Keto Meat Subs (low-carb, dairy-free + paleo)

ALT: NOW Foods Keto Meat Subs #keto #lowcarb #highfat #theketodiet #fatfueled #fatisgood #lowcarbpaleo #dairyfreeShow me the meat! Sometimes I just need a good low-carb sandwich, and now, thanks to this keto recipe, I have a perfect go-to. Low-carb veggies, all snuggled together cozily in a beautiful keto meat sub sandwich. Personalize it with your favorite keto lunch meats and veggies, and start chowing down!

Summertime… time to bring out the grill, pour some ice cold keto lemonade, toss some fresh keto salads, make a batch of ultimate sub sandwiches, and of course invite your friends over for an epic summer party! I don’t know about you, but I really enjoy a good summer get-together. The food, the conversation, the warm weather. I do not want to miss out while it lasts.

However, it is not so enjoyable when summer is beckoning, and I am stuck inside a hot kitchen with the oven on trying to make a tasty meal. Besides heating up the house unnecessarily, those types of meals just take a little more time than I would like when there are plenty more things I would rather be doing… outside in the sun.

That is why these keto meat subs are the ultimate summertime delicacy. They are incredibly easy and require no baking, broiling, sautéing, or broiling. Just good ol’ fashioned stacking and mixing.

One of my favorite parts of this recipe is the dipping sauce… boy, do I love dipping sauces! And this one contains one of my favorite ingredients—NOW Foods oil for extra healthy fat and great taste.

I’ve chosen to make the dipping sauce with one of four of my favorite NOW Foods oils, but you could use any of the following to complement these keto meat sandwiches:

ALT: NOW Foods Keto Meat Subs #keto #lowcarb #highfat #theketodiet #fatfueled #fatisgood #lowcarbpaleo #dairyfreeLiquid Coconut Oil: You can cook, fry, and saute with this no trans-fats, all natural pure coconut cooking oil. Pure, natural, healthy coconut goodness is what this is.

Canola Oil: Canola Oil, wah? How’d it get on this list? I explain it in the Notes below.

Avocado Cooking Oil: Avocado cooking oil is great with any method of cooking but is particularly useful with high-heat cooking like sauteing and stir-frying since it has a high smoke point. It’s also full of healthy fats and even Vitamin E!

MCT Oil: This oil is great for so many reasons, which I explain some of them here. It’s great for dressings, sauces, and some cooking, but avoid frying with it since it has a low smoke point.

Did you know MCT oil also comes in powdered form? Ya! In its powdered state, it's much easier to use, travel with, and incorporate into your favorite recipes. Plus, if you've experienced digestive issues with MCT oil before, MCT oil powder is a lot gentler on the gut. Check out my favorite brand of MCT oil powder here.

This keto sub sandwich recipe will definitely be a common meal in my house this summer… lunches, picnics, parties, on-the-go travel snack, you name it! I’m all about easy and delicious… meaning this recipe is a win-win!

ALT: NOW Foods Keto Meat Subs #keto #lowcarb #highfat #theketodiet #fatfueled #fatisgood #lowcarbpaleo #dairyfree

3.3 from 3 reviews
Keto Meat Subs
Recipe type: Paleo, Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Sugar-free, Grain-free, Nut-free, Egg-free, Low-carb, Keto
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
These are the EASIEST keto sandwiches you’ll ever make. Kevin and I created the recipe when we were on The Keto Diet Book Tour. We’d go to a grocery store, pick up our favorite low-carb sandwich fillings, and have at ‘er! MACROS: Fat 67%, Carbs 9%, Protein 24%.
  • 9 oz (250 g) Italian style ham*
  • 4½ oz. (125 g) prosciutto
  • 5½ oz (150 g) salami soppressata*
  • 5½ oz (150 g) genoa salami*
  • 2 avocadoes (12 oz/340 g), peeled, pit removed, and sliced
  • 4 green onions, sliced in half
  • 2 leaves of iceberg lettuce or kale
  • 8 toothpicks, optional

