I’ve been uncertain of my place in the low carb world for a while now, trying to figure out where I fit in, or even if I fit in. I’ve been looking at low carb and keto accounts on Instagram lately—something I’d completely avoided until just a few weeks ago. In looking at the pictures people post, I find myself kind of stunned at the amount of packaged foods and special items marketed toward and targeted at keto eaters: exogenous ketones, powdered MCT oil for your coffee, special “keto collagen,” etc.
To be clear, I’m not opposed to these kinds of things on principle. I think they can make low carb and ketogenic diets more fun, more delicious, and easier to stick to, and considering I occasionally share things that might fall into this category, I’d be a hypocrite if I said they have no place in a ketogenic diet.
I guess my beef with those products is that some people’s Instagram accounts are so peppered with them that people who are new to this way of eating might think they have to use them, or that they’re doing something wrong if they get all their food at the local supermarket, rather than having a substantial portion of their diet consist of these esoteric and super-special keto products that can only be ordered online.
Remember: there are only three things—three things—needed to be successful on a ketogenic diet.
With this in mind, I think I’m zeroing in on what my place might be in this community, and I’m becoming more comfortable with it: I’m the girl who reminds people how simple and UNcomplicated this way of eating is—when we let it be. I’m the one who talks people down from the proverbial ledge of measuring blood ketones, urine ketones, breath ketones, blood glucose, heart rate variability, and drinking a 500-calorie cup of fatty coffee for breakfast because they’re afraid of the protein in sausages and eggs. I’m the one keeping it down to earth, doing my best to make this way of eating clear, simple, and accessible to anyone who wants to give it a go, and I increasingly feel drowned out by an ever-widening sea of voices committed to doing the opposite: to adding layer after layer of unnecessary complexity, to the point where people feel like they need a dual PhD in calculus and biochemistry just to figure out what to put in their mouths.
That’s a great way to sell expensive products and gadgets, but if you ask me, it’s a terrible way to get people interested in this way of eating, and to help them get started.
So, in keeping with my simplicity theme, I’ve written a couple of posts on low carb/ketogenic cooking, to help people see how quick and easy it is to put a meal together, whether you’re cooking for one or two, or to feed a large family. If you keep your fridge, freezer, and pantry well stocked with low carb staples, you can whip up a delicious and suitable meal in minutes.
If you’ve got a busy lifestyle and find yourself pressed for time more often than not, a good strategy for you might be to take a few hours once a week and prepare a large amount of food at once, so there’s plenty of good stuff cooked ahead of time, and it’s waiting in the fridge, ready when you are. Or, if you’re like me, and you don’t have to worry about feeding picky kids, as long as you’ve got some canned tuna, salmon, or sardines in the pantry, and maybe some kind of vegetable in the fridge or freezer, dinner can be ready in 27 seconds.
HOWEVER, even though I am the queen of emphasizing how fast & easy it is to throw together a low carb meal in minutes, there are times when even I can’t stand the thought of choking down another bite of tuna, or I think I might turn into a cat if I have to pull back the lid on yet another can of sardines.
On these rare occasions, it’s great to have an alternative. A real alternative. A hot meal, high in fat, moderate in protein, low in carbs, made with grass-fed and pastured meats, organic vegetables, and no junky vegetable oils.
This is a tall order, but the people at Ketoned Bodies are doing it!
I’d like to introduce you to Ketoned Bodies, a meal delivery service that truly lives up to its promise of providing customers with high quality, keto-friendly foods that are delicious, a cinch to reheat, and, oh, did I mention they’re delicious? If you happen to live within 15 miles of New York City, delivery is free, and if you’re not in NYC, they ship the meals frozen, nationwide. (Apologies to my overseas readers.)
Because of everything I’ve mentioned so far, I was hesitant to try Ketoned Bodies. I really, truly believe we shouldn’t need this kind of service, but I proved myself wrong over the past several weeks. I work from home and have no children. To say my schedule is “flexible” is an understatement, and to say I’m pressed for time would be a joke. Yet even so, I did find myself in a bind a few times, where I had a choice between yet another can of salmon and julienned raw green pepper for dinner, or heating up one the samples I received.
Well, let me tell you: on those days, I was glad these meals were in my freezer, because I was hungry, and the food was outstanding.
Brian Charles, the founder of Ketoned Bodies, started the company because his mother has Parkinson’s disease, and he was learning that a ketogenic diet might be beneficial for PD. Here’s what he told me about his company:
“As far as the meals go, we only use 100% grass-fed beef and 100% pastured pork and poultry. All of the vegetables are organic and we avoid all grains, soy, added sugars, and canola oil like the plague. We also only cook on stainless cookware. I consider every ingredient and every cooking method and ask if it is something I would be comfortable with serving to my mother.”
Brian means business, folks. (He’s working on a master’s in nutrition, so we’ll soon have another keto-friendly nutritionist out there in the world!)
