I lost 40 pounds on the keto diet. Here are 16 things I'd always get at Trader Joe's to stay on track.

·10 min read
I lost 40 pounds on the keto diet. Here are 16 things I'd always get at Trader Joe's to stay on track.
  • When I was on the keto diet, which helped me lose 40 pounds, I relied on Trader Joe's.

  • I often picked up nuts and Buffalo-chicken dip, both of which are tasty and rich in healthy fats.

  • The chain's prepackaged mahi-mahi burgers and eggwich sandwiches are simple to prepare.

The Green Goddess dressing quickly became one of my keto-diet favorites.

Green Goddess salad dress at Trader Joe's; Nutrition facts on Green Goddess dressing
The Green Goddess salad dressing is one of the most delicious Trader Joe's items.Elizabeth Blasi

This dressing is so beloved the store released both Green Goddess dip and seasoning in 2021.

The keto-friendly Green Goddess dressing has only 1 gram of carbohydrates per serving and lists ingredients like avocado, olive oil, and apple-cider vinegar without any hydrogenated oils or natural flavorings.

Besides being excellent on a salad, the Green Goddess dressing can also marinate your proteins. When I was on the diet, I liked to pair it with chicken thighs or steak to add healthy fats and more flavor.

This dressing is only $3.99 per bottle.

This Buffalo-style chicken dip pairs well with cheese and meat.

Buffalo-style chicken dip at Trader Joe's
Keto dieters love foods like the Buffalo-style chicken dip to help increase their fat macros for the day.Elizabeth Blasi

This Buffalo-style dip from Trader Joe's is made with white-meat chicken, cream cheese, sour cream, and cayenne pepper to add a kick.

It pairs well with celery or green peppers for a snack or midday meal and each serving contains only 2 grams of carbohydrates.

The Buffalo-style chicken dip also makes a great base for pizza (using fat-head dough or cauliflower crust). You can spread it on the crust and add some cheese to make a rich, low-carb meal.

The Buffalo-style chicken dip costs $4.99 per container.

If you're a fan of crispy and crunchy foods, try broccoli florets.

Broccoli florets in a bag at Trader Joe's; Nutrition facts on broccoli florets
Keep your macronutrients on track with broccoli florets.Elizabeth Blasi

Finding crispy, salty snacks on the keto diet is a skill, but with 20 grams of fat per serving and only 5 grams of net carbohydrates, these broccoli florets have perfect macros that can help keep your daily macronutrients on track.

These snacks also come with the bonus of 7 grams of dietary fiber and 6 grams of protein per serving.

I liked to snack on these crispy, crunchy broccoli florets on travel days and or use them as croutons in my salad (and add the Green Goddess salad dressing on top).

The broccoli florets are $2.99 per pack.

Oven-baked cheese bites are practical yet indulgent.

Oven-baked cheese bites at Trader Joe's; Nutrition facts on oven-baked cheese bites
I think Trader Joe's has some of the best cheese snacks you can find in grocery stores.Elizabeth Blasi

Trader Joe's cheese bites have great flavor, my favorite being the black summer truffle imported from Italy. Each bite transports me to an Italian restaurant.

The oven-baked cheese bites are a great on-the-go snack, salad topper, or pseudo "bread crumbs" when ground up. You can also mix almond flour or pork grinds to create keto-friendly chicken nuggets or even pork chops.

Pick the oven-baked cheese bites up for $2.99 per box.

The Volpi Roltini, made with meat and cheese, is basically a keto staple.

Packages of roltini singles at Trader Joe's
Bring a handful of Volpi Roltini on your next trip to best suit your macros and wallet the next time you're in an airport.Elizabeth Blasi

I don't recommend a "dirty" keto lifestyle — a version of the diet that involves more processed foods — but I understand its importance when introducing yourself to the diet (and getting into ketosis) and traveling.

The Volpi Roltini is a great option to keep in your bag for on-the-go and traveling snacks. If you usually get a burst of hunger throughout the day, keep three to five of these in your fridge at all times.

