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Many foods taste better when topped with a little something extra. For some people, steak is one of them. Some prefer a buttery sauce, while others want a sweet or savory flavor.
Devouring a seared steak fresh off the grill can be very satisfying, but not all sauces can be paired with your steak when you’re on the keto diet!
A1 Sauce is one of the most popular steak sauces used to season steak or other grilled meats.
But is A1 Steak Sauce keto-friendly?
We share with you the impact of this sauce when you are in ketosis and some of the best keto alternatives to A1 Steak Sauce.
We also have two easy steak sauce recipes you can try at home!
What is A1 Steak Sauce?
A1 Original Sauce is a brown sauce product of Brand & Co in the United Kingdom and Kraft Heinz in North America.
It was created by Henderson William Brand, a chef to King George IV, in 1824. It went into commercial production in 1831 as a condiment for fish, meat, and fowl.
This zesty steak sauce has become a favorite of steak eaters in homes and restaurants.
In the USA, two new flavors of A1 were introduced in the 80s but were discontinued. Then, in 2000, A1 marinades were released in stores.
A1 Steak Sauce is a salty and tangy sauce with a hint of peppery taste that’s just like Worcestershire sauce. What makes A1 distinct is its tomato puree, which is the base ingredient.
It’s also not vinegary like Worcestershire sauce.
The smooth brownish-red sauce adds a salty flavor and a little “zing” that perfectly complements beef.
Aside from using it on steak, you can also put A1 sauce on other meats and vegetables.
A1 Steak Sauce has a rich caramel color which is just artificial food coloring to make the appearance less red and more brown.
A1 Steak Sauce Ingredients and Nutrition
The ingredients in A1 Steak Sauce include:
- tomato paste
- distilled vinegar
- corn syrup
- crushed orange puree
- raisin paste
- dried garlic
- potassium sorbate
- xanthan gum
- caramel coloring.
A1 Sauce is completely gluten-free. This is a common concern among people with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity.
Here is the nutritional information regarding 1tbsp of A1:
- 15 calories
- 0g fat
- 280 mg sodium
- 3g carbs
- 2g sugar
- 0g protein.
As you can see, this steak sauce doesn’t have much to offer. But that’s okay, considering that it’s simply a condiment for your main dish.
It is low in calories, with only 15 calories for a 1tbs serving.
A1 steak sauce is relatively high in carbs, although you may be able to fit one or two tablespoons into your diet occasionally.
Side Effects of A1 Steak Sauce
As mentioned, A1 Steak Sauce is low in nutrients. It has very few health benefits and some side effects.
High in Sodium
Although A1 Steak Sauce is low in calories and carbs, it has 280mg of sodium per serve, which is 12% of the maximum recommended daily value. That’s a lot for just a condiment.
Sodium is a mineral essential for muscle and nerve function that helps your body maintain proper water and mineral balance.
However, too much sodium intake can make you feel more bloated and puffier as your kidneys try to maintain balance in the body by holding on to water.
A review of more than 268,000 participants revealed that those with median salt intakes of 3g per day have a 68% higher chance of getting stomach cancer.
Artificial Coloring and Preservatives
A1 Steak Sauce has a reddish-brown tone because of its artificial food coloring.
Caramel colors may have a lower toxicity risk than other artificial colors. There are four types of this color, yet Kraft does not state which one they are using.
It’s simply labeled “caramel color,” causing a lot of concern among people.
Aside from coloring, preservatives are also found in A1 Steak Sauce.
The long shelf life of this sauce is a result of potassium sorbate, a form of sorbic acid that is produced to avoid the growth and spread of bacteria and fungi.
Potassium sorbate is considered a safe ingredient. However, various studies show that this artificial preservative affects the human DNA, reducing immunity when combined with other components.
Some people may also be allergic to this ingredient.
Is A1 Steak Sauce Keto-Friendly?
For the original A1 steak sauce, 3g of total carbs is in each 1 tbsp serving.
If you are on keto, you need to restrict your daily carb intake to enter or stay in ketosis. Usually, this means less than 50g of net carbs per day.
Net carbs are calculated by subtracting the dietary fiber and sugar alcohols from the total number of carbs.
If you are mindful of your serving size, you can add one or two tablespoons of this sauce to your keto-friendly meals.
The problem is that 1 tbsp is often not enough to season a steak for some of us.
Another reason to avoid A1 Steak Sauce on keto is it’s relatively higher in carbs compared to other options.
In short, A1 Sauce is not off-limits or forbidden on keto. However, it has a high chance of kicking you out of ketosis if you go beyond your limit and you pair it with foods that are also high in carbs.
Keto Alternatives to A1 Steak Sauce
These A1 Steak Sauce products and recipes are not carb-free, but they are lower in carbs compared to A1.
Guy Gone Keto Steak Sauce
This condiment is also made with natural allulose. This unusual type of sugar only has 5% of the calories you find in ordinary sugar.
Their steak sauce has less than 1g of total carbs per tablespoon!
Guy Gone Keto also offers ketchup, MCT oil, BBQ sauce, chili sauce, and teriyaki with only 1-2g of net carbs.
Stevia Sweet BBQ Sauce
Another guilt-free option for your steak is Stevia Sweet BBQ Sauce. It’s perfect for people who like their steak with a little sweet and sour.
Both original and spicy variants of this stevia-sweetened sauce only have 2g of carbs per serving, where 1g comes from the sugar of Worcestershire sauce.
