What condiments can you use on the carnivore diet? Some condiments are 100% carnivore approved, some are okay for most people, and some condiments really are best left in the grocery store while you do the carnivore diet.
Good Carnivore Condiments
You can make quite a few condiments out of animal foods, making them completely suitable for the carnivore diet! As a bonus, these condiments have beneficial qualities, such as omega 3s fatty acids, electrolytes, amino acids, and probiotics.
Fish sauce is made from just sea salt and anchovies, and it gives a delicious umami flavor! Watch ingredients carefully, I recommend Red Boat Fish Sauce.
Serving suggestions: Add to chicken to spruce up the flavor, stir fry beef cubes in tallow and sprinkle with fish sauce, add to fish, and add to eggs!
Yes, you are not only ‘allowed’ but encouraged to spread your steaks with butter on the carnivore diet! Butter can be eaten in slices, spread over meat, mixed into ground beef, or melted and drizzled on seafood. Yum!
Sensitive to dairy? Usually even those who are sensitive to dairy can tolerate ghee. You can purchase ghee at specialty stores, or you can easily make your own at home with high-quality butter!
Recommended: Raw local butter, Organic Pastures brand, or Kerrygold brand.
Recipe: Homemade Ghee (Clarified Butter)
Reduction Sauce is thick sauce made from meat stock. To make, use chicken stock or drippings from a roast. Skim the fat off and save for another use. Simmer over medium-low heat the stock or drippings until thickened, adding salt after reducing to desired consistency. Spoon this rich sauce over sliced meat, chicken, or more! For an extra treat, blend in some bone marrow, yum!
Yes, you can make mayonnaise with melted bacon grease and egg yolks! From there, you can make chicken salad, steak salad, tuna salad, deviled eggs, and more!
Totally a condiment, adding sprinkles of crispy bacon (homemade bacon bits) is a topping every carnivore can get behind! Simply dice up bacon and fry as usual!
Runny yolks! Special sauce made by chickens and full of rich fatty acids, protein, and more, adding a soft-cooked egg to anything gives it a delicious sauce. Try on steak, cottage cheese, or any other carnivore-friendly meal.
Homemade sour cream has beneficial probiotics, and is made from your milk or cream of choice- so you control the ingredients and the fat content! Sour cream adds some tang and creaminess to any carnivore meal.
For those who have lactose issues, homemade sour cream is much lower in lactose (milk sugar) than fluid milk.
Follow the yogurt recipe for never-fail sour cream or yogurt that is carnivore friendly: How to Make 24-Hour Yogurt in the Dehydrator
Cheese sauce is another creamy carnivore condiment that you’ll love on everything! Non-carnivores in your family will love it on veggies as well.
Lemon Juice is starting to veer into the ‘not for everyone’ on the carnivore diet, but lemon juice is a great condiment for many!
Serving suggestions: Squeeze into homemade chicken stock, over scrambled eggs, or dunk your fish and seafood into lemon juice.
Looking for carnivore diet meal ideas? Check out the 30-Day Carnivore Meal Plan! It has hundreds of simple but delightfully nutrient-dense recipes, including reminders about yummy condiments and sauces that support your carnivore diet.
Mustard on the carnivore diet really isn’t all that bad. It’s not carnivore, in that it’s not made from animal products, but it’s not bad enough for me to lump in the ‘bad’ classification of condiments on the carnivore diet. Basic mustard is made from mustard seed, vinegar, turmeric, and salt. These are all seasonings, and used in small amounts add flavor and color to our meat!
Watch for: Sugar, preservatives, and pepper (nightshades). However, clean mustard can be found at nearly every grocery store- just look at the ingredients.
Homemade Ranch Dressing
Yes, you can easily make your own ranch dressing, and if you make it in sour cream rather than commercial mayonnaise, it really is pretty compatible with the carnivore diet!
Herbs and Spices
Fresh herbs and dried herbs and spices can be used on the carnivore diet, on the relaxed version. If you are trying to get extreme health issues under control, or
All plants, including herbs and spices, have some amounts of ‘anti nutrients’ that interfere with your digestion and uptake of the needed nutrients in meat. So, proceed with caution, but if you don’t need to be super strict on the carnivore diet, seasonings are okay!
Bad Carnivore Condiments
Food is not bad. But those who are doing the carnivore diet to help with health conditions will want to give healthy consideration before using any of these condiments. Proceed with caution, or not at all, with the following:
Nightshades, sweeteners, preservatives, and additives- no, thank you! If you really scour the shelves, or your make your own, you can use additive and sugar-free sauce. In any case, barbecue sauce will have night shades, which are some of the more problematic plants. If you have autoimmune disease, or suspect you do, it’s best to stay away!
Seasoning Blends and Seasoning Salts
Taco seasoning, seasoning salt, steak rub- often these pantry go-to meat additives contain sugar, MSG, starch, wheat, and other food additives. Make your own blends from whole seasonings if you must, and read labels carefully.
Overall, salt is perfect on its own and you don’t need the extras!
Ketchup and Tomato Sauce
As we talked about with the barbeque sauce above, tomatoes and products made with tomatoes and peppers are problematic for those with autoimmune issues. Ketchup also includes corn syrup or sugar most of the time, which we also want to stay away from! Choose a ‘good’ carnivore condiment from the list above in its place.
UGLY Carnivore Condiments
Avoid these inflammation-causing condiments as much as possible if you would like to see the health benefits that come from following the carnivore diet.
Mayo is made with seed oils, most commonly soybean and canola. A better choice is avocado-oil mayo, but we really prefer you just use butter, cream cheese, or sour cream to add creamy richness on the carnivore diet.
Commercial Salad Dressing
We all know of at least one recipe that uses a ‘salad dressing packet’ along with meat in the slow cooker. On the carnivore diet we want to not only steer clear of the starches and additives in commercial dressing, but in the bottled variety the base is nearly always soy or canola oil- both a no-go!
Breading on meat
You may think that now that you’re a carnivore, Kentucky Fried Chicken is the place to go, but hold up there! That thick crispy breading is made from wheat, additives (again!) and fried in hydrogenated seed oils. Yuck!
Instead, you can make your own breading at home using pork rind crumbs, and stay on carnivore while getting all the crispy goodness!
Recipe: Gluten-Free Scotch Eggs
Seed oils for frying
There are so many good fats on the carnivore diet, you really do not need to be using canola oil, or any other kind of plant-based oil (including olive and coconut!). In its place, use lard, butter, ghee, bacon grease, chicken fat, and tallow!
Remember to always save your fats from the bottom of your roast pan and your skillet when you cook bacon and you’ll never need to resort to inferior plant oils again.
Learn more about the Carnivore Diet:
- How to Transition Onto the Carnivore Diet and What to Expect
- What Can You Eat on the Carnivore Diet?
- Why does the Carnivore Diet Work?
- Carnivore Diet for Women
- Carnivore Diet Vitamin C Deficiency Signs and Solutions
- Carnivore Breakfast Sandwich Recipe