Grab a pack of Volpi Roltini for $1.29.

Teeny tiny avocados are the perfect size for me.

Bags of Trader Joe's teeny tiny avocados
A bag of Trader Joe's avocados goes a long way.Elizabeth Blasi

Those on keto are no strangers to stocking up on avocados, but they can be a tricky produce item to keep ripe and fresh. I love Trader Joe's teeny tiny avocados because I can use one for my meal or snack without worrying about storing the remaining half.

When I was on the keto diet, I liked to use avocados to create tuna-salad boats for breakfast or lunch. To make, I removed 1 to 2 tablespoons of avocado from the center of each half and filled the gap with the remaining avocado, tuna, mayonnaise, celery, and pine nuts.

These avocados are only $2.99 for an entire bag.

Use pimento cheese dip to add extra flavor to chicken.

Containers of pimento cheese dip at Trader Joe's
The pimento cheese dip from Trader Joe's is another fan favorite in the keto world.Elizabeth Blasi

When I discovered that pimento cheese dip was keto-friendly, I was over the moon with excitement. Each serving of Trader Joe's version has 9 grams of fat and only 1 gram of carbohydrates.

The pimento cheese contains a small percentage of potato starch, so I would only recommend it to keto enthusiasts who have been on the diet for a few weeks and have switched over to ketosis.

I used this pimento cheese dip for a loaded or baked chicken when I followed the diet. You can top or stuff your chicken breasts or thighs for an added boost of flavor and fat or add the cheese halfway when baking or frying your meat.

A container of this dip costs only $3.99.

Throw one of these protein palettes in your bag so you always have a snack.

Protein palette at Trader Joe's
This protein palette helps me avoid "cheating" or pushing my intermittent fasting longer when I'm on a trip.Elizabeth Blasi

The protein palettes are a great way to get your macros in while supplying 31 grams of protein and energy to your body when on the go. Each palette comes with Italian dry pepper-coated uncured salami, roasted, salted almonds, and Trader Joe's Parmesan cheese crisps.

I recommend keeping two to three of these protein palettes in your fridge at all times. These are the best and most cost-efficient ways to stay on keto while on the go.

A protein palette costs $3.49.

Add an extra layer of savoriness with umami seasoning blend.

Umami seasoning on shelf at Trader Joe's; Nutrition facts on back of Umami seasoning
The umami seasoning blend elevates every dish.Elizabeth Blasi

Keeping up with the keto diet is about understanding flavor and how to utilize it in your cooking, which is how I fell in love with the umami seasoning blend.

Umami is a flavor present in some mushrooms and compliments vegetables and proteins with a savory, earthy flavor.

To avoid blandness in your meats and vegetables, use this umami seasoning with avocado or olive oil to marinate at least one hour before cooking.

A jar of umami seasoning is only $2.99.

Macadamia and pine nuts are the perfect snacks on keto.

Several bags of packaged nuts at Trader Joe's
You can get Trader Joe's nuts for affordable prices.Elizabeth Blasi

Though nuts can be one of the most expensive items on a keto-friendly shopping list, Trader Joe's is known for having a variety of nuts at affordable prices.

For the best snacks on keto, stick with macadamia and pine nuts. Both have excellent fat-to-carb macro profiles and make incredible pestos when combined with healthy fats and herbs.

To make a keto-friendly pesto, I pulsed some macadamia nuts in a blender and added avocado oil, garlic, salt, Parmesan cheese, and herbs like basil and parsley.

Trader Joe's nuts range from $3.49 to $8.99.

The cheese selection at Trader Joe's is unparalleled for keto enthusiasts.

Cheese on display at Trader Joe's
Keto or not, the Trader Joe's cheese section is a great place to find a nice assortment without paying too much.Elizabeth Blasi

Unexpected Cheddar is one of my personal favorite cheeses offered at Trader Joe's. With less than 1 gram of net carbohydrate per serving and 9 grams of fat, it makes for a great topper on keto-friendly casserole dishes or cheese for your next bun-less burger.

