Did you think that grilled cheese sandwiches would be a thing of the past on a keto diet? If so, I’m happy to tell you that you can have your grilled cheese sandwich AND your keto, too!
This meal is one of my favorites because it’s quick, easy, and satisfying — a grilled turkey and cheese sandwich, grilled chicken tenders, side salad, and a couple of pickle spears.
Keto Grilled Turkey & Cheese Sandwich
If you missed my favorite keto bread recipe, you can click here to learn about it (plus the changes I made to the recipe).
Now first, you must manage your expectations. Is this bread exactly like the wheat flour bread you’re used to? Nope. But is it good in its own way? Well, I think so. After trying countless keto “bread” recipes, this one is my favorite.
On the first day when I make the bread, I prefer to eat it all on its own. Just butter it up while it’s still warm and fresh out of the oven, and enjoy! But on the second day, I love to make grilled sandwiches.
For our sandwiches, I use about 1.5 ounces of deli sliced turkey (be sure to get one with no sugar added), a slice of cheddar cheese and mayonnaise, and mustard. I butter the bread and grill it up on my LeCrueset bistro grill. (I use this thing all the time and highly recommend it.)
When we have grilled turkey sandwiches, it’s always necessary to have another source of protein since that small amount of turkey isn’t anywhere near enough protein for a day.
Keto Tip: Remember that when it comes to macros, protein is a goal (i.e., you want to aim for this number each day because you MUST have enough protein for optimal health), carbs are a limit (i.e., you don’t need to make it a goal to hit this number), and fat is a lever to give you enough calories and keep you satiated. As long as you’re getting a reasonable amount of calories (i.e., not sending your body into starvation mode by eating way too few calories) then there’s no need to hit some arbitrary fat goal. Just use it to keep yourself satiated. If you’re hungry throughout the day, increase your fat until you’re satiated.
So anyway, protein is a goal, which means we must have enough of it, and it needs to be from healthy sources. If you have trouble finding free-range organic chicken in your area, you might want to check out Butcher Box. This is where Matt and I get all of our free-range chicken, grass-fed beef, and heritage pork, and it’s conveniently delivered to our front door once a month. You can check it out at the link below, and if you sign up, you’ll get two pounds of free ground beef every month for the life of your membership:
Also, my absolute favorite, go-to seasoning for chicken, beef and pork, is Johnny’s Seasoning Salt, which we get here on Amazon. This is THE BEST seasoning salt I’ve ever tried. I stick to the “no MSG” blend. It makes such quick work of grilling up some chicken for a meal when you don’t have time to do a fancy marinade or sauce.
I first discovered Johnny’s when I moved to Oregon. We used it often, and on everything. Then we moved to Texas, and I searched and searched, but couldn’t find it anywhere. Thank goodness for Amazon!
So just a note about it before someone calls me out for it. The label clearly states that sugar is an ingredient. But then it states that the serving size has zero carbs. And it is true that you only need a tiny little bit to give your food a great flavor. So take it or leave it, but I just thought I’d pass along the Johnny’s goodness for those of you who haven’t tried it. I use it maybe once a week, but if the sugar bothers you, then obviously just skip it and use other seasonings.
Of course, there are a thousand ways to make a side salad. For our standard, go-to side salad, I generally use:
- Organic spring mix
- Iceberg lettuce
- Seedless cucumber
- Tomato (not really recommended for strict keto, but I stick to one slice because I can’t give up my tomatoes)
- Green onions
- Shredded cheddar
- Sunflower seed kernels – about 2 tablespoons
- Ranch dressing
The funny thing is that a salad is often a big source of our veggies, and yet Carb Manager always gives my salads a Keto Grade F (avoid). Ha! Carb Manager doesn’t seem to like large quantities of veggies, so I don’t really pay attention to the food grades as long as my macros are reasonable.
For this meal, I actually ended up shredding the chicken and putting it on the salad.
Keto Macros For This Meal
This meal comes in a 18 of 20 allowable grams of net carbs, 112 of 116 allowable grams of fat, and 93 of 93 needed grams of protein, for a total of 1474 of 1500 allowable calories.
So that breaks down to 70% fat, 26% protein, and 5% net carbs.
As far as my macro percentages go, that’s exactly what I aim for.
So if you’ve been craving a grilled cheese sandwich, give this one a try and see what you think. Again, manage your expectations, and just enjoy this for what it is — a different type of bread with its own unique taste and texture. Don’t expect it to be something it’s not, and I think you might enjoy it. Matt and I sure do!
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Please note that I am not a dietitian, a medical doctor, or a ketogenic diet expert. My goal is to simply share my own journey, and pass along some good food ideas along the way.