Pantry items used in our recipes

We have also included where you should be able to find these products. We do not endorse any specific products or receive any kind of money from any of their makers. We only share here because we have used them and like them.  If you have certain products you have found that you really like, by all means, let us know and we’ll give them a try and share them if they are Keto safe.

Spanish Gardens Taco Seasoning and Taco Sauce

We were told about this sauce and seasoning by a good friend who uses it on her cauliflower crust pizza recipe instead of the sauce we have listed. So we bought some and it is now our official TACO SAUCE AND SEASONING. We also use the dry to season our Keto chili and both versions in our own dry rub and BBQ sauce. According to the label, it is sugar-free and carb-free although it does contain tomatoes so we may be a bit skeptical about that. We used it in our fish tacos and it was so good! The only place we could locate it in Jefferson City was Schulte’s IGA. You may be able to order it online, but we prefer to shop local if at all possible. UPDATE: We learned from one of our Facebook group members that she found it at Jefferson City’s Stadium Boulevard Walmart.

Better Stevia Original Liquid Sweetener

We use this as our go-to sweetener at home for drinks and cooking. We learned about it from Matt and Megha of KetoConnect. It only takes a few drops to get a lot of sweet, with no after taste. So while it seems expensive, this 8 oz bottle will last you for months. Much cheaper than sugar! We buy it from Amazon since we couldn’t find it locally, but you can find it several other places online. There are different flavors, versions, etc., but the only one we’ve tried thus far is the ‘Original.’

Splenda Zero Liquid Sweetener

This is one we take with us when we eat out to sweeten our iced tea with since it comes in such a small bottle. Powdered Splenda has carbs because the stuff used to keep the powder from clumping contains carbs. But the liquid Splenda has ZERO carbs. You can find this locally in several grocery stores, including Gerbes and Walmart.

Erythritol Powdered Sweetener

This is a sweetener we use in a few of our baking recipes, but it does have some carbs, so if the liquid Stevia works as well, we prefer to use that instead. But sometimes you need the texture and bulk of the powdered sweetener, especially if a recipe calls for “powdered” sweetener for a frosting, etc. You can actually put this granulated sweetener in a small “bullet” type processor and turn it into a powder very easily. We get this online at Amazon, but I believe it may also be available at local health food markets.

Thick-It-Up Thickener for Gravies and Sauces

This product is amazing! When a recipe would call for flour or cornstarch (both carby) substitute this. A VERY TINY SMIDGEN of this! I poured some of mine into an emptied Mrs. Dash bottle that has large holes in the top and shake it out of that as I’m stirring with this awesome little tool I have had for YEARS (pictured below) that I bought from RADA, and use it to whisk gravies, sauces, and other things that need to be WHIPPED not STIRRED as you are cooking. Stop adding the T-I-U BEFORE it starts thickening because it will continue to thicken after you stop adding it. Great for clear gravies to go over pot roasts, roasted turkey, and I’ve used it to thicken up other things like sauces. I think I ordered this from Amazon because I couldn’t find it locally. Like the liquid Better Stevia, since such a small amount will do you, it will last a long time!

LouAna Coconut Oil

We can’t say enough good about the healthy benefits of coconut oil. This is one of the best, and purest, out there, and it’s really not very expensive. Use it to cook with, or spread on top of Keto bread…and you can’t tell it from butter! You can also stir it into foods you want to add healthy fats to. If you cook with it, you can use half coconut oil, half (real) butter, and the butter flavor will override the coconut flavor for those who can taste the coconut flavor. You can get this at just about any grocery store now.

Gunslinger Smokin’ Hot Jalapeno Pepper Sauce

We discovered this little gem on the tables at one of our favorite Jefferson City eateries, Towne Grill, and when we asked the name of it (our bottle didn’t have the label on it) they told us we could actually buy it there. So we did. It’s not really hot, it has more of a tangy, vinegary taste, which is what we love. I’m not sure if it can be purchased anywhere else, but we’ll continue to get ours from Towne Grill long as they sell it.

Hellman’s Olive Oil Mayonnaise

We started using this after learning about the health hazards of products with oils like soybean, canola, corn, etc. While there may be traces of these oils in this mayo, olive oil (one of the healthy fats) is the primary oil used. If you like the “zingier” taste of Miracle Whip, simply add a little bit of apple cider vinegar to taste to get that flavor. This can be bought at any grocery store. Just be sure you don’t accidentally pick up the “low fat” version as anything with “low fat” on the label is highly BAD for you due to added carbs and unhealthy oils.

