Our roundup of the best keto snacks for those practising this back-to-basics diet
Cravings, temptations, midday slumps, we’ve rounded up the best keto snacks that you can buy to help combat all these challenges. With the restrictive nature of the keto diet, it can be hard for those practicing keto to find something to indulge in when they need a little pick-me-up. What kind of snack can you reach for when carbs and sugar are out of the equation? Thankfully, there’s a fast-growing market of handy pre-made snacks catering to keto practitioners now available, with a great range of keto-friendly sweet bites, crunchy mixes and protein-packed options to be enjoyed.
If you’re completely unfamiliar with all things keto or just want to know a little more about it, our handy buying guide below will introduce you to the main tenets and touted benefits of the diet. A little further down the page, you’ll find our mini reviews of the best keto snacks we could find, where we break down the flavours, ingredients and nutritional information that make them both keto- and snacktime-compatible.
Best keto snacks: At a glance
- Best sweet-tasting keto snack: Boostball Keto Balls Multi-pack | £19
- Best meaty keto snack: Bulk Beef Jerky | £10
- Best cheese keto snack: Cheesies Popped Cheese Multi-pack | £15
- Best nut keto snack: Acti-Snack Keto Crunch Salt and Vinegar Multi-pack | £15
- Best keto protein bar: Quest Nutrition Bar Box | £35
How to choose the best keto snacks for you
What is the keto diet?
Originally developed as a therapeutic diet to control seizures in patients with epilepsy, the ketogenic diet, or keto for short, is a diet that focuses on consuming plenty of healthy fats and good amounts of protein, while aiming to reduce carbohydrate intake as much as possible. The goal with keto is to put your body into a state called “ketosis”, hence the name. Ketosis is what happens when your body doesn’t have any carbohydrates to burn for energy, so it instead quickly burns through fat its reserves, seeking out an alternate energy supply. However, ketosis can take a few weeks to kick in and the diet requires you consume fewer than 50g of carbohydrates a day throughout, which means it’s no small undertaking.
What are the benefits of the keto diet?
The main benefit of keto for most people is efficient weight loss, while sufferers of difficult to control epilepsy have benefited from it as a drug free form of dietary therapy. As for the rest of the touted benefits of keto, they need further research for confirmation, but among them are: reduced risk of certain cancers, improved heart health, acne reduction and improved brain function.
What foods should I focus on, and avoid, if I’m doing keto?
For the ketogenic diet to work, you should avoid sugary and carb-rich foods such as fruits; sweets; wheat-based or starchy products such as rice, pasta and cereal; alcohol and juices; low-fat and sugar-free alternative products; as well as beans, legumes, tubers (potatoes, etc) and root vegetables. As we said above, keto is notably restrictive, and probably not for the faint of heart.
Now, what can we have? Well, still available for the ketogenic gourmet is meat, eggs, fatty fish such as tuna, trout and salmon, creamery butter and unprocessed cheese, nuts and seeds, healthy oils, low-carb vegetables such as carrots, peppers, tomatoes and greens, as well as seasonings such as salt, pepper and spice. So there’s still plenty of delicious meals to be had, but you’ll just have to get a little more focused and creative in the kitchen.
Are there risks associated with the keto diet?
Like any diet, keto comes with some associated risks if not managed correctly. Keto diets can, naturally, run a little high in saturated fats, leading to possible increases in cholesterol. Lack of access to the full range of fruits, vegetables and whole grains can lead to nutrient deficiencies. The amount of fat and protein that keto diets require your liver and kidneys to metabolise can put these organs under some strain. The keto diet runs low in fibre and carbs, so can lead to constipation as well as fuzzy thinking and mood swings if the correct countermeasures aren’t taken. For the best possible advice on any diet, however, always consult your doctor.
READ NEXT: Our pick of the best protein bars
The best keto snacks to buy in 2023
1. Boostball Keto Balls: Best sweet-tasting keto snack
Price when reviewed: From £19 (12pk) | Check price at AmazonMade from natural ingredients and packaged in compostable wrappers, these keto treats from Boost Balls are a perfect guilt-free snack on all fronts. They use coconut, almond, peanut and 0.35g of natural sugar to create a sweet-tasting treat that will satisfy your cravings while also complying with any keto-based diet.
With 24g of fat and 4.5g of fibre, they’ll also provide you with the high-fat content that keto demands, as well as a decent amount of dietary fibre, which keto eating plans tend to find hard to slot in. They’re available in a fun and decadent range of flavours, including chocolate hazelnut, peanut butter cup, raw chocolate brownie, chocca mocha, cherry bakewell and white chocolate raspberry.
Key details – Size: 40g x 12; Calories: 258kcal; Fat: 23.7g; Carbohydrates: 4.2g, of which sugars 1.4g; Protein: 5.2g; Fibre: 4.5g
2. Bulk Beef Jerky: Best meaty keto snack
Price when reviewed: £10 | Check price at Bulk
Meat is a big part of the keto diet, being a large food group that you’re allowed pretty much unfettered access to. But how does meat translate to snacking? Enter jerky, biltong and their various cousins, which make a great meaty midday snack for any keto follower.
