Keto, Paleo and Vegan Diet Guide

Keto, Paleo and Vegan Diet Guide

 

Keto bowl

Whether you’ve resolved to cook more this year or simply expand your culinary repertoire with new recipes, we’ve got your back. Here’s what you need to know about the trendiest eating styles for 2019–and all the recipe inspo you need to bring them to your kitchen.

The Keto Diet: Low in Carbs, High in Fat

If you’ve been seeing a lot of keto content all over your Pinterest and Instagram feeds, it’s not just you. Keto is the trendiest diet of 2018, and it’s still mega-popular going into 2019. 

Here's why: the diet calls for plenty of fat, and it's extremely satisfying. It doesn’t just let you eat some of your favourite fatty foods, like avocado and almond butter, – it welcomes them. 

So what do you eat on keto? The core of the diet involves keeping your carbohydrate intake low. This allows your body to enter a state called ketosis (which is where the diet’s name comes from). You’ll eat a moderate amount of protein, and higher-than-typical amounts of fat. Most of what you’ll find in keto recipes includes low-carb vegetables, meats, seafood, nuts, eggs, coconut oil and plenty low-carb dairy, like cheese and plain Greek yogurt. 

Top Keto Diet Recipes

To follow keto, focus on vegetables, fats and proteins at each meal. Like these mini ham and egg quiches. They’re perfectly portable for fueling up – and sticking to Keto – on the go.

Pair boldly seasoned piri piri steak with turmeric roasted cauliflower and tomatoes for a satisfying weeknight meal. Entertaining? Whip up spicy grilled salmon with tzatziki to impress guests – and keep the keto ones happy!

The Paleo Diet: Minimally Processed Meals with Lots of Protein

You can’t head to the health food store (or your favourite foodie's Instagram page) without coming across reference after reference to the paleo diet. Based on the types of foods presumed to be eaten by cavemen, the diet is by far one of the most popular of the past few years.
 
But what is the paleo diet, exactly? Similar to the keto diet, paleo focuses on homemade, minimally processed foods. And, like keto, you’ll focus on meats, seafood, eggs, nuts, fresh vegetables and oils. You’ll also avoid some higher-carb foods, like grains, legumes and sugar. However, you’re allowed more carbs on paleo than on the keto diet, which means you can enjoy more fruit. 

The Best Paleo Diet Recipes

All of the keto-friendly recipes listed above will work for the paleo diet, and you have plenty of other meal options too. If you’re looking for paleo-friendly staples, you can’t go wrong with favourite protein dressed up with seasonings. Try spicy sambal grilled chicken skewers or grilled harissa shrimp (substitute a paleo-friendly mayo) for vibrant flavour. These crisp pork lettuce wraps will have everyone at the table wanting seconds. Make them as mild or as spicy as you like, using Thai chili peppers.

Craving just a quick snack? Keep lemon kale chips on hand for a zesty snack when the mood strikes. 

The Vegan Diet: All Plant-Based, All the Time 

While buzzing diets over the past few years trend towards getting more protein primarily from meats, fish and shellfish, the vegan diet goes the other way. Eating vegan means foregoing all meat and fish–along with any other animal-derived foods.

That means nixing some of the usual suspects (meat, dairy and eggs) along with foods that contain less obvious animal-derived ingredients. You’ll want to take honey off your shopping list, watch out for gummy candies, marshmallows (they typically contain gelatin) and even some sugars (they may be processed with animal-derived bone char).
 
So, what’s left? Plenty! A balanced vegan diet comes packed with vegetables, fruits, grains, nuts and legumes. And once you get the hang of shopping for vegan foods–and reading the labels to ID animal-derived ingredients–it’s easy to create simple and delicious vegan meals at home. 

The Top Vegan Diet Recipes

Chances are, plenty of your favourite foods already work with a vegan diet. Mac ‘n cheese? This creamy butternut squash version is. Chili? Yup. Try this meatless version with a Moroccan twist.
  
Most of your go-to veggie side dishes already work with a vegan diet, and you can enjoy even more recipes with a few simple substitutions. Mashed potato recipe call for butter? Try an olive oil-based margarine instead. Soup recipe include chicken stock? Use vegetable stock in its place. We promise, it'll taste just as good.
 
When it comes to main courses, you have plenty of options to experiment with. Turn jackfruit into savoury vegan “pulled pork” that works perfectly in sandwiches or tacos. Use seasonings to turn tofu turmeric veggie patties into a masterpiece.
 
Beans and other legumes are an important part of many vegan diets as well, so find fun ways to work them into your meal plans. Cajun corn and bean salad is tangy with a hint of heat and great for potlucks and parties.  

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