Cheese – a source of protein and fat that is a STAPLE of the keto diet. It can be used in anything from sweet dough (see Cinnamon Rolls) to a topping on your keto pasta (see Ravioli).
But there’s lots of questions surrounding cheese on keto and that’s where I am coming in to break it all down.
Let me just say first that on a keto diet, you can eat the majority of cheeses, but there are a few exceptions and things you should know!
First off – lets talk about grocery store cheese. Some – mostly the shredded kind – contain additives such as potato starch or some sort of filler that keeps the shreds of cheese from sticking together.
YES, this does add to the carb count. For an example: a 100g brick of cheddar cheese contains about 2 carbs BUT a 100g bag of pre-shredded cheese could be anywhere from 3 carbs to 7!! If you use cheese in large quantities, like fathead dough or pizza, the shredded cheese will add several carbs!!
In all cases, it’s best to shred the cheese yourself.
This is also the case for soft cheeses, especially Philadelphia cream cheese. It has hidden sugars and carbs that normal deli-style cream cheese wouldn’t.
The same rule also goes for specialty cheeses that have flavours – like cranberry cheese. Those will have added carbs due to the flavouring AND the sugars. I recommend to avoid!
As for the best cheeses on the keto diet – here are some of the ‘zero carb’ cheeses and their macros.
Please note that these are based on the USDA Food Composition Database. (I rounded all the protein and fat macros, but left the carbs as is, since it’s more important for counting)
Zero Carb Cheeses
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There are SO many more types of cheese, I won’t be going over ALL of them today. Here is a list of the some of the most popular cheeses and their macros. Please note, I included “American” cheese but check out that carb count! It’s all processed so highly recommend you stick to real cheese.
Other Cheeses & Carb Counts
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Hope this helps anyone who is confused about what cheeses to eat on keto!!