Best Keto Restaurants
Noodles & Company/Facebook

18 Best Chain Restaurants for Keto and Other Low-Carb Diets

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Best Keto Restaurants
Noodles & Company/Facebook

Keto Go-To

Switching to a low-carb diet can be tough. Most people don't realize just how many carbs they're ingesting (or the effect it's having on their digestive health and weight) until they start to look into the keto diet, or something like it. And, to be sure, low-carb eating isn't for everyone, and everyone should check with a doctor before any big dietary changes. That said, an increasing number of restaurants are tailoring menus to low-carb eating. From fast food and fast casual to family restaurants, here are options if you're planning to eat keto anytime soon, with some specific menu item suggestions that are low-carb friendly.

Related: Tips and Hacks to Eat Low-Carb at Any Restaurant

Chipotle Keto Salad Bowl
Chipotle

Chipotle

With the ability to leave out the tortilla, rice, and beans (and super-fast ordering and delivery options), Chipotle is a go-to eatery for anyone on a low-carb diet who wants to dine out or order in. The chain has started making low-carb ordering even easier by offering "Lifestyle Bowls" to those on certain diets, including keto.
What to order: The keto Salad Bowl, or you can customize any burrito bowl, starting with your choice of protein. Just ditch the carb-heavy rice and beans, and if your protein or fat intake is low for the day, add extra cheese, sour cream, or guac. 

Related: The Best Mexican Restaurant in Every State

Qdoba Keto Bowl
QDOBA Downtown BG/Facebook

Qdoba

Everything that can be said for Chipotle is pretty much true of Qdoba, although the latter has far fewer locations. If you're lucky enough to have both in your area, it's pretty much a matter of preference.
What to order: Qdoba gets a little more creative by offering a smoked brisket keto bowl, which includes shredded lettuce, pico de gallo, salsa verde, cheese, and guacamole. Customizable burrito bowls are also available.

Related: 23 Traditional Hispanic Foods Most Americans Don't Know About (but Should)

IHOP Southwest Scramble
Fateha A./Yelp

IHOP

There's a reason breakfast is so many low-carb dieters' favorite meal. Eggs, bacon, cheese, even a bloody mary can be prepared without going crazy on the carbs. So any restaurant that serves all-day breakfast is going to be a go-to for keto eaters.
What to order:  The Southwest Scramble has a relatively low 12 carbs, or go for a simpler egg and protein options such as the Big 3-Egg Breakfast or Sirloin Tip and Eggs. You could also build your own omelet with cheese and protein, throwing in veggies for fiber and some avocado for added fat. Just remember to skip the hash browns (sob!), pancakes, and toast.

Related: Where to Find a Good, Cheap Breakfast in Every State

Outback Steakhouse Ribeye
Outback Steakhouse/Facebook

Outback Steakhouse

Steak, without any sauces or other dry rubs that could contain sugar, are zero carbs, so pretty much any steakhouse is going to work for the keto diet. Not every steakhouse has low-carb sides, though, so check ahead. Outback, however, does, as well as low-carb salads.
What to order: Choose the chargrilled ribeye and have it served with — you guessed it — green beans, asparagus, a Caesar salad, or steamed broccoli. Feel like more fiber? Order the Aussie Cobb Salad or Brisbane Caesar Salad.

Related: Where To Find Great Cheap Steak in Every State

Subway Chicken Bacon Ranch Salad
Terry D./Yelp

Subway

Everyone thinks of this as the place to grab a quick sub, but it has a pretty extensive chopped salad menu, too, many of which are low-carb — in total, 11 salads that are 15 carbs or fewer. Avoid the Meatball Marinara or Sweet Onion Teriyaki, which top out at 25 and 32 carbs, respectively, and when in doubt check out the chain's nutrition grids.
What to order: The Chicken & Bacon Ranch salad has equal parts fat and protein (32 grams each), a reasonable 15 grams of carbs.

