Is sausage keto friendly and can you enjoy sausage as part of a low carb meal plan?
If this delicious sausage and peppers recipe is any indication, all signs point to yes. Before I give a keto diet seal of approval, let’s talk about part of my back story. This way you can learn the reasons I’m qualified to give a thumbs up or thumbs down.
Before we talk about the merits of sausage on a keto diet, I wanted to let you know this blog contains affiliate links. I may receive a small commission if you click through. I also do my best to link to the same resources I used to lose 100 pounds.
Stuck in Yo-Yo Diets for 20 Years
I struggled with yo yo diets for the majority of my life. Throughout that 20 year struggle, I tried it all. I ate low calories and I added more exercise. Every mainstream diet available – tried it and failed. There were times I even counted grams of carbs. I attempted various low carb and keto diets like Atkins, South Beach, and all of the rest.
Even though I tried all of the low-carbohydrate diets, I couldn’t get the weight off for good. At least not until I reached my highest weight of 245 pounds. By this point I was desperate to lose weight. All of the diet plans I came across resulted in more yo-yo diet misery.
Each low-carb diet I followed included plenty of sausage. Throwing a few sausages on the grill was the easiest way to cut carbs without cooking extravagant meals. I kept my sources of carbs low with plenty of sausage links and hot dogs. When the George Foreman grill was released, this made low carb even easier to follow.
Beyond easy meals with basic ingredients, and of course simple ground beef recipes – since that’s also easy to fry up, my keto meal options were limited. I didn’t really even eat a whole lot of chicken since my cooking skills were that limited.
Variety Helps You Stick to a Low Carb Diet
I tell this story because this isn’t a great way to get long term success on a ketogenic diet. Variety is important to keep you interested in low-carb foods. It’s also important to learn the keto cooking basics so you can make the majority of your meals at home.
While it’s fine to dine out, finding keto foods at restaurants can get tricky. Added sugar is in nearly every recipe on the menu. Dining out too often means your total carb count may skyrocket. You won’t even know it since restaurants hire sneaky little chefs with their sneaky little sugary sauces.
Before we get into more sausage talk – after all, what girl doesn’t love a little sausage talk every now and then? Wait, not little – you need plenty of grams of protein in your sausage links 😂
As I was saying before my innocent food blog almost went full on Only Fans – here’s a quick tip when you eat out with the whole family. Check nutritional information before you get to the restaurant. That way you can see which dishes are higher in carb content.
Don’t even tempt yourself by looking at the side of the menu heavy in carbs! Stick with keto-friendly options, like grilled meats and salads. Even then, you still may have to ask for modifications.
OK – back to sausage. I am talking keto-friendly sausage, just in case anyone is confused.
Is Sausage A Safe Bet for Keto?
As with most things in life, the final answer is – it depends.
There’s a wide variety of sausages available. While the types of sausage you buy for specific keto sausage recipes can matter, when it comes to keto friendly sausage – it all comes down to the total carbs in the type of sausage you choose.
Whether you cook breakfast sausage as a side for eggs, you grill smoked sausage for dinner, or even when you put out summer sausage for guests – it all comes down to the number of carbs in the sausage meat.
You need to keep carb intake low and healthy fats high in order to kickstart weight loss results on a high-fat diet. Always read the nutrition label. This can help you stay in the metabolic state of ketosis long term. A few extra net carbs here, or a couple extra grams of added sugar there can start to add up throughout the day.
Keeping things simple when starting keto is the way our students have long term success. Always look at the label for total grams of carbohydrates first. Next, consider the quality of the food you put into your body.
Look at carbohydrate count on the label, but also consider the fat. Keto is a high fat diet. You need to eat enough fat to get into ketosis. The best sausages will be sausages with higher fat content, like Italian sausage or pork sausage. Steer clear of varieties like turkey sausage and Italian chicken sausage. These are leaner meats.
A Preference for Lean Meats Could Signal A Problem with Digestion
If your gut tells you to choose turkey sausage over more flavorful varieties, this is typically a digestion problem more than a preference. This is literally your gut telling you it needs some work.
Most mainstream diets have trained you to eat too little fat long term. When you do this, the part of digestion known as bile flow gets thick and sticky. If you don’t work to improve this, it will be difficult to eat the amount of fat necessary for a ketogenic diet.
The best part of keto is all of the good recipes with amazing flavors extra fat provides. Keto meals keep you satiated since they contain the high quality fats your brain and body need to thrive.
When you eat small amounts of carbs, plus small amounts of fat on keto – you’re not really following a keto diet at all. You’re back to a low calorie diet. This is proven to fail in more than 95% of people who attempt cutting calories very low.
I veered off track of the sausage talk, but digestion that’s in working order is important.
Low-Fat Is Not Keto-Friendly
One of my favorite things about a keto diet is there’s no need to starve yourself. Nothing makes me roll my eyes bigger than a keto advocate who tells you to burn the fat on your thighs. These experts insist lowering carbs is the only important thing to get into ketosis. Many will tell you to not add even an extra ounce of fat to the low calorie meals they promote.
High fat diets just don’t work that way.
Hopefully I’ve done my job in helping you understand there’s no such thing as a food that’s keto or not keto. There are foods that are more keto friendly. While these foods can help you stay in ketosis, no one single food is considered keto for everyone. The right way to follow keto is by keeping track of the carb count that works for you. Then, make sure you’re eating enough fat to trigger ketosis.
How to Make One Pan Sausage and Peppers
Now that we’ve concluded sausage is indeed keto friendly under the right circumstances, let’s talk about this delicious keto sausage and peppers recipe.
Fry the Sausage
My favorite way to get more healthy fats into the recipes I make is by using coconut oil for cooking. Please don’t use any old vegetable oil you have laying around when it comes to keto cooking. The point of a low carb diet is to bring inflammation down. Highly processed vegetable oils keep inflammation high.
(Except when it comes to vegetable oils, we do)
This is an easy meal to make, but you may need to take an extra step while the sausage cooks in the hot oil. When coconut oil gets hot, it splatters. When you place the sausages in oil, step back so you don’t get burned! Either that, or use a splatter screen to lessen hot oil splatters.
Fry each side of the sausage in the hot oil. Cook until the outsides are golden brown. This takes approximately 2-3 minutes per side. The sausages won’t be fully cooked when you remove them.
Set the sausages aside. Allow them to cool while you saute the veggies.
Saute the Veggies
Once you remove the sausages from the oil, turn heat down from medium-high heat to medium-low heat. The oil will be very hot. You don’t want the stovetop temp too high since it can burn the garlic. Once the oil has a chance to cool down, add in minced garlic.
Next add the sliced bell pepper and onions. You can use both green and red bell peppers. While you can use whatever kind of onion you have, sweet onions taste best in this recipe.
Stir the veggies on occasion as they soften. Save time by taking out the cutting board and slicing the partially cooked sausages into 1 inch thick slices while the veggies cook. Since they’ll still be hot, use a napkin to grab the sausages while you cut.
Add the Spices
After you slice the sausage, grab a small mixing bowl. Blend the spices together. Set the spice mixture aside until you add the sausage.
After about 5 minutes, the veggies should be soft enough to add in the sliced sausages. Sprinkle the seasoning on top and cover. Allow the flavors to blend over medium heat for around 10 minutes.
Once the main meal is removed from the heat, you can stir in olive oil to give this dish a great flavor. Don’t cook the sausages in olive oil since it can turn rancid at high heats. Stirring olive oil into warmed food should be fine.
One Pan Sausage and Peppers Wrap Up
This flavorful meal is quick and delicious. It’s a meal your whole family will love – even those who don’t follow a low carb diet. Since this recipe is great to reheat as leftovers, you can make a double batch.
Want another amazing sausage recipe? Try this easy keto sausage crust pizza.
Don’t forget to save this recipe to your favorite keto family friendly meals Pinterest board. Keep scrolling for the nutrition facts and recipe card.
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Is Sausage Keto Friendly?
More All-In-One Keto Dinners from Eating Fat is the New Skinny:Print
One Pan Sausage and Peppers
A simple one pan sausage & peppers recipe that’s perfect for mixing things up on a ketogenic diet.
- Prep Time: 5 mins
- Cook Time: 20 mins
- Total Time: 25 mins
- Yield: Serves 4 1x
- Category: Keto Dinner Recipe
- Method: Stove top
- Cuisine: Keto / Low Carb
- Diet: Diabetic
- 1 lb Italian sausage links
- 1 green pepper, sliced
- 1 red pepper, sliced
- 1 medium sweet onion, sliced
- 2 tsp minced garlic
- 3 tbsp coconut oil
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp dried basil flakes
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
- Slice the onions and peppers. Set aside.
- Heat the coconut oil in a skillet over medium-high heat
- Once very hot, add the sausage links. Cook approximately 2-3 minutes per side, or until brown on both sides. (They will not be fully cooked).
- Remove sausage from the oil and place on a cutting board. Allow sausage to cool.
- Turn the heat down to medium-low. Add minced garlic, peppers and onions to the oil. Saute until the veggies soften, approximately 5 minutes. Stir on occasion.
- Add the basil, oregano, salt and red pepper flakes to a small mixing bowl. Stir until combined.
- Slice the partially cooked sausage into 1 inch thick slices.
- Add sausage into the pan with the veggies. Top with spices and stir well.
- Cover and allow the flavors to blend over medium heat for 10 minutes.
- Remove from heat and stir in the olive oil.
- Serving Size: Recipe Serves 4
- Calories: 544
- Sugar: 4.7
- Fat: 47
- Saturated Fat: 19.6
- Carbohydrates: 8
- Fiber: 1.5
- Protein: 21.7
Keywords: One Pan Sausage and Peppers, Keto Sausage Recipes, Easy Keto Dinner Recipes