Is Turkey Keto-Friendly? (& Substitutes)

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To stay in ketosis you need to pay enough attention to what you eat. Find out whether turkey is keto-friendly and what other options you have.

100 grams of cooked turkey contains about 0 carbs. That means you can definitely say turkey is keto-friendly.

It will typically be more important to focus on what foods you eat with this meat.

One thing to note is that some brands of turkey bacon, turkey sausage, and deli turkey add carbohydrate-heavy ingredients to their products.

When buying these types of foods, it can be smart to double-check the nutrition label to make sure you don’t get kicked out of ketosis.

Something else to keep in mind is that turkey is not unique in its zero-carb content. You may prefer the taste or nutrients of certain alternatives for your ketogenic diet.

Is turkey low in carbs?

Keto is a very low-carb diet so you definitely want to check how many carbs foods like turkey contain.

100 grams of cooked turkey breast contain the following amounts of carbs (1):

  • Total carbs: 0 grams
  • Of which fiber: 0 grams
  • Net carbs: 0 grams

There are no foods that are lower in carbs than turkey meat that is just cooked. Even with a few herbs and spices, this food will typically be keto-friendly.

Other nutrients in turkey

The carbs in turkey and other foods are important when following a ketogenic diet but other nutrients still matter too.

Things like fats, proteins, vitamins, and minerals can also influence whether you stay in ketosis and more importantly how good your general health will be.

100 grams of cooked turkey breast contain the following nutrients (1):

  • Calories: 189
  • Protein: 28.7 grams
  • Carbs: 0 grams
  • Part of the carbs that is fiber: 0 grams
  • Fat: 7.4 grams
  • Selenium: 42% of the DV (Daily Value)
  • Niacin: 32% of the DV
  • Vitamin B6: 24% of the DV
  • Phosphorus: 21% of the DV
  • Zinc: 14% of the DV

And some other vitamins and minerals in smaller amounts.

Turkey does not just contain zero carbs. It can also help you consume more of a variety of important nutrients like protein, vitamins, and minerals.

It even contains a decent amount of fat which can be helpful for people who struggle to hit their calorie goals on keto.

Is turkey breast keto-friendly?

Basically any way of eating where you get into ketosis can be considered a keto diet. Ketosis is a state where your body mainly uses fat as fuel (2).

To get into this state you need to keep your carbohydrate intake low enough. Typically consuming less than 5% to 10% of your calories in carbs can get you into ketosis.

Because cooked turkey breast contains 0 carbs, you can definitely say that it is keto-friendly.

At the same time, you need to keep in mind that certain recipes do add ingredients with carbs.

That means you may still have to limit the portions of certain dishes that include turkey breast.

Is turkey ground meat keto-friendly?

100 grams of one example of ground turkey meat contains the following amounts of carbs (3):

  • Total carbs: 0 grams
  • Of which fiber: 0 grams
  • Net carbs: 0 grams

One thing to note is that many brands of ground turkey meat do add some herbs and spices. These add some amounts of carbs but typically not a lot.

In turn, turkey ground meat will generally be keto-friendly.

Are turkey slices keto-friendly?

Turkey slices are a type of deli meat that comes down to turkey meat combined with a few other ingredients like preservatives and sometimes sweeteners and oils.

100 grams of one example brand of turkey slices contain the following amounts of carbs (4):

  • Total carbs: 0.93 grams
  • Of which fiber: 0 grams
  • Net carbs: 0.93 grams

So you should expect that turkey slices contain at least a few carbohydrates.

At the same time, it is still fair to say that turkey slices are keto-friendly.

Is smoked turkey keto-friendly?

Turkey is a versatile type of meat. You may wonder if smoking it changes anything in its nutritional details.

100 grams of one example of smoked turkey contain the following amounts of carbs (5):

  • Total carbs: 0 grams
  • Of which fiber: 0 grams
  • Net carbs: 0 grams

As you can see, smoking the turkey will not really change anything in its carb count. That means it will still be keto-friendly.

Substitutes for turkey on keto

The zero carbs from turkey sound and are impressive but there are food substitutes with similar amounts of carbohydrates.

These other options offer different tastes, nutrients, and simply some variety to your ketogenic diet.

The values next to these turkey substitutes are the amounts of carbohydrates per 100 grams (6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11):

  • Salmon: 0 grams of net carbs
  • Beef: 0 grams of net carbs
  • Eggs (hard-boiled): 1.1 grams of net carbs
  • Tilapia: 0 grams of net carbs
  • Chicken: 0 grams of net carbs
  • Tuna: 0 grams of net carbs

Turkey is generally helpful for weight loss and health and this applies to these alternatives too.

At the same time, the foods above still often contain nice amounts of proteins and fats.

If you already ate a lot of these nutrients, you may still need to limit your portions of the substitutes above to avoid weight gain and suboptimal health.

Related posts:

Are turkey and chicken good for keto?

Turkey and chicken are both good for keto in the sense that their plan form contains zero carbs and nice amounts of protein, vitamins, and minerals.

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Matt Claes founded Weight Loss Made Practical to help people get in shape and stay there after losing 37 pounds and learning the best of the best about weight loss, health, and longevity for over 4 years. Over these years he has become an expert in nutrition, exercise, and other physical health aspects.