Ketogenic Shopping List: What to Buy and What to Avoid

One of the first things you need to do when you’re starting the Keto Diet is to make your Ketogenic Shopping List, which should have lots of low carb foods to stock your kitchen with everything you need to get started. Below is a list of the foods that are keto approved or keto friendly, and a list of bad ingredients to look for when you’re reading labels. The best thing to do when you shop is to read the label of EVERYTHING before you add it to your cart.

Plan to spend more time at the store the first couple of weeks that you’re shopping.

Keep your eye on the prize and appreciate that this diet allows you to eat lots of delicious and filling food that will curb your cravings for carbs and sugars, and mostly eliminate all processed foods from your life. Eating out will become more difficult at first because it does take planning in advance – check menus ahead of time, eat something filling with healthy fats before going to keep your willpower up, drink a glass of water when you first arrive, and know which foods to avoid.

You will mostly avoid the entire center of your grocery store. The exception is the freezer section where you might find frozen vegetables (Brussel sprouts, cauliflower, broccoli, etc) and the pantry type items that you’ll find below.

Your grocery will be higher when you first start this diet. BUT two things 1. it will eventually go down as you learn to the plan out your weeks and 2. you will be spending less money on fast food and eating out which is very expensive.


This list is just to get you started. You may find foods that are ok to have on the ketogenic diet that are not on this list, depending on where you live and what is available to you. Check the macros and ingredients for all foods prior to consumption.


Ketogenic Shopping List

What to Buy:



Shredded cheese is usually coated in potato starch so either eat in moderation or purchase a block and shred it yourself

  • Bleu Cheese
  • Cheddar
  • Cottage Cheese
  • Cream Cheese
  • Feta
  • Gouda
  • Mozzarella
  • Parmesan
  • Provolone
  • Ricotta Cheese
  • Swiss
  • Goat Cheese


  • Red Wine Vinegar
  • Bleu Cheese
  • Creamy Caesar
  • Ranch
  • Olive Oil
  • Apple Cider Vinegar (Braggs with the mother is the most recommended)


Fats & Oils

  • Almond Butter
  • Avocado Oil
  • Butter
  • Cocoa Butter
  • Coconut Oil
  • Fish Oil
  • Flax Seed Oil
  • Grape Seed Oil
  • Hemp Seed Oil
  • Macadamia Oil
  • MCT Oil
  • Full Fat Mayonnaise
  • Olive Oil
  • Walnut Oil



  • Chia
  • Flax
  • Hemp
  • Pumpkin
  • Safflower
  • Sesame
  • Sunflower


  • Most spices are approved but they do have minimal amounts of carbs so check labels, and make sure if its a blend that they don’t have added preservatives, sugars, or fillers that are not keto approved

Nuts & Legumes

  • Almonds
  • Brazil Nuts
  • Coconut
  • Hazelnuts
  • Macadamias
  • Pecans
  • Pistachios
  • Walnuts



  • Anchovies
  • Fresh Fish
    • Bass
    • Carp
    • Flounder
    • Haddock
    • Halibut
    • Mackerel
    • Salmon
    • Sardines
    • Sole
    • Tilapia
    • Trout
    • Tuna
  • Clams
  • Crab Meat
  • Lobster
  • Mussels
  • Oysters
  • Shrimp
  • Squid

Flours, Meals, & Powders

  • Acorn Flour
  • Almond Flour
  • Almond Meal
  • Cocoa Powder
  • Coconut Flour
  • Flax Seed Meal
  • Nuts Flours like Hazelnut
  • Protein Powder
  • Psyllium Husk
  • Sesame Seed Flour

Eggs, Poultry & Fowl

  • Eggs
  • Chicken
  • Duck
  • Goose
  • Quail
  • Turkey

Fruits & Berries

Eat these in moderation – check carb counts prior to consuming

  • Avocado
  • Blackberry
  • Blueberry
  • Cranberry
  • Lemon
  • Lime
  • Green Olive
  • Raspberry
  • Strawberry
  • Rhubarb
  • Tomato


