Keto diets leave you little room when it comes to the foods that you can and cannot have. Within keto diets you are only allowed to consume 30 – 50 grams of carbohydrates per day.
The reason behind limiting your carbs consumption is to put your body in a state of ketosis which forces your body to burn fuel for energy. Now, the allowed number of carbs depends on whether you are new to keto or have been following a keto diet for some time now.
Regardless of this, you’re only limited to those foods that are low in terms of their carbs composition. Now, talking of foods you may think of chicken broth as it is minimally processed and contains very few additives. But is chicken broth keto friendly? Let’s find out.
Before we get into whether or not chicken broth is keto, let’s first look at what chicken broth actually is.
What is Chicken Broth?
Chicken broth is a luscious liquid usually made of meat parts of the chicken, skin, carcass, and a blend of vegetables. The ingredients are mixed and seasoned with salts, herbs, and sometimes spices as well. After the ingredients are mixed, they are simmered for 45 mins – 120 mins.
Once the broth is prepared, it is strained and ready to serve. Chicken broth, as the name suggests, has a chicken flavor, and has a lighter texture as compared to chicken stock. You can either serve it on its own or can also be used as a base ingredient for different types of soups.
Either way, you will be craving for more due to the delicious flavor of the chicken broth.
Chicken broth is often confused with chicken stocks. They’re not the same and in fact, there is a huge difference between the two. Here is an insight into the differences between chicken broth and stock.
- Chicken broth is made from the meat and bones part of the bird whereas chicken stock is made from the bones of the bird. Chicken stock requires the bones to be roasted prior to simmering them.
- Chicken broth is simmered for a short period 45 – 120 mins, whereas chicken stock is simmered for a few hours.
So, when looking for chicken broth, make sure to not confuse it with the stock.
Interestingly, chicken broth can be made at your home with easy recipes and is usually preferred. However, if you cannot spare some time for making chicken broth, you can also get a pre-made chicken broth that you can usually find in canned or boxed packages.
Keep in mind, when looking for chicken broth in stores, make sure to opt for a low-sodium version. This will allow you to keep your sodium intake in check regardless of the diet you are following.
Now that you have an idea of what chicken broth is, let’s reiterate our initial question, is chicken broth keto friendly?
Is Chicken Broth Keto?
Generally speaking, for a food to fall in the keto safe foods, it has to have a low number of carbohydrates. Now, in the case of chicken broth, it only has 1.1 grams of net carbs per a 249 gram serving.
Based on the carbohydrate composition of chicken broth, it is keto friendly. In fact, it has a very small number of carbs so you can easily incorporate it in your keto diets without having to worry about your per day carbs intake or kicking yourself out of ketosis.
Furthermore, chicken broth contains no harmful additives or oils – thus making it ideal for your health as well.
Chicken broth provides you with a natural source of nutrients including minerals like magnesium, potassium, sodium, and calcium amongst others. Ideally, adding chicken broth to your meals will make sense because these nutrients are usually lower in keto diet.
So, simply adding chicken broth to your meals will allow you to fulfil your dietary requirements of these minerals. Furthermore, it will also lower the risks of dehydration effects associated with keto diets – thus sipping chicken broth will lead to balancing electrolytes in your body.
As a result, you will be maintaining optimum sodium levels which ultimately protects you from the dreadful Keto flu as well.
On a side note, when opting for store bought chicken broth, make sure to go through the nutritional information on the labeling. There are certain brands of chicken broth that have a higher level of carbs, so make sure to avoid buying those products.
Chicken Broth: Nutritional Profile
Chicken broth is super safe for keto diets and can provide you with an ultimate source of nutrition at the same time. A single cup serving of chicken broth contains the following nutrients:
|Total fat||0.5 g|
|Saturated fat||0 g|
|Monounsaturated fats||0.1 g|
|Total carbs||1.1 g|
|Total sugars||1.1 g|
|Added sugars||0 g|
|Vitamin A||0.1% of the Daily Values (DV)|
|Iron||1% of the DV|
Interestingly the calories that you get from one cup of chicken broth is 42% of proteins, 28% of carbohydrates, and 30% of fats.
Furthermore, depending on how you make chicken broth it may also contain the following vitamins:
- Vitamin B12
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin D
- Vitamin E
- Vitamin K
There are also trace amounts of certain minerals in chicken broth (made from bones). These include
- Chondroitin sulfate
These are a crucial part of your diet and can lead to a number of health benefits. These are discussed in the next section.
Health Benefits Of Chicken Broth:
Chicken broth can be extremely beneficial for your health, specifically on a keto diet. Here are some health benefits you can receive from sipping chicken broth.
· Better Weight Management:
Chicken broth only contains about 15 calories per a single serving. A single cup is more than enough to consume when served as portion of a balanced meal and will make you feel full. Since chicken broth is low in calories, it makes it an excellent low-calorie option.
This allows you to manage your weight better and prevent obesity. Moreover, if you have weight loss goals, it will also encourage weight loss.
That’s still not the best part of chicken broth. Chicken broth can also be used to tone down high fat recipes so you can simply use as a low calorie substitute for different meals.
· Prevents Or Lowers Inflammation:
Chicken broth is made from chicken meat and bones, both of which contain a compound referred to as carnosine. Carnosine is known to help with easing inflammation.
Usually, inflammation occurs in the beginning stages of a viral infection which is why people often opt for chicken broth when they suspect inflammation in their body.