This means that Stevia Sweet BBQ Sauce does not directly include sugar in their ingredients list!
G Hughes Steak Sauce
G Hughes Steak Sauce is a better option for a keto-friendly sauce than A1. But if you don’t like barbeque sauce on steak, ditch it.
It is sugar-free as it uses sucralose as a sweetener. Sucralose on keto may not be the best compared to stevia or monk fruit, but it’s much better than sugar because of the carb content.
G Hughes Steak Sauce only has 1g of carb per tablespoon of serving, so it won’t kick you out of ketosis.
Keto Primo Oh So Sweet Super BBQ Sauce
Another sauce made specifically for the keto diet is Keto Primo’s Oh So Sweet Super BBQ Sauce. Its ingredients are pure and low-carb.
What makes it sweet is monk fruit, a sweetener with a low glycemic index. Other keto-friendly ingredients include apple cider vinegar, pink Himalayan salt, and butter.
This sauce only has 2g of net carbs per serving. It’s all natural without preservatives or artificial sweeteners.
Many people also swear by its taste. If you’re watching your sugar intake, this BBQ sauce is the best option for your steak and ribs.
Primal Kitchen Steak Sauce
The Primal Kitchen Steak Sauce is gluten-free and high-quality. It’s made with real-food ingredients and is certified organic.
Primal Kitchen dedicates itself to the use of quality ingredients and healthy fats such as avocado and olive oil. However, this steak sauce is fat-free and gain-free.
It also contains no added sugar with only 1g of total carb per serving. Primal Kitchen also manufactures other condiments, like dressings, marinades, vinaigrette, pasta sauce, and more.
Guy’s Award-Winning Sugar-Free BBQ Sauce
If you like BBQ sauce on your steak, Guy’s Award-Winning Sugar-Free BBQ Sauce is worth a try. Their tagline? You don’t have to sacrifice flavor.
Guy’s BBQ Sauce is healthy compared to leading sauce products. But what makes them unique in the keto market is their fantastic taste.
Their sauce contains only 2g of carbs per serving, so you can enjoy your steak or baby back ribs without sacrificing your keto efforts.
Keto Steak Sauce Recipes
Here are two of our favorite keto steak sauce recipes which are guaranteed low-carb and tasty.
Keto Basic AF’s Keto Steak Sauce
This delicious recipe by Keto Basic AF can be used to top your yummy grilled steaks. It’s also gluten-free and made with organic ingredients.
Prepare the following:
- 2 tbsp vinegar
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp garlic
- 1 tbsp mustard
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- ½ c no added sugar ketchup
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1.5 tbsp Swerve Brown sugar.
This steak sauce only contains 1g of carb per serving, so enjoy your steak maybe with a low-carb bottle of wine!
The Novice Chef’s “Oh My” Steak Sauce
This tasty recipe by The Novice Chef is a favorite family secret recipe that you will surely love. If you want something more on the buttery side, you need to try this out!
It’s a mouth-watering blend of spices and butter which only takes some whisking.
The ingredients include:
- 8 tbsp butter, melted
- 1 small shallot, finely minced
- 5 chives, minced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2-3 tbsp horseradish (fresh)
- 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 2 tsp fresh thyme, minced
- cayenne pepper, to taste
- salt and pepper, to taste.
How to Use Steak Sauce on Keto
Aside from giving flavor to your steak, your steak sauce can be used in many other ways to spice up your keto meals.
For example, you can use it for your keto burger for that sweet, savory, and peppery taste. You can also mix it with your salad or marinate your pork with it.
Steak sauce can also be added to stir-frys and keto-friendly noodles.
FAQ Keto Diet and Sauces
Can I Use Sucralose to Sweeten my Homemade Steak Sauce?
Sucralose is a popular low-carb sweetener, but many experts believe it is not acceptable on the keto diet.
Aside from being dangerous when exposed to heat, sucralose can also affect your gut health.
The good bacteria in your gut are disrupted because sucralose hinders proper digestion and immune function.
There are a lot more reasons to avoid sucralose on a keto diet.
Try sweetening your homemade sauce with stevia instead.
Is Worcestershire Sauce a Good Alternative to A1?
Worcestershire sauce is keto-compatible in small amounts. Its carb content is similar to A1 because it contains malt vinegar, molasses, sugar, salt, anchovies, and more.
However, people rarely use this sauce as a steak dip. It’s commonly used during cooking or as a marinade instead of being slathered on your finished meal.
Find out the best keto alternatives to Worcestershire sauce.
What Can I Do to Make my Steak Tasty Without the Need for Sauce?
Not all steaks need sauce. In fact, the best types of steak can be eaten alone.
You can make your steak taste better by topping it with butter. It’s even yummier if you flavor the butter with garlic or blue cheese!
A keto diet should be high enough in good fats so that you feel satisfied after every meal.
Make sure to use the best types of fat on keto to stay healthy while in the state of ketosis.
A1 isn’t an A1 Choice on Keto!
A1 Steak Sauce isn’t the best option for those on the keto diet. Although one serving will not kick you out of ketosis, there are better choices for seasoning your steak.
And besides, you don’t need a sauce to make your steak taste better. Just get high-quality meat and season it.
However, you can always make your own keto steak sauce or choose a keto-friendly sauce product.
You can even try MCT oil with your steak! Check out our favorite MCT oil brands on the keto diet now!