Although fruit can often be too high in sugar for a strict keto diet, some fruits CAN fit into a low carb or slow carb lifestyle. This low carb cherry dessert (a Clafoutis) is made with almond flour, eggs, a bit of sugar (or sugar substitute), and of course cherries. It is easy, delicious and a prime example of a dessert that can fit into a low carb lifestyle.
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Why No Fruit on Low Carb Diets?
A lot of people have trouble with the idea that fruit is to be avoided on a low carb, slow carb or ketogenic diet.
There are a lot of variables to consider before excluding all fruit entirely however.
Some of the key questions to ask yourself with respect to fruit include:
- Is your goal weight loss or maintenance?
- Does your diet regimen include a cheat day?
- Which specific fruits do you want to include?
The main reason fruit is not considered compliant with low carb lifestyles is the amount of sugar that is found in most fruit (in the form of fructose) and how it can impact weight loss.
While fruit sugars may impact weight loss, there is a big difference between the sugar in whole fruit and processed sugar in terms of “health”.
Fruit definitely has some antioxidants and nutritional benefits that are healthy in a diet. Certain whole fruits (not fruit juice) can also help curb the carb load due to the added fiber that is processed differently in the body.
My recommendations on incorporating fruit into a low carb diet are as follows:
- when you are trying to lose weight include fruit on your cheat day ( or once a week) but exclude it during the other 6 days;
- berries are the least problematic with respect to weight gain;
- learn the hierarchy of which fruits are best and worst in terms of fructose and glucose responses.
- Here is a very simple list of fruits and their “relative” amounts of sugar compared to each other:
Fruits Lowest in Sugar:
- Lemons or limes
Fruits Low to Medium in Sugar
- Casaba Melon
Fruits Fairly High in Sugar
Fruits Very High in Sugar:
- Dried Fruit
The cherry clafoutis below is a dessert made with cherries, but on a relative scale it is lower in carbs than most fruit desserts. Custards, like this rhubarb custard and flans like this Mexican orange flan are great options for including fruit on a low carb lifestyle.
Low(er) Carb Cherry Clafoutis
Low Carb Cherry Clafoutis
- 1 cup almond flour
- 4` large eggs
- ¾ cup almond milk, unsweetened
- ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
- 3 Tbsp Truvia modify for other sweeteners
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 Tbsp vanilla
- 1 tsp lemon zest zest of 1 lemon
- 2 Tbsp Amaretto optional
- 2 cups pitted cherries halved
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Use butter to grease a 9″ round baking dish or several smaller dishes or ramekins
- In a blender add all ingredients except cherries and blend to mix thoroughly1 cup almond flour, 4` large eggs, 3/4 cup almond milk, unsweetened, 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream, 3 Tbsp Truvia, 1/2 tsp salt, 1 Tbsp vanilla, 1 tsp lemon zest, 2 Tbsp Amaretto
- Pour mixture into the baking dish(s) and drop in halved cherries to cover (they will sink a bit)2 cups pitted cherries
- Place in middle rack of oven and bake 35-40 minutes or until golden brown on top. Remove and let cool in dish. It will puff up while baking and deflate in the middle upon cooling. That’s OK…it still looks and tastes great.