Sub Sauce
  • ½ cup (120 ml) NOW Foods Elyndale Organics Avocado Oil, MCT Oil, Liquid Coconut Oil or Canola Oil
  • 4 teaspoons juice from banana peppers
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano leaves
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon grey sea salt
  • pinch ground black pepper
  1. Place a slice of ham on a clean plate or cutting board. Layer a piece of prosciutto, followed by three or four pieces of salami, layering like a pyramid or making a square shape with the layers.
  2. Add a couple of slices of avocado, followed by a piece of green onion and a piece of iceberg to the far side of the meat stack.
  3. Roll the ingredients up like a California roll. Secure with a toothpick. Repeat with remaining meat and filling.
  4. Afterward, combine all sub sauce ingredients in a medium-sized bowl and serve alongside the low-carb sandwich.
If you don’t want to make the sub sauce, no worries. You could add a scoop or two of bacon mayonnaise to the wraps before you add the filling.

*Opt for hormone-free, nitrite-free meats. If you can't find it, go with prosciutto for everything as it's just smoked meat.

View Nutritional Information (once on page, scroll down)

 ALT: NOW Foods Keto Meat Subs #keto #lowcarb #highfat #theketodiet #fatfueled #fatisgood #lowcarbpaleo #dairyfreeWHY CANOLA OIL?

This excerpt from the Practical Oil Guide in my paperback, The Keto Diet explains it best: 

I know what many of you are thinking: Wait, what? Did she just put canola oil on the list of safe cooking oils? No way is this woman sane.

I know. It blew me away, too. But with the right selection, canola oil is safer than many other oils out there. The omega-6 to omega-3 ratio of canola oil is on point—the distribution of SFAs to MUFAs and PUFAs is fabulous, and you can source cold- pressed versions, no problem. So the standard checks are in place.

So why did canola oil get a bad reputation? It’s generally assumed that all canola oil is refined, solvent-extracted, and processed to the nth degree. In addition, there’s a ton of genetically modified canola oil on the market today—about 90 percent of the world’s canola crop is genetically modified.

But let’s say we could get a non-GMO, organic, cold-pressed, and unrefined or chemical-free/low- heat-refined canola oil, which we can. What then? Keeping in mind what makes a good cooking oil (see page 135), let’s take a look at how canola stacks up to other oils.

Both flaxseed oil and hemp seed oil are touted as health-promoting oils for the very components that canola oil contains, and in many cases canola oil does it better. The PUFA content of unrefined canola oil is 32 percent, hemp seed oil is 80 percent, and flaxseed oil is 66 percent. From this information, we can draw the conclusion that canola oil is naturally more stable than hemp or flax. I’ll put that in the “win” column. Looking now to the omega-6 to omega-3 ratio, canola sits at 2:1, hemp seed at 3:1, and flaxseed at 4:1. We know that the closer the ratio is to 1:1, the better off we’ll be. Again, “win” column.

I’d say canola oil is doing pretty well for itself. But let’s dig a little deeper into its past to understand what went wrong and how we can find a good source of the stuff.

Canola was bred from rapeseed, which thirty years ago contained elevated levels of erucic acid, a monounsaturated omega-9 fatty acid considered harmful to humans. Canola has been bred over the years to have less erucic acid; today’s canola oil contains less than 2 percent. (Note that breeding plant varieties for certain qualities is very different from genetically modifying it—the former has been done for thousands of years, while genetic modification is a very recent development.)

Yes, a lot of canola oil is produced from genetically modified rapeseed. But there are non- GMO brands out there. A representative from the Non-GMO Project writes:

If a product has our Non-GMO Project Verified seal, you can be sure that it was produced using industry best standards for GMO avoidance.

We offer non-GMO verification for canola oil produced from rapeseed that has not been genetically modified. Natural cross-breeding techniques that have been used by farmers for thousands of years are not considered genetic engineering under our Standard.

