Spaghetti covered in marinara sauce. Classic macaroni salad. Creamy chicken Alfredo. Minestrone soup. It’s hard to imagine a food more versatile than pasta; this beloved pantry staple is delicious in a seemingly endless variety of ways. Whether you like it cold, hot, as the centerpiece of the recipe, or playing a supporting role to chicken or another meat, it’s almost certain that you eat dishes containing pasta at least a few times each month – or even weekly, if you’re a hardcore pasta lover. At BestReviews, we like delicious food as well. That’s why we decided to bring you this buying guide to all things pasta. If you’re ready to get cooking, check out our five recommendations in the matrix above. If you’d like to learn more about pasta in general, including the difference between all those different shapes and flours, read on.
If you are low carb and nut-free, coconut flour may be one of your best options for low carb and keto baking. Still, it’s not an easy flour to work with, especially if you are new to this low carb diet thing. So before you start, I suggest you read my primer on How to Bake with Coconut Flour. You can’t just sub in coconut flour for regular flour or for other low carb flours. It’s very dense and it requires an inordinate amount of eggs to bake properly, so direct substitutions will result in utter failure!

If you prefer your cereal hot, try this grain-free version from Wildway, a favorite of Aimee Aristotelous, RD, a certified nutritionist and author of The Whole Pregnancy. "It contains real food ingredients, [is] certified gluten-free, paleo-friendly, soy-free, and sweetener-free," she tells us. Not a fan of hot cereals? She also recommends the brand's grain-free granola.

Flax meal, or ground flaxseeds, plays a dual role in baking: it acts as a flour and egg replacement. Flaxseeds are a super food because they contain the highest levels of alpha lipoic acid of all plant foods, an essential fatty acid otherwise thought to be found in fish that promotes healthy brain function. Two tablespoons contain 4 grams of carbs and 3 grams of protein.
Consequently, when you begin a ketogenic diet, it acts as a metabolic stressor on the body. In the process of relearning how to burn fat for energy, a mild metabolic stress is inflicted upon your mitochondria. This stress is just powerful enough to kill off old and dysfunctional mitochondria which stimulates the growth of new and more powerful mitochondria (5). The end result is more energy and a higher level of vitality.

Hi Carleen, I wouldn’t recommend unblanched almond flour. It might be ok but the texture will be much worse than using finely ground blanched. I haven’t tried the recipe with flax but I expect that it will work better with psyllium, which provides that chewy bread texture and flax doesn’t do that. If you don’t want to use coconut oil, I’d recommend butter or ghee over vegetable oils. The almond flour biscuits should work fine as toppings.
Hi Stacey, I can’t give medical advice and definitely recommend following your doctor’s recommendations. You can ask him/her if low carb would be better suited for you. Also, you may want to double check with him/her if the kidney concern was related to high protein, because that is a common misconception about keto – it is not a high protein diet/lifestyle.
Made these donuts this morning, and they are delicious. The simplest and one of the best low carb donut recipes that I have tried. I did add a scoop of whey protein powder for structure, and that worked great. I used Swerve in the donuts and a small amount of Truvia (which contains a little sugar–but okay in this tiny amount per donut) for the topping. I got 8 donuts out of the recipe, but I think I actually could’ve gotten 10. I have two 6-cavity nonstick Wilton donut pans like the ones pictured in your link. Great recipe, Maya. Thanks! 

This article originally appeared in Personal Training Quarterly (PTQ)—a quarterly publication for NSCA Members designed specifically for the personal trainer. Discover easy-to-read, research-based articles that take your training knowledge further with Nutrition, Programming, and Personal Business Development columns in each quarterly, electronic issue. Read more articles from PTQ »

