Low Carb Indian Food

Medically Reviewed by Dr. Aman Priya Khanna
Written by Sangeeta Sharma, last updated on 19 December 2023| min read
Low Carb Indian Food

Quick Summary

  • Looking for delicious low-carb Indian food?
  • Indian cuisine is a treasure of flavours, with plenty of low-carb options that are both satisfying and nutritious.
  • With a low-carb Indian food list, you won’t have to sacrifice taste to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Are you on a quest for delicious low-carb Indian food that won’t derail your healthy eating goals? Look no further! Indian cuisine is a treasure of flavours, with plenty of low-carb options that are both satisfying and nutritious.

Say goodbye to guilt and hello to a world of delightful Indian flavours, all while staying on the low-carb track. With a low-carb Indian food list, you won’t have to sacrifice taste to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Read the following blog to learn some delicious recipes - a treat for your taste buds and health.

What is a Low-Carb Diet?

A low-carb Indian keto diet is a dietary approach that restricts the consumption of carbohydrates, particularly refined carbs and sugars. It emphasises the intake of protein, healthy fats, and vegetables within the framework of Indian cuisine. The reduction in carbohydrates puts the body in ketosis. It is a metabolic state where the body burns fat for energy instead of glucose. 

The benefits of following a low-carb Indian keto diet include:

  1. Weight loss

  2. Improves blood sugar control

  3. Improves good cholesterol and reduces bad cholesterol levels

  4. Reduces risk of metabolic syndrome (diabetes and heart disease)

  5. Reduces cravings

  6. Lowers triglyceride levels (fat molecules that circulate in the bloodstream)

  7. Reduces symptoms of Alzheimer's and Parkinson’s disease

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Foods to Eat and Avoid While on a Low-Carb Keto Diet

 While some foods are rich in carbohydrates, their substitutes may be perfect to prevent excessive consumption of carbs. It is important to understand the foods that are high and low in carbs. The following table shows what you should eat and avoid while on a keto diet. 

Foods to Eat

Foods to Avoid

Leafy greens and cruciferous vegetables like:

  1. Broccoli

  2. Spinach

  3. Kale

  4. Cauliflower

  5. Tomatoes

  6. Brussel sprouts

  7. Brinjal

  8. Bell peppers

  9. Asparagus

  10. Mushroom,

  11. Green beans

Starchy vegetables like:

  1. Potatoes

  2. Sweet potatoes

  3. Sweet corn

  4. Peas

Low-carb fruits like:

  1. Avocados

  2. Strawberries

  3. Olives

  4. Apricots

  5. Grapefruit

Canned fruit like:

  1. Peaches

  2. Plums

  3. Cranberries

Eggs and meat like:

  1. Beef

  2. Lamb

  3. Chicken

Breads and grains like:

  1. White bread

  2. White rice

  3. Those made from refined flour

Seafood like:

  1. Shrimp

  2. Lobster

  3. Salmon

  4. Shellfish

  1. Pasta

Nuts and seeds like:

  1. Cashews

  2. Almonds

  3. Coconuts

  4. Pumpkin seeds

  5. Peanuts

  6. Walnuts

  7. Chia seeds

  1. Sugary breakfast cereals

Dairy products like:

  1. Cheese

  2. Greek yoghurt

  3. Full-fat yoghurt

  4. Heavy cream

  1. Sweetened fruit yoghurt

Fats and oils like:

  1. Butter

  2. Extra virgin olive oil

  3. Avocado oil

  1. Honey or sugar in any form

Beverages like:

  1. Water

  2. Coffee

  3. Tea

  1. Beer and juice

Herbs and spices like:

  1. Salt

  2. Pepper

  3. Ginger

  4. Garlic

  5. Mustard

  6. Cinnamon

  7. Oregano

  1. Chips and crackers

Low-Carb Indian Food List

Several keto low-carb Indian foods are available to reduce the carb intake. Whether you are craving a savoury curry or a zesty tandoori dish, low-carb diet Indian food has got you covered! The following are 30 must-try Indian keto recipes: 

  1. Paneer Jalfrezi 

Paneer jalfrezi is a flavourful, low-carb Indian food that includes chunks of paneer cheese sautéed with bell peppers, onions, and tomatoes. The dish is seasoned with aromatic spices like coriander, cumin, turmeric, and garam masala. It is a wholesome and satisfying choice that caters to a carb-conscious lifestyle.

