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Hi and welcome back valued reader! In today’s blog post, I’ll talk about dining out when you’re following a keto diet. As always, don’t forget to “Like” & “Share” this information if you find it of value. I would really appreciate it!

Many restaurant meals, while not initially keto-friendly, can be made so with a little planning and imagination.

The first thing you need to watch out for, though, is the portion size. Most restaurant meals offer too much protein and not enough healthy vegetables.

Start by cutting that slab of beef it two and saving half for tomorrow. Sauces or gravies are a sneaky source of carbs, too, so ask for those on the side and just have a taste. Most places offer a meat or fatty fish dish that you can use as a start.

Order that and just replace any starches with extra healthy veggies. Another good choice is a bun-less burger. And replace those fries with vegetables instead.

Add some avocado, cheese, bacon, or eggs and you’ve got a keto meal.

For dessert, order a cheese board or berries with cream. If you like Mexican food, order meat with extra cheese, guacamole, salsa, and sour cream.

Here are a few national dining chains and some possible meal choices from each:

Applebee’s: Try their grilled chicken breast (other chicken choices have added carbs) and either broccoli or their fire-grilled veggies. Order a side of guacamole to add that healthy fat.

Carrabba’s Italian Grill: Skip the bruschetta in favor of asparagus wrapped in prosciutto, then try their chicken marsala, smothered in a mushroom wine sauce. Get a green veggie side with a drizzle of olive oil.

Cheesecake Factory: You’ll really have to avoid temptation here, because those lovely desserts are right off your menu. Order the pan-seared branzino with lemon butter instead.

Chili’s: choose a small (6-oz) sirloin steak with broccoli, then add a drizzle of olive oil for your healthy fats.

IHOP: Order the Make-Your-Own omelet with avocado and spinach. Skip the sides with this one (though you can order pancakes or fruit and pass them to a friend).

Jimmy John’s: Go for the tuna salad and provolone cheese “unwich” (their lettuce-wrapped version of a sandwich). Get the pickle, too—it has no carbs and adds a punch of flavor.

Olive Garden: This pasta spot also offers grilled salmon filet with garlic butter. Order parm broccoli and get the salad with dressing on the side.

Outback Steakhouse: Try the 5-oz grilled lobster tail with roasted butter garlic topping and sauteed shrimp.

Red Lobster: Their best choice is the wild-caught snow crab legs with asparagus. Remember to soak those crab legs in butter, too, for your healthy fats.

TGI-Fridays: Give their million-dollar Cobb salad with chicken a try. Go for the lunch portion and order either ranch, blue cheese, or Caesar dressing.

In my next post, I’ll look at some healthy ketogenic snacks and nutrition’s dynamic duos that will satisfy your hunger cravings.

Until next time,

Jimmie Wilks, MBACAP

Retired Air Force Vet & Online Marketer

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