Are you following a keto diet and missing the bold flavors of Mexican cuisine? Look no further! In this article, we’ll explore 15 delicious keto Mexican dishes that will satisfy your cravings without derailing your low-carb lifestyle.
Traditional Mexican food often incorporates ingredients such as corn tortillas, beans, and rice, which can be high in carbs. However, with a few clever swaps and modifications, you can still enjoy all the mouthwatering flavors of Mexican dishes without going over your daily carb limit.
From cheesy keto enchiladas to flavorful carne asada, we’ve got you covered. You’ll find recipes that are packed with protein, healthy fats, and plenty of spices to keep your taste buds happy. Whether you’re hosting a Mexican-themed dinner party or simply looking to spice up your weeknight meals, these keto Mexican dishes are sure to impress.
Additionally, we’ll provide you with some meal tips to help you create a balanced keto Mexican feast. We’ll cover ideas for low-carb side dishes, salsa options, and even some suggestions for keto-friendly margaritas or mocktails. So grab your apron and get ready to embark on a culinary journey through the vibrant flavors of Mexico.
Fajitas are a popular Mexican dish that can easily be made keto-friendly. Traditionally, fajitas include strips of grilled beef or chicken, sautéed onions and peppers, and are served with warm tortillas. However, to make them keto-friendly, you can skip the tortillas and serve the fajita filling on a bed of lettuce or cauliflower rice.
Here’s a simple keto fajita recipe:
- In a bowl, combine sliced beef or chicken, lime juice, olive oil, minced garlic, chili powder, cumin, and salt. Let it marinate for at least 30 minutes.
- Heat a skillet over medium heat and add the marinated meat. Cook until it’s browned and cooked through.
- In the same skillet, sauté sliced onions and peppers until they are softened.
- Serve the fajita filling on a bed of lettuce or cauliflower rice. Optionally, top it with sour cream, guacamole, and salsa.
With this keto version of fajitas, you can enjoy a delicious and satisfying Mexican meal while staying in ketosis!
2. Carne asada
Carne asada is a popular Mexican dish that features grilled beef, typically marinated in citrus juices and spices. It is a delicious and flavorful option for those following a keto diet.
To make carne asada, start by selecting a good cut of beef, such as skirt steak or flank steak. These cuts are relatively lean and work well for grilling. Next, prepare a marinade using a mixture of citrus juices (such as lime and orange), garlic, cumin, oregano, and chili powder. Let the beef marinate in this mixture for at least an hour, but preferably overnight, to allow the flavors to penetrate the meat.
Once the beef has marinated, remove it from the marinade and pat it dry. Preheat your grill to medium-high heat and lightly oil the grates to prevent sticking. Grill the beef for about 4-6 minutes per side, or until it reaches your desired level of doneness.
Traditionally, carne asada is served with tortillas, rice, and beans. However, for those following a keto diet, you can enjoy it in a variety of ways. Try serving it with a side of cauliflower rice, guacamole, and grilled vegetables. You can also use lettuce wraps instead of tortillas for a low-carb option.
Carne asada is a versatile dish that can be enjoyed on its own or incorporated into other Mexican-inspired keto dishes. It’s a great option for meal prepping, as you can make a large batch and use it throughout the week in tacos, salads, and bowls.
So fire up the grill and enjoy a tasty and keto-friendly carne asada meal!
Ceviche is a refreshing and light dish that originates from Latin America, particularly Peru. It is made by marinating raw fish or seafood in citrus juices, typically lime or lemon juice, which helps to “cook” the raw seafood.
To make a keto-friendly ceviche, you can use low-carb vegetables like cucumber, bell peppers, and tomatoes as a base. You can also add in some avocado for healthy fats. For the seafood, you can choose from options like shrimp, fish, or scallops. Make sure to use fresh, high-quality seafood for the best results.
