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Everything You Need to Know About the Vegetarian Keto Diet

The vegetarian keto diet food list is one of the most useful lists I’ve made this past year. I have been eating vegetarian (mostly vegan) for years. However, I confess that for most of that time, I was eating a carb-rich diet.

In the past year, I have really taken a look at changing my diet. Of course, the desire for weight loss was a primary motivator. However, losing weight wasn’t my only goal. I really want to feel more energetic. Diet is a key component of energy.

I started by giving up sugar. Of course, that immediately made a huge difference. Without sugar, my energy levels were much more even throughout the day.

Then I decided to give up all processed carbs. The keto diet caught my attention. However, most people I had seen on this diet were eating a lot of meat. Therefore, I had to do some research to find a vegetarian keto diet food list.

What is Keto?

The keto method is one version of a high-protein, low-carb diet. It has specific rules and ratios. The basic idea is that by cutting out carbs your body will switch to burning fats. Of course, this helps with weight loss.

The diet isn’t right for everyone. It affects the ketones in the body. Therefore, people who have insulin-dependent diabetes and other similar issues may experience problems on a keto diet.

That said, it works for a lot of people. The typical keto diet asks that you eat a lot of green vegetables, which is perfect for a vegetarian. However, it also calls for a lot of meat, seafood, eggs, and cheese. Obviously, this doesn’t work well for a vegetarian, and it definitely doesn’t work for someone who eats vegan.

Vegetarian Keto Diet

The main difference between regular keto and vegetarian keto is, of course, that you don’t eat meat. However, you do still need to get your protein. Therefore, you have to get creative with your diet. It helps a lot if you eat eggs.

Many vegetarians get their protein from beans and legumes. However, these tend to be high in carbohydrates. Therefore, you can only eat them in limited quantities on a keto diet.

For me, personally, I found that the best diet is one that incorporates a wide variety of non-starchy vegetables. I try to “eat my colors.” In other words, I try to eat a range of plants that aren’t just green but may also be red, yellow, or purple.

I incorporate some soy and fake meat products. This helps boost protein. However, be careful to read the labels with an eye towards carbohydrates. I also use an app called Carb Manager to help me track everything I’m eating.

Vegetarian Keto Diet Food List

If you’re not vegan but are vegetarian, then here is a good vegetarian keto diet food list to base your diet on:

Non-Starchy Low-Carb Vegetables

You want to choose primarily green vegetables that grow above-ground. Here are some great choices:

  • Artichokes
  • Asparagus
  • Bell pepper (limited quantities)
  • Broccoli
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Cauliflower
  • Celery
  • Chard
  • Cucumber
  • Eggplant
  • Green beans
  • Kale and all leafy greens
  • Mushrooms
  • Spinach
  • Zucchini


This vegetarian keto diet food list doesn’t have a lot of fruit on it. That’s because fruit has a lot of carbs. Therefore, it’s not a big part of a keto diet. However, there are some fruits that you can eat:

  • Avocado
  • Berries
  • Olives
  • Tomatoes

Protein Sources

  • Almonds and almond butter
  • Cheese
  • Eggs
  • Faux meat including tempeh, seitan, and other vegan meat products
  • Flax seeds
  • Greek yogurt
  • Hemp seeds
  • Pistachios
  • Sunflower seeds

Healthy Fats

Any keto diet includes a lot of healthy fat. In fact, the general recommendation is that 70% of your calories should come from fats. Egg yolks and avocados are a good starting point. Furthermore, you can cook with olive oil, avocado oil, and coconut oil. Butter, ghee, and cream are also welcome. If you are vegan, look for vegan dairy alternatives that are high-fat and low in carbs.

Do you see anything missing from this vegetarian keto diet food list? Be sure to share in the comments!

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