Low Carb Zaxby’s Options for Keto Diets

Q: Why did the keto eater cross the road?
A: To get away from the breaded chicken.

Seriously though, if you’re hungry and your options are limited, you can eat here.

Similar to Chik-fil-A, Zaxby’s likes to plays games with spelling, but they don’t fool around when it comes to chicken. Zaxby’s is the brainchild of Zach McLeroy and Tony Townley, who say they dreamed up the idea during a basketball game. They opened their first prepared-at-order restaurant near the Georgia Southern University campus back in 1990, offering basic chicken sandwiches and salads. While other restaurants seem to constantly revamp their menu, Zaxby’s sticks with tradition. Currently worth over $1 billion, it has over 660 locations in 16 states. The formula is clearly working.

zaxbys logo ketogenic diet compatible meals

Zaxby’s offers nutrition information broken down by ingredient, bless their heart, so you know exactly what to eat, and what to pass on. But read on because we’ve gathered all the best options for you!


Keto-Friendly Wings & Fingerzat Zaxby’s

We really wanted to include a ‘Zappetizer’ section because it’s such a cool word, but they’re firmly located in Carb Central, so we’ll dive straight into the wings.

Stick with tradition here, both in spelling and in cooking, and go for the bone-in wings. However, if you’ve got a hankering and just can’t resist, you can get away with a few fingers (just be extra vigilant with your carbs for the rest of the day).

  • Traditional Wings, 5 (0 net carbs) A keto fave, enjoy it with celery (1 net carb) for the perfect crunchy foil. See below for your best dipping sauce picks. (19g fat, 30g protein
  • ChickenFingerz™, 4 (8 net carbs) Yes, Virginia (and Georgia, Florida, and the rest of Zaxby’s territory), you really can eat the breading — sometimes. Just don’t overdo it. (14g fat, 34g protein)

zaxbys sauces dressing for low carb ketogenic eaters

Low Carb Dipping Sauces at Zaxby’s

Nutrition info is for a sauce cup.

  • Ranch (2 net carbs, 20g fat, 1g protein)
  • Tongue Torch (3 net carbs, 0g fat, 0g protein)
  • Zestable (4 net carbs, 19g fat, 0g protein)
  • Zax Sauce (5 net carbs) A little high, especially if you’re going for the breaded fingers. Dip sparingly. (18g fat, 1g protein)

Keto-Compatible Tossing Sauces at Zaxby’s

For the wings. The hotter your can stand it, the lower the carbs.

  • Nuclear – Only 1 net carb.
  • Insane – 2 net carbs

Wimpy is out at 9 net carbs. The Tongue Torch is still high at 6 net carbs.

plates at zaxbys for low carb diets grilled chicken

Plates at Zaxby’s for Low Carb Dieters

Toast and fries are a standard on every plate, so ask to leave them off to avoid temptation (or pass them to a non-keto friend). The good news is that although a lot of the chicken is breaded, you can indulge in a few fingers without falling off the keto wagon. The coleslawruns high: 11 net carbs. Pass.

  • Grilled Chicken (2 net carbs)– Delicious without the breading, you’ll feel virtuous without sacrificing flavor. (3.5g fat, 31g protein)
  • Chicken Fingerz, 4 (11 net carbs)– This is just for the chicken, no sauce, and it does not include the other carb-y sides like fries, toast and coleslaw. (19g fat, 45g protein)
  • Buffalo Chicken has the same amount of carbsas the regular fingers. (19g fat, 45g protein)
  • Big Zax Snak Meal (regular or Buffalo), no fries or toast (13 net carbs)– These are the same fingers but with the Zax sauce. Comes with a choice of drink. If you choose a soda, be sure to make it diet.


Keto Diet-Friendly Toppings and Sides for Zaxby’s Plates

  • Celery (1 net carb)– It provides that satisfying crunch without adding much in the way of carbs. (0g fat, 0g protein)
  • Tongue Torch Sauce (3 net carbs, 0g fat, 0g protein)
  • Ranch Sauce (3 net carbs, 13g fat, 1g protein)
  • Mayo (1 net carb, 23g fat, 0g protein)
  • Bacon (0 net carbs, 3g fat, 6g protein)

Although it’s not on the menu, you can order a BLT. Asking to ‘hold the bread’ on a sandwich might sound like an odd request, but we’re talking about bacon here. (3 net carbs, 35g fat, 23g protein)


Zalads at Zaxby’s for the Ketogenic Ziet (Sorry, Diet)

A salad will be your best bet at Zaxby’s. Fill up on fiber and micronutrients without missing out on Zaxby’s tasty chicken. Most of the ingredients are just fine, and even the breaded chicken won’t kill your keto. But we recommend taking a pass on the carb-y fried onions (5 net).

  • Garden Blue Zalad, no onions, no toast (2 net carbs) This one is low enough that you could keep the onions on (add 5 net carbs). (10g fat, 8g protein)
  • Garden Caesar Zalad, no croutons (3 net carbs) A keto classic. (9g fat, 15g protein)
  • Garden House Zalad, no onions, no toast (4 net carbs, 11g fat, 9g protein)
  • Garden Cobb Zalad, no onions, no toast (5 net carbs) With bacon, hard-boiled egg and cheese, this one is another keto go-to. (18.5g fat, 19g protein)
  • Grilled Caesar Zalad, no croutons (5 net carbs) The chicken is the reason you came here, right? (6g fat, 46g protein)
  • Blackened Blue Zalad, no onions, no toast (5 net carbs) Blackened chicken for those who like it spicy. Pick around (or ask to leave off) the carrots and tomatoes to save a few carbs. (13.5g fat, 40g protein)
  • Grilled House Zalad, no onions, no toast (6 net carbs) The house salad with chicken. (14.5g fat, 40g protein)
  • Grilled Cobb Zalad, no onions, no toast (7 net carbs) Cobb salad + chick = delish. (22g fat, 50g protein)
  • Buffalo Blue Zalad, no onions, no toast (13 net carbs) You actually get to eat the breaded chicken with this one. (24g fat, 42g protein)

Low Carb Dressings at Zaxby’s

Salad Dressing is one of those things keto eaters know they have to pay attention to for lurking carbs.

  • Ranch (2 net carbs, 16g fat, 1g protein)
  • Blue Cheese (2 net carbs, 19g fat, 1g protein)
  • Caesar (2 net carbs, 8g fat, 2g protein)
  • 1000 Island (3 net carbs, 24g fat, 0g protein)
  • Mediterranean (3 net carbs, 14g fat, 0g protein)
  • Lite Ranch (3 net carbs) We keto eaters don’t usually go in for light dressing, but this one is okay. (8g fat, 1g protein)

Avoid the Lite Vinaigrette and Honey French; too carb-y. The Honey Mustard is also a little high at 6 net carbs.

what to drink zaxbys low carb keto diet

What to Drink at Zaxby’s for Keto Dieters

Water, coffee, tea, iced tea (unsweetened), or diet soda if you must. Zaxby’s has a Coke Freestyle machine, so lots to choose from.

In Conclusion

Eating out should always be an enjoyable experience and Zaxby’s is no exception, but keep in mind fast food is not the most nutritious choice and should only be eaten in moderation.

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