keto bbq
Our Blog

Keto BBQ: Keto Cookout Ideas

Written by Melissa Mitri, MS, RD on July 22, 2021


From traditional BBQ chicken breasts to smoked ribs and grilled steaks, there are plenty of keto BBQ recipes that can be enjoyed as part of a low-carb lifestyle.

Whether you’re planning a camping trip feast or weekend backyard BBQ, we’re here to help with keto cookout ideas and easy keto BBQ recipes.

Simple Keto BBQ Recipes

Many keto-friendly foods are staples at backyard cookouts and summer BBQ. Protein-rich foods, like burgers, steak, chicken, jerky, and seafood can all be enjoyed as keto grill recipes.

If you’re grilling up burgers and dogs, skip the buns or wrap your burger in iceberg or romaine lettuce leaves for fresh flavor and crunchy texture.

Now you might be wondering, is BBQ keto friendly? Unfortunately, the answer is usually no.

Store-bought BBQ sauce and marinades tend to be high in added sugar. Most traditional BBQ sauce recipes call for sugar usually in the form of brown sugar, molasses, or honey. Ketchup, a common ingredient in BBQ sauce, is also a common source of added sugar.

Skip these and make your own low-sugar keto BBQ recipes for sauces and marinades—it’s easier than you think.

Side dish staples, like pasta salad, potato salad, and baked beans pack too many carbs to be keto-friendly. But, that doesn’t mean you have to fill your plate with meat alone. Cauliflower and green beans are keto BBQ sides to effortlessly complement your low-carb  plate.

To give you some keto cookout ideas, we’ve rounded up some of the best keto BBQ recipes from around the Internet to help you plan your next backyard event.

1. Smoked Beef Jerky

Most store bought jerky is loaded with sugar and homemade recipes call for marinating meat in sugary concoctions. This jerky is sweet, spicy, and smoky thanks to a marinade of coconut aminos, chili sauce, and spices and several hours in a smoker.

Courtesy of Ketogasm.

2. Keto BBQ Sauce Three Ways

Here are 3 sugar-free keto BBQ sauce recipes. There’s a classic tomato based red sauce, mayo based white sauce, and a mustard based yellow sauce. These are all great low-carb options and could be easily used as a delicious dip for your Chomps.

Courtesy of Joy Filled Diets.

3. Bacon Cheeseburger Kebabs

Here’s one of many keto grill recipes that’s a fun way to enjoy a cheeseburger, no bun required. Mini burger patties are skewered on kebabs with clawing low-carb toppings like bacon, lettuce, tomato, and pickle chips.

Courtesy of BonAppleTeach.

4. Keto Broccoli Salad 

Broccoli, cheddar cheese, bacon, and sunflower seeds are tossed in a creamy and tangy dressing. Traditional broccoli salad calls for a sweet and creamy dressing, but this is one of many keto BBQ sides that’s sweetened with a sugar substitute.

Courtesy of Whole Lotta Yum.

5. Creamy Cauliflower Salad

This creamy salad has all the flavors of traditional potato salad, but is made with low-carb cauliflower instead of potatoes. It’s one of our favorite keto BBQ sides that’s both delicious and healthy.

Courtesy of All Day I Dream About Food.

6. Grilled Pizza Dough with Mozzarella and Arugula

Next on our list of keto grill recipes is this pizza that starts with a homemade dough, known as Fathead dough. It’s made from a blend of cheese, almond flour, coconut flour, and ground flax seed.

Courtesy of Joy Filled Eats.

7. Barbecue Green Beans

Traditional baked or BBQ beans aren’t keto-friendly since most beans are high in carbs. This recipe used green beans, which are lower in carbs. To make it one of your easy keto BBQ sides, be sure to use sugar-free ketchup and swap an alternative sweetener, such as allulose, for the brown sugar.

Courtesy of Belle of the Kitchen.

8. Grilled Caesar Salad

If you’re in need of keto BBQ sides for grilled chicken or fish, try this grilled salad. Romaine hearts are grilled until lightly charred and topped with parmesan cheese and an easy Caesar salad. Just skip the croutons to make it keto.

Courtesy of The Recipe Critic.

9. Keto BBQ Ribs

These keto BBQ ribs are made with a no-sugar DIY sauce and can be either baked or grilled for fall off the bone goodness.

Courtesy of Here to Cook.

10. Grilled Chimichurri Chicken

Chimichurri sauce is a keto-friendly option to sugary marinades and sauces. This keto BBQ recipe is  made from fresh herbs, olive oil, and garlic so it packs tons of flavor and can complement a variety of proteins, from drumsticks to steak and salmon.

Courtesy of Tastes Lovely.

11. Grilled Cajun Shrimp & Sausage Skewers

Dry rubs and spice blends are another simple option for adding extra flavor to grilled proteins. This recipe includes a homemade cajun spice blend. These skewers may be 11th on our list of keto cookout ideas. But make no mistake, it’s definitely one of our favorite keto grill recipes.

Courtesy of What Great Grandma Ate

12. Grilled Cauliflower Bacon Mac & Cheese

There’s no need to go without a side of mac and cheese with your BBQ ribs. Pasta is replaced with low-carb cauliflower in this next of our recommended keto grill recipes. Cauliflower steaks are grilled and then crumbled into a creamy cheese sauce.

Courtesy of BonAppleTeach.

Of course, a list of keto cookout ideas isn’t complete without snacks and appetizers to munch on while you’re grilling. Chomps meat sticks are ready-to-eat and available in a variety of proteins and flavors. Try chopping them into small pieces for an easy, keto cookout idea to cheese and charcuterie platters.

👇 Featured Product 💪

Original Beef
Snack Sticks
1.15 oz

Original Beef

10 or 24 Pack
Only available


Melissa Mitri, MS, RD

Melissa Mitri, MS, RD

Melissa Mitri, RD Melissa is a health writer with over 12 years of experience in the field of nutrition. She specializes in helping women move away from restrictive habits that lead to vicious yo-yo weight cycles. Melissa enjoys writing about health, nutrition, and fitness with the goal of simplifying complex health topics for the reader. You can find out more about Melissa at