Whether you’re cooking up a hearty, grass-fed steak or patiently awaiting a batch of fall-off-the-bone ribs in your Instant Pot, your summer cookout won’t be complete without some delicious keto BBQ sides.
While traditional accompaniments like pasta salad and cornbread contain too many carbohydrates for ketogenic diet followers, there are low-carb alternatives that don’t skimp on flavor.
So, if you’re searching for side dish recipes to round out your BBQ party menu, we’ve got you covered with 16 terrific (and tasty!) options you need to try before the temperatures start to drop!
1. Cobb Salad Skewers
Switch things up by serving this keto-friendly salad on a stick. While salad skewers may seem a bit unorthodox, they’re an excellent way to incorporate veggies, protein and quality fats into your meal plan.
Pro tip: Access even more keto fuel by finishing these salad kabobs with a Bulletproof Brain Octane C8 MCT Oil and balsamic drizzle to keep them low-carb diet-friendly.†
2. Southern-Style Collard Greens
One of the most traditional barbecue sides around, collard greens can be prepared in a number of different ways. This southern-style recipe provides the same signature layers of flavor and that unmistakable melt-in-your-mouth texture in just 25 minutes.
Once those greens are good and ready, don’t forget to top them with crispy bits of perfectly browned bacon for added flavor and texture!
3. Keto Buffalo Chicken Casserole
When it comes to keto barbeque sides, it’s hard not to get excited about a buffalo chicken casserole that can essentially double as a main dish, too.
Spicy, savory and surprisingly simple to make, this low-carb recipe separates itself from the rest of the pack with the addition of Bulletproof Unflavored Collagen Protein, which supports healthy skin, bones and joints without affecting the taste of the final product.† Amp things up with sliced jalapenos and some keto-friendly hot sauce for added heat!
4. Keto Potato Salad
The best keto recipes swap out high-carb ingredients for low-carb alternatives without sacrificing flavor or texture. Instead of relying on spuds, this faux potato salad recipe uses roasted radishes to achieve a familiar mouthfeel.
Pro tip: Not a fan of radishes? You can concoct a cauliflower potato salad just as easily that still counts as a low-carb barbecue side dish.
5. Summer Salad Rolls
Grandma’s broccoli salad can sit this one out. Instead, opt for something more sophisticated and visually impressive. These nifty summer salad rolls feature plenty of fresh veggies, and they taste even better when dunked into a delectable dipping sauce that’s made with Bulletproof MCT Oil and sriracha chili sauce.
If you’re looking for lighter keto sides for BBQ parties, you’ll definitely want to add this fresh, crunchy recipe to your menu.
6. Gluten-Free Mac and Cheese
Traditional mac and cheese recipes may not align with the keto diet, but this gluten-free version most certainly does. Easy to make and even easier to eat, you also have the flexibility to take this low-carb side dish in a few different directions.
This mac and cheese is low in net carbs thanks to shirataki macaroni, but you can also sub cauliflower florets if you prefer. Trying to keep things dairy-free? Just don’t add any cheese. Surprisingly, the pumpkin and cashew-based sauce is so creamy that friends and family at your summer BBQ won’t miss it one bit.
7. No-Bean Keto Chili
Whether you serve it as an appetizer or as a side dish to your featured protein, this beanless keto chili will surely go over well with your guests. With quality fats from grass-fed beef (or lamb) and Bulletproof Grass-Fed Ghee, it fits perfectly into any keto meal plan.
If you’re worried about your chili being too watery, we’ve got you covered. A tablespoon or two of Bulletproof Collagelatin will bring everything together, just like a BBQ unites family and friends.
8. Crispy Keto Cauliflower Tots
Say goodbye to French fries and hello to the goodness supplied by these low-carb wannabe spuds. These crispy cauliflower tots are one of those keto BBQ sides that’s bound to become a weekly meal plan staple.
By the time you pull your tots out of the frying pan, you’ll have a line of hungry guests waiting to dunk them into some seasoned sour cream (if dairy suits your posse) or whatever homemade condiments you love most!
9. Bacon-Avocado Caesar Deviled Eggs
A keto side dish that hits all the marks in terms of flavor, presentation and texture, these deviled eggs not only taste divine, but they’re also incredibly macro-friendly. With plenty of quality fats from eggs, bacon and avocado, don’t be shocked if they disappear from the table almost as soon as you put them down.
