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The Carnivore Diet – What to Eat

What Can I Eat on The Carnivore Diet

The Carnivore Diet

Carnivore Diet – What to eat? The Carnivore Diet Equation is deceptively simple:

The Carnivore Equation

Meat + Water = Carnivore Diet

Who would have thought so many questions could arise from such a simple equation.

It’s best to start with a simple framework, and expand from there.

Let’s dive into what to eat on the carnivore diet.

What to Eat on the Carnivore Diet

Your primary focus should be on fatty meat, especially BEEF (ruminant meats).

Next on the list is other meats like pork and chicken as well as some seafood.

And…if you’d like…eggs, and low carb dairy.

Your Go-To Beef Cuts:

  • Steaks (ribeye, sirloin, strip, chuck eye)
  • Roasts (Prime rib, chick, brisket)
  • Ground beef (aka “mince”)
  • Organs as you desire

More Meats

  • Lamb
    • Chops
    • Ribs
    • Shank
  • Pork
    • Shoulder
    • Pork Belly
    • Butt Roasts
    • Ribs
  • Poultry
    • Wings
    • Thighs
    • Drumsticks
    • Chicken breasts (can be quite lean so eat sparingly or with other fatty meats)
  • Fish
    • Salmon
    • Trout
    • Mackerel
    • Sardines
    • Crab
    • Lobster
    • Shrimp
    • Scallops
    • Oysters
    • Tuna


  • Water (with or without carbonation or minerals)
  • Bone Broth

OK, but test without for at least some time:

  • Coffee
  • Tea

Sides and Exceptions


Coffee is a plant extract and caffeine is a natural insecticide.

But, if everyone tried to get through the carnivore adaptation plus caffeine withdrawal, carnivores would likely become endangered or extinct.

If you are a coffee drinker, I recommend you keep drinking it for the first 30 days.

Coffee is an “OK’d” exception for most carnivores, though I do recommend starting to wean off towards the end of the month after adaptation symptoms resolve a bit.

Though most people do fine with coffee, for some people cutting it makes all the difference. It’s worth it to find out if that’s you.

Technically most carnivores “OK” eggs and some dairy like butter, hard cheeses and heavy whipping cream. It’s best to think of these as “sides” and not main dishes.

Since intolerances to these are actually quite common, I personally recommend going without for at least some time.

After removing them for a time, if you desire, you can reintroduce them later and evaluate how you feel.

What Foods to Avoid on the Carnivore Diet?

Everything that is not meat.

  • Seasoning and Sauces (except salt)
  • Alcohol
    • Sorry it’s just not a health food as bad as we may wish it were.
    • If you can’t give it up that’s an important thing to know.
    • I’ve seen a carnivore diet not only curb carb cravings but also things like nicotine, alcohol and caffeine. Might be the perfect way to start cutting back.

Minimize processed meats.

  • It frequently contains additives you don’t want added.

NOTE: Aged meats can be high in histamines, which increase sensitivities, intolerances, and inflammation – histamine intolerance tend to go away as one’s gut heals, but something to keep in mind early on.

How Much to Eat on the Carnivore Diet

Eat when hungry.

Eat until full.

  • Listen to your body.
  • The majority of people average 2 meals per day.
    • Some people do best on 3 meals a day, while others do best on 1 meal per day. Neither 1, 2, 3, or 4 is better than the other.
  • Let your appetite guide you.

While your body is adapting and healing from years of malnutrition, it is common that you will eat twice as much as you will once healed.

Eat. Your body has been dying for it.

2-4lbs of fatty meat per day can be a guide for shopping purposes.

It is important that you do not intentionally restrict calories or food intake or force fasting as you adapt.

Most people eat somewhere between 2-4 lbs/day on average. The amounts depends on so many variables (kind/cut of meat, fat content, your activity, height, weight, genetics, metabolism), so eat until satisfied.