Paneer jalfrezi aids muscle maintenance and provides a sense of fullness, which may support weight management.


6.1 g


4.9 g


10.4 g

  1. Paneer Tikka

Next on the low-carb Indian vegetarian food list is paneer tikka. It has cubes of creamy paneer marinated in yoghurt, aromatic spices, and a squeeze of lemon juice. These marinated paneer cubes are threaded onto skewers and grilled for a smoky exterior and a soft, cheesy interior. Pair it with mint chutney and enjoy a guilt-free indulgence that’s delicious and nutritious.

Paneer tikka is a protein-rich dish that helps in muscle development. 


7.75 g


9.85 g


3.65 g

  1. Palak Paneer 

Palak paneer is a classic nutritious dish that combines the creamy goodness of paneer with a vibrant spinach gravy. This flavourful dish is spiced with a blend of traditional Indian spices and cooked with ginger, garlic, and onion. 

Low in carbohydrates and high in essential nutrients, it offers a delightful way to incorporate leafy greens and protein into a low-carb diet. Do you want a vegan twist for palak paneer? The answer is palak tofu! It is a mouth-watering dish that combines the goodness of spinach with tofu. These vegetarian dishes support overall health and provide essential nutrients. 


6.07 g


7.89 g


13.18 g

  1. Tandoori Cauliflower

Tandoori cauliflower or gobi is a delightful low-carb Indian dish that centres around cauliflower as the star ingredient. 

In this dish, cauliflower pieces are marinated in yoghurt and spices, such as cumin, turmeric, garam masala, and red chilli powder. The marinated cauliflower is grilled or air-fried until it turns crispy and golden. Packed with nutrients, it helps fight ageing, promotes digestive health, and supports weight loss. 


6.9 g


3.9 g


7.3 g

  1. Pumpkin Curry

Pumpkin curry is a delectable, low-carb Indian food for dinner that highlights the natural sweetness and earthy flavours of pumpkin. Chunks of pumpkin are simmered in a fragrant curry sauce made with cumin, chillies, ginger, onion, and garlic. 

You can enjoy the curry with pumpkin chunks or mash them using a potato masher. What’s more? It can be made in just 30 minutes! Rich in vitamin A, pumpkin curry supports immune function and overall eye health. 


9.8 g


2.94 g


5.63 g

  1. Baingan ka Bharta

In baingan ka bharta (mashed brinjal), brinjals are roasted until their skin burns and the flesh becomes tender and smoky. The roasted brinjal is mashed and cooked with onions, tomatoes, and aromatic spices like cumin, coriander, and chilli. 

Baingan ka bharta is rich in flavour and low in carbohydrates. This makes it an excellent choice for those seeking a carb-conscious Indian meal. Improved digestion and heart health are among the various benefits of this fibre-rich dish. 


12.57 g


1.69 g


5.28 g

  1. Cashew Vegetable Korma

Next on the low-carb Indian food list is cashew vegetable korma! The dish combines a creamy cashew-based sauce with vegetables like carrots, cauliflower, and green beans. The vegetables are simmered in a sauce made from ground cashews, yoghurt, and spices. 

Enjoy cashew vegetable korma as a comforting main course or a side dish for a delicious low-carb dining experience. With several nutrient-rich ingredients, it offers benefits like improved heart health and stable blood sugar levels. 


9.1 g


3.2 g


8.1 g

  1. Green Beans

Green beans can be transformed into a delectable, low-carb Indian dish that is both nutritious and flavourful. 

In this preparation, green beans are sautéed with traditional Indian spices, including cumin, mustard seeds, turmeric, coriander, and ginger. It serves as a healthy side dish that complements various main courses. Green beans are a good source of fibre and vitamins. It helps support digestive health, fight inflammation, and regulate blood pressure.  


7.9 g


1.9 g


0.3 g

  1. Keto Upma

Keto upma is a delightful low-carb twist on the traditional Indian breakfast favourite, upma. This dish swaps traditional semolina (sooji) with cauliflower rice. It offers the same hearty and savoury experience with a fraction of the carbs. 