Here’s a simple recipe for keto ceviche:
|– 1 pound of fresh seafood (shrimp, fish, or scallops)
|– Cut the seafood into small, bite-sized pieces
|– Juice of 4-5 limes or lemons
|– Place the seafood in a bowl and pour the lime or lemon juice over it to marinate
|– 1 cucumber, diced
|– Let the seafood marinate in the citrus juice for at least 30 minutes, or until the seafood turns opaque and “cooked”
|– 2 bell peppers, diced
|– Drain the excess citrus juice from the seafood
|– 2 tomatoes, diced
|– Add in the diced cucumber, bell peppers, tomatoes, and any other desired vegetables
|– 1 avocado, diced
|– Gently mix everything together
|– Salt and pepper to taste
|– Season with salt and pepper to taste
Ceviche is a versatile dish that can be enjoyed as an appetizer, a light lunch, or even a main course. It is packed with fresh flavors and nutrients, making it a perfect choice for a keto-friendly Mexican meal. Serve it with some lettuce leaves or keto-friendly tortilla chips for added crunch.
Guacamole is a classic Mexican dish that is perfect for a keto diet. Made with ripe avocados, lime juice, cilantro, and spices, it is packed with flavor and healthy fats. Here’s a simple recipe to make delicious guacamole:
- Cut two ripe avocados in half lengthwise, remove seed, and scoop the flesh into a bowl.
- Add the juice of one lime to the bowl of avocado.
- Mash the avocado with a fork until it reaches your desired consistency.
- Finely chop a handful of fresh cilantro and add it to the bowl.
- Season with salt, pepper, and any other spices you like (such as cumin or garlic powder).
- Mix everything together until well combined.
- Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed.
Serve your guacamole with low-carb chips or use it as a topping for keto-friendly tacos, burrito bowls, or salads. It’s a versatile and delicious addition to any keto Mexican meal.
If you’re a fan of slow-cooked, tender pork, then you’ll love carnitas. This traditional Mexican dish is made by simmering pork in its own fat until it becomes incredibly flavorful and melt-in-your-mouth delicious. Carnitas can be enjoyed on their own or used as a filling in tacos, burritos, or quesadillas.
To make keto-friendly carnitas, start by marinating the pork with a combination of spices like cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, and chili powder. After marinating for a few hours (or overnight), sear the pork in a skillet until browned on all sides. Then transfer it to a slow cooker and cook on low for 6-8 hours, until the meat is fork-tender.
Once the carnitas are done cooking, remove the pork from the slow cooker and shred it using two forks. If desired, you can crisp up the shredded pork by spreading it out on a baking sheet and broiling for a few minutes until it gets slightly browned and crispy.
Serve the carnitas with your favorite keto-friendly toppings, such as guacamole, sour cream, salsa, and chopped cilantro. You can also wrap the carnitas in lettuce leaves for a low-carb taco shell alternative.
|– 2 lbs pork shoulder, cut into chunks
|1. In a large bowl, combine the spices and rub them all over the pork shoulder chunks.
|– 1 tsp cumin
|2. Cover and refrigerate the pork for at least 2 hours, or overnight if possible.
|– 1 tsp garlic powder
|3. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat and add the pork chunks. Sear on all sides until browned.
|– 1 tsp onion powder
|4. Transfer the browned pork to a slow cooker and cook on low for 6-8 hours, or until fork-tender.
|– 1 tsp oregano
|5. Remove the pork from the slow cooker and shred using two forks.
|– 1 tsp chili powder
|6. Optional: Place the shredded pork on a baking sheet and broil for a few minutes to crisp up.
6. Camarones a la diabla
One of the spicier options on this keto Mexican dishes list is “Camarones a la diabla.” This fiery dish translates to “Devil’s Shrimp” and delivers a punch of flavor.
The dish typically consists of succulent shrimp cooked in a spicy sauce made from tomatoes, onions, garlic, and various chili peppers like serrano or chipotle. The heat from the chilies gives the dish its devilish kick.