Furthermore, according to research studies, harmful diseases like cancer can also be prevented by consuming foods that help in lowering inflammation.
· Leads To A Clearer Nasal Passage:
Amazingly, chicken broth can help you open up your nasal passageways when you consume it hot. This is because when you consume hot chicken broth, it will move over the mucus thus easing your nasal congestion complications.
So, if you ever have a cold or flu, you should have a cup of hot chicken broth.
· Keeps Your Body Hydrated:
Chicken broth contains a rather high amount of sodium. Since it is served in a liquid form it not only provides you with a means of rehydrating your body but also helps in replenishing the electrolytes in your body.
Once again, if you have a cold or flu, chicken broth would be ideal to rehydrate your bodily fluids.
· Provides A Boost To Your Digestion:
Chicken broth contains good amounts of glutamine. It is an essential mineral which is often neglected in our diets. Regardless, it plays a critical role in rejuvenating any damage caused to the gut lining. As a result, it will allow your gut to become impermeable.
When your gut lining is rejuvenated, it substantially improves the digestion of food in your body and also aids in improving your immune system as well – thus lowering your chances of suffering from diseases.
· Protect Your Joints:
As you grow old, your joints become weaker which usually ends up inflicting pain in your joints. Fortunately, chicken broth is an excellent source of gelatin which counteracts the age-related pain in your joints.
Moreover, gelatin can also ease up the pressure on your joints and acts as a cushioning between your bones.
Ideally, if you add gelatin based foods to your daily diet irrespective of whether you consume it in fluids or meals, it will provide regular support to your joints. So, even when you grow old, you will not have to suffer from joint related complications.
· Helps You Have A Clear Skin:
Chicken broth contains another nutrient known as collagen. It is responsible for the elasticity aspect of your skin and is essentially the primary layer of protein on your skin. Furthermore, collagen is also responsible for how your skin appears in terms of its plumpness and firmness.
In other words, a deficiency of collagen in your body is the primary agent responsible for the appearance of premature aging of your skin. Unfortunately, it either happens due to a deficiency of collagen or breakdown of the agent due exposure environmental factors.
One way to deal with this is to consume foods containing collagen, which chicken broth is filled with. So, if you add chicken broth to your keto diet plan, it will also help your skin look better and youthful.
Another important mineral found in chicken broth is zinc. It plays a crucial role in terms for fighting off acne and supporting your skin health. According to a research study, zinc is known to counteract the activity of acne causing bacteria on your skin.
· Improves Your Quality Of Sleep:
Chicken broth is an excellent source of magnesium. It is a naturally existing mineral and is serves as a relaxation agent in your body. Apart from being a relaxant, magnesium also helps in differing bodily functions like the synthetization of proteins, nervous activity, and relaxing your muscles as well.
All of these collectively result in a substantial improvement in your sleeping patterns. Moreover, unlike magnesium supplements, the magnesium found in chicken broth is a natural source which is easy for your body to absorb and benefit from.
Keto Friendly Chicken Broth Recipe:
When it comes to keto friendly chicken broth recipes, there are tens of different recipes that you can find. Here is a keto friendly chicken broth recipe just to get you started.
- Onions – 2 small sized ones
- Celery – 2 medium sized stalks (7-1/2″ – 8″ long)
- Garlic – 2 cloves
- Raw chicken (with bones) – 64 oz (once cooked, must be 64 oz after the bone is removed)
- Salt – 2 tablespoons
- Tap Water – 16 cups
- Parsley – 5 sprigs
- Thyme, dried – 1 teaspoon
- Bay leaves, dried – 1 x
- Whole Black Peppercorns – 1 teaspoon
- Start by washing all the vegetables including onions and celery. After cleaning and washing them, chop them coarsely. Dice the garlic as well.
- Next, add water to a pot, add the chicken, garlic, black peppercorns and seasonings. Set the heat to medium and bring it to boil. Once boiled, set the heat to low and let it simmer for 2 hours. Make sure the pot is covered.
- In the meantime, stir it periodically so that the large chicken pieces can be broken down.
- As the simmering process is going on, the water level will also be dropping so make sure to add water up to the initial level. Afterwards, let it simmer for up to 2 – 4 hours (in total).
- After the 2 – 4 hours period, turn off the heat and let it cool.
- Once cooled off, separate the liquid from the rest of the ingredients (including chicken, and the vegetables).
- Add the chicken broth to a container and store it in a fridge. Keep checking it and wait till the fat congeals.
- Next, skim off the fat and remove it from the liquid.
- Enjoy freshly made chicken broth!
On a side note, it can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Or, if you plan to use it for longer, you can freeze it and store it for up to 3 months
Is chicken broth keto friendly? Absolutely yes! A single cup of chicken broth contains only 1.1 grams of carbohydrates which is surprisingly low. This means, you can consume a whole cup of chicken broth without stressing too much on your overall carbs composition of the day.
While chicken broth may be low in carbs, it is a rich source of certain nutrients including sodium, magnesium, amongst others. These lead to an overall improvement in your immune system, your skin condition, keeping your body hydrated, and preventing join issues as well.
However, when looking for chicken broth you should either make it in your home or only get low-sodium versions of store based chicken broth products. Also make sure to get one without any additives to avoid risking your ketosis.
If you'd like to learn more about keto friendly foods, please click on one of the links below: