Many of us have turned to the keto diet as a means to manage our weight, and in the search for the perfect keto-friendly snack, you might come across pork rinds as a delicious, tantalizing option.
But before you dig in and devour this delicious delicacy, you might wonder, “are pork rinds keto-friendly, and how many can I eat ?”
In this blog post, we’ll look at the keto diet, whether pork rinds are keto-friendly, and how many you can eat yet still stay in your diet.
Do You Really Know What The Keto Diet Is?
Before we go further into pork rinds, let’s define a keto diet. A ketogenic diet is widely recognized as a way to manage weight.
The ketogenic diet works by forcing your body to use different fuel types.
When you’re doing the keto diet, you will be restricted from eating carbohydrates and instead load up on protein and fats.
This way, you won’t burn sugar for calories; instead, you’ll burn fat as fuel – a process called ketosis.
By burning fat, you’ll also lose its mass, and you can manage your weight better.
Another plus point of this diet is that you can keep your blood sugar level in check; that’s why it’s also suitable for those with type 2 diabetes.
How to Eat During Keto Diet?
If you’re interested in taking on the ketogenic diet, you must change your diet and ingest a lot of fats in your daily consumption.
Unlike the usual meal plan where you’ll get your energy needs mostly from carbohydrates, in a keto diet, you’ll consume around 70 to 80% fat, 5 to 10% carbs, and 10 to 20% protein.
If you’re an adult with 2000 calorie requirements daily, those figures roughly equate to about 2o to 40 grams of carbs daily.
What to Avoid During Keto Diet?
As the diet dictates, you will have to restrict your carbohydrate intake.
One of the most obvious ways to cut out carbohydrates is by limiting refined carbs like bread, pasta, and rice.
But those aren’t the only perpetrators. You should also look for starchy vegetables such as potatoes, sugary drinks, and condiments.
Always read the labels when buying packaged foods to determine whether or not they contain hidden sugars.
What Are Pork Rinds?
Commonly found in the snack or chip alley of your local market, pork rind is the culinary term for pig skin.
This delicious snack has been a staple recipe for Southerners for years.
Although you might think it’s weird to eat pig’s skin, pork rinds usually undergo lots of processing before it’s consumed.
The pork skins are boiled, dried, and fried, making them crisp and delicious.
Why Pork Rinds Are the Perfect Keto Snack
Eating something so fatty and indulgent when you want to watch your weight might seem counterintuitive, but pork rinds are a great addition to your keto meal plan.
This is because they’re made entirely out of fats and protein with no carbohydrates, unlike fruits and vegetables.
They have zero carbs in total, and that’s why they’re perfect for low-carb diets that restrict carbohydrate consumption.
Nutritional Benefits of Eating Pork Rinds
Pork rinds are not particularly high in vitamins and minerals but are a good source of fat and proteins.
A serving of pork rinds, about 14 grams, contains 9 grams of protein and 5 grams of fat.
One particular protein synonymous with pork rinds and other animal skin is collagen protein, which helps in cellular communication and tissue repair, and, ultimately, can make your skin look younger.
How Many Pork Rinds Can I Eat on Keto?
Just because there are zero carbs in pork rinds, don’t think you can eat as much as you want, especially if you are on the ketogenic diet for weight loss!
If you’re doing the keto diet to manage your weight, you don’t just need to watch your carbohydrate intake but also your total caloric intake.
Fats can add up your caloric intake very quickly; that’s why you should be mindful of the number of pork rinds you eat.
Aim to get 2000 calories per day, the average adult’s caloric needs, and eat them accordingly.
Also, it turns out that the protein in pork rinds is incomplete, so you will need to consume other forms of protein as well.
Another factor you should pay attention to is other additional ingredients, such as MSG, salt, and sugar, if you’re eating packaged pork rinds bought from the store.
All these could also add up to your caloric intake, so eat only a moderate amount of pork rinds.
This is about one or two servings a day and can serve as your snacks between meals of about 14 grams or 11 pieces of pork rinds per serving.
What Happens If You Eat Too Many Pork Rinds?
More often than not, when you buy your pork rinds from the store, they will be processed with lots of MSG, salt, and artificial flavorings.
For one, if you consume too many pork rinds and exceed your daily caloric requirement, you won’t achieve proper weight management and gain weight.
Consuming too much salt and artificial flavors can also make you gain weight and cause hypertension.
How to Eat Pork Rinds in Keto Diet?
There are many ways to eat and include pork rinds in your Keto diet, but you must be mindful of several things.
Firstly, if you’re not just eating pork rinds, you should be coupling pork rinds with other items that are also keto-friendly.