Is the ultra-refined, heat-processed, chemically extracted, genetically modified canola oil bad? You bet it is. Do I plan on drowning myself in non-GMO, organic, cold-pressed, unrefined, or chemical-free/ low-heat refined canola oil? No. Just like I don’t plan to do the same with hemp seed, walnut, and flaxseed oils anytime soon because of their PUFA content.

But I won’t go around shaming canola oil anymore. If you look for the same markers of quality used to evaluate any high-PUFA oil, it’s just as good.

To get your hands on the ENTIRE Practical Oil Guide, check out The Keto Diet.

What are your favorite sub sandwich toppings? Chat about it in the comments below! I’d love to hear your ideas!

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  1. What’s a good Canadian (I live in Calgary) or North American store that seeks hormone free nitrate free meat. And what about bacon. Is that not high in nitrates too?
    Looking for a go-to store please.

    • Hi Heidi! I can’t speak to many stores since I do most of my food ordering online through providers like ButcherBox, but Whole Foods and many health food stores carry high-quality nitrate-free meats.

  2. Hi! About the Canola Oil Omega 3:6 ratio: The Omega-3’s in vegatable oils are completely inaccessible to most people. Most people cannot convert them to DHA/EPA. That is one reason why I won’t use Canola Oil. Aside from me being allergic, I also stay away from Walnuts and Walnut Oil for the same reasons. With the Omega-3’s being inaccessible, there is nothing to counteract the incredibly high Omega-6 load.

    THANK YOU for the gelatin egg recipe! I also am sensitive to eggs. Have you tried the Great Lakes brand of Beef Gelatin? That is what I currently have (a $24 can of it.)

  3. I’m curious to know about if there’s much difference in Coconut Oils? I love Coconut, while my husband can’t stand it. Is there any certain brand that would work good so not to over power the flavor of Coconut? Thanks in advance

    • If you’re looking for coconut oil with the coconutty flavor, I’d go for an unrefined variety. If you’re wanting coconut oil without the coconutty flavor, try a refined variety. I hope this helps!

  4. I watched your oil videos but I’m still curious about why you think canola oil is a good choice (or why you are “on the fence” about it). I was under the impression that it’s not simply the fact that it easily oxidizes (which if you aren’t cooking with it reduces that risk), but also the way it’s created (harmful chemicals, the fact that the oil has to be deodorized before it gets bottled), and the fact that all rapeseed is GMO. I understand that there are worse choices, but this does not seem like an oil worth wasting any time with since there are other great options! Just curious!!!

    • Hey, Martha! Yeah, I don’t recommend cooking with it. There are many non-GMO canola oils on the market, so I can’t see how all rapeseed is GMO. If you’d like to share, I’d be happy to take a look at the sources that say otherwise. With that said, I highly highly recommend choosing an organic and non-GMO brand, like the one from Ellyndale Organics. I included canola oil as an option in this recipe because it’s a more affordable option compared to the other oils listed. And when talking about affordability, it’s definitely the lesser of two evils when compared to say, soybean oil. Hope this helps!

  5. I’m not a huge fan of peppers. Is there something I could substitute? I’m not a cook by any stretch of the imagination so my brain can’t even think of something else haha!

    • Feel free to use vinegar instead! Apple cider vinegar is my fave.

  6. I use the Applegate Farms Uncured meats for this. I absolutely love this recipe ❤️

  7. Why would you eat cured meat? Isn’t the whole idea of Keto to help heal the gut? Eating processed meats is harmful to the gut lining. I’ve personally never seen salami or pepperoni without sugar and other chemical for preservatives added. If you know where you can get these meats without preservatives or sugar I would like to know otherwise eating this snack would be defeating the purpose.

    • Hey, Pamela! I go for the hormone-free, nitrite-free meats that I find at my local health food store. If you can’t find these, you can go with prosciutto for everything since it’s just smoked meat.

  8. I love these kinds of “sub” sandwiches. I used to live in Canada and went to subway all the time where I got their salad made right in front of me, added the cold cut combo or the chicken or tuna and bam! A healthy low carb filling lunch in minutes.
    Going to try your sauce recipe too.

    • So convenient! The sauce is super tasty ;) Hope you love it!