When I started the diet, I planned a keto-friendly charcuterie night using an assortment of cheeses from Trader Joe's selection that cost under $20 in total. I paired them with a selection of cured meats, oven-baked cheese bites, and nuts.

Trader Joe's prices on cheese can range from $2.99 to $15.99.

This spinach-artichoke dip is loaded with flavor.

Spinach-artichoke dip at Trader Joe's; Nutrition facts on back of box of spinach-artichoke dip
I like to put Trader Joe's spinach-artichoke dip on pizza crust.Elizabeth Blasi

I went on the keto diet because of its viable food options, including foods like Trader Joe's spinach and artichoke dip.

Though spinach and artichoke dip contains a lot of dairy and is best when eaten in moderation, it's still a great staple to keep in your freezer. Just remember that each serving is 2 tablespoons with 2 grams of net carbs (8 servings per container).

You can use Trader Joe's dip on chicken thighs or on top of a keto-friendly pizza crust for a tasty meal.

You can get a container of spinach and artichoke dip for $3.29.

Reed's Zero-Sugar Craft ginger beer goes great in a Moscow mule.

Bottles of Reed's ginger beer at Trader Joe's; The back of a Reed's bottle and nutrition facts
Reed's ginger beer is $1.20 each.Elizabeth Blasi

Finding beverages low in sugar can be hard, but Reed's changed the game for me. Each ginger beer has no sugar and is sweetened with Erythritol (which doesn't spike blood sugar or insulin levels), and it's delicious.

Use Reed's ginger beer in a Moscow mule and serve in a festive copper mug.

Grab four bottles for $4.79.

Mahi-mahi burgers are bursting with keto-friendly flavor.

The writer holds a box of mahi mahi burgers; Nutrition facts on mahi mahi burgers box
Each bite of mahi-mahi burgers makes me feel like I'm on a south Florida beach.Elizabeth Blasi

Though I was skeptical at first, I took a friend's advice and tried these mahi-mahi burgers.

The flavor reaches a new level when served over a lettuce wrap with keto slaw and sriracha aioli. Each burger has 0 grams of net carbohydrates, 9 grams of fat, and 15 grams of protein.

To get the patty perfectly cooked through with a crispy texture, I recommend heating it in the air fryer.

A box of Trader Joe's patties costs $7.99.

Have a DIY pizza night with these cauliflower crusts.

Bag of cauliflower pizza crust; Nutrition on back of cauliflower pizza crust
If you're just starting the keto diet, look closely at the ingredients list on cauliflower pizza crust.Elizabeth Blasi

Finding pizza crusts made with cauliflower without flour or cornstarch can be difficult.

The cauliflower pizza crusts from Trader Joe's have three primary ingredients (cauliflower, eggs, and Parmesan cheese) and no added fillers to increase the carbohydrate count. Each crust has 3 grams of net carbs and 6 grams of fat.

Paired with the Buffalo-chicken dip from Trader Joe's, cauliflower crust also makes an incredible dough replacement for a flavorful keto-friendly pizza.

You can pick up a bag for $4.99.

For a satisfying keto breakfast, pick up eggwich breadless breakfast sandwiches.

Boxes of eggwiches at Trader Joe's, Nutrition facts on eggwich box
The eggwich breadless breakfast sandwich is a relatively new product gracing Trader Joe's aisles.Elizabeth Blasi

Though the eggwich breadless breakfast sandwich wasn't a Trader Joe's staple item during my time on the diet, it has become one of my tried and true favorites on maintenance keto.

With only 3 grams of carbohydrates and 12 grams of fat, each sandwich is made with turkey sausage, American cheese, and two egg patties.

I highly recommend heating these up in the air fryer because it's faster than using a conventional oven and the microwave can leave them soggy and unevenly cooked.

You can pick up a box of sandwiches for $4.99.

Click to keep reading Trader Joe's diaries like this one.

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