Keto upma is cooked with an aromatic blend of spices, colourful vegetables, and ghee. This low-carb Indian food maintains all the flavours that make upma so beloved while reducing carbohydrate intake. It helps with weight management and blood sugar control while providing essential nutrients. 


9 g


5 g


20 g

  1. Bharwa Bhindi 

Bharwa bhindi (stuffed okra) is a delightful Indian dish that showcases the flavours of tender okra stuffed with a savoury, spiced filling. 

Fresh okra is carefully slit and stuffed with ground spices for this low-carb keto food. These spices include cumin, coriander, salt, red chilli powder, and amchur (dried mango powder). These stuffed okra are then pan-fried to perfection, resulting in a crispy dish bursting with flavour. The fibre-rich dish aids digestion, supports healthy blood sugar levels, and lowers bad cholesterol levels. 


10.5 g


2.6 g


10.5 g

  1. Lauki 

Lauki, also known as bottle gourd, is like a hidden gem in Indian cuisine! This versatile vegetable boasts a low-carb and low-calorie profile. Plus, it steps in as a healthier alternative to starchier veggies. 

You can add lauki to various dishes with ease. From lauki kofta to lauki soup, there are several different options to consume this keto Indian vegetable. Lauki promotes weight management, aids digestion, and supports overall well-being.


7.61 g


1.68 g


3.5 g

  1. Brussel Sprouts Curry 

Brussels Sprouts Sabji - a fast Indian-style stir-fry that takes Brussels sprouts to a whole new level in under 20 minutes! The dish only needs a handful of ingredients, including Brussels sprouts, onions, tomatoes, and a dash of spices. 

It is a savoury delight that ticks all the dietary boxes - vegan, gluten-free, keto, and low-carb. The Brussels sprouts recipe is as easy as it is delicious! This dish offers several benefits, like maintaining healthy blood sugar levels and reducing inflammation. It also helps the blood clot. 


8.6 g


2.6 g


1.6 g

  1. Low-Carb Indian Vegetable Samosas

Who doesn’t like samosas? But it is a known fact that samosas are unhealthy. Not anymore! Low-carb vegetable samosa is a healthier twist on the beloved classic. By reducing hunger, this low-calorie option helps in weight management. 

These samosas are baked to crispy perfection instead of being fried. The filling inside these golden parcels includes minced cauliflower and onion with cumin, garam masala, fresh ginger, and cilantro. Even those who typically shy away from cauliflower will find it irresistible.


17 g


5 g


16 g

  1. Turmeric Cauliflower Soup

A bowl of warm, comforting turmeric cauliflower soup is a low-carb keto masterpiece. This velvety soup boasts the golden hues of turmeric blended with the creamy goodness of cauliflower. 

It is a wholesome creation that captures the essence of Indian flavours while keeping carbs in check. With every spoonful, you will discover the magic of a dish that is as good for your taste buds as it is for your well-being. It is an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory dish that helps boost the immunity system and supports digestion. 


16 g


6 g


26 g

  1. Keto Zucchini Fritters

Tired of zucchini pasta but want all its low-carb benefits? Keto zucchini fritters are a classic twist that offers a flavour-packed alternative. Grated zucchini is mixed with almond flour, eggs, and savoury spices to create a keto-friendly batter. These fritters are then pan-fried for crispy, guilt-free bites that can be enjoyed as a snack, appetiser, or a side dish. 

Keto zucchini fritters are a delicious way to incorporate more vegetables into your low-carb diet. The low carbohydrate content in the dish can help promote stable blood sugar levels. 


5.7 g


2 g


6.9 g

  1. Kachumber Salad

Kachumber is the epitome of freshness in Indian cuisine. This vibrant salad includes onions, tomatoes, crisp cucumbers, mint, and a hint of green chillies. Its simplicity makes Kachumber delightful - no dressings, oils, or fats. 

It is a versatile creation that adapts to your tastes, allowing you to explore endless variations. And the best part? It is vegan, oil-free, and gluten-free, making it a guilt-free and flavourful addition to your table. The vegetables in this salad help lose weight, make the skin glow and improve heart health. 


6.4 g


0.5 g


0.2 g

  1. Chicken Tikka Kebab

Are you looking for a non-veg version of paneer tikka? Chicken tikka kebab is a mouth-watering dish with chicken pieces marinated in yoghurt and aromatic spices. These marinated chicken chunks are skewered and grilled to perfection for smoky edges and tender, juicy meat. 

