The Best RD-Recommended Keto Foods and Meal Ideas (and What to Avoid)

The ketogenic diet, or keto as it's commonly known, has gained massive popularity in recent years. Originally used to treat epilepsy in children, keto emphasizes a high-fat, moderate-protein, and low-carb eating pattern. This unique combination of macronutrients leads to ketosis, a metabolic state in which the body burns fat instead of carbs (glucose) for energy, research confirms.

The ideal keto pattern focuses on quality protein sources, sustainably sourced seafood, and healthy fat from coconuts, nuts, seeds, olive oil, and avocados. Nonstarchy vegetables and some higher-fiber fruits like blueberries are also included. But like many popular diets, as more people jump on the keto bandwagon, more processed and packaged keto products hit the shelves.

While prepared keto foods or keto meal kits can be timesaving or make it easier to stay in ketosis, not all of these products are created equal. Despite what certain brands want you to believe, a keto-friendly food label doesn’t automatically mean it’s good for you, so it can feel overwhelming to sort through all the options.

I am a registered dietitian-nutritionist with experience working one-on-one with clients and in community and corporate wellness settings, as well as in clinical nutrition, academics, and research. I’ve completed advanced training in integrative and functional nutrition and medicine, with a focus on women’s health. In this article, I’ll guide you through some of the top keto foods and meals to help you choose delicious, nutrient-dense foods that fit a keto lifestyle.

The Best Keto Meal Delivery Options

Let's dive into the top keto meals I’d recommend to my nutrition clients, highlighting brands that prioritize taste and nutrition, and make it easier to follow the lifestyle.

A keto meal delivery scored one point each for the following criteria:

  • Fits the keto macros of being high in healthy fats, moderate in protein, and low in carbs
  • Made with whole, unprocessed ingredients
  • High in fiber and essential nutrients
  • Quality protein sources
  • High customer ratings for flavor

A note about packaging: While we didn’t add points for using sustainable packaging, it’s worth noting that some of the following companies use environmentally friendly packaging with recycling options.


Our Rating5


  • Plenty of variety
  • Add-ons like extra protein and snacks
  • Keto menu emphasizes healthy fats and 15 grams (g) or less of net carbs per serving
  • Recyclable and some compostable packaging


  • Not suitable for those with celiac disease, allergies, or intolerances, as all recipes are prepared in the same facility
Price Meal kits start at $11.49 per serving; ready-to-heat options begin at $9.99

Offering organic and sustainable ingredients with meal kits or ready-to-heat choices, Sunbasket has many specialty diet options, including keto-friendly. You can select meals or add-ons weekly (including a market with opportunities for extra protein, snacks, or breakfast). Theoretically, you could choose options for the whole family, even those who aren’t following keto.

Sunbasket scores high for choice and variety. The keto-friendly menu prioritizes healthy fats like avocados, nuts, and other quality ingredients. At 550 calories or less per meal, Sunbasket keto-friendly meals contain at least 20 g of protein and 15 g of net carbs (or less) per serving.

Net carbs are total carbohydrates minus the fiber content, which helps bump up the amount of daily allotted carbs. Most people need to experiment with the exact amount of carbs they can have without getting pushed out of ketosis. Sunbasket also makes it easy to try other meal plans if you decide keto isn't the right fit for you.

Green Chef

Our Rating4.5


  • Discounts offered to first responders, nurses, medical providers, teachers, active military, and veterans
  • Free 20-minute session with a registered dietitian
  • Most ingredients are certified organic
  • Recyclable packaging


  • No option to customize for allergies
  • Shipping charged separately
Price Meals range from $11.99 to $13.49 per serving, depending on how many meals you order weekly

A certified organic option, Green Chef prides itself on high-quality ingredients with a variety of choices to fit different dietary needs. Like Sunbasket, Green Chef also has an add-on marketplace where you can order sides, snacks, and breakfast items to accompany your meals.

The keto menu offers veggie-rich, high-fiber meals with less than 20 g of net carbs per serving. Some meals contain more calories per serving than you may need, and total carbs appear higher (although still considered keto-friendly if you follow net carbs). A bonus beyond the food is that Green Chef offers a free 20-minute dietitian consultation to help you customize your meals and provide any additional support needed on your keto journey.

