1,500-Calorie Keto Meal Plan

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Written by Brenda Peralta, Registered Dietitian and medically reviewed by Abby Courtenay

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Whether you are trying to lose some weight or are at the calories for maintenance, a 1,500 kcal meal plan can help you achieve those goals.

If you are new in this journey, a simple meal plan will help you understand how many calories are ideal to consume throughout the day.

This article will explore everything you need to know about a 1,500-calorie keto diet. You will learn the benefits and drawbacks of it, plus an entire day’s worth of meals with its shopping list. And if you still have some questions, check the FAQs at the end of this article.


What is a 1,500-calorie keto diet plan?

For this eating plan, you limit your intake to a maximum of 1,500 calories per day. 

To put that into context, an average woman needs between 1,800-2,000 calories daily to maintain weight, while an average man needs 2,500-2,800.

If you are a woman and are trying to lose some weight, this 1,500 kcal ketogenic plan could be just for you!

For a man, this amount is probably far too low. Having a very low-calorie diet might, in the end, jeopardize your metabolism.

This specific meal plan is a low-carb, moderate in protein, and high-fat diet. It follows the macronutrient percentage of a regular ketogenic diet:

  • Carbs: 5-10%
  • Protein: 20%
  • Fats: 70-80%

However, not all people should consider following a 1,500 kcal diet plan. The calorie intake is likely not enough for men or for pregnant or breastfeeding women. Whatever your personal situation is, make sure to always check with your healthcare provider when you are starting a new eating habit.


Benefits of a 1,500-calorie keto diet

The primary goal of cutting back calories is for weight loss. You need a caloric deficit to burn through your fat storage, and that is how you manage to lose weight.

The main advantages of following this meal plan are related to weight loss.

  • Reduced risk in cardiovascular diseases
  • Reduced risk in the prevalence of diabetes
  • Improved overall health
  • Better quality of sleep
  • Improved energy
  • Higher self-esteem
  • Decrease in joint pain

The benefits you get from weight loss can be seen in as little as a 5% reduction in your total body weight.

Weight loss should not be aggressive. An aggressive weight loss strategy could lead to a decrease in fat mass and muscle mass as well — something we don’t want. Muscle increases your metabolism, which means you burn more calories if you have a greater muscle mass.

A weekly reduction of 0.5-1% in your weight is a steady, healthy rate of weight loss.

Drawbacks of a 1,500 kcal keto meal plan

The main goal of following a 1,500-calorie ketogenic diet is to lose weight. In the long run, following a low-calorie meal plan can pose certain problems to your health.

However, this is not considered a very low-calorie diet. That would be a 1,200 kcal meal plan.

Regularly eating fewer calories than your body needs could potentially cause your metabolism to slow down. If not done correctly, it could also lead to a reduction in muscle mass.

Thus it helps if you are careful not to undertake a very aggressive calorie deficit, and make sure to monitor how much protein you consume. Having an adequate protein intake and adding strength exercise helps prevent muscle loss.

One of the other possible drawbacks is a lack of nutrients. If you do not make an effort to eat vegetables, that will mean less fiber and nutrients. This could lead to constipation and a decrease in your immune system as well as a host of other nutritional deficiencies.


How to start a 1,500-calorie keto diet plan

When starting a new lifestyle, it can be a little overwhelming in the beginning. This is especially true if you are going from a high carb diet to a keto diet.

How many carbs are enough? How much protein should you be consuming? How many fats?

Having a meal plan can help you manage all of these questions and make sure you have a safe and easy way into a ketogenic eating pattern.

Here are the steps to follow.

  • Ask your doctor or registered dietitian if you are able to have a 1,500 kcal eating menu. They will help you determine the number of calories you need and how many of each nutrient. As mentioned, undereating can lead to alterations in your metabolism.
  • Once you have the ok from your doctor, calculate your daily macros. Here are the grams according to the percentages. Keep in mind the exact amounts may vary from person to person.
    • Carbs (5-10%): 19-38 g
    • Protein (20%): 75 g
    • Fats (70-80%): 116-133 g
  • Create a weekly or monthly menu. Once you have the meals that you want to make, you can do meal prep for them. This helps you save time and money!