When dietary CHO is of sufficient quantity the body has the ability to store small amounts for later use. Stored CHO is referred to as glycogen. Body reserves of glycogen, however, are limited, with relatively small amounts stored in the liver and skeletal muscle. As CHO is the “go to” energy source for the CNS, as well as an important energy source for other tissues, the body must maintain a stable supply of circulating blood glucose. While this is a complex process, the liver is primarily responsible for either breaking down stored glycogen or manufacturing small amounts of glucose in a process known as gluconeogenesis. In this manner the liver is able to maintain circulating blood glucose levels under most conditions. If the liver is unable to supply a sufficient amount of glucose, blood sugar levels will fall and result in hypoglycemia, a condition characterized by hunger, fatigue, headache, nausea and impairments in cognitive ability. In sporting terms hypoglycemia is referred to as “bonking” or “hitting the wall” and significantly affects athletic performance. Therefore, it is easy to understand the perceived need for dietary CHO; in the absence of sufficient blood glucose, physiological function is rapidly compromised.
There are so many tricks, shortcuts, and gimmicks out there on achieving optimal ketosis – I’d suggest you don’t bother with any of that. Optimal ketosis can be accomplished through dietary nutrition alone (aka just eating food). You shouldn’t need a magic pill to do it. Just stay strict, remain vigilant, and be focused on recording what you eat (to make sure your carb and protein intake are correct).
The ketogenic diet, or keto, relies on using your fat as fuel, instead of glucose from carbohydrates or protein. Simply put, the daily ketogenic diet consists of 75 percent fat, 20 percent of protein, and a teeny allotment of carbohydrates, about 5 percent. This balance of macronutrients is intended to put your body in a state of ketosis, which suppresses the release of insulin and blood glucose levels. The benefits of ketosis to your health are improvements in biomarkers like blood glucose, reduction of blood pressure and decreased appetite due to fullness linked to consumption of fats.
As with cold cereals, your best bet for a low-carb breakfast cereal comes in the form of whole grains. Oatmeal is an excellent choice because it is high in fiber and contains a substance called beta-glucan, which slows down the digestive process. That means you will stay full throughout the morning. Bran cereals can also be eaten hot, and whole grains such as quinoa or grits can be flavored to be either savory or sweet. Quinoa goes especially well with walnuts and raisins, dates or dried figs. It is is also scrumptious when flavored with a little bit of coriander and served with a poached egg on top. Grits are also a natural partner for eggs, but they are also delicious with pecans and fresh blueberries. Drizzle a bit of honey, agave or real maple syrup on top for sweetness. This will increase the carb count a bit, but the nutritional benefits of starting your day with a hearty, hot breakfast are more than worth the few extra carbs.
The ingredients above are usually quite expensive and might take some experimenting to get the hang of using. The low-carb or keto way of eating by no means require baking. If you don’t miss bread you certainly don’t need to replace it with a low-carb version but if you do miss bread or maybe just miss the baking itself the recipes below might be of interest to you.
Shirataki noodles are available in many shapes -- spaghetti, fettucini, macaroni -- and can be purchased plain. Products like Miracle Noodle and NoOodle Noodles sell this type, which tends to be extra-slippery, nutritionally void (they are mostly made up of water) and close to calorie-free. Other brands, like House Foods and Nasoya's Pasta Zero blend the yam flour with tofu or chickpeas, which adds just a few calories and grams of carbohydrates and fiber.
The ketogenic diet is not a benign, holistic, or natural treatment for epilepsy; as with any serious medical therapy, complications may result.[28] These are generally less severe and less frequent than with anticonvulsant medication or surgery.[28] Common but easily treatable short-term side effects include constipation, low-grade acidosis, and hypoglycaemia if an initial fast is undertaken. Raised levels of lipids in the blood affect up to 60% of children[38] and cholesterol levels may increase by around 30%.[28] This can be treated by changes to the fat content of the diet, such as from saturated fats towards polyunsaturated fats, and if persistent, by lowering the ketogenic ratio.[38] Supplements are necessary to counter the dietary deficiency of many micronutrients.[18]
Thanks so much for sharing your results. You look so good, and you have inspired me to try a more structured version of the Keto Diet. I lost some weight recently on HCG 2.0, which puts you into ketosis (keto flu and all!). I have tried to maintain my weight loss with a version of the Keto Diet, but I know that I am probably still eating too many carbs and not enough fat. I am 47, and I contine to have issues with keeping the weight off despite a healthy diet and exercise. I am sure it is hormone-related.

