When beginning your ketogenic journey, there are some foods that you are going to need to eliminate from your diet. Among them are some of what you may consider to be some of your favorite desserts and snacks. These desserts include things like cakes, cookies, and pies. But what if you’re a chocolate lover?
Some varieties of chocolate are permissible on keto, with the most common being dark chocolate. However, it’s important to always check our labels and know how to determine net carbs to ensure your chocolate is keto-friendly.
In this article, we’ll talk about the different kinds of chocolate you can have on keto and what types you’ll want to stay away from.
Can I Eat Dark Chocolate On A Keto Diet?
You may be surprised to know that dark chocolate is actually keto-friendly and fits nicely into a ketogenic diet. The most significant difference between the milk chocolate you’re accustomed to and dark chocolate is that the dark version contains significantly less sugar.
Many people wonder how milk chocolate has so much more sugar than its dark counterpart, and the answer is simple: dark chocolate has a higher concentration of cocoa. If you’ve never eaten dark chocolate before, one of the first things you’ll notice is that it has a bitter flavor in comparison. It’s one of those foods that will taste better over time as you have to get used to the different flavors after consuming the sugar-filled version for so long.
Milk chocolate, on average, contains around 30% cocoa solids, according to The School of Public Health at Harvard. On the other hand, dark chocolate contains anywhere from 50 to 90 percent cocoa solids. The higher the percentage of cocoa solids, the lower the amount of sugar the chocolate contains. Additionally, the greater the percentage of cocoa solids, the more flavanols it contains. Flavanols are essential because it provides benefits contributing to a healthy heart.
As long as you’re consuming it in moderation, dark chocolate is an excellent snack for keto.
How Much Dark Chocolate Can I Have On Keto?
Now that you know that you can fit delicious dark chocolate into your ketogenic diet, you’re probably wondering how much of it you can have. I get it. Once you start eating chocolate, it’s tough to stop. As I stated earlier, if you want to enjoy this treat, you’re going to have to do so in moderation.
If you are following the standard keto diet, you’re going to want to keep the number of carbohydrates you consume to about 5% of your overall calories, according to the National Library of Medicine.
To give you an example, if you’re calorie goal for the day is 2,000 calories, which is pretty standard for Americans, you will be aiming to consume 25g net carbs per day or less. Food Data Central, a service of the United States Department of Agriculture, shows that an ounce of dark chocolate that contains 70 to 85 percent cocoa solids contains 13 grams of carbs. The chocolate also includes about 3 grams of fiber, making the one-ounce serving ten net carbs.
As you can see, ten net carbs can be a significant amount of your daily carbs, so you may have to get creative to fit it into your diet. Try to eat foods with small amounts of carbs if you plan to treat yourself with dark chocolate. This will allow you to enjoy your snack without going over your carbs, ensuring you keep your body in ketosis.
One thing to keep in mind when choosing dark chocolate to buy is that you only want to choose those with a minimum of 70% cocoa. This is important because the lower this percentage, the more sugar will be used to make it, leading to a much higher carbohydrate count. In addition, you should always be checking your labels, even if you’re familiar with the brand, because recipes and formulas change regularly with no notice.
When it comes to how much dark chocolate you can have on keto, it’s going to be all about portion control.
Why Is Dark Chocolate So Popular For Keto?
When you ask someone following a ketogenic diet what they go to when they want a sweet snack, dark chocolate will be a likely answer. There are several reasons that dark chocolate is so popular for keto dieters, and most of them have nothing to do with taste.
- Dark chocolate is rich, which makes it more difficult to overindulge.
- The flavonals found in dark chocolate are great for limiting your risk of stroke and heart disease.
- It is full of healthy fats, which provides even more benefit to your heart.
- Dark chocolate is packed full of important nutrients, such as antioxidants that help your body fight off disease.
- It can be used in delicious recipes that call for chocolate.
Can I Have Sugar-Free Chocolate On Keto?
