Keto Ginger

Keto as a Way of Life

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50 Meats Ranked Best to Worst for Keto

Counting and tracking your macros is pretty much the golden rule of Keto. Keep those carbs in check while getting the right amount of Fat and Protein. While meat is always a great low carb option, sometimes it can be tricky to pick the right animal or the right cut of meat that will balance your fat and protein.
If you go too far past your protein macro, it can knock you out of ketosis. That’s because, through the complex magic of biology, your body will convert excess protein into glucose. Also, on Keto, if you don’t get enough fat in your diet, you’ll start feeling sluggish and tired.



The problem with some meats when you’re on Keto is that they are too lean. That means, even though it’s low in carbs, some meat has too much protein and not enough fat. That doesn’t mean you can’t have those meats. It just means you’ll need to be careful not to go over your protein macro. And if there isn’t enough fat in the meat you eat, then you will want to pick up some extra, healthy fat somewhere else.
Again, this is not a bad thing. It’s just something to be aware of as you plan your meals.

We’ve put together a list of meats as a quick model to help you figure out the fat and protein ratios in each type of meat. We used some calculations to give each meat a Keto Score.

 

I don’t recommend sticking strictly to this guide or any other. Use it as a simple reference to help you make plans.

Oh… and by the way; the term “Keto Score” isn’t a thing in the Keto community. It’s an arbitrary appellation we came up with for the purposes of this post.




Meal planning is important! Benjamin Franklin said,
“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.”

This is How the Keto Score Chart Works

  • We used the MyFitnessPal app to calculate the macros for 3 ounces of each cut of meat listed, unless another serving size is noted.
  • “3 oz” was used in our calculations because the USDA website claims that’s a proper serving size of meat. Although, if you only give me 3 oz of meat, I’ll probably work off the calories in it just being mad.
  • We counted each gram of fat as having 9 calories, each carb as having 4 calories and each gram of protein as having 4 calories. Those calculations were used to extrapolate the Percentage of each Macro in relation to the calories.
  • The Keto Score is the number we derived from our calculations. We used this score to rate these meats from best to worst for the purposes of Keto. The lower the score, the better.
  • In meats that contain carbs, that macro counts against the Keto Score.
The best way to check for ketones and know for certain whether you are in ketsosis is by testing your blood. The Keto-MOJO Blood Ketone and Glucose Testing Meter Kit is a good way to do this. We like that it’s reliable and not too expensive. We also like that it measures blood glucose. Sometimes you want to make sure a certain food you’re eating isn’t spiking your blood glucose too much because that will knock you out of Ketosis. After you eat that food, use this to test your blood. You have your answer instantly.

Click here to get yours today

The Keto Score Chart for Meat

 