Over 8–10 mmol/l: It’s normally impossible to get to this level just by eating a keto diet. It means that something is wrong. The most common cause by far is type 1 diabetes, with severe lack of insulin. Symptoms include feeling very sick with nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain and confusion. The possible end result, ketoacidosis, may be fatal and requires immediate medical care. Learn more


I would suggest using a keto calculator on the various websites I mentioned like Maria Body Mind Health or Ketogains. 20 net carbs, not total carbs. So I subtract the total carbs from the fiber to get my net carbs. It should be just 5% of your day, just like the chart I posted, protein can range from 15-25% for my body that is anywhere between 60-80 grams a day and the rest is fat.
I have been on the Atkins diet for the past month and a half (with great results!) But, I am not too crazy about the taste of the Atkins low carb baking mix. I decided to give this one a try, and I am so glad I did! I have read thru some of the other reviews, and for the most part, it was given high marks. I'd like to add to that five star rating by saying how much easier it is to use. No clumping, no harsh after taste, and I love the whole grain flavor! The pancakes are awesome, and its good to be able to have them again! You feel satisfied on a very small amount of anything made with this product, and remain comfortably full, which helps you avoid 'picking' in between meals. Highly recommend!

Fanatic? Someone with T2D, a disease usually claimed to be progressive and a never ending stream of problems and medications, was REVERSED. That’s something to shout from the rooftops. The drop in medication use alone, but the big pharma companies would prefer that people’s stories of reversing (well, putting it into remission) T2D get called fanatical instead of insightful.


I don’t make pancakes often and never waffles, but I have definitely used it for the crepes A LOT. The key to the crepes is that the liquid is super thin–like cake mix, not like brownie mix. The xantham gum is really not a huge amount for the full recipe. It is under 1 TBSP per cup of other dry ingredients. Let me know if you like it better with the wheat gluten. Thanks for writing!
Hi Amelia, I’m glad you liked the bread! Sorry it turned out expensive for you. I usually use this almond flour from Amazon, which is a lot cheaper than the one you mentioned ($8.49 per pound right now), but I don’t know if it’s available on Amazon UK. Vitacost also often has good prices, especially if you look for a coupon code online, but not sure about their shipping prices to the UK. Let us know if one of those turns out to be a better deal, or if you find some other place that’s better.
This is such a great addition to breakfast. With that said I tweaked it a bit by adding a bit more butter and vanilla. After cooling I pressed it into a spring-form pan to use for a cheese cake, end result was great. Guests couldn’t believe their desert was carb free gluten free. I think the possibilities for this recipe is endless, nuts, chocolate shavings or chunks my husband added cranraisins. Thank you so much for posting.
I was worried. I read my ingredients and follow the instructions to the letter. I made the little bow ties. I put them in the freezer for 15 minutes and I fried them in garlic and olive oil. They were so good. I think they would definitely stand up to any sauce that you added to them (after they were fried) I can’t wait to try them as fried ravioli. I’m also going to stuff a few with ricotta and sauerkraut, fry them, dress them with sour cream, and call them a pierogi.
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2. Raygan, F., Bahmani, F., Kouchaki, E., Aghadavod, E., Sharifi, S., Akbari, E., . . . Asemi, Z. (2016). Comparative effects of carbohydrate versus fat restriction on metabolic profiles, biomarkers of inflammation and oxidative stress in overweight patients with Type 2 diabetic and coronary heart disease: A randomized clinical trial. PMID: 28607566 
The first modern study of fasting as a treatment for epilepsy was in France in 1911.[12] Twenty epilepsy patients of all ages were "detoxified" by consuming a low-calorie vegetarian diet, combined with periods of fasting and purging. Two benefited enormously, but most failed to maintain compliance with the imposed restrictions. The diet improved the patients' mental capabilities, in contrast to their medication, potassium bromide, which dulled the mind.[13]
Hi Amelia, I’m glad you liked the bread! Sorry it turned out expensive for you. I usually use this almond flour from Amazon, which is a lot cheaper than the one you mentioned ($8.49 per pound right now), but I don’t know if it’s available on Amazon UK. Vitacost also often has good prices, especially if you look for a coupon code online, but not sure about their shipping prices to the UK. Let us know if one of those turns out to be a better deal, or if you find some other place that’s better.

