Vegetables

While I love meat and fish, I simply adore vegetables and believe the side dishes can often be the star-of-the-show. I am a huge believer in eating plenty of keto-friendly vegetables for that much-needed fibre. Here are some ideas to get you to eat your greens!

Best Ever Crispy Keto Kale ‘Chips’

Keto Kale Chips

These are so yum! Crunchy chips which are high in fibre, low in carbs and packed with goodness – it will make you forget all about chip-and-dip while watching the game …

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 1.9g
(5%); Fat 13g (75.5%); Protein 7.3g (19.5%)
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Keto Cauliflower Rice

Keto Cauliflower Rice

This is a nifty way to mimic rice when you are serving a dish that needs all its lovely sauces mopped up. I cooked down onions and garlic to add more flavour before adding and cooking the blitzed cauliflower. It’s high in fibre and filling. You can play around and pimp it using different freshly chopped herbs or flavoured oils, but this recipe below is a good ‘base’, so go wild…

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 5.3g
(19.6%); Fat 7.4g (62.4%); Protein 4.9g (18%)
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Keto Coconut-roasted Cauliflower

Keto Coconut Cauliflower

I love the Coconut-roasted Broccoli that Funnyman whips up, but doing the same thing with cauliflower is incredible! At only two-ingredients, this will likely be a favourite in your home as much as it is in ours. Quick, uncomplicated … and simply heavenly. This recipe will serve 3 people as a side veg option on a keto diet, but Funnyman and I scoff the whole lot between the two of us alongside our Peppered Lamb Ribs quite often. He has both dishes waxed, so these are the nights I put my feet up and do nothing but watch him cook for me for a change..

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 4.5g
(10.5%); Fat 15g (76.9%); Protein 5.4g (12.6%)
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Keto Baked Creamy Baby Onions with Crackling Crumb

Baked Onions
Baked Onions

I love this dish! I baked baby onions in a thyme-infused cream and topped with a crumb made from blitzed lean pork scratchings and finely grated Parmesan. When I made this dish for us, we ended up eating them on top of our grilled pork chops: Lush! The peeling of the onions is mind-numbingly annoying and a finicky job, but the results are worth it in the end. Be sure to keep the little root end intact to ensure the onions keep their shape, but use a small, sharp paring knife to trim it close enough that the entire onion is edible. (And don’t jab yourself like I did doing that …. #BloodFest2018)

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 5.9g
(15.4%); Fat 12g (68.5%); Protein 6.2g (16%)
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Keto Creamy Cauliflower Mash

Keto Creamy Cauliflower Mash

PLEASE TRY THIS! It’s such just a game-changer. Some may turn their nose up at mashing up cauliflower to mimic The Great Potato, but if you try it like this – you will be converted. I didn’t just stop at using a potato masher, I added full-fat cream cheese and then blitzed the mixture into a creamy, (dreamy) puree. All it needed was a little seasoning and it’s perfect to go with your Sausages and Gravy, to top your Cottage Pie or as a side dish to mop up all those lovely flavours of your low-carb stew. See my Low-carb Seafood Bake as an example of how versatile it is..

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 4.3g
(15.6%); Fat 7.9g (64.8%); Protein 5.4g (19.9%)
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Keto Grilled Brie Mushrooms with Onion Chutney

Keto Grilled Brie Mushrooms

This lovely small meal can be served either as an appetiser for your next fancy dinner party, or enjoyed as a light meal along with some fresh salad leaves. The red onions are cooked down for a while on a very low heat, and their jammy sweetness balances the oozy Brie just perfectly. The general marrying of the two flavours are worth knowing, even for those that don’t like mushrooms. Some examples include Brie and onion jam keto sandwiches or toppings for grilled steak. And for those that LOVE the idea of a big, black mushroom – do this exact dish as it is written here and top your bunless burger with it – you will never consider a bacon and Cheddar topping again!

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 4.5g
(10.4%); Fat 14g (70.8%); Protein 8.1g (18.8%)
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Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Parmesan

Keto Roasted Brussels Sprouts
Keto Roasted Brussels Sprouts

I wasn’t always a fan of Brussels sprouts. I remember as a kid, I used to hide them under my napkin just so that I could be excused from the dinner table. What was I thinking? I LOVE them now! If you are not a fan of Brussels sprouts, you have probably been preparing them wrong. I sometimes finely slice them and fry them with grass-fed butter and bacon bits, or grill them crispy (like I have done here) and serve covered with grated Parmesan. They are an excellent side dish to your protein to complete a healthy keto meal.

