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Low-Carb Chili Cheese Veggie Fries

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I asked my followers on Facebook for their favourite (not low-carb) meal. My challenge was to make a low-carb alternative chili cheese fries, an American classic. I came up with this recipe using turnips and rutabaga instead of potato fries. They are not the same as potatoes but good enough as a healthier low-carb alternative!

To make the fries, you could even use kohlrabi or celeriac. Turnips are slightly lower in net carbs than swede (aka rutabaga). They are commonly used in paleo diet meals. Turnips are usually smaller, have yellow & green peel and light flesh. Swede is rather large, has purple & yellow peel and orange flesh.

Hands-on Overall

Allergy information for Low-Carb Chili Cheese Veggie Fries

✔  Gluten free
✔  Egg free
✔  Nut free
✔  Avocado free
✔  Coconut free
✔  Fish free
✔  Shellfish free

Nutritional values (per serving)

Net carbs11.3 grams
Protein28.2 grams
Fat37.7 grams
Calories516 kcal
Calories from carbs 9%, protein 23%, fat 68%
Total carbs16.1 gramsFiber4.8 gramsSugars7.5 gramsSaturated fat15 gramsSodium839 mg(36% RDA)Magnesium61 mg(15% RDA)Potassium923 mg(46% EMR)

Ingredients (makes 4 servings)

Chili sauce:
  • 600 g minced beef (1.3 lb)
  • 1 tbsp bacon grease or lard
  • 1/4 cup tomato purée, unsweetened (63 g/ 2.2 oz)
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tbsp dried onion
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp hot chili powder
  • 1/2 to 1 tsp xanthan gum to thicken the sauce
  • 2 cups water (480 ml)
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese to serve (60 g/ 2.1 oz)
  • 2 large turnips or kohlrabi (350 g/ 12.3 oz)
  • 1 medium swede (rutabaga) (250 g/ 8.8 oz)
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder or paprika
  • 1 tbsp ghee, melted
  • 1/2 tsp salt or more to taste
  • oil spray (olive or coconut)


  1. Get all the ingredients you will need for the chili sauce: tomato purée, ground cumin, paprika, onion flakes, garlic powder, Xanthan gum, 1 cup of water, pepper and salt.
    Low-Carb Chili Cheese Veggie Fries
  2. Grease a pan with bacon fat or lard over medium-high heat. Add mashed garlic and cook briefly (if you are not using onion flakes, add finely chopped onion and let it brown). Crumble the minced beef into the pot and cook while stirring frequently until the beef is evenly browned. Cover with a lid and turn the heat down. It's time to prepare the sauce.
    Low-Carb Chili Cheese Veggie Fries
  3. In a separate bowl, mix all the ingredients well and add them to the pan with the browned meat.
    Low-Carb Chili Cheese Veggie Fries
  4. Add a second cup of water and boil for about 10-15 minutes. Low-Carb Chili Cheese Veggie Fries
  5. When done, set aside.
    Low-Carb Chili Cheese Veggie Fries
  6. Now, let's make the fries. Preheat the oven to 220 °C/ 430 °F (fan assisted), or 240 °C/ 465 °F (conventional).
    Low-Carb Chili Cheese Veggie Fries
  7. Wash and peel the turnips and swede. Cut them into spears about 1/2 inch / 1 cm wide (or even less for crisping them up).
    Low-Carb Chili Cheese Veggie Fries
  8. Drizzle a tablespoon of cooking oil of choice over them and mix well to allow the oil everywhere. Turnips and swedes tend to be hard and you will need to precook them before baking them in the oven. Simply place them in a plastic bag and microwave them for about 7 minutes.
    Low-Carb Chili Cheese Veggie Fries
  9. Remove from the microwave oven and open the bag to allow the hot vapour outside. Remove the fries from the bag and place them (without any residual water) to a baking pan lined with baking sheet. Sprinkle the garlic powder (or any spices & herbs you wish) over them evenly using a sieve and spray with some olive oil. Garnish with salt and place in the oven for about 15-20 minutes. Keep an eye on them to make sure they don't get burned and stir once or twice.
    Low-Carb Chili Cheese Veggie Fries
  10. Remove from the oven and serve immediately. Always keep in mind these fries are not the same as potato fries. They are missing the starch and they tend to get quite soggy. Store in the fridge for up to 4 days and reheat before serving. Low-Carb Chili Cheese Veggie Fries

Ingredient nutritional breakdown (per serving)

Net carbsProteinFatCalories
Beef, minced (ground), raw, grass-fed
0 g25.8 g30 g381 kcal
Bacon grease
0 g0 g3.3 g29 kcal
Tomato purée (unsweetened)
1.1 g0.3 g0 g6 kcal
Spices, garlic powder
0.2 g0.1 g0 g1 kcal
Garlic, fresh
0.2 g0 g0 g1 kcal
Onion, dried and flaked
0.9 g0.1 g0 g4 kcal
Cumin, spices
0.3 g0.1 g0.2 g3 kcal
Paprika, spices
0.1 g0.1 g0.1 g2 kcal
Chile (chili) powder, spices (ancho, chipotle, Mexican chile powder)
0.2 g0.2 g0.2 g4 kcal
Xanthan gum, thickening agent
0 g0 g0 g2 kcal
Pepper, black, spices
0 g0 g0 g0 kcal
Salt, sea salt
0 g0 g0 g0 kcal
Water, still
0 g0 g0 g0 kcal
Turnips, raw
4.1 g0.8 g0.1 g25 kcal
Swede (rutabaga), fresh
4 g0.7 g0.1 g23 kcal
Spices, garlic powder
0.2 g0.1 g0 g1 kcal
0 g0 g3.8 g34 kcal
Salt, sea salt
0 g0 g0 g0 kcal
Total per serving
11.3 g28.2 g37.7 g516 kcal

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Martina Slajerova
Creator of

Martina Slajerova

I changed the way I ate in 2011, when I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s, an autoimmune disease that affects the thyroid. I had no energy, and I found it more and more difficult to maintain a healthy weight.

That’s when I decided to quit sugar, grains, and processed foods, and to start following a whole-foods-based ketogenic approach to food.

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Comments (7)

Your recipes looks YUM! Definitely want to try it out. Thank you!

Thank you!

I love your recipe but am a bit disappointed that you mentioned to use palm oil
That is ethical no longer an ingredient you should use to save  our plant and even though the recipe is amazing,we should contribute and tsop using that
Also why use Lard?Is there an alternative?Thank you

Hi Barbara, this is a very old recipe and I think I didn't mention the word "sustainable" there. So you can use any of the listed alternatives (ghee, coconut oil etc). Lard is great for cooking but you can use any other fat/oil. Check out this list of fats and oils to use for cooking: Complete Guide to Fats & Oils on a Low-Carb Ketogenic Diet
I hope this helps!

OMG I have to try this! Great photos, thanks for sharing!

Thank you! 😊

Planning on trying your recipe with Diakon radish for the "fries" have been craving chili cheese fries and I do have some turnips but also have diakon I am wanting to try with this recipe, Pinned, Thanks