It is a protein-packed favourite for anyone seeking a guilt-free, low-carb twist on a classic Indian appetiser. Enjoy it with a side of mint chutney for a truly satisfying and healthy culinary experience. Chicken tikka kebab is a lean protein option that aids muscle growth and repair. 


5.7 g


17 g


18 g

  1. Coconut Shrimp Curry 

It is an Indian delight brimming with ginger, garlic, onions, and tomatoes and finished with creamy coconut milk. This dish satisfies your taste buds and is keto-friendly, gluten-free, and dairy-free. 

Coconut shrimp curry regulates cholesterol levels and decreases the risk of cardiovascular disease. For a vegan twist, you can easily swap out shrimp for mushrooms and still enjoy the creamy, aromatic goodness of this curry.


5 g


9 g


6 g

  1. Keto Chicken Biryani

Indulge in guilt-free biryani bliss with cauliflower rice keto biryani! Here’s an irresistible recipe for keto chicken biryani that lets you savour the rich flavours without the guilt. 

In this keto-friendly rendition, you must swap traditional rice for cauliflower rice, pairing it with chicken, aromatic spices, and ghee. Not only is it incredibly delicious, but it is also wonderfully low-carb, just the way you want it to be! From aiding weight loss to boosting the immunity system, it offers several health benefits. 


9 g


59 g


18 g

  1. Keto Chicken Korma

Indulge in the rich and aromatic world of low-carb Indian cuisine with keto chicken korma! The dish’s low-carb, high-fat content helps with fat loss and weight management. In just thirty minutes, you can savour the blend of fragrant spices and a creamy, nutty sauce. 

Plus, it is a perfect choice for those seeking low-carbohydrate Indian food that’s also gluten-free and keto-friendly. This tangy and flavourful chicken korma pairs wonderfully with cauliflower rice. 


5 g


28 g


28 g

  1. Mutton Curry

Elevate your low-carb Indian dining experience with the Indian-style keto mutton curry. The dish is masterfully seasoned with fragrant cumin, green cardamom, and a touch of pepper. The result? Tender, melt-in-your-mouth meat!

Rich in flavour but not overwhelmingly spicy, it is a delicious Indian keto creation. This low-carb Indian food promises an unforgettable journey through the vibrant tastes of India. It supports muscle maintenance and provides essential nutrients as part of a balanced diet.


1.6 g


17 g


15 g

  1. Chicken Tikka Masala

Keto chicken tikka masala is as delightful as the traditional version but has fewer carbs. To create a flavourful base, begin by sautéing white onions, garlic, and ginger in creamy butter. Next, introduce diced chicken, garam masala, chilli powder, paprika, and cumin. 

As the chicken browns, let it simmer in a tomato broth, and finish it off with natural yoghurt. This low-carb, keto-friendly dish is as comforting as it is wholesome. It controls blood pressure, helps lose weight, and reduces bad cholesterol levels. 


7.35 g


15.37 g


7.69 g

  1. Keto Butter Chicken

Keto butter chicken is a mildly spicy dish that boasts low-carb goodness. The recipe includes a simple marinade, easy butter chicken sauce, and everyday pantry staples.

It delivers an authentic restaurant-quality taste right to your home kitchen. Butter chicken is a delicious keto, low-carb Indian food that will satisfy your cravings. Moreover, being the star ingredient, chicken helps in muscle growth and weight management. 


2.84 g


11.49 g


11.44 g

  1. Egg Bhurji

Egg Bhurji, or Anda Bhurji, is a beloved Indian-style scrambled eggs recipe. It includes onions, tomatoes, ginger, fresh coriander, and warm spices. Not only does it offer a burst of flavour, but it is also a protein powerhouse while keeping the carb count low. 

This delightful dish is a quick and wholesome breakfast or brunch, taking just 15 minutes from stove to plate. Nourish your day with this healthy Indian classic and get its several benefits - from heart health to weight loss!


6.33 g


3.75 g


5.02 g

  1. Egg Curry

As the temperature drops, nothing is quite as comforting as a soul-warming meal to cosy up with. Keto egg curry is the ultimate cold-weather comfort food. Plus, it is highly nutritious and helps with overall growth. 

