This site is reader-supported and we earn commissions if you purchase products from retailers after clicking on a link from our site. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases.
It is said that ice cream was first eaten in China in 618-97AD by a king named Tang. Right now, it’s one of the cheapest and best summer treats out there. This refreshing dessert is loved by many because there is a flavor for every kind of person!
But if you’re on the keto diet, ice cream may present a dilemma. Not all of them are tailored for the diet, so it’s important to know what ice cream is keto-friendly. Read on to discover what makes ice cream keto-friendly and which ice cream products best fit the description!
What is Ketosis?
The ketogenic diet aims to force your body to use an alternative type of fuel called ketones. The body relies on ketones produced by the liver in stored fats by limiting the carbohydrate intake and forcing the body to use the stored fats.
You can learn more about how to get into ketosis here.
This metabolic process of the body is called ketosis. This state is when your body starts burning ketones instead of glycogen from carbs for fuel.
Eventually, you’ll lose weight, have more energy for endurance, and even have lower blood sugar levels.
What Makes Ice Cream Keto-Friendly?
Before we proceed, we have talked about whether or not you can have ice cream on keto diet. Now let us discuss what makes ice cream keto-friendly.
Wholesome ingredients and alternative sweeteners are what makes ice cream keto-friendly.
The keto diet limits carbohydrates to between 20 and 50 grams per day, depending on your body type, activity levels, and other factors.
Protein also gets limited to roughly 1 gram per pound of body weight, because too much protein gets converted to sugars.
Ice cream can be keto-friendly if it is made with just a few wholesome ingredients.
One example is heavy whipping cream. It is the most common ingredient in low-carb ice creams. Its health benefits are even greater than the benefits of standard heavy cream.
It can improve your brain function because grass-fed cows give the richest source of choline and omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3s are anti-inflammatory compounds that help boost brain function and cardiovascular health.
Low-carb ice cream also uses whole fat milk, eggs, gelatin, and most importantly, keto sweeteners. Sugar is the main culprit in ice cream that can kick you out of ketosis.
However, erythritol only has 4 grams of carbs per teaspoon. This sugar alcohol can stimulate the sweet taste receptors in your tongue to mimic the taste of sugar.
Monk fruit, on the other hand, is a natural sweetener extracted from monk fruit which is a plant native to China. This keto sweetener contains no calories and no carbs.
Stevia is another non-nutritive sweetener, meaning it has little to no calories and carbs. It is available in both liquid and powdered form and is usually much sweeter than regular sugar.
Carbs in Ice Cream
As mentioned, the keto-friendliness of food depends on its ingredients. On average, a serving of ice cream is usually ½ cup or 65-92 grams, having about 115-120 calories.
Let’s try to divide ice cream into four types and consider how many carbs there are in each serving:
- Typical ice cream products have 15-20 grams per half a cup, depending on the brand.
- Sugar-free ice cream has about 15 grams per half a cup.
- Low-fat ice cream has 17 grams of carbs per half a cup.
- Premium ice cream has the most carbs, at about 20 grams per ½ cup.
As you may have noticed, even sugar-free ice cream can have a high carb content. This is because of the milk which can also be converted to glycogen or sugars.
Not all dairy is created equal, and some of it is not keto-approved.
Keto-Friendly Ice Cream Brands
Now that you know that keto-friendly ice cream is made of wholesome ingredients, especially keto sweeteners, here are some brands that fit the description.
Halo Top Ice Cream
Since it was first launched in 2012, Halo Top has been one of the most popular brands of light ice cream. It manufactures low-carb dairy and non-dairy ice creams. It’s also made with natural and organic ingredients.
Although it is not marketed for keto dieters, a ½ cup serving of their vanilla bean ice cream provides about 14 grams of carbs and 11 grams of net carbs.
Arctic Zero Cake Batter
Arctic Zero is not only keto-friendly and dairy-free but is also made with prebiotic fiber, reducing the net carb count to just 5 grams per serving! Prebiotic fiber feeds the beneficial probiotic bacteria in your gut and helps with healthy digestion.
It is available in chocolate, cookie shake, salted caramel, and other tasty flavors! It is dieal for keto dieters and those who are lactose intolerant!
Rebel Keto Ice Cream
Rebel Ice Cream produces a number of delicious ice creams that have zero sugar. They’re great for the ketogenic diet and made with whole ingredients like cream and eggs.
They use monk fruit and stevia to keep the carb count low, and have a very creamy texture.
Each ½ cup of Rebel vanilla ice cream has 10 grams of carbs and 8 grams of net carbs. Of all the keto ice creams, we can say that this brand is the creamiest!
Enjoy Your Keto-Friendly Ice Cream!
The keto diet involves a lot of compromises, but you can always find a way to enjoy ice cream. Remember that wholesome ingredients like heavy whipping cream, milk, and eggs make an ice cream keto-friendly.
More importantly, keto-approved ice creams substitute sugars with sweeteners like monk fruit and erythritol!
Thankfully, there are numerous ice cream brands out there that push the boundaries of flavors while making sure you don’t get knocked out of ketosis!
Try one of these keto-friendly ice cream brands that will surely fit your low-carb, high-fat needs!