Foods to eat on a 1,500-calorie keto meal plan

The calories and macronutrient intake are all set. We now need to know which foods we can include and which ones we should avoid.

Starting with the basics for a keto diet plan, you should avoid most products that are high in carbs. These ones below are high in carbs and high in calories, making it harder to stay below 1,500 kcal.

  • Nutritive sweeteners like sugar, honey, and agave
  • Bread and bread like products like pizza and tortillas
  • Candy
  • Cookies and cakes
  • Ice cream

Some healthier carb sources like legumes, grains, and starchy vegetables (like potatoes/sweet potatoes) can be included with moderation in the eating plan. Be sure to measure the portion size and stay within the daily carb intake.

Now we know which foods we should try to avoid or have in small amounts. Let’s talk about the foods you should include.

Veggies are going to be your friends. Most are low in carbohydrates and very high in fiber. This means that they help you stay within your daily carb intake but, most importantly, help you provide satiety.

One of the advantages of a ketogenic diet is that, in most cases, people don’t usually feel hungry. However, if this does happen, increase your veggie intake!

Besides having any non-starchy veggie that you like, fats are the food group you can have in large quantities. Here is a list of the healthy fats you should try to focus on.

  • Olive oil and olives
  • Avocado and avocado oil
  • Hemp seeds
  • Flaxseeds and flaxseed oil
  • Almonds, peanuts, hazelnuts, and walnuts
  • Coconut oil and coconut milk
  • Nut butter

Remember to have a good protein intake to help preserve your muscle mass. Add these foods into your meals.

  • Plain Greek yogurt
  • Eggs
  • Fish and seafood
  • Cheese
  • Poultry
  • Red meat
  • Venison
  • Pork

If you are looking for drinks to add to the plan, make sure they are low in calories and sugar-free. For example, tea, coffee, sugar-free soda, sparkling water, and best of all, water. 

Try using almond milk in your tea or coffee. Not only is it very low in carbs, but it is low in calories too.


1,500-calorie keto diet plan grocery list

Now that you know which foods you can add and which would be best to avoid, it is time to go shopping!

The first thing to consider is the vegetables that you are going to add. They are key to this process.

Not only are they high in nutrients, but since they are high in fiber, they provide satiety. Choose from the following list the ones you want to include.

  • Leafy greens
  • Zucchini
  • Mushrooms
  • Eggplant
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Carrot
  • Tomato
  • Cucumber
  • Celery

You can include some fruits in a keto plan. Choose the ones that are low in sugar, or if you choose any other, make sure to always count the serving size.

  • Strawberry
  • Blackberry
  • Blueberry
  • Raspberry
  • Peaches

Now let’s fill up on the protein.

  • Eggs
  • Chicken breast
  • Beef
  • Lean pork
  • Plain Greek yogurt
  • Cheese
  • Salmon
  • Tuna
  • Shrimp

Finally, we get to include the fats.

  • Avocado
  • Avocado oil
  • Olive oil
  • Flaxseeds
  • Chia seeds
  • Cream cheese
  • Sour cream
  • Almond butter
  • Coconut milk
  • Almonds
  • Peanuts

If you have a sweet tooth, opt for a sugar-free drink or desserts. There is now a wide variety of keto desserts you can choose from.

Sample meal plan for a 1,500-calorie keto diet

If you are still struggling to come up with a 1,500 kcal ketogenic meal plan, here is one to make things easier.

  • Breakfast: keto pancakes
  • Morning snack: carrot sticks with almonds
  • Lunch: Caprese zoodles
  • Evening snack: guacamole with broccoli
  • Dinner: garlic rosemary pork chop with cauliflower rice

Calories: 1,520 | Macros: 34.3 g net carbs, 101.1 g protein, and  102.1 g fat.