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 5.6g
(10.8%); Fat 17g (74.7%); Protein 7.2g (14.5%)
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Stir-fried Greens with Bacon

Keto Cabbage Bacon Stir Fry

Everything tastes awesome with bacon (and this is why we love keto). This side dish of stir-fried greens is sensational! A large portion of this could easily stand as a meal on its own, but it would be better for your macros if this recipe was made for two as a side dish and served alongside a nice portion of protein, such as pork chops. TIP: use only the sliced white parts of leeks as the green ends are bitter.

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 6g
(6.5%); Fat 31g (77.2%); Protein 15g (16.3%)
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Roasted Coconut Broccoli

Keto Coconut Broccoli

A super-simple two-ingredient dish that ticks all the boxes as the perfect keto side dish. We have this at least two or three times a week to accompany our chicken, fish or braai (BBQ) meat – and we love it to the point of craving it. The stems soften and melt in your mouth, while the florets caramelise and crisp up – and the coconutty flavour is just heavenly… 

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 6.4g
(11.2%); Fat 19g (73.7%); Protein 8.6g (15.1%)
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Low-carb Greens with Crackling Crumb

Greens with Buttermilk Dressing
Greens with Buttermilk Dressing

While I simply love meat, a lot of my attention is focussed on the accompanying side dishes. Think further than frozen broccoli (gag), because there is a multitude of things you could do with veg and salads on the side making them interesting and fun. Here is one that is packed with flavour and can be served warm – or as a side salad at your next braai… 

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 5.3g
(19.5%); Fat 3.8g (34%); Protein 12g (46.5%)
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Keto Charred, Blistered Padrón Peppers

Keto Padron Peppers
Keto Padron Peppers

The first time I ever tried padrón peppers was in Barafina in Soho, London about 2 years ago. Funnyman and I were out drowning our sorrows for some or other reason, I cannot recall exactly but I suspect it was something financial. The irony was that we sat in this restaurant for about 4 hours and ordered three-quarters of the tapas menu items throughout the evening, washed down with plenty of wine (this was LBK- life before keto). Whatever was bothering us that night was soon forgotten (along with our financial common sense) – but the padrón peppers were thankfully as memorable as they were delicious. Eaten whole, this is a risky little appetiser as some are hot and some are not – you just don’t know what you will get. They are simply the perfect appetiser for someone who likes to live on the edge and I was delighted when I saw they are now readily available at the supermarket. I have made this several times and never encountered a spicy one, so perhaps it’s not that risky after all. A lovely, simple tapas – you should give it a try! 

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 0.7g
(5.1%); Fat 4.6g (78.3%); Protein 2.2g (16.5%)
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Keto Crispy, Crunchy Kale

Keto Crispy Kale
Keto Crispy Kale

Poor kale has had a bad rep. It can be bitter and, well, let’s be honest – it’s kale. But once you try it prepared this way, it will convert you. Crunchy and partially charred, it’s a fabulous side-dish. Carefully measure the olive oil that you add on the kale and mix/coat it well using your hands in a large bowl ensuring each leaf is evenly coated before spreading out and roasting in the oven. A sprinkling of Pink Himalayan Salt, grated Parmesan or finely grated lemon zest are all great ways to finish it – but I love it with salt. Happy crunching! 

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 0.6g
(3.2%); Fat 6.9g (89%); Protein 1.4g (7.8%)
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Keto Courgette and Brie Soup

Keto Courgette and Brie Soup
Keto Courgette and Brie Soup

Inspiration for this recipe came from my darling friend, Little Debbie Bryson who makes something similar at her sop-en-dop* birthday party every winter in Cape Town. Since moving to UK, I have sadly missed so many of them. This is for you LDB, I know it doesn’t compare to yours – but I slurped my version up with a longing lump in my throat. The recipe makes two hearty bowls, filling enough as a main meal, but you could make it stretch to 4 servings and enjoy it as a late-afternoon light meal (cup-of-soup) and halve the macros accordingly..

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 7.4g
(6.8%); Fat 31g (65.1%); Protein 30g (28%)
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Keto Greek Village Salad

Keto Greek Village Salad
Keto Greek Village Salad

Funnyman took me to Santorini in 2015 (life before keto) so that I could recover from an (emotionally and physically) unpleasant abdominal operation. We spent 8 days in the sun, drinking beer and Ouzo and eating our body weight in seafood, lamb and salads – pretty much doing everything opposite to what the surgeons advised me. I couldn’t have cared less – we were in Greece, my life had changed forever and I felt sorry for myself.  Returning home, I realised that Greece ruined tomatoes for me. The tomatoes in Greece are simply the most fantastically-delicious balls of heaven you will ever come across – and any tomato you eat after visiting Greece will be a sore disappointment. Here in the UK, opt for organic, deep-red, on-the-vine, and ones that look over-ripe, and you might find something close. But if you want the best – go to Greece! (And please don’t store tomatoes in the fridge…)

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 6.8g
(13.9%); Fat 16g (77.4%); Protein 4.1g (8.6%)
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