recipes

Is Sausage Keto-Friendly: Low-Carb or Not?

Is Sausage Keto-Friendly: Low-Carb or Not?

May 30, 2024 4 min read

Is Sausage Keto-Friendly: Low-Carb or Not?

Picture this: it’s a beautiful Sunday morning—the sun’s up, the weather’s perfect, and the entire family is getting ready to fire up the BBQ. On the menu are kabobs, shrimps, and sausages.

But hold up—you’re on keto!

So you can get back to your grilling and enjoy your Sunday without worrying about breaking your ketosis streak, we’re answering that question for you here. 

How Many Carbs in a Sausage?

To determine whether sausage is keto-friendly, we must dig deeper into its nutritional profile. This can be tricky because there are so many different types of sausages. For starters, they can consist of various types of meat, such as pork, beef, chicken, and turkey. They also vary in ingredients, depending on the style and flavor. 

Generally, though, sausages are a combination of ground meat, healthy fats, and spices, which are naturally carb-free. But when you add binding ingredients to the mix, that’s where the carb content appears. Sausages can have eggs, flour, and breadcrumbs to help them keep their shape and add flavor. 

Gluten, soy flour, wheat flour, and corn syrup are some binding ingredients that can increase the content of sausage. Nutritionists recommend checking the ingredients list for binding agents and additives to determine the exact carb content. 

To give you a starting point, though, here are estimated carb contents for one piece of common types of sausages: 

Can You Eat Sausage on a Keto Diet?

Keto practitioners generally agree that you can eat sausage while observing the ketogenic diet. Because sausages are made up of meat, they are sources of fat and protein. They’re also low-carb, making them keto-friendly. 

Nutritionists, however, want to point out that sausages are not entirely carb-free. Binding ingredients, such as flour and eggs, are hidden sources of carbs that you need to be mindful of. 

Before consuming sausages, seasoned keto dieters check the label to ensure the carb content is low or inconsequential. Then, they crunch the numbers to determine if eating the sausage will cause them to exceed their daily carb allowance, which, depending on the person, is around 20 to 50 grams. 

How are Sausages Typically Made?

Sausages are made of a cocktail of different meat products. These can include chicken, beef, turkey, and pork — some even include organ meats. Sausages also contain fats, spices, and seasoning for flavor. 

Manufacturers add binding ingredients to bind all these ingredients together and prevent the sausage from crumbling. Then, the sausage link is cured, salted, smoked, dried, and finally filled into an edible natural or synthetic casing. 

The result? An appetizing, glossy link neatly encased and displayed in a grocery store freezer. Sausages are classified as processed meat containing dyes, nitrates, preservatives, and other additives. However, many manufacturers have started offering sugar-free sausages as a healthier alternative. 

What are the Best Sausages for Keto?

There are many types of sausages on the market, some more keto-friendly than others. Keto practitioners consider the following the best sausage varieties for keto. The nutritional facts listed below are for one sausage link around 4” in length. 

  • Andouille sausage: 210 calories, 19 grams of fat, 8.1 grams of protein, and 0.6 grams of carbs. 
  • Beef sausage: 304 calories, 28 grams of fat, 12 grams of protein, and 0 grams of carbs. 
  • Breakfast sausage (pork): 88 calories, 8.3 grams of fat, 3 grams of protein, and 0.1 grams of carbs. 
  • Breakfast sausage (turkey): 41 calories, 1.91 grams of fat, 5.53 grams of protein, and 0 grams of carbs. 
  • Chicken sausage: 147 calories, 7.8 grams of fat, 18 grams of protein, and 0 grams of carbs. 
  • Pork sausage: 75 calories, 6.5 grams of fat, 4.3 grams of protein, and 0.3 grams of carbs. 
  • Salami (1 slice): 37 calories, 3.1 grams of fat, 2.1 grams of protein, and 0.1 grams of carbs.
  • Turkey sausage: 147 calories, 7.8 grams of fat, 18 grams of protein, and 0 grams of carbs.
  • Vienna sausage (1 piece): 37 calories, 3.1 grams of fat, 1.7 grams of protein, and 0.4 grams of carbs. 

Ways to Eat Sausage on Keto

Whether you prefer fried, grilled, or boiled sausage, there are plenty of ways to add it to your keto diet meals. We asked seasoned keto dieters for their favorite ways to eat sausage — now we’re letting you in on the top methods: 

  • Add to soups: Enhance the flavor of your soups by adding chopped sausages. 
  • Substitute for meatballs: Sausage works as a substitute for meatballs, giving you a unique flavor to your meals. 
  • Make frittata: For an Italian dinner, make a keto-friendly frittata with sausage, vegetables, and cheese as your main ingredients. 
  • Dip in your favorite sauces: Snack on some sausages in your favorite dipping sauce.
  • Stuff with other ingredients: Make your own sausage stuffing with cauliflower rice, ground sausages, mushrooms, and spices. 
  • Add to fried cauliflower rice: Sausage fried rice is a filling dish that you’ll enjoy for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Sauté sausage and cauliflower rice, and add pepper flakes for a spicy kick! 

Conclusion

You heard it from keto practitioners and nutritionists—sausages are keto-friendly. But check the label and ensure there are as few additives as possible to keep your carb consumption low. 

Is Sausage Keto-Friendly: Frequently Asked Questions

Are sausages low-carb?

Sausages are naturally low-carb. Primarily made of meat and fat, most sausages typically contain >1 gram of carbs per link. However, certain binding ingredients and seasonings can increase the carb content of a sausage. 


How many sausages are keto?

Keto practitioners recommend keeping your carb consumption to 20 to 50 grams per day. Eat sausages in moderation so you don’t exceed your carb allowance. Three to five links per day should be enough to satisfy your cravings while keeping you in ketosis.