This dish is a breeze to prepare and bursts with authentic Indian flavours. It features a delightful blend of tomatoes, onions, and chillies. This curry promises to ignite your taste buds while keeping those carbs in check. 


7.54 g


5.95 g


7.11 g

  1. Salmon Tikka Masala

Imagine a mouth-watering salmon tikka masala gently simmering in a creamy tomato sauce infused with coconut milk and various spices. This Indian spiced salmon recipe is quick to prepare on the stovetop. 

What is the secret to its incredible taste? It is as simple as adding tikka masala powder and salt to salmon. This makes it a delectable keto fried fish recipe perfect for effortless weeknight dinners. Not only does it help lose weight, but it also maintains blood pressure and lowers harmful cholesterol levels. 


12 g


7 g


9.5 g

  1. Chettinad Chicken

Chettinad chicken curry - a South Indian gem that deserves a permanent spot on your monthly curry menu! This delectable chicken curry boasts a naturally low-carb and gluten-free profile. But is it flavour-free too? Not even slightly! 

Made with boneless chicken, it includes a rich blend of aromatic spices. These include turmeric, red chillies, coconut, coriander, cumin seeds, black pepper, onions, and garlic. The result? A delicious keto curry that supports weight management and muscle maintenance.


7.19 g


16.22 g


10.07 g

  1. Chicken Keema

For all the Indian food enthusiasts embracing a low-carb lifestyle, you don’t have to bid farewell to your beloved flavours. Chicken keema is a low-carb Indian food to enjoy the flavours you crave. 

While the dish is traditionally cooked with peas or potatoes, you can substitute it with green beans for a low-carb version. Chicken keema helps maintain bone health, boosts immunity, and supports muscle growth. 


12 g


8 g


9.2 g

  1. Chicken Saag

Chicken saag or palak chicken is a timeless Indian curry that combines the rich flavours of tender chicken, fresh spinach, and aromatic spices. It is a culinary masterpiece where juicy chicken pieces gracefully absorb the essence of spinach and spices. The result? A dish that is nothing short of delightful!

It is intensely delicious, keto-friendly, and gluten-free, offering flavour and nutrition in a single dish. Plus, you can cook this low-carb Indian food in under an hour, making it a perfect choice for a quick, wholesome meal. The dish offers several benefits. These include promoting eye health, reducing hypertension, and anti-inflammatory properties. 


3.1 g


8.6 g


9.7 g

  1. Tandoori Chicken Salad 

Whoever claimed that salads must be bland clearly hasn’t tasted the magic of tandoori chicken salad. Infuse your salad with vibrant flavours and turn it into a delicious and healthy dish. Tandoori chicken is marinated in yoghurt mixed with aromatic spices. Next, it is perfectly grilled. This results in tender, charred pieces bursting with flavour. 

The chicken pieces are tossed with colourful vegetables like lettuce, cucumber, and tomatoes. Tandoori chicken salad is an excellent choice to enjoy the essence of Indian cuisine while keeping the carb intake in check. Besides weight loss, this salad also helps build and maintain bones and muscles. 


12.3 g


34.9 g


19.5 g

Please Note: While reducing your carb intake can be healthy, eliminating it may be unnecessary. Carbs are your body’s primary energy source, and eliminating them from your diet may have some downsides. Therefore, instead of a no-carb Indian diet, you should focus on a low-carb diet.

Challenges of a Low-Carb Diet With Indian Food

Although a low-carb diet offers several benefits, incorporating it into Indian food can be challenging. Why? The following points explain these challenges and their reasons:

  1. Carb-Centric Staples: Traditional Indian cuisine revolves around carbohydrate-heavy staples like rice, wheat, bread, and lentils. These form the basis of many meals, making it challenging to reduce carb intake significantly.

  1. Limited Veg Options: Vegetarianism is common in India. Many vegetarian dishes rely on legumes, which can be carb-rich. Finding low-carb vegetarian options without these staples can be a challenge.

  1. Lack of Awareness: Low-carb diets are relatively new in India. Awareness and resources for cooking and ingredients are still limited. Access to low-carb products can also be a challenge.