To keep this dish keto-friendly, opt for low-carb ingredients like fresh shrimp and use a sugar-free tomato sauce. You can also add extra heat by including additional chili peppers or hot sauce to suit your taste preferences.
Serve the Camarones a la diabla over cauliflower rice or alongside a refreshing keto-friendly salad for a complete and satisfying meal. This dish is not for the faint of heart, but if you enjoy bold and spicy flavors, give it a try!
7. Al pastor pork
If you’re a fan of Mexican cuisine, you’ve likely encountered al pastor pork before. This delicious dish is made from marinated pork that is cooked on a vertical rotisserie or spit. The pork is typically marinated in a mixture of dried chilies, pineapple, vinegar, and various spices, giving it a sweet and tangy flavor.
To make a keto-friendly version of al pastor pork, you’ll need to swap out some of the traditional ingredients. Instead of using pineapple, which is high in carbs, you can use a sugar-free pineapple substitute or omit it altogether. You can also opt for a low-carb tortilla or lettuce wrap instead of the traditional corn tortillas.
To prepare al pastor pork, you’ll need to marinate the pork in the spice mixture for at least a few hours, or ideally overnight. After marinating, the pork is stacked on a vertical rotisserie or spit and slow-cooked until it’s tender and crispy on the outside. Once cooked, the pork is typically sliced thin and served with onions, cilantro, and a squeeze of lime.
This flavorful dish is not only keto-friendly but also packed with protein and healthy fats. It’s a great option for a weeknight dinner or a festive gathering with friends and family. Give it a try and enjoy the delicious flavors of al pastor pork while staying in ketosis!
Chorizo is a staple in Mexican cuisine and is a versatile ingredient that can be used in many keto-friendly recipes. It is a type of spicy sausage that is made from ground pork, garlic, and various spices. Chorizo adds a rich and smoky flavor to dishes, making it the perfect addition to your keto Mexican meals.
Here are some ideas on how to incorporate chorizo into your keto diet:
- Create a low-carb chorizo and vegetable skillet by cooking sliced chorizo with bell peppers, onions, and zucchini. Season with keto-friendly spices like cumin, paprika, and chili powder.
- Make keto-friendly stuffed peppers by mixing cooked chorizo with cauliflower rice, cheese, and diced tomatoes. Stuff the mixture into bell peppers and bake until the peppers are tender.
- Add cooked chorizo to cauliflower rice to make a delicious keto Mexican rice. Sauté the chorizo in a pan until browned, then mix in cooked cauliflower rice and season with spices like garlic powder, onion powder, and cumin.
- Create a chorizo and egg breakfast scramble by cooking chorizo with scrambled eggs and toppings like diced tomatoes, avocado, and cilantro. This protein-packed breakfast will keep you satisfied until lunchtime.
- Make a keto-friendly chorizo and cheese dip by mixing cooked chorizo with cream cheese, shredded cheddar cheese, and diced jalapeños. Bake until bubbly and serve with low-carb tortilla chips or vegetable sticks.
With these ideas, you can enjoy the delicious flavors of chorizo while sticking to your keto diet. Get creative and try different ways to incorporate this tasty ingredient into your meals!
If you’re looking for a delicious keto-friendly snack or appetizer, look no further than queso. This classic Mexican cheese dip is rich, creamy, and pairs perfectly with low-carb tortilla chips or vegetable sticks.
To make a keto-friendly version of queso, start by using a combination of low-carb cheeses like cheddar, Monterey jack, or queso fresco. You can also add some cream cheese for extra creaminess. Melt the cheeses together with a bit of heavy cream in a saucepan over low heat, stirring until smooth and well combined.
- Choose full-fat cheeses to keep the dish keto-friendly.
- Experiment with adding spices like chili powder, cumin, or jalapenos for some extra flavor and heat.
- Serve the queso immediately while it’s still warm and gooey.
- If you have any leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Reheat gently on the stovetop or in the microwave.
