Best Keto Replacement Meals
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If you have a busy schedule or don’t like to spend a lot of time preparing meals on your low carb/ keto diet the world just got a lot easier. There are many replacement meals, many are in shake form.
The basic keto coffee started out as a meal replacer. A meal replacement is a complete meal usually in a drink or bar form that can substitute in calories and macronutrients for the equivalent of a breakfast, lunch, or dinner meal.
They are usually a low calorie, or in this case low carb alternative to food. Meal replacements are not a snack on the go because they are generally more healthy for you and loaded with vitamins, minerals, and nutrients to help boost energy.
They can help provide a quick alternative to bringing on an unhealthy meal. Meal replacements help some people stick to their diet.
One way many people go off their diet is they have skipped a meal and are really hungry and will grab for anything, often a not wise food choice. A meal replacement can be a great choice when you need something quick, good for you, that can suppress your hunger without sabotaging your diet regime.
Most people who choose to use a meal replacement shake do so to help them lose weight or for convenience when they don’t have the time to cook a balanced meal. Making your own shake will save money and time as compared to making a cooked meal.
If you decide to use a meal replacement shake or bar on your keto diet or on a regular diet you need to become a label reader. Many store-bought shakes are loaded with carbohydrates and sugar so be careful.
Related Article: Best Keto Meal Replacement Shakes
Just to review, someone on a keto diet is trying to turn their body into a fat burner instead of a glucose burner for energy. Carbohydrates (mostly sugars and starches) are broken down into glucose.
If you have less than 20 grams of carbohydrates per day your body will switch to burning stored fat. Fat is broken down into ketones.
When you eat fats and do not exceed your daily caloric need, you generally will lose weight.
There are many keto replacement meals. Keto Coffee, for instance, was originally developed as a replacement breakfast drink by Dave Asprey, a biohacker who invented ‘Bulletproof coffee’.
But drinking keto coffee and following a non-keto diet will not lead to weight loss. In fact, it can cause weight gain.
Typical keto coffee contains coffee, grass-fed butter or clarified butter known as ghee, brain octane oil known as MCT oil which is metabolized more efficiently. MCT oil is multi-chain triglycerides.
Some people use coconut oil. Many claim drinking this gives them lots of energy, keeps them satisfied until lunchtime, and clear thinking, and focused.
Some kind of nut milk like almond milk and sometimes coconut milk. It is creamy and you need a blender to help integrate the liquid with the oil.
Maya Krampf founder of Wholesome Yum shares her keto coffee recipe (check it out on Wholesomeyum.com)
- 8oz. Black coffee
- ½ cup unsweetened almond milk (regular or vanilla)
- 1 teaspoon MCT oil
- 1teaspoon butter
- 1 tablespoon Collagen protein powder (optional)
- I like to add a bit of Lakota Monk Fruit powder or stevia for a low carb sweetener.
Some other homemade meal replacements I found, thanks to keto bloggers like Olivia or Liv the founder of Liv Breathe Keto at livebreatheketo.com. Olivia shares that many store-bought keto replacement shakes can be expensive and I would have to agree.
Sometimes you need help keeping up with the macronutrients required on a keto diet, especially getting enough fat and protein. Many shakes don’t do it, so making your own or buying a keto meal replacement shake can help.
Once you get into the routine it’s not hard. Doing it yourself may not be as quick as a prepackaged shake but if you have a blender or hand blender it’s really not hard.
One quick note, the difference between a high protein shake and a keto meal replacer is the latter is higher in fat, just like most keto meals should be.
When using protein powders check to make sure they are low in carbs and tasty. Some protein powders can taste terrible.
By playing around with the ingredients you can make the shake with the ratio of macronutrients (protein, carbohydrate, and fat) that are right for you.
Need more protein? Use more protein powder or add a raw egg.
Need more fat? Add more MCT or coconut oil.
If you budgeted for a few carbs, use Monk fruit sweeteners like Lakota brand or Stevia.
Vegan or dairy-free? You can switch heavy cream with coconut cream and there are some low carb vegan protein powders like California Gold Nutrition plant-based protein in chocolate and vanilla flavors.
Unlike keto coffee which is hot, keto replacement shakes are generally cold so butter is not a good option.
It won’t melt and it may make your shake grainy. Experiment and try out different oils.
Olive oil is very keto-friendly but maybe too strong. Some people like avocado oil, or coconut oil depending on the season.
Coconut oil is solid in the winter which is why MCT oil may be a better choice.
A typical recipe might look like this:
- 2 cups unsweetened coconut or almond milk
- 1 scoop protein powder
- 3 Tablespoons whipping cream
- 1 teaspoon avocado oil or MCT oil
- ⅛ teaspoon Lakota Monk Fruit powder or stevia (6-10 drops)
- Ice is optional for thickness
You can add flavoring that is low in carbohydrates like vanilla or mint extract, instant coffee, nut butters, cinnamon and nutmeg, cocoa powder, sugar-free syrup, strong brewed tea cooled down. Use your imagination!
If you want less calories, you can use less oil and or cream. Some keto-friendly protein powders are Dr. Axe Keto Protein in different flavors and Isopure.
Dr. Axe also has keto meal replacements under the name Keto Feast. Many of these brands you can order online if you can’t find them locally.
You can be very creative and enjoy.