A fan favorite, Taco Bell is one of the more popular fast food joints in the US.
While not necessarily authentic Mexican fare, the menu options at Taco Bell are nonetheless delicious and will satisfy anyone’s craving, whether at 2 in the afternoon when the munchies kick in, or 2 in the morning after a night out with buddies.
But once you start out on the ketogenic lifestyle, is Taco Bell a complete write-off?
It could be if you continue to order menu items that are loaded in high-carb ingredients.
But if you know your macros and go into Taco Bell well-informed about what their menu options are and how you can tweak them to fit your lifestyle, you can easily enjoy dining out at Taco Bell and still maintain a state of ketosis.
We’re going to dive into the menu items that you might be better off sticking with.
But before we do, let’s briefly go over the specific ingredients that you should and shouldn’t eat to make sure you don’t get kicked out of ketosis.
Ordering Keto at Taco Bell
You’ve probably already noticed it at other fast food restaurants across the country: healthier menu options.
These days, it seems like no matter where you go – be it McDonald’s, Burger King, or even Pizza Hut – fast food eateries are offering healthier options in order to maintain and even expand their consumer base.
As more and more people become health conscious, restaurants like these need to do what they can to keep business pumping.
That’s good news for you, because it means you’ll have an easier time making better food choices to sustain your ketogenic lifestyle. When it comes to Taco Bell, salads are your best bet.
While you can easily crank up the carb factor with sugary vinaigrettes and croutons, you can also skip these in favor of lower-carb, fatty ingredients like shredded cheese, bacon, sour cream, guacamole, salsa, and Italian seasoning. You can also enjoy the veggies and lettuce.
Here’s more of a detailed breakdown of low-carb add-on ingredients you can include in your dishes at Taco Bell:
- Fire Grilled Chicken – 40 calories, 2g fat, 8g protein, 0g net carbs
- Steak – 50 calories, 2g fat, 8g protein, 1g net carbs
- Seasoned Ground Beef – 80 calories, 5g fat, 5g protein, 1g net carbs
- Shredded Chicken – 60 calories, 3g fat, 6g protein, 1g net carbs
- Bacon – 70 calories, 5g fat, 4g protein, 0g net carbs
- Sausage Crumbles – 60 calories, 5g fat, 2g protein, 0g net carbs
- Guacamole – 35 calories, 3g fat, 0g protein, 1g net carbs
- Shredded Cheddar Cheese – 25 calories, 2g fat, 2g protein, 0g net carbs
- Sour Cream – 20 calories, 1g fat, 0g protein, 2g net carbs
- Jalapenos – 5 calories, 0g fat, 0g protein, 0.5g net carbs
- Nacho Cheese Sauce – 30 calories, 2g fat, 0g protein, 2g net carbs
- Avocado Ranch Sauce – 30 calories, 3g fat, 0g protein, 0g net carbs
- Creamy Chipotle Sauce – 30 calories, 3g fat, 0g protein, 0g net carbs
- Creamy Jalapeno Sauce – 20 calories, 3g fat, 0g protein, 0g net carbs
- Habanero Sauce 10 – calories, 1g fat, 0g protein, 0g net carbs
- Spicy Ranch Sauce – 20 calories, 3g fat, 0g protein, 0g net carbs
What You Shouldn’t Order at Taco Bell on Keto?
While there are certainly ingredients that you can enjoy that will keep your daily carb content low, there are a slew of others that are obvious carb culprits and should definitely be avoided when dining at Taco Bell:
- Taco shells – 14g carbs each
- Burrito wraps – 50g carbs each
- Beans – 20g carbs per serving;
- Some salad dressings – More than 10g carbs per serving.
While the wraps and taco shells are obvious high-carb ingredients, there are others that are really good at hiding carbs. Your job is to sniff them out and avoid them.
Keto-Friendly Menu Items to Order at Taco Bell
Armed with the above-mentioned information, ordering at Taco Bell will be a little easier for you.
But to make things even more clear and to take the guesswork out of what you can and can’t eat, let’s go over some of the menu options that are more keto-friendly than others.
1. Power Chicken Menu Bowl
When on the keto diet, consider ordering the Power Menu Bowl at Taco Bell.
It’s basically a big bowl of salad, but it’s somewhat hearty enough to satisfy your hunger and comes with lettuce, shredded chicken, cheddar cheese, sour cream, guacamole, avocado, and ranch sauce.
Just make sure to specifically ask to hold the beans and rice.
Otherwise, it’s a great option for keto dieters.
- 250 calories
- 15g fat
- 21g protein
- 5g net carbs
2. Power Steak Menu Bowl
The same dish as the one just mentioned, this one comes with steak as the meat of choice. Check out the following for nutritional information.
- 260 calories
- 16g fat
- 20g protein
- 7g net carbs
3. Power Ground Beef Menu Bowl
This is the same deal as the ones we’ve just listed, but includes ground beef.
The macros vary slightly, but not by much. Either way, any one of these are great for keto dieters.
- 290 calories
- 21g fat
- 15g protein
- 6g net carbs
4. Mini Skillet Bowl
If you happen to get to Taco Bell in time to enjoy some breakfast, then consider ordering the Mini Skillet Bowl.
It’s mainly eggs, which is good for the keto dieter.
But it also comes with potatoes, so you’ll want to ask them to hold that ingredient if you want to keep your net carb count to a minimum.
You can, however, always add some of your favorites, such as a side of meat, guacamole, or sour cream.
As far as the nutritional value of the Mini Skillet Bowl, check out the following.
- 490 calories
- 46g fat
- 14g protein
- 5g net carbs
5. Naked Egg Taco
A unique menu option that Taco Bell has recently added is the Naked Egg Taco.
Instead of wrapping a traditional taco in a taco shell, this dish is wrapped in fried eggs.
However, there may be potatoes in the “wrap,” so make sure to specifically ask them to hold the potatoes when ordering this menu item.
You can throw some bacon or sausage in there, as well as some cheese, guacamole, and sour cream.
- 310 calories
- 21g fat
- 14g protein
- 13g net carbs
Believe it or not, Taco Bell isn’t necessarily an eatery that you have to drive by when you’re hungry in order to maintain your state of ketosis.
Sure, you’ll have to make some tweaks to the menu options, but while most of the menu is loaded in carbs, there are still plenty of ingredients that you can enjoy while staying well under your daily carb content.
Plus, they’re pretty tasty too!