Look for dips and condiments with low-carb content, such as mayonnaise or guacamole.
Another fact is your portion sizes; you should not eat more than 2 serving dimensions of pork rinds daily since it contains many additional ingredients and is high in calories too.
The average portion size is around 14 grams or roughly 11 pieces, up to 81 calories.
Keto-Friendly Pork Rind Recipes
As mentioned, to be safe, you might want to make your pork rinds at home to avoid hidden carbohydrates.
With a little effort, you can enjoy a keto-friendly snack that you can tweak according to your taste.
Here are some of the best keto-friendly pork rinds recipes that you can try at home:
Pork rinds are delicious on their own, and for the original flavor, all you need is olive oil and salt.
- Trim off excess fat from the skin until it’s about 3 to 4mm thick.
- Cut it into bite pieces and score the skin so that it crackles nicely.
- Then rub both sides of the skin with salt.
- Add olive oil to your baking tray, and bake at 200C or 400F. After 10 minutes, turn the skin and bake for another 10 minutes.
- Remove excess oil, then bake for another 15 minutes or until it’s crispy on both sides. If it fails to puff up, you can skip this step and deep fry the pork rinds instead.
Flavored Pork Rinds
If you want your pork rinds to have a little kick to them, why not add more seasonings?
You can add cinnamon to give you a bit of sweetness or BBQ flavoring for spiciness:
- Cinnamon – If you’re missing sweet snacks, add equal parts of cinnamon and sweeteners into the pork rinds.
- BBQ – To get the BBQ flavor, toss your pork rinds with smoked paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, sea salt, and chili powder. You can add sweetener if you want more layers to the taste.
- Cheesy – Toss your baked pork rinds with some cheddar cheese powder.
Pork Rinds vs Potato Chips
For those who are missing potato chips because of your keto diet, pork rinds can be the perfect alternative to satisfy your cravings.
However, pork rinds are extremely keto-friendly!
The texture and taste of pork rinds can mimic potato chips perfectly, and you can create different flavored pork rinds just like you would potato chips.
You only need to prepare the plain pork rinds and toss them with any flavor.
Get creative and try to make a pork rinds version of your favorite potato chip flavor!
Taste and texture are not the only reasons you should go for pork rinds. They’re lower in fats and glycemic index and have a much higher protein content than potato chips.
So the next time you crave potato chips, grab a bag of pork rinds instead!
Other Uses of Pork Rinds For Keto-Friendly Diet
Aside from being a good alternative for potato chips and being a snack, there are other ways that you can enjoy pork rinds.
What’s impressive is that it can act as a substitute for plenty of carbohydrate-sourced foods.
For example, it can be used as a substitute for panko bread or bread crumbs.
It’s tough when you can enjoy plenty of dishes that contain bread crumbs, but now you can crumble the pork rinds and use them as a substitute.
Use pork rinds to create breaded fried chicken or fish and chips by coating the protein and deep frying them.
Pork rinds can also be used as a pizza crust. All you need to do is to ground them up and mix them with cream cheese, eggs, and Italian seasoning.
Other Keto-Friendly Snacks
Not a fan of pork rinds? Or maybe you ate too many and could now use a change. Here are some other keto-friendly snacks.
Kale chips – Bake some kale with salt or your favorite seasonings; you’ve got another healthy snack alternative.
Zucchini chips – This can be another chip alternative, but be mindful as they have very dense water content and take a long time to bake.
String cheese – If you’re in a hurry and want to grab something on the go, string cheese can be a keto-friendly alternative for your afternoon snack.
Dark chocolate – Drive away those sweet cravings with a little dark chocolate. High in antioxidants, dark chocolate is way better than milk chocolate, especially if you are on keto.
Final Thoughts – Are Pork Rinds Keto-Friendly?
Although pork rinds have a bad rep, it turns out that they’re a versatile, keto-friendly ingredient that can be used in many different ways.
Aside from being a snack substitute for potato chips, they’re also excellent for bread, pizza crust, and bread crumbs.
Remember to keep the portions moderated and stick to around 2 servings a day so you won’t exceed your calorie counts.
That way, you’ll enjoy pork rinds without jeopardizing your low-carb diet or efforts to lose weight.
I’m Chris Watson & the Founder of EatForLonger.com. I’m a food and wellbeing enthusiast researching and sharing foodstuffs and simple food-based concepts, such as fasting and clean eating.
I hope it inspires you to make tiny changes to what you eat and when you eat while optimizing your healthspan and all-around well-being.
Read more About Me here.