I’m discouraged to see that nowhere in the article nor in the comments is there a mention of a diet’s best fit to genetics. Consider if someone is an APOE E2 carrier and/or has certain polymorphisms of the APO5 gene. These are quite rare in Okinawa but much more prevalent in the USA (12% of the population). According to a number of well-designed studies, these genetic characteristics point to a higher fat, lower carbohydrate diet as beneficial and even a “moderate” carb diet as problematic.


This is something I always do the wrong way. I always melt it and use a full 1/4 cup of melted coconut oil because I don’t know how to properly measure solid coconut oil. The brand I use is very hard when solid and comes in a tub so I have to scrape it with a spoon to get shavings. 1/4 cup of coconut oil shavings is not the same as 1/4 cup of solid coconut oil in a block – 1/4 cup shavings would have less oil because of the air in between.


Having tempting, unhealthy foods in your home is one of the biggest reasons for failure when starting any diet. To maximize your chances of success with the keto diet, you need to remove as many triggers as you can. This crucial step will help prevent moments of weakness from ruining all your hard work.If you aren’t living alone, make sure to discuss with your family or housemates before throwing anything out. If some items are simply not yours to throw out, try to compromise and agree on a special location so you can keep them out of sight.
Almond Meal is made slightly different than almond flour. Instead of blanching the almonds to remove the skins, the skins on the almonds are kept on. It’s a little bit coarser than almond flour and still bakes the same. For baked goods, I like to use a super fine ground almond flour but I will equally use almond meal as it seems to perform just as well in most recipes, at a reduced cost.
My favorite sugar-free low carb BBQ sauce is a family recipe that I tweaked to make keto friendly. It is simple to prepare without a lot of added ingredients that aren’t necessary. You can find my recipe here. If you are looking for convenience, there are several brands that make a sugar-free variety that can be ordered from Amazon or you may find in your local stores. The only brand of store-bought sugar-free bbq sauce I have tried is by G. Hughes. They offer several different varieties, but I prefer hickory. I might be a little partial, but my homemade BBQ sauce makes this recipe taste much more authentic and flavorful.
So I made this recipe and the taste is amazing! However, mine is still in more of a powder form and never got any crispness to it. So we really can’t eat it. Any suggestions on what I can do to make it right? The only difference I had was I used stevia instead of 1/3 cup of a sweetener. I even tried cooking it another 10 minutes thinking my oven just needed more time to crisp it. Thank you for your help! I have loved all the recipes I’ve tried from your site.
Yum! My fiance wanted me to make him some cereal as he starts on his keto journey. This one looked relatively simple so I gave it a try tonight. Subbed macadamia nuts for the hazelnuts and added a small handful of hemp seeds just for fun. It is so good! Will definitely be putting this on my list of things to make regularly! I bet it will be awesome sprinkled on my homemade Greek yogurt!
I made 2 mugs of this recipe tonight. I made my husbands with 2 squares of Ghirardelli 100% cacao. I made mine with 1 heaping Tbl. of unsweetened baking cocoa and 3 TBL of sweetener (instead of 2Tbl) the remaining ingredients were added as the recipe called for. Hands down, the cake made with the baking coca had a better texture and flavor. We will definitely make it again whenever we need a chocolate fix. Thanks for sharing.
