The Ultimate Guide to Keto-Friendly Restaurants
Keto Beginners Series

The Ultimate Guide to Keto-Friendly Restaurants

The Ultimate Guide to Keto-Friendly Restaurants

Posted a month ago

SaVanna Shoemaker, MS, RDN, LD

SaVanna Shoemaker, MS, RDN, LD

Dining out on Keto can be tough. Most restaurant foods are higher in carbs than you might expect. This is usually because they are breaded or battered, made with sugary sauces or glazes, and/or come in huge portion sizes.

We want you to have options, though, so you can enjoy dining out with friends or family, going on dates, or treating yourself to some takeout. 

In our experience, nearly every restaurant offers something that’s Keto-friendly — even if you need to make a minor modification or two. 

In this article you’ll discover 40 of the best chain restaurants for Keto dining, and helpful tips for ordering Keto-friendly restaurant meals.

5 Tips to Find and Enjoy a Keto-Friendly Restaurant

You can find something Keto-friendly at almost any restaurant, but here are some tips to help you find and enjoy the best possible Keto meal while dining out:

  • Do some research online. Scope out restaurants, browse menus, and choose a restaurant to eat at before you get hungry. A little planning can help you stay Keto and avoid carb-laden temptations.
  • Don’t shy away from local eateries. In my experience, most local restaurants are happy to accommodate your dietary preferences — and probably have a little more creative freedom than chain restaurants, too.
  • Look for “build-your-own” style restaurants. Places like Chipotle, Subway, and Mongolian BBQ restaurants — where you choose your own ingredients for a salad or bowl — are excellent choices that give you lots of control over the final carb count.
  • Plan your day around dining out. If you know you’re eating out for dinner and you want to indulge a bit, save yourself a few extra carbs and/or calories by doing an intermittent fast or eating Carnivore for breakfast and lunch.
  • Use our restaurant guide below. Our top 40 list will help you dine out low-carb style in a variety of eateries

How to Order a Keto-Friendly Meal at Almost Any Restaurant

With these tips, you can order a Keto meal almost anywhere: 

  • Choose a classic grilled steak, salmon, or chicken. You can’t go wrong with a juicy steak or grilled meat, as long as it’s not doused in a sugary glaze. To complete your meal, stick to low carb sides like broccoli and asparagus..
  • Order a sandwich with no bun. Burgers, grilled chicken sandwiches, and deli sandwiches can all be perfectly Keto-friendly with no bun. Eat with a knife and fork, or ask for a lettuce wrap version.
  • Order an entree salad; hold the carbs. Choose grilled meats, and forego croutons, fried onions, tortilla strips, and sweet dressings (including most vinaigrettes). Instead, choose a creamy dressing like ranch, mayo or plain oil and vinegar.
  • Replace the pasta in a pasta dish with veggies. My favorite trick at a local Italian restaurant is to have my preferred sauce and protein laid over a bed of broccoli rather than pasta. 

Before we dive into our list of restaurants, a quick disclaimer: we love dining out on occasion, but most fast food chains and fast-casual restaurants use low-quality ingredients and provide very large portion sizes. Keep in mind as you peruse this list that we’re not saying these foods are okay to eat daily or even most days, just that they are good options when you DO choose to dine out. Also, not all these dishes or restaurants are gluten-free, so proceed with caution if you are sensitive to gluten. Happy eating!

Best Fast Food Restaurants

In N Out

In N Out is a West Coast burger chain that offers their famous cheeseburgers in lettuce wrap form — just ask for “protein style.”

Best keto order: Double-Double, Protein Style

Noodles & Company

While regular pasta won’t be on a Keto-friendly menu anytime soon, Noodles & Company offers zucchini noodles for people counting carbs.

Best keto order: Zucchini Pesto Cream with Grilled Chicken

Dickey’s Barbecue Pit

Dickey’s is a popular barbecue chain offering sauce-free meats (fewer carbs), delicious Keto-friendly side options, and huge portions. Plenty of leftovers for tomorrow!

Best keto order: Brisket and Pulled Pork Combo Plate, with Creamy Spinach and Green Beans, with no roll or sauce.

Jimmy John’s

Jimmy John’s is a sandwich shop priding itself on speedy delivery, but we really like that you can turn any sandwich into a lettuce wrap by asking to “make it an Unwich.”

Best keto order: Hunter’s Club Unwich

Freddy’s

Freddy’s is a classic American burger chain that will make any sandwich a lettuce wrap. It’s even an option when you order Freddy’s online!

Best keto order: Freddy’s Original Double, as a lettuce wrap

Best Healthy Restaurants

Elevation Burger

Elevation Burger uses 100% grass-fed beef and organic ingredients, and you can make any one of their high-quality burgers into a lettuce wrap.

Best keto order: Paleo Burger (comes as a lettuce wrap)

Chipotle

At Chipotle, you can build a Keto-friendly salad bowl from various meats, veggies, and toppings.

