favorite shakes. Feel free to adjust the ingredient amounts as necessary to fit your macros. You can also substitute low-fat or nonfat cottage cheese if that’s what you’ve got on hand.
- ALMOND MILK 1 CUP
- COTTAGE CHEESE 1/2 CUP
- PEANUT BUTTER 3 TBSP
- CHOCOLATE PROTEIN POWDER 2 SCOOPS
- SWEETENER TO TASTE
- Pour ingredients into blender.
- Blend until desired thickness.
If you want great, cheap, keto-friendly comfort food, you can’t beat the classic roasted chicken. There’s no specific recipe you have to follow here. Buy a whole chicken, pat it dry, and apply plenty of salt.
Put your chicken in a cast-iron pan, roasting pan, or other heavy pan, and throw it in the oven at 425 degrees Fahrenheit. A good rule of thumb is to cook the chicken for 10 minutes per pound, but make sure the juices are running clear before you dive in.
Salmon is protein-rich and full of monounsaturated fats—it’s a perfect food for a high-fat meal! One of the best, simplest ways to cook salmon is to place it skin-side down on a hot grill. Close the lid and let the smoke inside cook the top portion. The skin on the bottom will keep the meaty part from sticking or drying out.
Try not to overcook it. Salmon and other fatty fish are best when they’re just barely cooked through. Before you throw it on the grill, brush the fish with some olive oil to further prevent it from sticking to the grill. To season it, use plenty of salt and add whatever herbs and spices you like.
If you’re on a high-fat diet, the slow cooker is one of your best friends! It can make almost any cut of meat taste good, including those tough cuts of beef like chuck and top round. Here’s a super-easy recipe for you to try!
- BEEF 1LB
- BAY LEAF 1 CHOPPED
- CARROTS 3 CHOPPED
- CELERY STALKS 3
- ONION 1
- OREGANO, THYME, AND GARLIC TO TASTE
- SALT AND PEPPER TO TASTE
- BEEF STOCK, BROTH
- Once everything’s in the pot, turn it on low and let it cook for 8-10 hours. If you’re in a bit of a hurry, you can probably have everything cooked on high in about 4 hours.
MPORTANT LOW-CARB DIET TIP EAT YOUR VEGGIES
Although vegetables are a carbohydrate source, you shouldn’t leave them out of your diet. Many vegetables have almost no starch or sugar, and are full of fiber. If you’re not eating oatmeal, bread, or other starches, you’re going to need some fiber in your diet, trust me. Vegetables also contain the vitamins and minerals you’ll need to stay healthy and recover from your workouts.