Dairy & Dairy Substitutes

  • Almond Milk (unsweetened)
  • Coconut Cream
  • Coconut Milk (unsweetened)
  • Heavy Cream – most of those sold in stores use carrageenan so consume in moderation if that is the only type you can find, fresh or local cream can usually be found without that ingredient
  • Sour Cream (full fat)
  • Soy Milk (unsweetened)
  • Whipped Cream
  • Butter and/or Grass Fed Butter


  • Beef
    • Tongue
    • Ribs
    • Roast
    • Pastrami
    • Sausage
    • Corned
    • Ground 70%-90% Lean
    • Hot Dog / Frankfurter
    • Steak
  • Bologna
  • Lamb
  • Pepperoni
  • Pork
    • Bacon
    • Chops
    • Ham
    • Liverwurst
    • Loin
    • Prosciutto
    • Sausage
  • Veal
  • Venison


  • Artichoke
  • Arugula
  • Asparagus
  • Bok Choy
  • Broccoli
  • Broccoli Rabe
  • Brussel Sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Cauliflower
  • Celery
  • Chard
  • Chicory Greens
  • Cucumber
  • Eggplant
  • Endive
  • Fennel
  • Garlic
  • Green Bean
  • Jalapeño
  • Lettuce (Green Leaf, Romaine)
  • Parsley
  • Radish
  • Spinach
  • Zucchini


  • Broth: Chicken, Beef, Vegetable, Bone
  • Olives
  • Jalapenos or Tamed Jalapenos
  • Pickled Peppers
  • Sauerkraut
  • Pickles
  • Tomato Paste
  • Truvia or Stevia
  • Splenda, use only in extreme moderation as it can kick some people out of ketosis

What to AVOID:


Avoid these ingredients even if it has low carbs on the label…

  • Rice Flour
  • Corn, Corn Starch, Starch, Corn Solids
  • Aspartame
  • Potato, Potato Starch
  • Sugar and its many names:
    • Agave nectar
    • Barbados sugar
    • Barley malt
    • Barley malt syrup
    • Beet sugar
    • Brown sugar
    • Buttered syrup
    • Cane juice
    • Cane juice crystals
    • Cane sugar
    • Caramel
    • Carob syrup
    • Castor sugar
    • Coconut palm sugar
    • Coconut sugar
    • Confectioner’s sugar
    • Corn sweetener
    • Corn syrup
    • Corn syrup solids
    • Date sugar
    • Dehydrated cane juice
    • Demerara sugar
    • Dextrin
    • Dextrose
    • Evaporated cane juice
    • Free-flowing brown sugars
    • Fructose
    • Fruit juice
    • Fruit juice concentrate
    • Glucose
    • Glucose solids
    • Golden sugar
    • Golden syrup
    • Grape sugar
    • HFCS (High-Fructose Corn Syrup)
    • Honey
    • Icing sugar
    • Invert sugar
    • Malt syrup
    • Maltodextrin
    • Maltol
    • Maltose
    • Mannose
    • Maple syrup
    • Molasses
    • Muscovado
    • Palm sugar
    • Panocha
    • Powdered sugar
    • Raw sugar
    • Refiner’s syrup
    • Rice syrup
    • Saccharose
    • Sorghum Syrup
    • Sucrose
    • Sugar (granulated)
    • Sweet Sorghum
    • Syrup
    • Treacle
    • Turbinado sugar
    • Yellow sugar


This is a pretty comprehensive list of what to buy and what to avoid, which should be enough to get you started. You might feel a little overwhelmed right now. That’s ok, its a lot to take in. I’ve compiled a couple of other resources that should help this all make a little bit more sense:

7 Tips for Starting the Ketogenic Diet – a few ideas and resources to check out, to help this all make sense

11 Amazing Winter Keto Recipes – recipe round-up to help get you started with a couple of tasty ketogenic meals

Fathead Dough – 5 Delicious Ways to Enjoy this Versatile Dough – pizza, bagels, rolls, breadsticks & biscuits – if you think you’ll be missing bread type foods, then this dough is for you!

11 Keto Salads – salads are a great to get in your vegetables every day, these are all different and full of flavor to help you mix up what you’re eating each week


Have any questions about the Ketogenic Diet or how to get started? Leave it in the comments below!

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