Whether you’re hosting a party or just want a tasty snack, keto-friendly queso is sure to be a hit. Enjoy!
Salsa is a classic Mexican condiment that adds a burst of flavor to any dish. It is a versatile sauce that can be spicy, tangy, or mild, depending on your preference. Salsa is typically made with tomatoes, onions, peppers, and various spices.
On a keto diet, you can enjoy salsa in moderation as it is low in carbs and high in flavor. It can be used as a topping for grilled meats, salads, or served as a dip with low-carb tortilla chips or vegetable sticks.
|2 large tomatoes, diced
|1. In a bowl, combine the diced tomatoes, onions, peppers, and cilantro.
|1 small onion, finely chopped
|2. Add the lime juice, salt, and pepper to taste.
|1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped
|3. Mix well and let the flavors meld together for at least 15 minutes.
|2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
|4. Serve the salsa with your favorite keto dishes or as a dip.
|2 tablespoons lime juice
|Salt and pepper to taste
Feel free to adjust the ingredients and spices to suit your taste. You can also add diced avocados or mango for extra texture and flavor. Enjoy this keto-friendly salsa as a tasty addition to your Mexican-inspired meals!
Birria is a traditional Mexican dish that is perfect for a keto diet. It is a slow-cooked meat stew that is flavorful and tender. The dish is typically made with goat or beef, but you can also use other meats like pork or lamb.
The key to making keto-friendly birria is to omit the use of any high-carb ingredients like onions or tomatoes in the stew. Instead, you can use low-carb alternatives like shallots or green bell peppers to add flavor. You can also add spices like cumin, oregano, and bay leaves to enhance the taste.
To make it a complete meal, you can serve birria with keto-friendly tortillas or cauliflower rice. You can also top it with some fresh avocado or sour cream. The rich and savory flavors of birria make it a perfect choice for a keto-friendly Mexican dinner.
Overall, birria is a delicious and satisfying dish that can be easily adapted to fit a keto diet. Whether you’re craving some tender meat stew or looking to try a traditional Mexican dish, birria is a keto-friendly option that won’t disappoint.
12. Tacos with corn tortillas
When it comes to Mexican cuisine, tacos are a staple and a crowd pleaser. While traditional tacos use flour or corn tortillas, for those following a keto diet, corn tortillas are the better option.
Corn tortillas are made from ground corn, which is lower in carbs compared to flour tortillas. They are also gluten-free, making them suitable for individuals with gluten sensitivities or allergies.
To create delicious keto-friendly tacos, start by choosing high-quality corn tortillas that are free from additives and preservatives. Fill the tortillas with a variety of keto-friendly ingredients such as seasoned meat, cheese, avocado, salsa, and fresh cilantro.
For a keto twist, you can opt for lettuce wraps instead of tortillas. Simply use a large lettuce leaf as a base and fill it with your favorite taco fillings.
Remember to watch your portion sizes and track the amount of carbs in your tacos to stay within your daily carb limit. Enjoy these tasty tacos as a satisfying and flavorful addition to your keto Mexican meal.
13. Taco Salad
Taco salad is a delicious and satisfying keto-friendly Mexican dish that is perfect for a quick and easy meal. It combines all the flavors of a traditional taco in a nutritious salad.
To make a keto-friendly taco salad, start by preparing a base of fresh lettuce. You can use romaine lettuce, iceberg lettuce, or a mix of different leafy greens. Add a generous amount of sliced tomatoes, diced avocado, and thinly sliced red onions for added flavor and texture.
For the protein component of the salad, you can use cooked ground beef or chicken. Season the meat with taco seasoning for an extra kick of flavor. You can also add grilled shrimp or steak for a flavorful twist.
To add some crunch to the taco salad, sprinkle crushed pork rinds or toasted almonds on top. This will not only add a satisfying texture but also increase the fat content of the dish, making it more keto-friendly.
