Is Salami Keto Friendly? Is it actually good for you?

  • Date: August 16, 2021
  • Time to read: 6 min.

I love deli meats like salami, a charcuterie board is my idea of food heaven. Read on to find out if salami is keto friendly. SPOILER ALERT: It is! We will also look at whether salami is healthy for you on a keto diet and better still, our favorite serving suggestions read for you!

Before we get into the detail to answer, is salami keto friendly, we will quickly do a recap of what the keto diet is.

The Keto Diet: A Brief Recap

The whole ethos of a keto diet is to keep your macros to 70% Fat, 25% Protein, and 5% Carbohydrates (Carbs).

This 5% of Carbs should not exceed 20 grams per day for a traditional keto diet. Depending on whether you are doing Lazy, Dirty or Strict Keto, will depend on how strictly you track these macros.

In order to keep your carb consumption under 20 grams, you need to be conscious of what you are eating and stick to low carbs healthy foods, that are also low on the glycaemic index. The reason for this is so as to not to spike your blood sugar and knock you out of ketosis.

If keto is new to you, why not check out our Keto Starters Guide.

What is Salami?

We are assuming that if you are asking the question, is salami keto friendly?, that you are already familiar with what salami is. However, if you have just seen it in a recipe or in the store and have asked the question, we’ll give you a quick overview.

Salami is a cured sausage, traditionally made out of pork. Over the years other meats have been used. In essence, it is fermented and air-dried meat.

The main ingredients of salami are;

  • Pork (veal, venison, and goose are other popular options)
  • Pork fat
  • Salt
  • Culture (optional – for fermentation process)
  • Dextrose/Sugar (optional)
  • Sodium Nitrate (optional)
  • Various spices (usual)

The fattier cuts of meat are used, blended with leaner pieces of meat, and seasoned with spices and an active culture which helps the fermentation process.

The meat is then stuffed into casings and hung whilst the fermentation process continues. This is until the fermentation process has produced enough lactic acid that it prevents the bacteria from growing any further and effectively stops the fermentation process. 

Different Types of Salami

There are several different types of salami. All are made with more or less the same process.

VarietyHistory
ChorizoChorizo originates from Spain. it consists of pork and pork fat seasoned with salt and smoked paprika giving it its red color.
CiauscoloCiauscolo Italian in origin. Its ingredients include pork shoulder and pork belly heavily seasoned with black pepper and garlic.
FinocchionaFinocchiona is Italian – specifically from the Tuscany region. Its unique flavor comes from red wine and fennel.
GenoaGenoa is Italian, unsurprisingly from the Genoa region. Seasonings include garlic, pepper, and wine.
KulenKulen is from Croatia. It has hot paprika as its seasoning.
PepperoniPepperoni is an American classic. Made famous through Peparami. Pepperoni is made from a mixture of beef and pork and seasoned with paprika.
SoppressataSoppressata comes from Southern Italy. Soppressata is made from leftover parts of pork and is seasoned with garlic and red pepper flakes to give it a hot kick.

Historically, salami was popular among the Southern, Eastern, and Central European lower class because it can be stored at room temperature for over a month. 

Still to this day salami is still cheap,  but is much more trendy to eat!

Now, back to the main event!

Is Salami Keto Friendly?

Now, let’s get into the detail of the nutritional value of Salami to answer the question, is salami keto friendly? Then, we will go on to decide whether it is even healthy to eat!

What are the nutritional values of Salami?

The nutritional values of Salami per 100 grams are; 

  • Carbs: 0.6 grams.
  • Protein: 21.6 grams.
  • Fat: 28 grams.
  • Fibre: 0 grams.
  • Sugar: 0.5 grams.
  • Calories: 370 cal

As you can see, Salami is high in fat and protein and low in carbs. Perfect for a keto diet.

How many Net Carbs are there in Salami?

Net carbs are calculated by deducting the amount of fiber from the total number of carbs.

There are 0.6 grams of net carbs in Salami; (0.6 grams of carbs – 0 grams of fiber = 0.6 grams of net carbs).

As discussed above, if you are eating a traditional keto diet, your aim is to stay below 20 grams of carbs in a day.

An average serving of salami is 15 grams meaning that you will be eating less than 0.01 grams of net carbs.

Is Salami Healthy on a Keto Diet?

There are a number of surprising health benefits to salami, we will explore a few of them here;

Contains Sodium – Although too much sodium (salt) can be bad for you. A level is required on the keto diet due to the amount you lose, along with water when you go into ketosis and your fat cells are flushed out. Sodium can also assist in preventing keto flu. For more on the Keto Flu and dehydration on keto, check out these two articles.

Contains Zinc – also great for combating the keto flu

Can Aid Digestive Health – Due to the fermentation process that salami goes through, it contains healthy bacteria, which is great for gut health and ensuring a healthy digestive system overall.

Good Source of Protein – Protein is essential in our diets as it is protein that assists with muscle repair. Also, protein can assist in making you feel fuller for longer.

Good Source of Fat – Salami is full of saturated fat. Fats are essential on a keto diet as this is the fuel that your body will learn to burn when it is in ketosis.

Good Source of B Vitamins – B1, B2, B3, B5, B6 & B12- B vitamins are important for making sure the body’s cells are functioning correctly. They help the body convert food into energy, they assist with the creation of new blood cells, and the maintenance of healthy skin cells, brain cells, and other body tissues.

The nutritional value of salami always surprises me. 

So, Is Salami Keto-Friendly?

This is the important bit. Traditional salami is keto friendly. As you can see from the nutritional value above, it is high in fat, high in protein, and very low in carbs.

What you need to be wary of are pre-packed store-bought versions. Some of these will have more preservatives added, and potentially sugars. This will change the nutritional value dramatically.

Try to buy from your local butcher or deli if possible. If you are buying pre-packed, ensure you check the label to ensure your salami is keto friendly.

Why not have a go at making your own keto salami? This is always something that I have wanted to have a go at. If you make your own keto salami, let us know in the comments below. 

Is it ok to Eat Salami on a Low Carb diet?

Yes, as we have established, salami is great for a keto diet, meaning it is also perfect for a low carb diet

Salami Keto Serving Suggestions

There are a number of ways to enjoy salami on a keto diet. One of my favorites is a charcuterie board, with other meats, cheese, and olives.

Is Salami Keto Friendly: A Keto Salami charcuterie board

Another great way to enjoy salami on keto is to oven bake them on a baking sheet for around 10 minutes in a medium oven. The salami soon starts to curl at the edges and turns into an amazing crisp or chips if you’re American.

It can also be sliced and added to a sauce (like a carbonara) or even tossed in butter with some cabbage. I’ve also used it to make egg cups in place of ham or in a crustless quiche or frittata.

My final favorite serving suggestion is to slather the salami with cream cheese and roll it into perfect pinwheels.

There really are so many options!

Have you got your own favorite keto-friendly salami recipe? Share it with us all in the comments below! ???

If you like salami and other sausage products, you may want to check out our article on Vienna Sausages and how you can incorporate them into your keto diet.

Final Thoughts: Is Salami Keto Friendly?

Yes! You can definitely eat salamis on a keto diet, the carbs are low and the fat, protein and flavour are high! Just be careful to read the nutritional label to ensure that it is not full of surprise ingredients. Other than that, our only advice to you is to enjoy your salami on keto!

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