I’ve been doing keto on and off for a year. Before that, I explored eliminating “inflammatory” or “reactive” foods based on another eating program. I have Celiac and autoimmune issues and I think one of the reasons people stall with Keto is because they are eating too many typically “inflammatory” foods–foods that your body has a harder time digesting and as a result create systemic inflammation which, in turn, cause weight loss plateaus. For those trying to fight through a Keto Plateau, I would suggest eliminating ALL dairy (try subbing ghee for butter), artificial sweeteners (including stevia and erythritol) and all nuts for 5 days. I know it sounds close to impossible but all three of these Keto staples are some of the biggest culprits of inflammation in the body. I found this suggestion on another Keto website and tried it and dropped 6 lbs in 5 days. Another typically inflammatory food is Eggs. If you can’t eliminate all of these foods at once, try eliminating one at a time for a minimum of 5 days and see if there is any movement on the scale. For those who have stalled, chances are at least one of your Keto staples is holding you up. Good luck!
Hi, I’m still a bit skeptical, I have seen some of my friends do the keto diet, and have had good results. Though I am still not sure about the idea of the fats being eaten. They say they eat meat with the fat and must do so, is this correct? Also isn’t this not good for the body especially for the kidneys? Second, can a diabetic do this diet? There are many questions running through my head.
H. Guldbrand, B. Dizdar, B. Bunjaku, T. Lindström, M. Bachrach-Lindström, M. Fredrikson, C. J. Östgren, F. H. Nystrom, “In Type 2 Diabetes, Randomisation to Advice to Follow a Low-carbohydrate Diet Transiently Improves Glycaemic Control Compared with Advice to Follow a Low-fat Diet Producing a Similar Weight Loss,” Diabetologia (2012) 55: 2118. http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00125-012-2567-4.
I have only been on a Keto diet for a couple of weeks, but I have found some great recipes on your site and have loved them all! Today I made these donuts and then frosted them with your Low Carb Keto Cream cheese frosting. I followed both recipes exactly as written and had great results. Thanks so much! I thought I would never be able to give up sweets, but now I do not have to and I am so relieved.
Several recent studies indicate that a low-carbohydrate diet is effective at improving glycemia. A few studies have shown that in non-diabetic individuals, low-carbohydrate diets were more effective than higher carbohydrate diets at improving fasting serum glucose [13,14] and insulin [6,14-16], and at improving insulin sensitivity as measured by the homeostasis model [6]. One of these studies also included diabetic patients and noted a comparative improvement in hemoglobin A1c after 6 months (low fat diet: 0.0 ± 1.0%; low carbohydrate diet: -0.6 ± 1.2%, p = 0.06) [6] and 12 months (low fat diet: -0.1 ± 1.6%; low carbohydrate diet: -0.7 ± 1.0%, p = 0.019) duration [5]. In a 5-week crossover feeding study, 8 men with type 2 diabetes had greater improvement in fasting glucose, 24-hour glucose area-under-the-curve (AUC), 24-hour insulin AUC, and glycohemoglobin while on the low-carbohydrate diet than when on a eucaloric low-fat diet [7]. In a 14-day inpatient feeding study, 10 participants with type 2 diabetes experienced improvements in hemoglobin A1c and insulin sensitivity as measured by the euglycemic hyperinsulinemic clamp method [8]. Hemoglobin A1c also improved in an outpatient study of 16 participants who followed a 20% carbohydrate diet for 24 weeks [9].
Hi Maya. I LOVE your site!! Interesting, informative with fab recipes and ideas. Hubby and I have just started eating low carb and I have to say, we are not finding it too difficult and I already feel sooo much better!! I find the hardest part is choosing low carb veg, I feel as if we are not eating enough. Any suggestions on how to get more veggies into our diet?
"Avoid inflammatory oils like safflower, sunflower, corn, or soybean oils and opt for whole food cereal or granolas with limited ingredients, which tend to be made from nuts, seeds and occasionally whole oats or puffed rice," says Kelly LeVeque, RD, a celebrity nutritionist who works with Jennifer Garner and Jessica Alba, and author of Body Love. One of her faves: This grain-free granola from Thrive Market, which has a blissfully short ingredient list but tons of flavor.
Just made these, without a silpat (I used parchment) and with a wonky cookie sheet (I desperately need a new one, and will have one before I make these again) but they were great! I really wanted chicken noodle soup, as I woke up this morning with a sore throat.. These are awesome!! Very little taste, not eggy at all, and my chicken soup really hit the spot! Thanks!