For the dressing, you can use a simple mix of olive oil, lime juice, and a pinch of salt and pepper. This will add a refreshing and tangy flavor to the salad.
To assemble the taco salad, start by placing the lettuce in a bowl or on a plate. Top it with the sliced tomatoes, diced avocado, and thinly sliced red onions. Add the cooked ground beef or chicken on top, and sprinkle with crushed pork rinds or toasted almonds. Finally, drizzle the dressing over the salad.
|– Fresh lettuce
|1. Wash and dry the lettuce.
|– Sliced tomatoes
|2. Slice the tomatoes.
|– Diced avocado
|3. Dice the avocado.
|– Thinly sliced red onions
|4. Slice the red onions thinly.
|– Cooked ground beef or chicken
|5. Cook the ground beef or chicken.
|– Taco seasoning
|6. Season the meat with taco seasoning.
|– Crushed pork rinds or toasted almonds
|7. Crush the pork rinds or toast the almonds.
|– Olive oil, lime juice, salt, and pepper
|8. Mix the olive oil, lime juice, salt, and pepper for dressing.
|– Optional: grilled shrimp or steak
|9. Grill the shrimp or steak, if using.
Taco salad is a versatile dish that you can customize to your liking. You can add ingredients such as sliced jalapenos, black olives, or shredded cheese for added flavor. Serve with a dollop of sour cream or a side of guacamole for an extra creamy and satisfying meal.
Enjoy this flavorful and filling taco salad for a delicious and keto-friendly Mexican meal!
14. Huevos a la Mexicana
Huevos a la Mexicana, or Mexican-style scrambled eggs, is a classic Mexican breakfast dish that is not only delicious but also keto-friendly. It’s a simple dish made with eggs, tomatoes, onions, and jalapenos.
To make this dish, start by heating some oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add chopped onions and jalapenos and sauté until they are soft and fragrant. Then, add diced tomatoes and cook until they start to release their juices.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs with salt and pepper. Pour the egg mixture into the skillet with the vegetables and stir gently. Cook until the eggs are set but still soft and slightly runny.
Serve the Huevos a la Mexicana hot with a side of keto-friendly tortillas or on top of a bed of lettuce for a lighter option. You can also top it with some fresh avocado slices and crumbled queso fresco for added flavor and creaminess.
This dish is not only great for breakfast, but it can also be enjoyed for lunch or dinner. It’s a quick and easy meal that is packed with traditional Mexican flavors and can be easily customized to your personal taste by adding other ingredients such as cilantro or Mexican cheese.
Try making Huevos a la Mexicana for a keto-friendly Mexican meal that will leave you satisfied and craving more.
15. Pico de gallo
Pico de gallo, also known as salsa fresca, is a delicious and vibrant Mexican salsa that is perfect for adding flavor and freshness to any keto meal. It is made with diced tomatoes, onions, jalapenos, cilantro, lime juice, and salt.
This low-carb condiment is packed with vitamins and antioxidants, making it a healthy and nutritious addition to your keto diet. It can be used as a topping for tacos, grilled meats, or even enjoyed on its own as a refreshing salsa.
To make pico de gallo, simply chop the ingredients, mix them together, and let the flavors marinate for a few minutes. You can also customize it to your taste by adding other ingredients like garlic, avocado, or mango.
Here is a simple recipe for pico de gallo:
- 3 tomatoes, diced
- 1/2 onion, finely chopped
- 1 jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- Juice of 1 lime
- Salt to taste
Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Allow the flavors to blend for at least 10 minutes before serving.
Pico de gallo is a versatile dish that can be enjoyed in many different ways. You can use it as a dip for low-carb chips or veggies, spoon it over grilled chicken or fish, or use it as a base for a flavorful salad.
So next time you’re craving a taste of Mexico on your keto diet, give pico de gallo a try. It’s easy to make, bursting with flavor, and the perfect addition to any keto Mexican dish!