Calories
Fat
Protein
Carbs
Fat % of Calories
Protein % of Calories
Carb % Calories
Keto Score
Cheek – Pork
558
60
5.4
0
96.77%
3.87%
0.00%
0.0
Pork Belly (aka Bacon)
441
45
7.8
0
91.84%
7.07%
0.00%
0.1
Beef Ribs
260
22.2
14.06
0
76.85%
21.63%
0.00%
0.3
Ground Lamb
240
19.8
14.1
0
74.25%
23.50%
0.00%
0.3
Lamb Shoulder
225
18
14
0
72.00%
24.89%
0.00%
0.3
Rib-Eye Steak – Beef
466
37.6
30
0
72.62%
25.75%
0.00%
0.4
Ground Beef (80/20)
213
16.8
14.42
0
70.99%
27.08%
0.00%
0.4
Pork Baby Back Ribs
187.5
15
13.5
0
72.00%
28.80%
0.00%
0.4
Pork Spareribs (1 small cut)
296
22.63
21.7
0
68.81%
29.32%
0.00%
0.4
Hot Dog – Beef
229
20
11
0.2
78.60%
19.21%
0.35%
0.4
Calories
Fat
Protein
Carbs
Fat % of Calories
Protein % of Calories
Carb % Calories
Keto Score
Top Round – Lamb
241
17
21
0
63.49%
34.85%
0.00%
0.5
Pork Shoulder (pulled pork or Boston Butt)
288
16
20
0
50.00%
27.78%
0.00%
0.6
T-Bone Steak – Beef
376
25.6
33
0
61.28%
35.11%
0.00%
0.6
Chicken Wings (1 wing with skin)
81
5.4
7.46
0
60.00%
36.84%
0.00%
0.6
Leg of Lamb
219
14
22
0
57.53%
40.18%
0.00%
0.7
Chicken Thighs (1 small thigh w/ skin)
135
8.45
13.67
0
56.33%
40.50%
0.00%
0.7
Pork Crackling (Pork Skins or Chicharones)
462
27
51
0
52.60%
44.16%
0.00%
0.8
Pork Loin
206
12
23
0
52.43%
44.66%
0.00%
0.9
Lamb Chop
142.5
7.5
17.25
0
47.37%
48.42%
0.00%
1.0
Chicken Leg (1 medium drumstick w/skin)
105
5.42
13.13
0
46.46%
50.02%
0.00%
1.1
Calories
Fat
Protein
Carbs
Fat % of Calories
Protein % of Calories
Carb % Calories
Keto Score
Turkey Wing
221
11
27
0
44.80%
48.87%
0.00%
1.1
Pork Country Style Ribs
120
6.75
17.25
0
50.63%
57.50%
0.00%
1.1
New York Strip Steam – Beef
360
18
46
0
45.00%
51.11%
0.00%
1.1
Lamb Shank
184
8.7
22.7
0
42.55%
49.35%
0.00%
1.2
Skirt Steak – Beef
348
17.2
45.4
0
44.48%
52.18%
0.00%
1.2
Flap Steak – Beef
240
12
33
0
45.00%
55.00%
0.00%
1.2
Turkey Leg (1 leg with skin)
208
10
28
0
43.27%
53.85%
0.00%
1.2
Porterhouse Steak – Beef
346
16.4
46.2
0
42.66%
53.41%
0.00%
1.3
Filet Mignon (Beef Tenderloin)
348
16
48
0
41.38%
55.17%
0.00%
1.3
Turkey Thigh
127
6.6
16.6
0.3
46.77%
52.28%
0.94%
1.4
Calories
Fat
Protein
Carbs
Fat % of Calories
Protein % of Calories
Carb % Calories
Keto Score
Pork Sausage
276
23
16
1.2
75.00%
23.19%
1.74%
1.5
Chicken Liver
99
4.11
14.39
0
37.36%
58.14%
0.00%
1.6
Chicken Breast (1/2 small breast with skin)
164
6.48
24.82
0
35.56%
60.54%
0.00%
1.7
Bottom Round Steak – Beef
316
11
47.2
0
31.33%
59.75%
0.00%
1.9
Rib Chop (Pork Chop)
136
5.1
22.1
0
33.75%
65.00%
0.00%
1.9
Top Round Steak – Beef
240
7.6
36.9
0
28.50%
61.50%
0.00%
2.2
Top Sirloin – Beef
316
10.6
51.6
0
30.19%
65.32%
0.00%
2.2
Hot Dog – Pork
274
25
9.9
2.3
82.12%
14.45%
3.36%
2.5
Beef Liver
114
3.1
17.31
0
24.47%
60.74%
0.00%
2.5
Salmon Filet
100
3
17.5
0
27.00%
70.00%
0.00%
2.6
Calories
Fat
Protein
Carbs
Fat % of Calories
Protein % of Calories
Carb % Calories
Keto Score
Bratwurst
283
25
12
2.4
79.51%
16.96%
3.39%
2.6
Beef Summer Sausage
304
26
15
2.8
76.97%
19.74%
3.68%
3.1
Eye of Round Steal – Beef
276
7
49.8
0
22.83%
72.17%
0.00%
3.2
Sirloin Tip Side Steak – Beef
206
5.4
39
0
23.59%
75.73%
0.00%
3.2
Pork Tenderloin (aka Fillet)
135
3
25
0
20.00%
74.07%
0.00%
3.7
Leg (aka Ham)
203
8
29
2.1
35.47%
57.14%
4.14%
3.7
Italian Sausage
293
23
16
3.6
70.65%
21.84%
4.91%
3.9
Pork Liver
140
3.7
22.1
3.2
23.79%
63.14%
9.14%
5.9
Turkey Breast
125
1.8
26
0
12.96%
83.20%
0.00%
6.4
Canned Tuna in Water
99
0.69
21.69
0
6.27%
87.64%
0.00%
14.0

 

We’ve put together a printable PDF of this chart so you can keep it in your kitchen as a quick reference Cheat Sheet.

CLICK HERE TO GET YOUR FREE PDF CHEAT SHEET

50 Meats Ranked for Keto

Thoughts on the Keto Score

  • A Keto Score of less than 1 means the meats get more of their calories from fat than from protein.
  • A Keto score between 1-2 is a good choice for Keto, but you want to make sure to add more fat from other sources like healthy oils and veggies.
  • A Keto Score between 2-3 is approaching too lean with too much protein. Be careful to limit other protein sources for the day if you eat these.
  • A Keto Score over 3 is either because the meat contains carbs or because the protein to fat ratio is too high. We advise limiting these meats and using cooking methods that add extra healthy fat to them.



A Couple Notes About the Chart

Notice that things like Hot Dogs and Sausage are listed. There are also other meats that contain carbs. A big part of Keto is making sure you’re eating good quality foods with whole ingredients. Processed meats like these often have fillers and sugars. If you eat these occasionally, it’s not the end of the world. However, even if you’re hitting your macros, we recommend limiting processed foods like these meats.

If you really want something like sausage, you can always make your own. We have a Keto Pork Breakfast Sausage recipe here. And we’ll be posting more as time goes on, so make sure to check back with Keto Ginger.

Thanks for Reading

We hope you enjoy this 50 Meats comparison post. If you download out free PDF cheat sheet, please let us know what you think about it. Just drop us a line in the comments below, send us an email at info@ketoginger.com or join us on our Facebook Page where we share and discuss Keto recipes all the time.

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Check Our Some of Our Meat Recipes on Keto Ginger!

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Keto Mojo

This is the blood ketone meter we use. We like it because it lets us check blood ketones as well as glucose.

Here's the text right from the Amazon page, and I think it's pretty spot on:

"Blood testing is the most accurate way to test for ketone and glucose levels. The Keto-Mojo Testing Kit exceeds strict FDA and International standards ensuring you get the best measurement results possible."

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The products on this page may be affiliate links; many of them found on Amazon. If you purchase any of these products through our links, we will receive a small commission from the sale. See our Affiliate Disclaimer for more information.