10. Chopped Salad With Herb-Infused MCT Oil Dressing
Not all BBQ side dishes require an oven or stovetop to prepare. Show off your knife skills with this chopped salad recipe that’s colorful, crunchy and low in carbohydrates. An herb-infused dressing made with MCT oil and avocado adds a zesty, creamy finish.
11. Chilled Prosciutto-Wrapped Asparagus
Transport your guests across the world with a prosciutto-wrapped asparagus side dish that’ll take their taste buds on a tour of Italy. A thin, salty piece of prosciutto wrapped around a steamed sprig of cooled asparagus provides a beautiful balance of flavors.
Plus, this will become one of your favorite keto recipes since it only takes 20 minutes to make. That means you’ll have more time to mingle with your guests and work through devouring all the other keto barbeque sides on your plate.
12. Stone-Smashed Guacamole With Radish and Jicama
Your idea of grilling season may not include tacos, but you should still give this guacamole recipe a try. Made with avocado, chopped cilantro, lime and a few spices, this easy-to-make guac pairs perfectly with jicama sticks and sliced radishes (both of which are far better choices for keto dieters than standard tortilla chips).
13. Mashed Turnips
An approved member of the Bulletproof Diet, turnips are a terrific low-carb alternative to potatoes. If you’re looking for keto sides for BBQs that don’t require many ingredients, this recipe for mashed turnips literally takes just three to complete.
14. Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad With Lemon-Thyme Vinaigrette
Want to take your keto salad game to the next level? Your BBQ guests will undoubtedly be impressed by this classy Brussel sprouts salad that’s finished with a zippy vinaigrette made with two types of mustard, lemon juice and thyme.
With 14 grams of fat and only 6 grams of net carbs per serving, this definitely falls into the keto-friendly BBQ side dish category.
15. Quick Pickled Vegetables
Caught in a bit of a time crunch? These quick pickled veggies can be prepared in about 10 minutes using a two-ingredient brining solution.
While the flavor will most certainly improve with time, you can still serve your guests something that’s lip-smackingly good in a matter of minutes.
16. Low-Carb Dumpling Cabbage Wraps
Keto-friendly recipes like these low-carb dumpling cabbage wraps are great for BBQs because they’re a breeze to throw together and there’s plenty of wiggle room to adjust the ingredients.
Don’t have meatballs on hand? Use shredded chicken or another protein source. Have extra veggies in your fridge? Chop them up for added crunch and micronutrients in this super-simple BBQ side dish.
Tips for hosting a keto-friendly BBQ
Serving delicious food is obviously a must at any gathering of family and friends. Aside from making sure everything you serve tastes great, here are some other tips for hosting a keto-friendly BBQ:
- Avoiding sugar in your rubs: Dry rubs can transform an ordinary piece of protein into something extraordinary. However, many store-bought rubs contain sugar, which certainly doesn’t align with the keto diet. If you’re making a homemade version, feel free to add spices like salt, pepper, garlic powder and cumin (for added smokiness). Additionally, try these alternative sweeteners to keep things keto-friendly.
- Choose quality protein sources: When selecting protein sources for your backyard BBQ, make sure to pick ones that are of the highest quality. For example, grass-fed beef is superior to grain-fed since it contains a healthier balance of fatty acids. Although it might be more expensive to go with higher-quality protein sources, the increased nutritional value and superior taste should convince you to splurge when you can!
- Offer sugar-free beverage options: Instead of stocking your coolers with soda, juice and other sugary drinks found at a typical BBQ, make sure you have sugar-free beverage options available. From homemade sugar-free lemonade to a refreshing ginger-mint green tea cooler to seltzer water served with lemon and lime wedges, help everyone wash down their meal with keto-friendly drinks. If you’re mingling with coffee lovers, add a few cans of Bulletproof Cold Brew, too!
- Host activities so people are moving around: Food may be the focus of a BBQ, but that doesn’t mean everyone has to sit down and eat the entire time. Try hosting different activities that promote movement and social interaction. Whether that means putting on a mini cornhole tournament, breaking out a rope for a tug-of-war battle or playing a friendly game of kickball, everyone can benefit from having a few activities to participate in that don’t involve a fork and a plate.
The bottom line: From low-carb versions of comfort food classics to unique Bulletproof-backed recipes, there’s no shortage of keto BBQ sides you can serve at your next cookout. Give your guests the gift of quality fats by putting a few of these delicious, nutrient-dense side dish options on the picnic table. Just don’t be surprised when your friends and family ask for your culinary secrets on their way back to the car!
Looking to spike your keto BBQ with adult-friendly beverages? Help your guests quench their thirst with these guilt-free, low-carb cocktails.
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