Best keto order: Keto Salad Bowl with Steak

Bonefish Grill

Bonefish Grill is an upscale seafood restaurant that serves a wide variety of Keto-friendly proteins, like grilled shrimp, fish, steak, chicken, and pork. 

Best keto order: Filet and Lobster Tail with Steamed Asparagus and Creamed Spinach

On the Border

On the Border is a Mexican chain restaurant offering an assortment of Keto-friendly dishes, like fajitas, steak, and chicken. Few of their menu items are battered or breaded, and they also feature lots of veggies.

Best keto order: Grilled Queso Chicken, no rice

Just Salad

As the name suggests, Just Salad can make any salad as Keto-friendly or as carb-loaded as you desire. To keep it simple, just order “The Keto,” — which features roasted chicken, almonds, avocado, eggs, and cheddar over salad greens.

Best keto order: The Keto

Best Family-Friendly Restaurants

Blaze Pizza

Blaze Pizza is a popular, nationwide pizza chain that now offers a cauliflower-based Keto pizza crust. For convenience, order the “Keto Pizza,” — which features the Keto-friendly crust, spicy sauce, cheese, bacon, tomatoes, mushrooms, and spinach.

Best keto order: The Keto Pizza

IHOP

IHOP is known for its pancakes, but they also have huge omelets and tons of Keto-friendly breakfast items like eggs, bacon, and sausage. (Note: they put a little bit of pancake batter in their omelets to fluff them up, so ask them to hold the pancake batter.)

Best keto order: Spinach and Mushroom Omelet, no pancake batter added

Wingstop

With a dizzying assortment of flavors and dipping sauces, Wingstop is a perfectly Keto-friendly option to sate your craving for wings.

Best keto order: 8 pc Original Hot Wing Combo with Veggie Sticks and Ranch Dressing

Marco’s Pizza

Marco’s Pizza is a popular chain pizzeria offering Build-Your-Own Pizza Bowls. Go for light sauce to cut the carbs even further, and pile on your favorite toppings.

Best keto order: Pizza Bowl with pepperoni, mushrooms, spinach, light sauce

Ruby Tuesday

As a sit-down fast-casual restaurant, Ruby Tuesday offers steakhouse fare like steaks, seafood, and chicken. To accompany, they have several low-carb veggie sides and a large Garden Bar where you can build your own salads.

Best keto order: Top Sirloin with Fresh Grilled Zucchini and Roasted Baby Bellas

Best Budget-Friendly Restaurants

Chili’s

Chili’s is a popular and reasonably-priced fast-casual restaurant that offers a huge variety of burgers, fajitas, and other popular Tex-Mex dishes. Go for fajitas or steak to keep the carb counts low.

Best keto order: Shrimp Fajitas, no rice, beans, or tortillas

Waffle House

For a quick and inexpensive diner-style breakfast, Waffle House offers eggs, bacon, and omelets. Just skip the high-carb sides!

Best keto order: Cheesesteak Omelet, no sides

Chick-fil-A

Chick-fil-A’s grilled nuggets and Kale Crunch Side are one of the easiest Keto-friendly fast food meals to order (and to eat).

Best keto order: Grilled Nuggets and Kale Crunch Side

Popeye’s

Although Popeye’s is known for their fried chicken, they offer blackened chicken strips that are Keto-friendly — just skip the side.

Best keto order: Blackened Chicken Tenders with Blackened Ranch Sauce, no side or biscuit

Subway

While the ingredients aren’t the highest in quality, many people consider Subway a healthier option thanks to all the vegetables they offer. You can turn any footlong Subway sandwich into a low-carb salad called a “No Bready Bowl.”

Best keto order: Steak & Cheese No Bready Bowl

Best Steakhouses

Outback

Outback is a more casual steakhouse that offers several steak, seafood, and side options.

Best keto order: Victoria’s Filet Mignon with Caesar Salad (no croutons) and asparagus

Ruth’s Chris

For a more formal steakhouse experience, Ruth’s Chris is the place. They have several Keto-friendly proteins and sides, too.

Best keto order: Petit Filet and Shrimp with Creamed Spinach and Grilled Asparagus

LongHorn

With steak, chicken, fish, burgers, and entree salads, you’ll have no trouble finding a Keto meal at LongHorn.

Best keto order: LongHorn Salmon with Crispy Brussels Sprouts and Fresh Steamed Broccoli

Saltgrass

A quintessential Texas steakhouse, Saltgrass offers steaks, seafood, chicken, and entree salads that can all be made into Keto meals.

Best keto order: New York Strip with House Salad (no croutons) and Broccoli

Texas Roadhouse

Texas Roadhouse is another classic, casual steakhouse with several Keto meal options. You can also snack on their complimentary in-shell peanuts while you wait for your food.

Best keto order: Herb Crusted Chicken with Sauteed Mushrooms and Steamed Broccoli

Best Coffeehouses

Starbucks

With a simple, coffee-based drink, it’s actually pretty easy to keep your Starbucks order Keto. For sweetness, you can add sugar-free vanilla syrup.