Shrimp Scampi
LauriPatterson/istockphoto

Red Lobster

Listen, if you never met a Cheddar Bay Biscuit you didn't want to introduce to your face, it's probably best you stay away from Red Lobster, which has more than its fair share of carb-heavy offerings. But if you can stick with unbreaded seafood while declining the two pillowy biscuits that come with every entree (and equal 32 carbs), you should be fine.
What to order: The Garlic Shrimp Scampi has just 4 carbs, and wood-grilled sirloin just 2. The Salmon New Orleans is also a safe order, as are the wild-caught snow crab legs. Pair any of these with sides such as a Caesar salad, asparagus, broccoli, or tomato-mozzarella caprese.

Related: Eat These Gut-Busting Appetizers at Your Own Risk

Baked Chicken Wings
bhofack2/istockphoto

Buffalo Wild Wings

Although wings are always a popular menu item with low-carb dieters, not just any wing works. Stay away from breaded ones, and those tossed with high-sugar sauces. Luckily, BWW offers tons of options.
What to order: Traditional bone-in wings with a buffalo sauce or seasoning, spicy garlic sauce, salt and vinegar dry rub, or other low-sugar sauce or rub. If wings sound too messy, opt for the naked tenders or a chicken Caesar salad. Hold the croutons.

Related: The Best Chicken Wings Spot in Every State

Wedgie Burger
Red Robin

Red Robin

A menu laden with burgers, fries, and onion rings might not be the first to spring to mind for a keto eater, but this one offers "Healthy Hacks"that allow orders of a burger with half a bun, no bun, or wrapped in lettuce, sauce on the side, and subbing in a salad or steamed broccoli for those other carby sides. Regional burger chains such as Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar also offer a lot of low-carb customization.
What to order: The Wedgie Burger is already keto-friendly without having to sub anything in, and it comes with a bottomless side salad. Or order the Avo-Cobb-O salad — protein- and fat-appropriate with eggs, bacon, grilled chicken, blue cheese crumbles, avocado, and more (maybe just eat around the croutons, or ask to leave them out).

Jersey Mike's Sub in a Tub
Jersey Mike's/Facebook

Jersey Mike's

This sub store has more than 1,500 locations and counting and has been named one of "The 15 Most Keto-Friendly Restaurants In America" by Delish. Why? Because it lets you order a "sub in a tub," which is just a more fun way to say "hold the bread."
What to order: The Chicken Philly Cheese Steak Sub in a Tub has just 16 carbs. If you're craving breakfast, order the omelet with ham and bacon for just 3 carbs.

Jimmy John's Unwich
Jimmy John's/Facebook

Jimmy John's

Unwich, anyone? Another sub shop that's jumped on the keto bandwagon, JJ's lets customers order many of its sandwiches as lettuce wraps (then wrapped in paper, which can be useful for less-messy chowing down). Jimmy John's website notes that any sandwich ordered as an Unwich comes down to fewer than 10 grams of carbohydrates.
What to order: Why not go with an "unwiched" Vito? It has, after all, topped a "power-ranking" of the chain's best menu offerings.

Related: Where to Find a Good, Cheap Sandwich in Every State

Kentucky Fried Chicken Grilled Chicken
KFC

Kentucky Fried Chicken

One look at KFC's nutrition guide will tell you that carbs add up fast here, especially if you plan on eating more than one piece of original recipe or extra crispy — each with between 3 and 18 carbs. But opt for non-battered chicken and a healthier side and you've got yourself a fine keto meal.
What to order: A piece or two of Kentucky grilled bird, the green beans, and a side Caesar or house salad (choose your dressing wisely) clocks in at fewer than 10 carbs.

