Too Many Calories: Are You Making This Keto Mistake?

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Last Updated on October 26, 2023 by Toya

In this post, I discuss one of the biggest mistakes I see people make on keto: unknowingly eating way too many calories.

When it comes to keto, most people think that eating high-fat foods, reducing carbs, and eating a moderate amount of protein will give them the results they crave.

This is indeed true for many keto eaters. They seem to just get the perfect balance that gives them the results they want without thinking about calories.

However, for a large number of people following the keto lifestyle, an additional step is required…that of reducing calories.

In these cases, the old adage, calories in calories out, still applies to keto.

And while I won’t advocate for you to start counting calories for every meal, you should take stock of how many calories you’re averaging on a daily basis, as this can hinder any progress you might otherwise see.

Note that even if you’re going to be limiting your calories, you still need to have the correct macros. This is an essential part of making keto work.

Why too many calories on keto could hinder your progress

No matter what diet or eating regime you undertake, you need a caloric deficit to get lasting results—or at least to get results more quickly.

For example, if your body only needs 2300 calories daily to lose weight and you’re eating 3000 calories each day, you won’t get the results you want. Especially if you’re not burning those extra calories through movement or exercise.

Many people who follow a keto lifestyle tend to eat more calories than their body needs without even noticing it. This, in turn, leads to zero movement on the scale and a lot of confusion and frustration.

Ways you can unknowingly sneaking in extra calories 

High-calorie low carb Starbucks drinks

While you can have many keto-friendly drinks at Starbucks that are also low calorie such as Americano, Cold Brew, Espresso, and Dark Roast Coffee, some other drinks carry a lot more calories than you think…or need.

Take the Keto Chai Tea Latte for example, which has 220 calories, or the Keto Frappuccino with 220 calories. If you have just 2 of these daily, that’s an extra 440 calories you’re taking in!

All the fatty, greasy foods that you may be eating daily

Cheese: While cheese is certainly keto-friendly and you should be able to enjoy it, you should be aware that cheese contains a lot of calories. In fact, 1 cup of cheese contains 455 calories. Many keto recipes call for cheese, but that doesn’t mean you need to eat it every day. I suggest you find ways to reduce the amount of cheese you eat daily to help you manage your caloric intake.

Heavy cream: If you love using cream in your coffee or making creamy keto dishes, then consider reducing the amount you’re using. 1 cup of heavy cream has 821 calories. Obviously, you’re probably not ingesting an entire cup of heavy cream every day, but if your daily recommended caloric intake is only 2000 calories, cream is definitely something you need to be reducing.

Bacon: People love bacon on keto, but eating too much of it is a sure way to hinder your results. 3 slices of bacon contain 161 calories. Therefore, if you eat 6–9 pieces of bacon every day (or most days), you’ll be intaking 322–483 calories from just eating BACON!

Keto coffee creamers 

How many cups of coffee are you drinking daily? If you’ve been doing keto for any length of time, you know that coffee is a go-to pick-me-up drink. Keto coffee creamers average between 10 – 100 calories per serving. If you’re having coffee three times a day with creamer, that is an average of 30 – 300 extra calories.

I recommend paying attention to the type of creamer you’re using. Try to stick to a low cal creamer.

Eating very large portion sizes

If you’re eating large portion sizes, you can very easily double or triple your daily calorie needs. Sticking to recommended portion sizes is the best solution. You may want to consider getting a food scale or measuring cups to make sure you’re eating the right amount of food your body needs and nothing more.

Upping the keto snacks, especially the lazy keto snacks

If you’re eating keto snacks, especially keto store-bought snacks or lazy keto snacks every day, then you could easily be adding an extra 300 – 600 calories to your caloric intake.

For instance, one of my favorite lazy keto snacks is the quest smores protein bar. I can easily eat 2 of these bars when I’m bored or craving something sweet. However, 1 bar has 180 calories. So 2 bars would quickly add up to 360 calories!  A simple solution is to snack on keto-friendly veggies or fruit or stick to having just 1 store-bought keto snack instead of two or three.

You’re eating lots of avocados

We love avocados on keto. They’re a great, healthy snack and they add that amazing creaminess to salads, burritos, etc. However, 1 whole medium avocado has 224 calories. So, try to limit your intake to about half.

You’re using lots of salad dressing 

I love salad dressing. But typically, I try to cut down on how much I’m using. Just 2 tablespoons of salad dressing tend to add an extra 150 – 200 calories to a salad!

This may all sound tedious, but the truth is, too many calories could singlehandedly be sabotaging your keto journey, even though you’re staying under 20 grams of carbs every day.

Here’s the account of someone who saw no results with keto due to eating too many calories. Once the issue was addressed, she started to see amazing results!

Here’s another account of someone who was eating too many calories on keto.

This may seem a bit bleak because may already be feeling restricted with what you can eat and now there may be another restriction on how much you can eat.

But, you can make it work. I highly recommend using one of the two methods discussed below to help you start eating the right amount of calories and macros for your specific body and keto goals.

2 easy ways to better manage your calories on keto

This could be a bit confusing or even difficult for you to figure out. This is why I recommend doing a custom keto meal plan. A meal plan such as this is perfect for getting you results because it helps you eat the right amount of calories while also helping you stay on top of your body’s macro needs.

I highly recommend using this custom keto diet plan. It can be customized to your age, height, weight, food preferences, and of course the goals you want to set for yourself. It’s not something that you necessarily have to keep up with forever, but if you want to learn how to eat for your specific body type, age, and goals, it is a great place to start learning.

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You can take the lessons you learn with you forever.

Custom meal plan…just for you!

Or, spend some time making a meal plan yourself

Use this calculator to find your daily macros including calories.

Find recipes that fit into those macros and calories, and stick to eating this way. If you see results within a few weeks, then you’ll for sure know that you were eating too many calories on keto!

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