Boar’s Head Sugar-Free Meats

We were recently unpleasantly surprised to learn that many of the meats we had been eating, thinking they were Keto, actually had “hidden sugars” in them! So we did research for “Sugar Free meats” and discovered a very familiar brand does carry a line of sugar-free meats. Truly sugar-free. Many meats they carry still have Dextrose, Maltodextrin, and other sugars disguised in fancy names, so I actually went to the store and read all the labels to find some with none of those. These can be found (for now) at Gerbes (Superstore, not sure about the West End location), but I understood last week that they are going to discontinue some of the items that have to be sliced and keep the items with sugars. So it’s these pre-packaged meats, or nothing, right now. Just thankful for these!

Epic Bites Sugar-Free Jerky

This is some jerky I found, the ONLY one, when I was searching for sugar-free jerky at Gerbes where I bought the Boar’s Head above. I bought both the uncured bacon flavor and venison steak flavors. Both were a hit, so as long as they keep selling it, I will keep buying it.

NOW Sports MCT Oil

This is what we use for our “bulletproof” coffee. The difference in your concentration,  cognition, and focus is amazing. So that’s why I’m including it even though it’s not really a “cooking” oil (I have actually added it to salad dressing in lieu of olive oil, though). You may have to start out taking about a teaspoon a day and gradually work yourself up to a full tablespoon as some folks find it upsets the stomach. A hint: take it right before bedtime and if it upsets your stomach, you’ll sleep through it! Seriously, the benefits are worth any slight temporary discomfort. We buy this at the Supplement Superstore in Jefferson City.

Madison’s House Salad Dressing

This is the dressing you can buy at Madison’s Restaurant in Jefferson City to put on your own homemade “House Salad” that Madison’s is famous for. We keep a bottle in the fridge at all times because who doesn’t also love a House Salad on Sundays (when Madison’s is closed)?

Kroger Pork Rinds

After having tried just about every brand and off-brand pork rind available to me, I have finally decided that the Gerbes Kroger Pork Rinds, Original flavor, are the best for grinding to use as coatings, panko fillers, and just plain old munching. There are fewer “marbles”, and sometimes none at all in a whole bag. I found that some brands have so many of those hard ones that not even a food processor can, well, process, the more effort it takes to use them because you have to pick out all the big “rocks” after you tried to grind them up. And they are delicious as well as “hidden sugar” free!

Tuna in Olive Oil

We started using ONLY tuna in olive oil after discovering how bad the popular oils (canola, soybean, corn, etc.) to eat and for recipes. Both Starkist and Genova are great, tasty, and easily found at most grocery stores.

No Sugar Added Ketchup

We use this Heinz “No Sugar Added” ketchup in recipes that call for ketchup and it can be found in just about any grocery store now. If you can’t find it in your store, it’s also online.

Liquid Aminos (Low Carb & Gluten Free Soy Sauce Alternative)

Bragg Liquid Aminos is made with only two ingredients, and says on the label it is also Gluten Free. I have been seeing “liquid aminos” in recipes for some time now, always with the advice that ‘if you can’t find it, use soy sauce.’ Well, when shopping for my Kikkoman soy sauce at Walmart, I actually spotted this on the shelf next to it, so I got it! I was thrilled to see it was also Gluten Free as I keep a bottle of La Choy on hand for a loved one who is Celiac and can’t eat the Kikkoman which contains wheat.

Pink Himalayan Salt

I use this in recipes that specifically call for Pink Himalayan Salt. Otherwise I use Kosher salt or sea salts. I found this at a local health food store, and based on how infrequently I use it, this little bag will probably last me a LONG time. But it can be found in grocery stores or health food stores.

UPDATE: We have started using Redmond Real Salt Ancient Coarse Sea Salt recently after learning that many of the other salts contain bits of plastic from processing! We use this as our table salt and in recipes now. So far we can only order it online.



This is low-carb, and comes in a few different flavors, but 4g of carbs is the lowest carb count of any of them. It is VERY good! Can be used in “pasta” dishes, as a pizza sauce, Keto lasagna, etc. We get it at Walmart.

Ghee (Clarified Butter)

We have been using the Ghee found at Aldi for quite some time now and it is excellent, and less expensive than some of the other stores that sell Ghee.

Keto-Friendly Fruit Flavorings

Ok, we haven’t officially used these yet, but when we found them, we just had to share this link since they have so many great flavorings that are ZERO CARBS. These would be a great way to get that fruity flavor without the high fructose sugar carbs that are in fruits. Diet sodas, Keto ice creams, sauces, teas, CHAFFLES, the uses are limitless. UPDATE: We received our apple flavoring but way too late to use in the recipe for which we needed it. It takes quite awhile to receive your shipment, so take that into consideration when planning your recipe.