What Are the Most Popular Keto Ingredients?

March 13, 2019

Here at Is It Keto, we never stop thinking about keto foods. As keto has grown in popularity, keto recipes have proliferated around the web. Hundreds of recipe authors are producing new and exciting keto recipes every day. Have you ever wondered what ingredients they all have in common?

To find out, we collected data from 15 different keto sites, including favorites like Diet Doctor and KetoDiet. In total, we gathered over 4,400 keto recipes. With so much data, we were excited to dive in and find out what was inside.

Ingredient Frequency in Keto Recipes

Salt is clearly the most popular keto ingredient, appearing in over one-third of all keto recipes. In fact, over 50% of recipes contain either "salt" or "sea salt."

Olive oil, of course, makes a strong showing as well. Keto authors include it in about one in five recipes because it's a pure fat that requires minimal processing to manufacture.

The cloud above includes every keto recipe, but what if we split it up by meal?


Wow! More than three-quarters of keto breakfast recipes contain eggs. It's no surprise, as they're not only high in protein and low in carbs, but they're effective at binding together ingredients in recipes like keto muffins or pancakes.

Also prominent at the breakfast table are almond flour and coconut flour. We often see these as a substitute for wheat flour in keto recipes like keto cereal or cinnamon rolls.

Trends in breakfast are interesting, but what about more substantial meals like lunch and dinner?

Lunches and Dinners

The most striking thing is how much smaller a role eggs play. While they were an astounding 76.4% of breakfast recipes, they appear in only 24.2% of lunches and dinners.

Salt and pepper truly dominate the lunch and dinner category. They're almost an afterthought in most recipes, but once you recognize how frequently "salt and pepper (to taste)" appears in a recipe, it's clear why these ingredients make an appearance in roughly half of all lunch and dinner recipes.

We don't see many meats in this list because they essentially “split the vote.” With so many different types of meat, no single one stands out sharply. Topping the list are chicken breasts (9.8%), bacon (8.5%), and ground beef (8.3%).


This one caught us by surprise. We knew that vanilla was a familiar feature of many desserts, but we didn't realize just how popular it was. Almost half of all keto dessert recipes contain vanilla extract!

In terms of keto sweeteners, erythritol and stevia are the clear winners. These two ingredients appear in roughly one-third of keto desserts. We were surprised that monk fruit, a common sweetener, was almost too small to show up in the graph — it appears in only 4.1% of recipes.


We collected recipe data from the following keto websites:

Other Ideas?

Are you wondering about other trends in the world of keto? Let us know what other graphs and investigations you'd like to see next!