A Great Meal Without All The Carbs

Naruto Roll In the New Year, many people have chosen goals of becoming more fit. Sushi is nutritious and delicious, with the added benefit of being high in Omega-3 fatty acids. But can you eat it when you are on the keto diet? Is there keto sushi? The primary problem for keto eaters is the rice, which is high in carbs. What sort of options are there for sushi lovers without the high carbohydrate rice?

Low Carb Sushi Options

Fortunately for people choosing a keto lifestyle, sushi is no out of the question. Rice may be high in carbs, but options abound, and you can choose from a variety of offerings if you are craving a nice sushi meal without having to eat a lot of carbs. As a keto person myself, here are a few suggestions that have helped me over the years. I’m sharing them with you so you can enjoy sushi and still stick to your plan.

Try Asking Your Chef If They Can Create Rolls Without Rice

If you are lucky and you have a friendly itamae (who is particularly creative), you can try asking for sushi rolls without rice. Quick tip: restaurants are more likely to be accommodating to requests during slower nights, not when the restaurant is jam packed.

Because rice is inexpensive, you may be charged more for rolls that substitute rice for other ingredients, such as extra avocado. Make sure to ask if there are any additional charges. As well, you need to be quite wary when eating these rolls from a mess standpoint. Often, the chef will have less experience creating rolls without rice. Combined with the fact that rice is an essential part of keeping the roll together, you need to take care when eating this style of sushi so that it does not end up on your shirt.

Naruto Rolls For Eating On A Keto Lifestyle

What is a “Naruto Roll?” Ordering a “Naruto Style” roll means that instead of rice, your roll is wrapped in very thinly sliced cucumber. Check the menu for this style of roll, and if you cannot find it, try asking your waiter if it is a possibility. Not only is it much lower in carbs, but it tastes great and is pleasing to the eye.

Using Cauliflower Rice

Some adventurous chefs have experimented with substitutes for carbohydrate rich rice in their rolls. One of the closest options available in terms of texture is cauliflower rice. You probably will not find cauliflower rice in a restaurant, or at least not easily. Unfortunately, for most, this is probably for those who are deciding to make sushi at home, and you should!

To make cauliflower rice, you need to coarsely chop a head of cauliflower and blend it into a food processor. But be careful – over blending will create more of a paste than anything resembling rice! Once the cauliflower resembles the consistency of rice, you can put it into a microwave for around 3 minutes on high with a little bit of olive oil to cook it. Make sure it is tightly wrapped in microwave safe cling wrap. Season with a bit of salt before using it to make your keto sushi rolls. To help make the rice sticky, add a tablespoon of rice wine vinegar.

Cauliflower rice is not going to be nearly as good as authentic sushi rice for creating rolls, and it will be more difficult to create something that stays together. However, if you truly cannot eat carbs, necessity is the mother of invention, and even adding some form of binding agent (I’m saving that content for another page)!

Sashimi Is The Best Option For Keto Dining

The best option is an easy answer, sashimi is highly nutritious and delicious. You can read about nutritional information for sushi items, and reviewing the chart shows that many sashimi options have between 0-1 gram of carbs per portion. Be careful of ordering imitation crab, as it is one of the highest in carbs. If you are going for sashimi, you need to go for the real deal.

Which brings us to the one downside of sashimi, it is generally more expensive than other options. If you want to eat sashimi cheaper than going out to a restaurant, you will want to make it at home. This can be difficult for those who do not live by the ocean, and will also require a fair bit of practice. However if you are fortunate enough to have a Japanese grocery store near you, they often carry sushi grade fish.

There are also online sources you can find with a web search. A word of warning, though. Be careful of “hidden carbs” in sushi. When you are ordering sushi with a keto diet in mind, you might not realize some unexpected sources of carbs. One of these is unagi sauce. Just an ounce or eel can have 14 grams of carbs. You might be surprised at the additional ingredients, sauces, and flavorings that may add these hidden carbs.

Our Takeaway

As long as you are careful and know what to look for, you don’t have to give up sushi. Take a look at our sushi calories page and plan ahead. You may be surprised at the amazing meal you can still enjoy while sticking with a keto sushi plan and making educated decisions. If I can do it, I’m sure that you can, and I’ve been eating keto sushi for a very long time without feeling that I’m missing out on my favorite food.

Warren Ransom

I have always been fascinated by the creation and culture of different foods, particularly sushi and sashimi in the modern era of Japanese cuisine. I am a classically trained chef and sushi connoisseur, also having operated a food service company and enjoy investigating and experimenting with food around the world.

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