This beef jerky from Bulk is made from fully traceable, topside beef from grass-fed British cows. Air-dried and free from any artificial colours or flavours, it’s fully back-to-basics, offering only two things: a meaty flavour and a whopping 60g of protein. It’s a little lacking in the fat department, so it would be best paired with some cheese or nuts to balance the high protein content. For those who want a little extra flavour, there’s also a sweet chilli variant available. To get the lowdown on more high-quality, meaty snacks, be sure to check out our full best biltong round-up.
Key details – Size: 100g; Calories: 298kcal; Fat: 4g; Carbohydrates: 6.3, of which sugars 3.8g; Protein: 60g; Fibre: 3.2g
3. Acti-Snack Crunch Keto Salt and Apple Cider Vingear: Best keto nut mix
Price when reviewed: £15 (12pk) | Check price at AmazonNuts are a huge part of the keto diet for some, offering plenty of healthy fats, bulk calories, as well as vitamins and minerals, while being naturally low in carbs. A tasty nut mix is, therefore, a no-brainer for keto snacking. This on-the-go pack contains crunchy cashews and almonds coated in a tangy and more-ish salt and vinegar seasoning.
Each 40g pack contains 19g of fat and 6g of protein, making them perfect for a midday fat boost or post-gym protein hit. They’re also naturally high in magnesium, potassium and iron, and offer a decent amount of much-needed dietary fibre relative to their size.
Key details – Size: 40g x 12; Calories: 224kcal; Fat: 19g; Carbohydrates: 6g, of which sugars 1.6g; Protein: 8g; Fibre: 3g
4. Cheesies Popped Cheese Multi-Pack: Best cheese keto snack
Price when reviewed: £15 (12pk) | Check price at AmazonCheese is an important building block for any keto diet, as it’s low carb and high protein while offering plenty of healthy fats. It can be hard, however, to find suitable cheese-based snacks that will last in your cupboard for weeks, or ones that can be handily popped into a bag. Air-popped cheese is an ingenious solution to this dilemma, as it’s 100% cheese while still being shelf-stable.
These popped cheese bites from Cheesies come in a fun range of flavours, including cheddar, gouda, emmental and chilli. They’re crunchy, salty, strongly cheesy, and come in handily-sized servings for snacking and taking on the go. While they make a fine snack when eaten on their own, they can also be used similarly to croutons, enlivening soups and salads with a hit of umami flavour.
Key details – Size: 12 x 20g; Calories: 122kcal; Fat: 10.2g; Carbohydrates: 0g, of which sugars 0g; Protein: 7.4g
5. Keto Skinny Konjac Flour Rice, Penne and Noodles: Best midday keto snack
Price when reviewed: £13 (6pk) | Check price at AmazonWhile avoiding carbohydrates on the keto diet, it can sometimes be difficult to find something substantial to bulk out your midday meals. A clever base for lunchtime keto snacks are these carbohydrate replacements from Keto Skinny. Made from Konjac flour, derived from the Japanese Konjac plant, as well as oats, these meal bases contain a nice amount of fibre, zero carbs and are also gluten free.
This multipack contains a great variety of easy to prepare options, including two packs each of the brand’s rice, penne and noodle offerings. Simply needing to be rinsed and then heated for one to two minutes in a pan or microwave, any of these options would form a solid base for a satisfying midday keto snack.
Key details – Size: 270g x 6; Calories: 9 kcal (per 100g); Fat: 0g; Carbohydrates: 0g, of which sugars: 0g; Protein: 0.2g (per 100g); Fibre: 4g (per 100g)
6. Quest Nutrition Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Protein Bar: Best keto protein bar
Price when reviewed: £35 (12pk) | Check price at AmazonOften, the interests of keto practitioners and gym regulars line up nicely, with both contingents seeking high protein, low-carb foods when they’re in need of a boost. These chocolate chip cookie dough flavoured protein bars from Quest are a great example of this crossover appeal.
These bars contain an excellent 21g of protein, with only a net 7g of carbohydrates and practically no sugar. They still taste nicely sweet, while also having that unmistakable protein bar flavour that any gym-rat worth their salt has come to know and love. Beyond that, they fill an important and sometimes overlooked keto niche, being one of the best sources of fibre on this list, with each 60g bar containing a solid 14g of fibre.
Key details – Size: 60g x 12; Calories: 190kcal; Fat: 9g; Net carbohydrates: 4g, of which sugars: <1g; Protein: 21g; Fibre: 14g
7. Keto Hana Keto Granola Coconut and Almond: Best breakfast keto snack
Price when reviewed: £6.50 | Check price at Holland & BarrettOne thing you might miss from your pre-keto life is breakfast cereal. While it might be simple to make and tasty, it’s also often maddeningly high in sugars and carbohydrates, making it a big keto no-no. Thankfully, there’s now a solution at hand, thanks to diet-focused food brand Keto Hana. Keto Hana’s focus is on making simple, low-carb foods, and its coconut and almond granola is specifically crafted with keto and paleo diets in mind.
This granola mix is made from almonds, coconut, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, hazelnuts, butter and plant-based sweeteners – that’s the entire ingredient list, by the way — and offers a natural, low-carb alternative to sugary breakfast cereals. Though it boasts a pared back ingredients list, it still has plenty enough sweetness, crunchy texture and flavour to make it a satisfying way to start your day.
Key details – Size: 300g; Calories (per 30g serving): 180kcal; Fat (per 30g): 15g; Carbohydrates (per 30g): 8g, of which sugars 1g; Protein (per 30g): 6g; Fibre (per 30g): 5g