It’s windy atop the second tallest North American edifice, but you don’t need to climb the Willis Tower’s Skydeck to look for restaurants that work. Obsessed with top-quality beef, Chicago makes eating out an impeccable keto-friendly steak a cakewalk.
A good steak is a good steak, but man shall not live by beef alone. Surprisingly, dining out on other keto-balanced yummies is easy in the City in a Garden; since the seismic shift to a low-carb-high-fat nation craze, more and more restaurants are jumping on the bandwagon.
Now it’s not about searching for a lonely keto-fish, it’s rather about picking the biggest one in the sea. Here’s a list of remarkable spots, offering at least five keto-friendly options with itsy-bitsy carbs. The rule of five meats is immutable unless the place is beyond godlike. Behold, it’s the cuisine to die for.
Not just a single restaurant but a vast yet cozy food court centered around authentic Italian cuisine, Eataly might become amore at first sight. Stroll around the vibrant marketplace before enjoying a charcuterie at BAITA, and savor a main course from Osteria di Eataly. From poultry with grilled vegetables to whole roasted sea bass with pungent Sicilian salmoriglio sauce, Eataly has a number of mouthwatering delicacies to please any keto-conscious foodie. And that daily stretched and shaped yummy housemade mozzarella… you better have at least $50 when you step in.
The concept is outstanding — it’s just you and a microwave inside a bright room amid Irving Park. Technically, a restaurant; the rest is exceptional. No waiter service, no pompous atmosphere, only reasonably priced nourishing grub in Tupperware labeled with nutrition facts. Keto-perfect signature Roasted Chicken With Veggies, Honey Glazed Salmon or Ground Beef Stuffed Peppers are worth every penny of $9, and customized meal deliveries make following your keto-plan a piece of cake.
Inspired by his mother’s recipes, Anthony Reyes flavors culinary classics with a trendy twist, sharing his and Mable’s unconditional love of cooking in the eponymous restaurant. An austere white and blue menu is replete with exquisite keto-friendly items from fatty porchetta and melt-in-your-mouth coastal oysters to grilled romaine hearts and charred broccoli. The fully exposed kitchen begets the loud atmosphere of a family feast, turning a casual visit into a night to remember. Chef Reyes knows first-hand how to serve a hearty presidential-grade dinner for two, and one Benjamin is footing this bill.
Lou Malnati’s Pizzeria
Breaking that “at-least-five” rule didn’t take too long. Lou’s offers the one and only fully keto-friendly option — the famous Chicago-style “crustless” deep dish pizza. The cream of the crop in succulence, it takes two to tango the size they modestly call small, and the large one has the mass of a neutron star. The sausage crust makes this meaty beast a perfect keto-safe outlet for ravenous pizza eaters, providing just 2g of carbs per serving. And while the chef is creating this beautiful culinary masterpiece, whet your appetite with chicken caesar sans croutons.
The Purple Pig
This Michelin-approved Mediterranean cuisine restaurant doesn’t take reservations, but chef Jimmy Bannos Jr. gets Roasted Bone Marrow to speak so loudly that you’ll pardon the wait. A fourth-generation restaurateur, he knows how to create magic with offals, treating any discerning palate with perfection. As for the keto classics, this “Cheese, Swine and Wine” institution serves Salmon with pickled leeks or Coppa Steak topped with cream cheese for an entree, also offering a tremendous amount of delicious pork and cheese platters for carnivorous gourmands. The spot is usually full by 6 pm, so come beforehand with at least a couple of 20’s in the wallet.
Tango Sur is a tour of South American flavors and culture with an intimate dimly lit vibe, constantly crammed with authentic Argentinian steak aficionados. Whether you choose Pechuga de Pollo, a grilled chicken breast with a green chimichurri sauce, or Parrillada Para Uno, a tray-served mix of killer meats, avoid potato sides by all means. A properly seasoned king-size steak plus sauteed vegetables adds up to less than $30 for a keto-flawless meal, and budget-saving BYOB approach makes this meal a crowning glory.
Going the whole nine yards, it’s either a lobster or a crab. Intact face-and-claws 1lb Maine Lobster is available a la carte, along with Garlic Roasted Broccoli. But Endless Alaskan King Crab Legs is what indeed makes this basement-based spot a marvelous gem. Pay $69.95 once and get those yummies served until you say when. Unlimited and delicious steamed keto-perfect crustacean, surely the best thing since sliced bread. How many rounds will you devour before throwing in the towel?