Even though dark chocolate is one of the best options for keto, some people just can’t get used to the taste. There’s nothing wrong with that. It takes some people longer than others to be accustomed to the bitterness to the point where it begins to taste good. If you find yourself in this situation, you may want to look into sugar-free chocolate instead.
A ketogenic diet is all about getting your body into a state of ketosis. Consuming sugar will cause your glucose and insulin levels to rise, which could completely throw you out of ketosis, depending on how much you consume. If you don’t have much self-control, it might be best to avoid the sugar altogether.
Sugar-free chocolate typically tastes more like milk chocolate, which I know many of you will be happy to hear. Instead of sugar, you’ll want to check the label for approved artificial sweeteners. Erythritol is my personal favorite because it doesn’t give me an aftertaste and has more of a natural sugar flavor. You can also choose brands made with monk fruit sweetener or stevia.
You will find some artificial sweeteners used that are higher in carbs, but since they’re not real sugar, the product can still be advertised as sugar-free. Artificial sweeteners that are not keto-friendly include date syrup, maltitol, coconut sugar, and maple syrup.
Can I Use Chocolate For Baking On Keto?
If you’re whipping up a keto recipe that calls for chocolate, you should search out unsweetened chocolate, which is made entirely of cocoa. You can use artificial sweeteners for taste, but an ounce of 100% cocoa only contains about 3 carbs.
The Best Chocolate Brands For Keto
Now that you know it’s possible to fit some chocolate into your ketogenic diet, it’s time to explore some of the best keto-friendly products on the market. It’s important to note that not all chocolate brands are created equal, so choosing from this list is vital.
Lilly’s Dark Chocolate
It doesn’t get much better than Lilly’s when it comes to keto-friendly chocolate bars. These bars use erythritol and stevia for sweeteners, which are a lot more gentle on your stomach than other brands. The number of carbohydrates vary depending on what variety you choose, but about 4g per serving seems to be about the average.
The most popular flavors include Original Dark Chocolate, Hazelnut, Extra Dark Salted Caramel, and Salted Almond.
Lindt Dark Chocolate
Lindt is another brand that gives you a large variety of flavors to choose from. One of my favorite things about Lindt is that it is smooth and not very bitter at all. It also melts in your mouth like a traditional chocolate bar full of sugar.
Green & Black’s Organic Dark Chocolate
This brand is organic and ethically sourced. One of the draws of this chocolate bar is that it only contains a handful of ingredients and comes in at 7g of carbs per serving.
Keto Indulge Chocolate Candy
When you want something a little sweeter and more decadent than a standard chocolate bar, Keto Indulge has you covered. The company combines premium nut butters with their naturally sweetened dark chocolate to give you a high-quality keto treat. The candy is available in both hazelnut and mocha flavors.
Our Choice For Best Keto Chocolate: ChocZero
To me, the ultimate sign of a great keto snack is that it doesn’t taste like a keto snack. That’s where ChocZero comes in. I have yet to try a single ChocZero product that I wouldn’t eat if I weren’t on keto. I’ve given my kids and family members pieces of my ChocZero, and they had no clue that it was keto-friendly.
ChocZero makes many delicious products, but the ones below are my personal favorites. Just click on each image to get more information.
As you can see, ChocZero has quite the variety of chocolate available. This is just a tiny sample of what they have, but these are my favorites.
Keto doesn’t have to mean the end of your love for chocolate. As long as you’re smart and check the labels, you can indulge while still keeping yourself on track!
Can I Include Gluten-Free Pasta In My Keto Diet? You can’t eat gluten-free pasta on keto, since keto means low-carb. Most gluten-free pasta is not allowed because gluten-free isn’t necessarily carb-free. However, someone who is following keto is safe to eat certain gluten-free pasta alternatives.
Will Ice Cream Kick My Body Out Of Ketosis? The carbohydrates from the sugar in standard ice cream will kick your body out of ketosis. Instead, look for keto-friendly ice creams or other frozen alternatives.
Can I Still Put Sugar In My Coffee During Keto? You can’t use sugar to sweeten your coffee while following a ketogenic diet. Instead, you’ll want to look at other options to sweeten your coffee.