Adding Low-Carb Indian Food to Your Lifestyle

Incorporating low-carb Indian food into your lifestyle can be both delicious and nutritious. Whether you eat out or cook at home, there are plenty of Indian food options to help you decrease your carb intake. Three primary rules to add low-carb Indian dishes to your diet include:

  1. Explore Low-Carb Dishes: Focus on straightforward dishes with low-carb vegetables and simply prepared meats. You can opt for tandoori dishes, tikka dishes, or kebabs, as they have the lowest carb content. 

  1. Avoid High-Carb Ingredients: Steer clear of common high-carb ingredients like:

    1. Tamarind paste

    2. Chickpeas

    3. Mango

    4. Rice

    5. Naan

    6. Potatoes

    7. Lentils (dal)

    8. Fried foods

  1. Plan Ahead: Plan your meals to ensure you have low-carb options readily available. This can help you avoid reaching for high-carb alternatives when you are hungry.

  1. Consult a Dietician: If unsure about creating a balanced, low-carb Indian meal plan, consider consulting a registered dietitian or nutritionist. They can provide personalised guidance.


Low-carb Indian food lets you enjoy the vibrant flavours of Indian cuisine while keeping your carb intake in check. You can enjoy your favourite dishes health-consciously with creative substitutions and mindful ingredient choices. You must consult a dietician or nutritionist to plan a diet meal specific to your needs and goals. 

The experts at HexaHealth offer holistic guidance to enhance your overall well-being. With our expert advice and resources, you can embark on a comprehensive wellness journey tailored to your needs. We can help you connect with doctors who are experts in their field. So what are you waiting for? Schedule an appointment today! 

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Diet Chart for Fatty Liver Diet for Constipation

Frequently Asked Questions

Examples of low-carb Indian foods include:

  1. Paneer tikka

  2. Palak paneer

  3. Tandoori cauliflower

  4. Cashew vegetable korma

  5. Bharwa bhindi

  6. Keto chicken biryani

  7. Chicken tikka kebab

  8. Egg bhurji

  9. Coconut shrimp curry

  10. Mutton curry 

These dishes focus on lean proteins, low-carb vegetables, and spices while minimising high-carb ingredients like rice and bread.

You can find a low-carb Indian food list PDF on various health and nutrition websites. You can also search for these PDFs on search engines.

Low-carb Indian vegetarian food list includes the following options:

  1. Paneer jalfrezi

  2. Palak paneer 

  3. Paneer tikka

  4. Tandoori cauliflower 

  5. Cashew vegetable korma

  6. Baingan ka bharta

  7. Turmeric cauliflower soup

  8. Brussel sprouts curry 

  9. Palak tofu

  10. Lauki

Ideal low-carb Indian food for dinner include:

  1. Palak paneer

  2. Pumpkin curry

  3. Brussel sprouts curry 

  4. Tandoori chicken

  5. Salmon tikka masala

These choices offer satisfying, carb-conscious dinners.

A low-carb diet restricts carbohydrate intake and focuses on proteins and fats. In Indian cuisine, it involves using lean meats, paneer, low-carb vegetables, and spices for flavourful dishes. It reduces high-carb ingredients like rice, bread, and sugary items.

Yes, several Indian foods are low in carbohydrates. These low-carbohydrate Indian foods include:

  1. Palak paneer

  2. Cauliflower rice

  3. Kebabs

  4. Tandoori chicken

  5. Butter chicken

  6. Chicken saag

A no-carb Indian diet is challenging but possible with careful choices. A day on a no-carb diet can look like the following:

  1. Breakfast: Cheesy eggs paired with broccoli and chicken sausage

  2. Lunch: Flank steak and arugula salad drizzled with olive oil dressing, complemented by a side of cashews

  3. Dinner: Coconut-crusted shrimp alongside roasted asparagus and mushrooms

  4. Snacks: Turkey jerky and a creamy avocado

Consult a dietitian for personalised guidance.