How Often to Eat on the Carnivore Diet

You should drop your preconceived notions of how many meals to eat per day.

You should eat when you are hungry. You should eat until you are full.

That said, I did a bit of research and investigating and found that on average:

  • 70% 2 meals/day
  • 20% 1 meal/day
  • 10% 3 meal/day

1 meal per day is not better than 2, nor 3 better than 4.

Carnivore Diet Snacks

If you eat enough fatty meat at your meal, you should not feel like snacking.

If you feel continually hungry after eating you need to:

  1. Eat more during meals
  2. Eat more meals

Many people have a habit of snacking, and find they have an urge to snack even when not hungry. If it is something you can’t or don’t want to kick, pork rinds can be used to snack on. Be careful what they are cooked in. No vegetable oils.

I’ve found that this snacking habit fades for most carnivores over time.

Next Steps

carnivore dietAfter 30, 60, or 90 days of focusing on fresh meats, some people need to go a step further to try and identify any troublesome foods.

For example, some people have issues with pork or eggs or seafood. So doing a pure carnivore elimination diet can help identify any potential troublesome animal-based foods.

Beyond the Elimination Protocol

After completing the elimination protocol, by removing everything but ruminant meat, water, and salt, you are in a prime position to personalize and perfect your diet. From here you slowly and systematically add back in “test foods” and evaluate how you feel and react to them.

  1. Start by adding back in other meats
  2. Then test eggs
  3. Then test “ok’d” dairy
  4. Then test coffee/tea


If you try adding back in pork and notice ill symptoms, keep it out of your regular diet. If you test back in dairy, like cheese, and notice bloating – cut it. But you may try adding eggs back in, and you feel good with them and like having them as a side. Keep them. You may try having your morning coffee again, and enjoy it and feel great with it. Add it back in. Personalize your plan.

The best way to do this is complete the elimination protocol, and then only add back in 1 “test item” at a time using ruminant meats as your baseline to test everything against.

Beyond the Carnivore Diet “Experiment”

If you want to experiment adding back in plants or fruits or sugars, I’d recommend doing this with intent and care (see the Meat Health Masterclass at the end).

While most people get great feedback 30, 60, and 90 days into a carnivore diet, for some people reversing the years of damage takes months to years. The longer your “test experiment” the better gauge you’ll have knowing if this diet is for you.

If you survive the experiment CONGRATULATIONS!

The Meat Health Masterclass

If you want to learn exactly how to do a meat-based / carnivore diet, everything from what to eat, when, how much, how to avoid the transition symptoms, how to avoid deficiencies as well as if you should include any plants, and if so, how much, when, what, ect…I highly recommend you watch the Meat Health Masterclass as your next step:

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  1. Hi Dr. Stock,

    I redid the test again this morning and this time it was over 5 minutes before I burped, so I guess I am definitely low in stomach acid.

    How do you increase it naturally? I saw on your video’s description that you’ve listed to increase salt intake (any particular salt to use?), also Zinc and B vitamins, and vitamin C (should I just get any supplement that has those things in it, or a separate one for each one?).

    Speaking of vitamin C, that is a bit of a weird one, as I had a blood test almost two years ago (just after I started this diet and my readings were very low – not sure what they are now, though). Even though it was low, I read it’s not really necessary on this way of eating so I didn’t worry about trying to increase it (plus I haven’t been sick with colds or flus since eating this way – I used to get about 4 or 5 a year. Haven’t had one since switching to this meat based diet). Anyway, do you still think I should try and get my vitamin C levels up?

    I’m also going to try and get my vitamin D level up as that was something else that was low. I tried a supplement last year, but I read that it’s a fat soluble vitamin, and if I’m not digesting fats properly, that might be why it didn’t make any difference when I took it last year. I also took around 20, 000 IU a day as suggested by someone on another forum as the recommend amount of 1000 IU a day would take a long, long time to get your levels up. I’ve also seen that mentioned by other people lately too.

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