Best keto order: Caffe Americano with a splash of heavy cream

Dunkin’ Donuts

Although donuts are off the menu for Keto, you can still have coffee, bacon, and any of the breakfast sandwiches (with no bread) from the Dunkin Donuts menu.

Best keto order: Snackin’ Bacon and a plain iced coffee

Tim Hortons

Tim Hortons are common in Canada, and you will find some in the US too. Although many of their options are carb-loaded, you can still order simple coffee or tea drinks and sandwiches or wraps without the bread.

Best keto order: Grilled Chicken Bacon Ranch Wrap (no wrap) and an original brewed coffee

Dutch Bros

Although all of the food at Dutch Bros is high in carbs, you can still order unflavored coffees with cream.

Best keto order: Nitro Infused Cold Brew

Peet’s Coffee & Tea

For a Keto-friendly breakfast at Peet’s, grab a frittata and a coffee drink made with heavy cream or half and half instead of milk.

Best keto order: Bacon, Spinach, and Swiss Frittata and a Sugar-Free Vanilla Latte Made with Heavy Cream

Best Gourmet Restaurants

Fogo de Chao

Fogo de Chao is a Brazilian steakhouse. It works essentially as a very high-end buffet, and during your meal, you have unlimited access to sides and are also offered a variety of meats.

Best keto order: stick to grilled or roasted meats and non-starchy vegetables

The Melting Pot

The melting pot offers a family-style fondue experience. You can indulge in cheese fondue and enjoy cooking your own meats at your table. To stay Keto you should avoid dipping any breads or crackers, as well as the chocolate dessert fondue.

Best keto order: stick with cheese fondue, vegetables, and meats

Del Frisco’s

Del Frisco’s is described as a modern American restaurant, and they offer a very upscale dining experience. Fortunately, they also provide a great deal of Keto-friendly options.

Best keto order: Roasted Chicken with Roasted Asparagus and Roasted Wild Mushrooms

Texas de Brazil

Like Fogo de Chao, Texas de Brazil is a Brazilian steakhouse. Stick to meats and veggies, and you’ll be golden.

Best keto order: choose meats and non-starchy vegetables

Morton’s The Steakhouse

Morton’s The Steakhouse is a high-end steakhouse that offers a variety of unique Keto-friendly options along with Keto-friendly steakhouse classics like steak, chicken, and broccoli.

Best keto order: Miso Sea Bass

Best International Chains

Europe: Five Guys (UK, Germany and Spain)

Five Guys is an American-owned burger chain with locations throughout the UK, and more recently, Germany and Spain. To keep it Keto, opt for your burger served in a lettuce wrap.

Best keto order: Bacon Cheeseburger, in a lettuce wrap

South America: Giraffas (Brazil)

Giraffas is a Brazilian chain restaurant that offers a variety of burgers and more traditional Brazilian meal options. They offer some meats and veggies but make sure to avoid the potatoes and rice to keep your meal Keto.

Best keto order: Medalhao de Alcatra, with a salad instead of fries and rice

Asia: Kebab Turki Baba Rafi (Indonesia)

Kebab Turki Baba Rafi is a fast food kebab restaurant with over 1,000 locations across Asia. Without the wrap, most of their options are Keto-friendly, except for the dessert kebab.

Best keto order: Kebab Meat Lover with no wrap

Australia: El Jannah

El Jannah is an Australian chain restaurant that specializes in Lebanese-style charcoal chicken. They offer several Keto meals.

Best keto order: ½ Chicken Plate with Mixed Pickles, no bread

Africa: Nando’s (South Africa)

Nando’s is available worldwide but started in South Africa. Their spicy Peri-Peri chicken and vegetable sides make perfect Keto takeout.

Best keto order: 3 Peri-Peri Chicken Thighs with Turmeric Roasted Cauliflower

Canada: A&W

A&W are a Canadian-based burger chain on a mission to serve great tasting food, farmed with care. This means your burger patties are guaranteed to be hormone and steroid free. Plus you can request them served in a lettuce wrap!

Best keto order: Sausage and Cheddar, served in a lettuce wrap

Hungry yet? Don’t forget to plan out your meal (or track what you just ate) — many of these meals and menu items are already in the Carb Manager food database!

Comments 5

  • Foodie43

    Foodie43 11 days ago

    Thank you for sharing this!

    • Judy

      Judy 16 days ago

      I prefer the cheese omelet with a side of sausage and sliced tomatoes at Waffle House.

      • UnbelievableKetone302393

        UnbelievableKetone302393 23 days ago

        Lots of good information. Things I will use for sure.

        • rkdumontefe8

          rkdumontefe8 a month ago

          Not to mention, A&W uses grass fed beef in their burgers

          • Determined2Lose1

            Determined2Lose1 a month ago

            You can also go through the A&W drive thru (or inside of course) in the mornings and order a side of bacon and however many eggs you want and how you want them cooked. I often get 2-3 eggs scrambled and a side of bacon (3 slices) if I didn't have time for meal prep.