Can You Eat KFC on the Carnivore Diet?
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The Colonel is calling you, but can you answer? Nope because if you are trying to be a strict carnivore dieter then you should probably refrain from KFC and give it a pass.
However, there are caveats and suggestions. One of the hardest things about the Carnivore Diet is when life throws you a curveball and you are knocked out of your routine it can be challenging to get back on track.
When that happens, you will find that the world doesn’t really want you to be carnivore.
Any low carb diet should be easy when you are at home and you should have options for when you are at work. But it gets harder when you are out and about, and in unusual settings.
So, fail to prepare or prepare to fail!
It is a good idea to have a thought about what you would do in unusual circumstances.
You could have forgotten your lunch, you could be stuck in an airport somewhere, you are on a trip with friends and don’t want to be super awkward.
In these cases, it could be a challenge to stay carnivore, so you might need to be creative if you don’t want to cheat.
If you are a nonstop traveler then you may want to check out this article:
Real world options
If you are caught in a pickle, with your meat pants down. There are ways out of the meatless hole you have dug yourself:
If you are out and about without your usual Carni food. Probably the best option is to not eat until you get back home or can make a sensible carnivore choice.
If you have passed the carnivore transition period, you should be fat adapted.
Therefore, you have a food store strapped to you at all times… your body fat.
So, ignore the initial pangs of hunger, and do a bit of intermittent or extended fasting. You won’t die of hunger because you have missed one meal.
Dried or Cooked meat:
In most places, you will be able to find some form of dried or cooked meat. Think jerky or cold meat platters.
Even gas stations in the middle of nowhere are likely to have some sort of salami stick. If you are near a supermarket, then you might be lucky enough to be able to get your hands on a hot rotisserie chicken.
Be sure to check the ingredients though as a lot of jerky contains sugars, seasoning, and soy sauce.
These are my go-to sugar-free jerky options. I keep them handy for emergencies.
- Biltong by Kalahari
- People’s Choice Beef Jerky – Old Fashioned – Original
- Keto Carne Beef Jerky (Warning this one has sea salt, spices, garlic.)
These get a lot of fingers pointed at them for contributing to the obesity epidemic… and rightfully so I may add.
However, they can be a haven for carnivores, who don’t want to fall off the wagon.
Just ordering multiple burger patties from McDonald’s or Wendys, is a classic example.
How to eat carnivore in KFC
For whatever reason, you have found yourself in a queue at KFC, what can you order?
In my opinion, there is 1 good option, 1 ok option, and a whole lot of bad options.
Grilled Chicken: I say it is a good option, what I mean is it is the best possible option you have if you find yourself in KFC. Order a bucket of grilled chicken pieces.
These are obviously grilled and not fried and don’t have the crispy coating on them.
However, they are marinated and seasoned. So, you know that marinade is going to have some seed oils, sugar, and spices (which are by default plant-based).
But for most people that isn’t going to cause you too much harm, if you only have KFC as a one-off or rarely. If it does upset your stomach or some old ailments return. Then you know never to have a KFC again.
Just order a bucket of normal fried chicken, then peel off the coating. This reduces the carb content of your meal and reduces your consumption of highly processed junk food ingredients.
This means you are only left with the problem that the chicken will have been fried in vegetable seed oils like canola. This will seep into the chicken, so there is nothing you can do about it.
Seed oils are awful for health, but if you are feeling robust and healthy then having an occasional meal like this is not going to kill you but it is certainly not optimal.
If want some more info on how bad seed oils are then check out this article by Chris Kresser.
Again if you have a KFC like this, and you feel terrible afterward. Then simply don’t have it again.
The bad options
Basically, everything else on the menu haha.
Fried chicken with the coating on:
As discussed above if you have the coating it is going to contain grains, sweeteners, preservatives, and it will be fried in seed oils. This goes against pretty much all the “rules” of being a carnivore and should be avoided.
Especially if you are gluten intolerant or have Celiacs. It’s a gluten nightmare.
The burgers in KFC are always some form of fried chicken with the coating on, in a bun.
So, if it wasn’t bad enough eating the fried chicken, you are now adding bread (gluten) into the mix and increasing the carb content of the meal even further.
Fries, beans, slaw, gravy etc. These are all either plant-based like the fries or products filled with rubbish ingredients like the gravy. So, I would avoid all of these like the plague, and just stick to the chicken.
Avoid normal and diet sodas. The normal sodas are full of sugars, and the diet sodas are full of artificial or “natural” sweeteners and should be avoided.
Instead, just order a bottle of water.
These are usually things like cakes & cookies, and I shouldn’t need to explain that these are not carnivore!
They will likely be positioned right in front of you when you are ordering, or you will be flat out asked if you want some when they are confirming your order.
Say no and stay strong.
Whilst they do taste nice the sauces such as classic ranch, money mustard, and honey BBQ are nothing more than tasty sugar bombs and should be avoided.
If you think your chicken tastes boring and needs sauce, then you shouldn’t be in KFC at all really!
The means are some combination of a main, sides, and drink. So, should be avoided for the above reasons. Your safest bet, it just to get some chicken and a drink of water if needed.
Let’s be clear eating a KFC is not optimal, but you don’t have to be optimal all the time. There can be a little room for deviation now and again if you want and if your body can handle it.
But there is a big difference between making sensible carnivoreish choices, or going off the rails completely.
Also, the amount of times you are doing things like this is important. If you have a KFC meal once a year it is unlikely to do any lasting damage, but if you do it once a week, then you might run into some problems.
It mainly just comes down to having a bit of common sense.
Motivation to stay strong
If the draw of fast food is too strong while attempting a strict carnivore diet then you may be a prime candidate for coaching. MeatRX, a carnivore diet resource, and coaching platform is a great option.
Also, check out the Wild Lumen’s YouTube channel as you will find great carniverous content, as well as carnivore diet approved recipes!
And finally, check out these useful articles:
- Top 11 Carnivore Diet Mistakes
- This May Be Why You Are Tired on a Carnivore Diet
- 11 Reasons to Quit Alcohol on a Carnivore Diet (#2 is Scary)
Disclaimer: I’m not a doctor. Consult with and ask your doctor about any diet or medical-related questions. No information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure any disease or condition. This is not medical advice.