The importance of dietary CHO is so well ingrained that the concept is taken for granted. In fact, basic macronutrient guidelines are predicated upon the idea that the central nervous system (CNS) requires a minimum of ~130 grams (~520 kcal) per day to function properly (i.e., to maintain optimal cognitive function). As a result, the minimum recommended daily intake of CHO reflects this idea (7). Similarly, most contemporary texts on sports nutrition emphasize the outsized role of CHO in optimizing both athletic performance and recovery (9). Frequently referred to as the “master fuel,” recommendations range from 3 – 12 grams per kilogram of bodyweight, per day. As an example, the recommended daily intake for a 180-lb athlete would be 246 – 982 grams, with a caloric equivalent of 984 – 3,928 calories. In marked contrast, the KD would recommend a maximum of just 50 grams (~ 200 calories) per day for the same individual.


Another amazing recipe!! I made these this morning and they came out great. I baked for 28 minutes. Mine didn’t rise very much, I used brand new baking powder but I must have measured something incorrectly. I used your knife method when taking out of the pan and then turned my pans upside down and tapped them and the donuts fell right out. I also bought the pans you suggested. They were a huge hit. Thank you!!
There’s nothing like pouring a bowl of low carb cereal with almond milk for an easy morning breakfast. These low carb granola and low carb muesli recipes are made from nuts and seeds resulting in a nourishing sugar free, gluten free, and grain free breakfast option. Because they are very nutritionally dense, enjoy a small portion. Enjoy a spoonful on full fat Greek yogurt or ice cream.

A computer program such as KetoCalculator may be used to help generate recipes.[47] The meals often have four components: heavy whipping cream, a protein-rich food (typically meat), a fruit or vegetable and a fat such as butter, vegetable oil, or mayonnaise. Only low-carbohydrate fruits and vegetables are allowed, which excludes bananas, potatoes, peas, and corn. Suitable fruits are divided into two groups based on the amount of carbohydrate they contain, and vegetables are similarly divided into two groups. Foods within each of these four groups may be freely substituted to allow for variation without needing to recalculate portion sizes. For example, cooked broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, and green beans are all equivalent. Fresh, canned, or frozen foods are equivalent, but raw and cooked vegetables differ, and processed foods are an additional complication. Parents are required to be precise when measuring food quantities on an electronic scale accurate to 1 g. The child must eat the whole meal and cannot have extra portions; any snacks must be incorporated into the meal plan. A small amount of MCT oil may be used to help with constipation or to increase ketosis.[37]
Hi Paula, Sorry that you were disappointed. The color likely has to do with the brand of psyllium husk powder; some of them turn purple when baking, though this is not harmful. The brand I use is linked on the recipe card and does not turn purple (as shown in the pictures). Regarding taste and texture, I’d love to help troubleshoot, if you can describe what issue you are seeing.
Hi Roseanne. It can be hard to start especially when stressed out. Here is an idea to help you ease into a low carb lifestyle. First, know that I am not a nutritionist nor a doctor. There were times I thought I would go out of my mind without a piece of low carb cheesecake in the morning. I’m not a big egg eater and that saved my life until I found how easy quiches were to make and how much I loved them. If you are craving something, eat something – as long as it is low carb. There were days I ate all day long – there were also days I ate very little. For me it was all or nothing. Cheat days didn’t work for me because they brought back cravings. If you are stressed out and need something sweet – make a protein smoothie with ice (look at my smoothie bowl recipe). It is much better to go a little over your calories and carbs than to have a pig out. I hope these simple ideas help. Have a wonderful week and good luck. -Kim

I have never made waffles with this mix as we don’t make waffles. However, I would think it would be similar to pancakes, which I have made. Did you use 1/4 cup of Xantham gum? More than this seems to make a pastier batter. When making pancakes, I found that I needed to batter to be way thicker than most pancake batters. I also found that I needed more eggs. As for what else this mix can be used for, I have recipes at the blog for cookies, cupcakes, biscuits, and crepes using this mix. I have dozens of recipes in various stages of testing that use this mix. Some of my favorites are quick breads and muffins and cookies. Cake type recipes (muffins, small loaves of bread, cupcakes, cake, etc.) really turn out well with this mix. Let me know how some other dishes turn out for you! Thanks!
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