We think of couscous as a healthy substitute for white rice. But when it comes to the ketogenic diet there’s really one question: Is couscous keto friendly?
The short answer is: sort of. In moderate amounts.
If you want to make sure you get the most out of your keto diet then I recommend you keep reading. I’ll answer question about couscous and the keto diet in full.
And as a “thank you” for reading I’ll tell you about some keto couscous recipes that will delight your tastebuds.
Enough chit-chat. Let’s get to it.
Is Couscous Keto?
According to the USDA, 1 cup of couscous contains about 36 grams of total carbohydrates. A standard ketogenic diet recommends you stay under 50 grams of carbohydrates per day. That means eating a standard amount of couscous will take up almost 75% of your carbs for the day.
Based on that information, couscous is not exactly keto friendly. Yet you can still enjoy it in moderation.
In essence, couscous is simply pasta (read: flour) processed into a small, grain-like size. Many people mistake couscous for actually being a grain – a confusion that is not helped by the fact that they are usually sold on the same aisle at the grocery store.
Couscous is indeed not a low-carb food, and not one you should eat much of if you want to follow a keto diet.
But if you’re a couscous lover, take heart. The creative minds who manage to make a keto version of nearly everything have brought us plenty of ways to enjoy keto couscous and couscous alternatives.
Keto Couscous Recipes
You might not be surprised to learn what the most popular keto couscous recipes use: cauliflower. It is one of the few keto foods that’s capable of mimicking the texture of our favorite grains.
Keto Couscous Chicken Salad
Writing for Paleo Flourish, Louise Hendon published an intriguing keto couscous recipe: a Chicken Cauliflower “Couscous” Salad. The recipe uses a North African style of spices: cumin, lemon juice, red peppers. The cauliflower couscous can be made by simply breaking up cauliflower florets and food processing them into their desired size. You can find the full recipe right here.
Keto Moroccan Stew With Couscous
If you want something a little heavier and perhaps more filling, you’ll be excited to see this Moroccan stew recipe from the Aussie Keto Queen blog. Sticking with the North African theme, this is another recipe that is inspired by traditional North African and Middle Eastern cuisine. And again, our friend cauliflower stands in as a fine substitute for couscous. The recipe includes plenty of beef, butter, and some bacon, with just barely more than 10 grams of carbs. You can find it in its entirety here.
Keto Couscous With Lemon and Herbs
You can enjoy keto couscous in its simplest form without preparing a big spread. This is a simple couscous (using cauliflower) with lemon and herbs from I Breathe I’m Hungry. It’s easy to add the flavors of your choosing if you are looking for a bolder taste. Dairy free, vegetarian, and tasty. Everybody at your table will be able to enjoy. Find the full recipe here.