Factor (Formerly Factor 75)

Our Rating4


  • Recipes designed by dietitians
  • Free 20-minute session with a registered dietitian
  • Bundles, snacks, and sides provide plenty of customizable variety


  • No option for low-sodium meals
  • No option to customize for allergies
Price?Options from 6 to 18 meals weekly, ranging from $13.49 to $10.99 per serving

One of the more popular prepared meal providers, Factor advertises as a dietitian-designed keto meal delivery service. Food is prepared fresh and shipped so it's ready to heat and eat. You can pick and choose from various menu items and add-ons like sides, breakfast, or dessert.

Factor earns points for fresh veggies, quality ingredients with minimal additives, and high customer ratings for flavor. Some meals are high in calories, so if you rely on these foods for all meals, you may take in more than you need. Fiber also tends to be on the low side for some of the meals, which could be fixed by adding more nonstarchy vegetables (although this may take away from the convenience). Overall, Factor is a decent choice for those who need a quick, keto-friendly meal without the hassle of cooking.

The Worst Keto Meals

Most meal delivery or meal kit options provide an overall quality meal, even if they vary in nutrient value. The worst keto meals are high in processed ingredients and contain too much sodium to compensate for the lack of taste.

For these keto meals, each product lost a point for the following criteria:

  • Highly processed
  • Minimal nutritional value
  • Calories far outweigh the amount of nutrition provided
  • Excessive sugar alcohols or artificial sweeteners
  • Unhealthy fat sources

Atkins Frozen Meals

Price Generally less than $5 per meal


Atkins products are found at most grocery retailers in the frozen section. The eat-and-go options seem convenient, but there are a few red flags. Products are highly processed with minimal nutritional value outside being low in carbs. Calories may appear low, but when compared with serving size, you’ll likely feel hungry again soon. Added sugar isn’t exactly keto-friendly, and high sodium per serving adds up fast. Skip these meals and opt for less-processed options.

Jimmy Dean Scrambles

Price Generally less than $5 per meal


On keto message boards where people ask questions about quick keto breakfasts, Jimmy Dean Scrambles jump out as a popular on-the-go option. The problem? The product is highly processed, with minimal nutritional value, high calories per serving, and unhealthy fat sources. Although it provides a lot of protein, the lack of real ingredients doesn't compensate for the convenience. Stick to making your own scrambles at home with fresh eggs and vegetables.

The Best Keto Foods

The best keto foods don’t necessarily need a keto label and may not even come in a package. Think whole foods like vegetables, meats, avocados, olive oil, and so on. Having packaged options is helpful, though, and some are better than others. From snacks to meal ingredients, here are a few of the best keto foods to add to your shopping list.

Each keto food item received points for the following criteria:

  • Fits keto macros
  • Made with whole, unprocessed ingredients
  • High in fiber or other essential nutrients

The Worst Keto Foods

Many options on the market cater to a keto lifestyle, so it’s essential to be mindful of nutritional content and ingredients. Some foods may claim to be keto-friendly but can hinder your ability to reach ketosis or aren’t great for your health. Here are some of the worst keto foods to avoid.

Processed Meats

While meat is a staple on the keto diet, processed ones like deli meats, hot dogs, and bacon are linked to many health issues and should be consumed in moderation. They often contain added preservatives and artificial ingredients that don't align with the principles of a healthy keto diet.

Keto Cookies

A cookie is a cookie, even when it is labeled "keto-friendly." Many keto cookies are high in sugar alcohols to keep the carb count low, which may not make you feel great, plus they provide little nutritional value. Of course, it's okay to enjoy a treat occasionally but don't rely on these snacks as a regular part of your diet.

Keto Bars

Not all but many keto bars contain highly processed ingredients and sugar alcohols, which can cause digestive issues. If you need an on-the-go snack, you're better off reaching for nuts, olives, or avocados, which offer nutrition and taste delicious without additives.

Choose Mostly Whole Foods for a Healthy Keto Diet

Whether you follow keto, paleo, vegan, or anything in between, fresh and unprocessed foods are ideal choices for anyone. Choosing from the high-rated options above can make it easier to follow a keto diet and stay in ketosis. Just make sure that you also include plenty of nutrient-dense whole foods to support long-term health on your keto journey.
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Everyday Health follows strict sourcing guidelines to ensure the accuracy of its content, outlined in our editorial policy. We use only trustworthy sources, including peer-reviewed studies, board-certified medical experts, patients with lived experience, and information from top institutions.


  • Zhu H et al. Ketogenic Diet for Human Diseases: The Underlying Mechanisms and Potential for Clinical Implementations. Signal Transduction and Targeted Therapy. January 17, 2022.
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