Carb-less Indian food includes:

  1. Meat

  2. Fish

  3. Eggs

  4. Cheese

  5. Oils

  6. Butter

  7. Water

  8. Plain coffee or tea 

  9. High-fat fruits like coconut and avocados

  10. Herbs and spices

 You can make traditional Indian dishes with fewer carbs with the following steps:

  1. Focus on lean proteins like chicken or paneer.

  2. Use low-carb vegetables generously.

  3. Reduce rice and bread portions.

  4. Incorporate spices for flavour.

  5. Opt for yoghurt-based sauces.

  6. Explore low-carb substitutions like cauliflower rice or almond flour for rotis. 

Popular keto-friendly Indian recipes include:

  1. Palak paneer

  2. Palak tofu

  3. Bharwa bhindi

  4. Butter chicken

  5. Chicken tikka masala

  6. Tandoori chicken salad

These dishes use rich spices, lean meats, and low-carb vegetables while minimising or substituting high-carb ingredients.

You can enjoy Indian cuisine on a low-carb diet by:

  1. Choosing dishes with lean proteins, non-starchy veggies, and flavourful spices

  2. Avoiding rice and bread

  3. Opting for tandoori options

  4. Using yoghurt-based sauces

  5. Experimenting with cauliflower rice or almond flour for keto-friendly alternatives

The key principles of low-carb eating with Indian food include:

  1. Reducing the intake of carbohydrates

  2. Focusing on proteins

This includes limiting grains, legumes, breads, sweets, etc. Instead, it focuses on lean meat, non-starchy vegetables, spices, etc.

Low-carb Indian cooking can include ingredients like:

  1. Lean meats

  2. Paneer (cottage cheese)

  3. Non-starchy vegetables (spinach, cauliflower)

  4. Spices (cumin, turmeric)

  5. Yoghurt (Greek or full-fat yoghurt)

  6. Healthy fats (coconut oil, ghee)

These items are versatile and align with a low-carb diet.

Some low-carb substitutes for common Indian ingredients include:

  1. Paneer or tofu instead of potato

  2. Cauliflower rice instead of regular rice

  3. Coconut milk instead of dairy milk

  4. Almond flour instead of wheat flour

High-carb Indian dishes can be modified to become low-carb by substituting starchy ingredients with lean proteins like chicken or tofu. Using cauliflower rice and almond flour instead of regular rice and wheat flour can also help achieve a low-carb diet.

 Yes, there are several low-carb Indian snacks and appetisers. These include:

  1. Paneer tikka

  2. Baked vegetable samosa

  3. Chicken tikka kebab

  4. Egg bhurji

  5. Tandoori chicken skewers

These options prioritise protein while avoiding high-carb elements like potatoes and bread.

Low-carb Indian breakfast options include:

  1. Keto upma

  2. Egg bhurji

  3. Omelette

  4. Avocado coconut milk smoothie

  5. Spinach smoothie

When dining at Indian restaurants, choose the following low-carb options:

  1. Curries (without high-carb ingredients)

  2. Spinach dishes

  3. Paneer dishes

  4. Cauliflower (without potato)

  5. Okra (bhindi)

  6. Tandoori chicken

  7. Mixed grill

In a low-carb Indian food plan, you should always look for:

  1. Lean proteins

  2. Low-carb vegetables

  3. Spices

  4. Yoghurt-based sauces

It is important to limit high-carb ingredients like rice and bread. 

Yes, there are low-carb Indian foods for weight loss. These include:

  1. Lean meats like chicken

  2. Seafood like shrimp and fish

  3. Eggs

  4. Paneer

  5. Vegetable-heavy curries

These options are satisfying, minimise carbs, and support calorie control.

A sample for one full day of low-carb Indian meal plan is as follows:

  1. Early morning: one glass of warm water with lemon

  2. Breakfast (9 am): One omelette with capsicum

  3. Mid-morning (11 am): One cup of chamomile tea or green tea

  4. Lunch (1:30 pm): One cup of mixed vegetable soup, oats upma, and one cup of raita

  5. Mid-afternoon (3 pm): One glass of lemon mint-infused water

  6. Evening (5 pm): One or two boiled eggs

  7. Dinner (8 pm): Tomato Caprese salad (2 tomatoes and 100 g paneer) and clear veg soup

Consult a nutritionist for a meal plan tailored to your needs and preferences. 

