Sample Low-Carb Single-Day Menu

Steak cooking in a pan with mushrooms and onions
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A low-carb diet is one of the best ways to lose weight, and there are plenty of diets which follow a low-carb meal plan. Low-carb diets include the paleo diet, Atkins diet, ketogenic diet, low-carb, Mediterranean diet, Whole30, and a general low-carb diet.

Sample One-Day, Low-Carb Diet Menu

Not all diets are the same, so if you are following a specific program, make sure you know what it restricts and what it allows. The following sample menu works for a general low-carb diet. Modifications can be made so that it adopts to grain-free and gluten-free plans as well as vegetarian and vegan diets.


If you have celiac disease or a gluten sensitivity, pick a gluten-free cereal such as something rice or corn-based. If you are following a paleo or grain-free diet, cereal is not an option. Instead of cereal, you can try making breakfast products like muffins using almond or coconut flour.


  • Salad using 4 cups chopped romaine or other dark green lettuce (i.e., not iceberg), half an avocado, 4 ounces cooked chicken meat, and vinaigrette dressing such as sweet and sour lime dressing.


  • 1/4 cup whole almonds


  • Grilled or pan-fried steak (5 ounces raw)
  • 1 cup green beans, prepared as you like them
  • 1 cup mushroom and peppers with wine and herbs

If you are a pescatarian, vegetarian, or vegan, you can swap the meat and chicken out for beans, tofu, eggs, nuts, or fish. Keep in mind, if you change the protein source, how much protein you are consuming may change. Always read your labels to see how much protein a synthetic meat has as compared to carbs.

Nutritional Analysis for the Sample Low-Carb Menu

The above menu includes a total 26 grams effective carbohydrate, plus 32 grams fiber.

For Atkins Induction, leave off the mushrooms and pepper dish at dinner, and the total carb is slightly less than 20 grams of carb plus 29 grams fiber. The menu also contains 95 grams of protein and about 1500 calories.​

Note: Calories can be adjusted by adding and subtracting protein and fat, or, if your particular carbohydrate needs vary from this, by changing amounts of carbohydrate foods.

All menus have essentially all essential vitamins and minerals except for calcium and Vitamin D. “Essentially” means that one particular vitamin might be a bit under one day or another. For the most part, these menus far exceed the minimum requirements.

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