Ketoned Bodies has a wide variety of meals to choose from, whether you prefer red meat, pork, poultry, or seafood, and whether you need options that are a bit heavier or lighter on the protein. You can see the options here, and there are a few others that are slightly more pricey because of the ingredients (such as ribeye and flat iron steaks, and wild-caught salmon).
All I can say is, I tried 7 of their entrees, and every single one was dynamite. There were zero disappointments. Some of the meals are larger than others, so you’d have to let your appetite guide which one you reach for. I found myself just a tad hungry after one or two of them, but the ribeye and pork chop were so large and satisfying that I actually had to stop eating and put them in the fridge to finish up later on. (If you’re a large-ish man, though, these are probably perfect for you. And if you’re a medium-sized female, you get a big meal plus a snack out of them!)
I can only vouch for the particular entrees I tried, but being that there were 7 of them, and all of them were on point, I have to assume all the others are equally delicious. All the meals are pre-cooked, and shipped to you frozen, packed with dry ice. I’ve seen the packaging other companies use for similar products, and to be frank, I’m usually horrified by the amount of waste. I was pleasantly surprised by Ketoned Bodies. Yes, it came in a cardboard box, and yes, the meals were packed in an insulated foam box inside the cardboard box, but if you live in an area that has recycling, the cardboard is no problem. (Or, if you have cats, you’ve got yourself a free hideout for them to use, instead of spending a zillion dollars on toys they don’t play with anyway.) And the foam box is very sturdy. Definitely reusable as a cooler for drinks when summer comes or if you do any tailgating. Bottom line: when it comes to packaging for stuff like this, Ketoned Bodies seems fairly minimal, which is nice. Packed well enough to ensure the safety of your food, but without so much extra fluff you feel guilty just looking at it.
So the meals come to you frozen, and they can be reheated directly from the freezer. Each one comes in a plastic tray that is both microwave and oven safe. If you’re skittish about heating food in plastic, simply transfer it from the plastic and put it into whatever cooking vessel you’re more comfortable with. I tried both methods—microwave and regular oven—and I preferred oven. The microwave worked just fine, but the heating was a little uneven. I suspect this is a semi-unavoidable artifact of how microwaves work, and has nothing to do with the meals, themselves. It’s just a fact that when you heat things in a microwave—especially from frozen—some areas will be scorching hot, while others are still a bit frosty. The oven, on the other hand, was perfect every time. I was a bit worried about putting a plastic tray into the oven, because there are some plastics that are microwave safe, but which would melt in a regular oven. The first time I popped one of these into the oven, I nested it in a glass baking dish just in case. But everything turned out fine, no melting, no mess, just amazing, nourishing, satisfying, tasty, fatty, proteiny, very low carb food.
I know I’ve said it a hundred times already, but I honestly cannot emphasize how good these meals were. They’ve got everything you might be looking for: properly raised animal proteins, good quality animal fats and the safer plant oils, and low carb vegetables prepared the way most of us like them: brussels sprouts with bacon, cauliflower mash, zucchini noodles, buttery mushrooms. Everything I tried was dynamite. None of the meat was dried out or overcooked. The ribeye was pretty much to die for. I don’t know how they figured out how to cook it once, have someone reheat it at home, and ensure that it would taste as good as anything you’d order in a fine restaurant, but they did.
That’s what I can assure you, friends: every meal I tried from Ketoned Bodies was as good as anything you might get at a restaurant, except you know it’s keto-friendly. No hidden sugars or starches in the sauces or stealth breading. Everything was seasoned to perfection, whether it was the bacon brussels sprouts with the ribeye, or the buttery mushrooms and capers with the chicken scallopine. I might have added a little bit of extra salt to the pork chop & zucchini, but other than that, everything had just the right amount of salt, pepper, acidity, and spice. (At least, the right amount for me.)
I was 100% satisfied with the food from Ketoned Bodies, and I recommend this company if you’re looking to keep a few trustworthy keto meals socked away in your freezer for those nights when you could pop open your fifth can of tuna for the week, but a lamb curry shepherd’s pie, Chinese chicken with cauliflower rice, or shrimp scampi with zucchini pasta sounds
just a little WAY MORE appealing.
So, yes, I prefer for people to make their own food as often as possible. But when “life happens,” as it inevitably does, Ketoned Bodies is the way to go. I stand by their quality, their mission, and their damn tasty food.
Note: I do have an affiliate account with Ketoned Bodies. If you order from them using the links in this post, I will receive a small portion of the sale. I mentioned in this post that if I was going to add a few more affiliate links, I would only support products I use and respect, myself, and this is one of them. Big time.
Disclaimer: Amy Berger, MS, CNS, NTP, is not a physician and Tuit Nutrition, LLC, is not a medical practice. The information contained on this site is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any medical condition and is not to be used as a substitute for the care and guidance of a physician. Links in this post and all others may direct you to amazon.com, where I will receive a small amount of the purchase price of any items you buy through my affiliate links.