Yes, there are some challenges in following a low-carb diet with Indian cuisines. These include:

  1. The staple food in India, like rice, bread, and legumes, is high in carbohydrates.

  2. There are limited veg, low-carb options for a vast proportion of vegetarians and vegans in India. 

  3. The Indian population does not have the awareness or resources to follow a low-carb diet.

Benefits of incorporating low-carb Indian foods into your diet include:

  1. Weight management and potential for weight loss

  2. Improves blood sugar control

  3. Improves good cholesterol and reduces bad cholesterol levels

  4. Reduces risk of metabolic diseases

  5. Better appetite control

To maintain a balanced diet on a low-carb approach, you should eat lean proteins, non-starchy vegetables, and healthy fats. It is important to do the following:

  1. Monitor portion sizes

  2. Include a variety of foods

  3. Stay hydrated

  4. Consider consulting a dietitian for personalised guidance


All the articles on HexaHealth are supported by verified medically-recognized sources such as; peer-reviewed academic research papers, research institutions, and medical journals. Our medical reviewers also check references of the articles to prioritize accuracy and relevance. Refer to our detailed editorial policy for more information.

  1. Salis S, Virmani A, Priyambada L, Mohan M, Hansda K, Beaufort C. 'Old Is Gold': How Traditional Indian Dietary Practices Can Support Pediatric Diabetes Management. Nutrients. 2021 Dec 10;13(12):4427. doi: 10.3390/nu13124427. PMID: 34959978; PMCID: PMC8707693.link
  2. Dixit AA, Azar KM, Gardner CD, Palaniappan LP. Incorporation of whole, ancient grains into a modern Asian Indian diet to reduce the burden of chronic disease. Nutr Rev. 2011 Aug;69(8):479-88. doi: 10.1111/j.1753-4887.2011.00411.x. PMID: 21790614; PMCID: PMC3146027.link
  3. Bhattacharya M. A historical exploration of Indian diets and a possible link to insulin resistance syndrome. Appetite. 2015 Dec;95:421-54. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2015.07.002. Epub 2015 Jul 21. PMID: 26206172.link
  4. Oh R, Gilani B, Uppaluri KR. Low-Carbohydrate Diet. [Updated 2023 Aug 17]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan-. link
  5. Mohan V, Unnikrishnan R, Shobana S, Malavika M, Anjana RM, Sudha V. Are excess carbohydrates the main link to diabetes & its complications in Asians? Indian J Med Res. 2018 Nov;148(5):531-538. doi: 10.4103/ijmr.IJMR_1698_18. PMID: 30666980; PMCID: PMC6366262.link
  6. Raghuram N, Anand A, Mathur D, Patil SS, Singh A, Rajesh SK, Hari G, Verma P, Nanda S, Hongasandra N. Prospective Study of Different Staple Diets of Diabetic Indian Population. Ann Neurosci. 2021 Jul;28(3-4):129-136. doi: 10.1177/09727531211013972. Epub 2021 Oct 24. PMID: 35341223; PMCID: PMC8948325link
  7. Seshadri P, Iqbal N. Low carbohydrate diets for weight loss: historical & environmental perspective. Indian J Med Res. 2006 Jun;123(6):739-47. PMID: 16885595.link
  8. Kumar NK, Merrill JD, Carlson S, German J, Yancy WS Jr. Adherence to Low-Carbohydrate Diets in Patients with Diabetes: A Narrative Review. Diabetes Metab Syndr Obes. 2022 Feb 18;15:477-498. doi: 10.2147/DMSO.S292742. PMID: 35210797; PMCID: PMC8863186.link
  9. Dorans KS, Bazzano LA, Qi L, He H, Appel LJ, Samet JM, Chen J, Mills KT, Nguyen BT, O'Brien MJ, Uwaifo GI, He J. Low-carbohydrate dietary pattern on glycemic outcomes trial (ADEPT) among individuals with elevated hemoglobin A1c: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial. Trials. 2021 Feb 1;22link
  10. Naude CE, Schoonees A, Nguyen KA, Senekal M, Young T, Garner P, Chaplin M, Volmink J. Low carbohydrate versus balanced carbohydrate diets for reducing weight and cardiovascular risk. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2019 May 14;2019(5):CD013334. doi: 10.1002/14651858.CD013334. PMCID: PMC6515305.link

Updated on : 19 December 2023

Disclaimer: The information provided here is for educational and learning purposes only. It doesn't cover every medical condition and might not be relevant to your personal situation. This information isn't medical advice, isn't meant for diagnosing any condition, and shouldn't replace talking to a certified medical or healthcare professional.


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