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The keto diet doesn’t have to be complicated. But it does require starting some good food habits before you chart your macros.

Start here for the top changes you can make now for low-carb, high-fat keto-diet success.

Habit #1: Ditch the Sugar

First, you don’t (really) need it and turns out it’s the biggest culprit of hidden carbohydrates in most pre-packaged convenience foods. Start simple by removing it from your drinks and work your way to finding less-sugar or no sugar options in the snacks, cereals, yogurt, and more, you eat every day.

Mor Kitchen pantry sweetener review and tasting notes will get you started on sugar alternatives.

Habit #2: Cut Out Preservatives

This is definitely a must; the keto diet is healthful, organic and natural-food based. If you can’t make it or grow it, it isn’t going to help you reach ketosis. Just by turning over our pantry from carbohydrate and preservative-full snack foods and staples such as processed granola to nuts and sugar-free jerky, we automatically reduced our carbohydrate (and our spirits doubled!) 

Habit #3: Get to Know Farmers

Sourcing locally offers the richest and freshest organic produce and products that will be the baseline for your meal planning. More vegetables and berries at the ready will also help you ensure you maintain your vegetable-to-protein ratios. Start substituting keto-friendly vegetables for chips and high-carbohydrate snacks and watch the change in your waistline.

The best and the worst vegetables on keto from Diet Doctor.

Habit #4: Make Food from Scratch

Simple protein-rich meals that combine a meat such as salmon with a green like cheddar-cheese broccoli and a quinoa side can be easy to cook. Not so confident in the kitchen? Take a quick lesson from the many chefs offering free cooking programs online. It has never been easier to learn simple, new tricks in the kitchen. 

Habit #5: Learn to Bake

Do you have a “thing” for carbs? We did, too. We are busy keto bakers at Mor Kitchen, making everything from pies to breads. Plus, our test kitchen meal favorites make it simple to plan with us each week.

Habit #6: Drink More Water

You are what you drink. This couldn’t be more true for any diet more than on keto. It keeps the dreaded “keto flu” at bay and helps hydrate as the body converts fat to energy when your carbohydrate stores are lower.

This Formula Will Tell You Exactly How Much Water to Drink on Keto

Habit #7: Keep Pickles Handy

Believe it or not a little salt and the pure, naturally preservative-free makeup of pickles goes great with keto. Plus, it can cure the bad symptoms that plague beginners (keto Facebook groups regularly hail pickles miraculous healing powers!) Consider it your go to (along with olives) on the approved-snacking list or charcuterie tray.

Are pickles keto? from Delish.

Habit #8: Stock Pile Cage-Free Organic Eggs

Eggs are incredibly versatile and a staple in the keto diet. You will go through a dozen eggs easily per week following a keto diet. If you bake, you will use double that amount for breakfast, lunch and dinner (and keto-friendly treats in between).

Habit #9: Buy Butter and Healthy Oils 

Avocado oil, coconut oil, clarified ghee and full-fat butter are essential. They all fall into the category of better-for-you options that release fewer chemicals or undesirable free radicals and are higher in desirable Omega-3s. Avoid other high smoke-point oils such as rice bran oil, however (keto is a rice-free diet). If you aren’t used to these oils, find a few recipes that will get you started without burning your food.

Cooking Oils and Smoke Points: How to choose? from Masterclass.

Habit #10: Get to Know Berries

Snacking on berries is a keto-friendly substitute when you have a sugar craving. Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries are among the fruits lowest in sugar content and approved when you are dedicated to eating keto.

9 Delicious Keto-friendly Fruits from Healthline

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