Cauliflower Crust Pizza
Fascinadora/istockphoto

Blaze Pizza

Competing pizza chains Blaze and MOD offer cauliflower crusts. If we're reading their nutrition tables correctly, however, MOD's crust clocks in at a less than keto-friendly 87 carbs, while Blaze's is 15. In September, participating Blaze locations also rolled out what it called a "Life Mode Pizza" featuring keto crust, spicy red sauce, shredded mozzarella, ovalini (another mozzarella), bacon, cherry tomatoes, mushrooms, and spinach. Sorry, MOD: Some folkslike you better, but for us keto peeps, Blaze wins this one. We'll save MOD for cheat day.
What to order: The keto or Green Stripe pizzas made with the keto crust (if available; otherwise go for cauliflower crust). Slices have 4 carbs.

California Pizza Kitchen
California Pizza Kitchen/Facebook

California Pizza Kitchen

Like other pizza chains around the country, CPK heard the calls of keto dieters and added cauliflower crust to its menu in 2018, along with a creative marketing campaign to promote it.
What to order: Any of the five offerings on the certified gluten-free pizza crust menu, all made with a cauliflower crust — but keep in mind that the barbecue chicken pizza will have carbs in the sauce. Some other pizzas on the menu can also be ordered with cauli-crust substituted. Not in a pie mood? CPK has a Cobb salad, always a great choice for a low-carb eater.

Derby Cobb Salad
BJ's Restaurant & Brewhouse

BJ's

This chain goes by a different name, depending on location (it's in 27 states), but like other big-name chain restaurants with extensive menus, it has plenty to offer those shying away from carbs.
What to order: For appetizers, start with the Spinach-Stuffed Mushrooms or a Twisted BLT Salad. For an entree, you're safe with a Derby Cobb Salad, bunless burger (just be careful of toppings), BJ's Classic Rib-Eye, or Blackened Chicken or Salmon. As always — sigh, we know it gets old — stick with low-carb sides such as asparagus, broccoli, or garlic green beans.

Shrimp Zoodle Bowl
Yard House

Yard House

Another regional chain, Yard House shows up on many keto dieters' lists of go-to dining out favorites, mostly due to its large and varied menu and willingness to sub out bread in burgers and other offerings.
What to order: The Ahi Sashimi or Spicy Tuna Roll makes a great low-carb app, and you can follow that with the Shrimp Zoodle Bowl, any of the daily fish offerings, or order a burger or sandwich with either no bread or a lettuce wrap.

Modern Market
Modern Market/Facebook

Modern Market

With around 30 locations, this chain isn't huge, but if you happen to have one nearby, it has some decent low-carb offerings, including soups, salads, and hard-carved plates.
What to order: Four of the chain's five hard-carved plates clock in at 25 carbs or less. That gives you a choice of pulled pork, chicken, steak, and salmon. Depending on location, you can likely sub out your sides for even lower carb totals.

Dickey's BBQ Plate
Dickey's Barbecue

Dickey's Barbecue

This chain — the largest barbecue franchise in the U.S. — has the usual carb-laden options, especially when it comes to sides, but you can get around that. Check out the nutrition info and plan your order ahead so you're not tempted by carbier options, especially if you're new to keto.
What to order: Stick with the plates (less bread) and choose meats that don't have sauces or serve them on the side. The turkey, polish sausage, pulled pork, and beef brisket are the lowest-carb options; for sides, stick with creamed spinach, green beans, or a Caesar salad.

Noodles & Company
Noodles & Company

Noodles & Company

A chain with a noodle-heavy menu doesn't seem like a good option for low-carb eaters, but Noodles offers dishes with zoodles (zucchini noodles) and caulifloodles (which we're sure you can figure that one out on your own), and you can always ask to sub in zoodles in your favorite entree. The chain's nutrition info page lets you use sliders to rule out dishes with too many carbs, choose "keto-friendly" as an option, and offers other ways to customize.
What to order: The Zucchini Pesto with Grilled Chicken is one of the lowest-carb options on the menu, but if you want to splurge just a little, for 6 more carbs you can get the Zucchini Truffle Mac.

Related: 13 Ways to Make the Most of a Zucchini Surplus