Preparing Mexican dishes at home can be a fun and delicious way to enjoy a keto-friendly meal. With a little bit of planning and creativity, you can recreate your favorite Mexican flavors while staying within the guidelines of a low-carb, high-fat diet.
1. Taco Tuesday – One of the easiest ways to enjoy a keto Mexican meal at home is by having a taco night. Use lettuce wraps or low-carb tortillas as your base, and fill them with your favorite keto-friendly taco fillings, such as seasoned ground beef, grilled chicken, or sautéed shrimp. Top with avocado, cheese, sour cream, and salsa for a flavorful and satisfying meal.
2. Mexican Cauliflower Rice – Replace traditional rice with cauliflower rice to make a keto-friendly version of this classic Mexican side dish. Sauté cauliflower rice with diced vegetables, like bell peppers, onions, and tomatoes, and season with spices like cumin, chili powder, and garlic powder. Serve as a side dish or use as a base for your favorite Mexican protein.
3. Enchiladas with Low-Carb Tortillas – Swap out traditional flour tortillas for low-carb tortillas to make keto-friendly enchiladas at home. Fill the tortillas with seasoned chicken or beef, roll them up, and top with a low-carb enchilada sauce and cheese. Bake until the cheese is melted and bubbly for a satisfying and indulgent meal.
4. Guacamole – Avocados are a staple in Mexican cuisine and are also a great source of healthy fats for a keto diet. Make a simple guacamole by mashing ripe avocados with lime juice, garlic, and salt. Serve with low-carb tortilla chips or vegetable sticks for a delicious and nutritious snack.
5. Fajitas – Fajitas are a versatile and easy-to-make Mexican dish that can easily be adapted to fit a keto diet. Sauté strips of steak, chicken, or shrimp with onions and bell peppers in a skillet with Mexican spices like cumin, chili powder, and paprika. Serve with lettuce wraps or low-carb tortillas and top with guacamole, cheese, and sour cream.
Remember, when preparing keto Mexican dishes at home, it’s important to choose high-quality ingredients and watch your portion sizes to stay within your macros. With a little bit of creativity and flavor, you can enjoy all the delicious flavors of Mexican cuisine while following a keto lifestyle.
At a Mexican restaurant
When dining at a Mexican restaurant on a keto diet, there are plenty of delicious options that you can enjoy while staying low-carb. Here are some tips to help you navigate the menu:
Stick to the basics: Look for dishes that are based on meat, cheese, and vegetables. Fajitas, tacos, and salads are all good choices. Just make sure to skip the tortillas or ask for them to be substituted with lettuce wraps.
Watch out for hidden carbs: Be aware that some Mexican dishes may have hidden carbs in the form of sauces or toppings. Avoid dishes that are breaded or covered in sugary sauces. Instead, opt for dishes that are served simply with grilled or roasted meat and vegetables.
Ask for customizations: Don’t be afraid to ask the server to customize your order. Most Mexican restaurants are happy to accommodate dietary restrictions. Ask for extra vegetables instead of rice or beans, and request sauces or toppings on the side so you can control the amount you eat.
Be cautious with condiments: While Mexican cuisine is often served with salsa, guacamole, and sour cream, be mindful of the carb content in these condiments. Salsa is usually low in carbs, but guacamole and sour cream may have added ingredients that increase the carb count. Use them sparingly or ask for them to be served on the side.
Stay hydrated: Mexican cuisine can sometimes be spicy, so it’s important to stay hydrated. Opt for water or unsweetened iced tea instead of sugary beverages or alcoholic drinks that can undermine your keto goals.
Enjoy the flavors: Mexican cuisine is known for its bold flavors, so embrace the spices and seasonings that make it so delicious. Look for dishes that incorporate ingredients like chili powder, cumin, and cilantro to add flavor without adding carbs.
By following these tips, you can enjoy a tasty and satisfying meal at a Mexican restaurant while staying true to your keto lifestyle.