As if struggling to find a restaurant or cafe in Sydney that caters to the growing list of dietary requirements people have wasn't hard enough! Now we have an army of KETO, LOW-CARB and CARNIVORE warriors who need to eat too!
Low carb diets are very trendy right now, and with good reason! Early research suggests that a high-fat, very low-carb diet may benefit several health conditions. Although some of the evidence is from case studies and animal research, results from human controlled studies are also promising.
Medical jargon aside, a place that doesn't serve bread, grains or spuds on pretty much every menu item is very rare to come across.
Lucky for you guys, GCT's Lifestyle Journalist Despina Karp has whirled in the top 5 Sydney fooderies that cater to all your low carb dietary requirements.
Proof that you can dine out and maintain Ketosis and whatever low carb diet you're on (seriously, there are hundreds!)
Nieo's Grille: By far, the most affordable low carb and nutritious meal you'll find in Southern Sydney, Nieo's has quickly become popular with gym junkies and low carb foodies. Nioe's founders are Theo Georgoulopoulos and Nick Xenofos, who have spent a lifetime in the hospitality industry by previously creating the popular Chickens Plus concept, so they truly understand what the customer requires and what quality really means. Their takeaway menu is inspired by the classic Charcoal Chicken Shop & Milk Bar. All of Nieo's dishes are made in-house and prepared daily. Their signature takeaway dish is their famous Charcoal Chicken that is marinated in a family recipe and grilled over local hardwood Australian Charcoal (100% chemical-free and sourced from a sustainable source). They also have a large range of wholesome dishes available including steamed vegetables, an array of amazing salads and the ability to easily turn anything on the menu KETO. Their BABY SPINACH salad (dried tomatoes, Spanish onion, capsicum, crumbled parmesan & baby spinach) combined with Tabbouli and half a Grilled Chicken (Lemon & Herb) is my favourite low carb dish. Another one of my favourites is the BARRA PACK (Grilled barramundi fillet, dill & sour cream with any 3 salads or veggies sides). Did I forget to mention that this is only $19.90? Yeah, you read that right. Grab the family and pop down to Neio’s, the kids (and adults) won’t be disappointed! Address: 212-214 William St, Earlwood NSW 2206 and 308 Rocky Point Rd, Ramsgate NSW 2217
Sprout Wholefood Cafe: This gem of a cafe in the Lower North Shore has made sure their low carb customers won’t leave hungry with the Naked Breakfast: Grilled halloumi, poached eggs, avocado, tomato salsa and mushrooms, then brought together with Sprout’s super green pesto. Up the protein even further by adding bacon. For lunch grab the Protein Bowl- your choice of braised lamb and citrus dressing OR grilled miso chicken served on a bed of kale and cabbage slaw and fermented veg, topped off with a poached egg. Or if you’re into the current poke trend (Hawaiian salad with marinated raw fish and rice), they’ve recently added a salmon poke bowl to the menu, complete with cauliflower rice. Address: 272-274 Willoughby Rd, Naremburn
Ruby’s Diner: Popular with the locals (and Despina's favourite coffee) is Waverley's Ruby's Diner. Ruby's is an award-winning diner/ cafe offering gourmet coffee and a healthy, seasonal menu- I joined the long queue of Sunday brunch diners dressed in yoga pants for what I was told was "the best low carb Brekkie in Sydney". I ordered one of Ruby’s specialty coffees. Ruby's loves their bulletproof coffees (their Iceproof coffee is a staple favourite if you’re needing all-day fuel). The Iceproof comes with filter black coffee, grass-fed butter, MCT oil and vanilla whey protein over ice, it honestly tastes like a milkshake! Apart from the AMAZING 'milkshake coffee', a crowd favourite is the Breakfast Salad; which despite the ever-changing seasonal menu, is available all year-round. It comes with kale, broccoli, avocado and almonds, finally topped with poached eggs and soft fetta. One word and that is: yum! If you must try one dish from Ruby's, it's their 'Paleo Burger'! This amazing primal meal comes with a thick-cut, grass-fed organic beef patty, all the Aussie toppings, plus a poached egg, and all held together by a lettuce bun. Doesn't get much better than that! Address: Shop 1 & 2, 179/173 Bronte Rd, Waverley
About Life Cafe and Grocer: As the name suggests, this isn't just a diner, About Life is your ultimate Low Carb Double Whammy! With a convenient 7 different locations across Sydney, customers get to relax at the casual whole food cafe before heading next door to the adjoining grocery store for all your low carb needs. Talk about killing two birds with one stone! Popular items include their Protein Bread loaves and a huge array of low-carb baking mixes! My favourite dish is the 3-egg omelette that covers an entire dinner plate, stuffed with three fillings of your choice! (I added halloumi to mine, just because I'm Greek). If it's lunchtime, make sure to grab a Signature Proteins with any 2 low carb veggie sides for just $15.90! The protein's include everything from Miso, Ginger & Sesame Barramundi or Dukkah Crusted Huon Tasmanian Salmon, to the free-range Pulled Pork cooked in bone broth or Chicken Breast with oregano garlic and lemon. Addresses: 31 Oxford Street, Bondi Junction; 520 Miller Street, Cammeray; 13 Willoughby Rd, Crows Nest; 1 Kiaora Lane, Double Bay; 62 Burns Bay Rd, Lane Cove; 605 Darling Street, Rozelle; 285a Crown Street, Surry Hills
Preach Café: Instagram famous Preach’s café is Nestled in Sydney’s famous Bondi Beach, Preach is on a mission to create healthy, wholesome food filled with flavour and nutritional goodness. Offering traditional Aussie breakfast and lunch dishes, Preach Cafe also cleverly infuses Middle Eastern flavours for a truly unique and enjoyable dining experience. What I like is that Preach’s are conscious of where its produce comes from and works with top providores to source the best ethical ingredients to create their delicious meals. I would try their Tofu scramble Chilli eggs, Bondi feast (minus the sourdough bread) and avocado bun. Address: 56 Campbell Parade, Bondi Beach NSW 2026
So, as we’ve discovered, eating out on a low-carb diet doesn't have to be a chore! Pop the address into Google Maps, and you’re good to go! Happy low carb feasting.
Despina Karpathiou is an accredited makeup artist, beautician and lifestyle writer based in Sydney, Australia. She is currently studying Skin Health and Nutrition and is passionate about makeovers and healing skin (and health) conditions from the inside out. Follow her here for all things skin, health and beauty.