BREAKFAST Ingredients Serving Size Calories Net Carbs(g) Protein(g) Fat(g)
Keto pancakes Eggs 3 large (50g) 215 1.1 18.9 14.3
  Almond flour 1/8 cup 69 1.5 2.5 6
  Cream cheese 1 oz 99 1.6 1.8 9.8
  Lemon zest 1 teaspoon 6 1.4 0 0
Calories Net Carbs Protein Fat            
389 5.6 g 23.2 g 30.1 g            
MORNING SNACK Ingredients Serving Size Calories Net Carbs(g) Protein(g) Fat(g)
Carrot sticks with almonds Carrot sticks 1 cup 50 8.3 1.1 0.3
  Almonds 1 oz 164 2.6 6 14.1
Calories Net Carbs Protein Fat            
214 10.9 g 7.1 g 14.4 g            
LUNCH Ingredients Serving Size Calories Net Carbs(g) Protein(g) Fat(g)
Caprese zoodles Zucchini 1 medium 33 4.1 2.4 0.6
  Olive oil 1/2 tablespoon 60 0 0 6.8
  Cherry tomatoes 1/2 cup 14 1.6 0.4 0
  Mozzarella cheese 3 oz 235 2.4 23.1 14.4
  Fresh basil 1 tablespoon 1 0 0.1 0
  Balsamic vinegar 1 tablespoon 14 2.7 0 0
  Garlic powder 1/2 teaspoon 5 1 0.2 0
Calories Net Carbs Protein Fat            
362 7 g 24 g 31.4 g            
EVENING SNACK Ingredients Serving Size Calories Net Carbs(g) Protein(g) Fat(g)
Guacamole with broccoli Guacamole 70g 108 1.4 1.4 9.9
  Broccoli 1 cup 30 1.9 2 0.3
Calories Net Carbs Protein Fat            
138 3.3 g 3.4 g 10.2 g            
DINNER Ingredients Serving Size Calories Net Carbs(g) Protein(g) Fat(g)
Garlic rosemary porkchop with cauliflower rice Pork chop 1 unit 287 0 40 12.8
  Butter 1/2 tablespoon 51 0 0 5.8
  Rosemary 1 teaspoon 2 0.1 0 0.1
  Garlic 1 clove 4 1 0.2 0
  Cauliflower 1/2 cup 13 1.6 1 0.1
  Olive oil 1/2 tablespoon 60 0 0 6.8
Calories Net Carbs Protein Fat            
417 2.7 g 41.2 g 25.6 g            
DAILY TOTALS   1,520 cal 34.3 g net carbs 101.1 g protein 102.1 g fat

For more ideas, see our other meal plans and eliminate or modify some ingredients to bring down the number of calories.


Questions about a 1,500 kcal ketogenic plan

If you still are unsure about following a 1,500-calorie keto meal plan, here are the answers to the most frequently asked questions people have regarding this program.

Being in a deficit for an extended period of time can be counterproductive. It is not recommended to be in a deficit for too long. 

The theory is that our bodies adapt or “get used” to eating a low-calorie diet and then we stop losing weight. Diet plans like intermittent fasting try to avoid this, but you can also avoid it by incorporating a “refeeding” month, where you increase your calories slightly (with an increase in exercise) to keep the body guessing. 

It depends on many factors, including your starting weight and your total daily calories. For you to lose 1 pound, you need to have a caloric deficit of approximately 3,500 kcal.
On average, a person can lose about 1 pound per week with a 1,500-calorie keto program. 

Most people should consume around 20% of your total calories from protein. However, each person is different, and factors like your age and how much you exercise come into play. (Older adults and people who exercise regularly have higher needs.) 

For the average sedentary adult, the recommended daily amount is 0.36 grams per pound of body weight, or 0.8 g per kg of body weight.

It is a myth that you need 5 meals per day. As long as your caloric intake is controlled, you can have 3, 4, or even 6 meals during the day. The most important thing is to stick to the total calories during the day.

Add more veggies to your meals.

They are high in nutrients and fiber. Fiber is the indigestible part of the veggies that offer satiety. Increase your daily intake of veggies in case you feel hungry throughout the day.

Yes, but it would be very difficult to eat a keto meal.
Fats are very filling, which means that with very little, you feel full. Reaching 1,500 kcal on a keto diet is quite difficult.
Even if you succeed, it is best to have a constant protein intake throughout the day instead of one big meal because this will help to prevent muscle loss.


More ketogenic plans to learn about

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