Are parmesan cheese crisps keto-friendly? Yes, you bet they are! With only two simple ingredients, this recipe for keto parmesan crisps is perfect for anyone looking for low carb snacks. Aside from being nearly carb-free, these high protein chips are delicious and inexpensive to make. Enjoy them with salsa or your favorite chip dip. You won't regret giving these keto cheese chips a try!
This recipe is a new and improved version of the keto chips I posted earlier this year. My family decided we liked this version better than the original recipe. I couldn't keep it a secret, so I thought I'd take new photos and a better video and give y'all an update!
It's kind of funny how this recipe came about. I ordered some grated Parmesan cheese from the grocery store one week, but they gave me shaved Parmesan instead. Lots and lots of shaved Parmesan cheese.
Grated and shaved Parm can both be used to top pasta dishes. However, in this case I wanted to make my Chickpea Snack Recipe, so I couldn't use shaved cheese. What in the world was I going to do with it all?
That's when I remembered this high-protein chips recipe. Instead of using a mix of cheddar cheese and grated Parm, I used the shaved Parmesan instead. The results were SUPER!
The texture of these crisps is better than when I used a combination of cheeses. These crisps are just that, with lovely crispy edges and a (very slightly) softer center. They're easier to make too, so there's really no downside to this recipe upgrade!
Who really came up with these baked Parmesan crisps?
As I was updating this recipe, I noticed that The Terrified Amateur left a comment about making a chip with just Parm. I had forgotten entirely about this suggestion when I was trying to figure out what to do with excess Parmesan cheese.
Is this a complete coincidence, or did this comment nestle somewhere in my subconscious, ready to spring into conscious thought when needed? I have no idea, but I thought it best to credit Sir Amateur's creativity in this case.
He has also suggested the addition of black pepper. I think it's a smart way to add more flavor here if you want to cut back on salt.
Looking into the subject of heated cheese even more, it appears that the Italians have initiated this topic before us. A traditional appetizer called frico seems (in its simplest form) to be very similar to the thin cheese crisps offered here.
P.S. There is another version of Italian frico, a soft, pressed cake made of potatoes and cheese. That dish is quite different than this thin frico recipe. Perhaps the thick cheese and potato crisp will make a recipe appearance here on another day.
Benefits of Making Keto Parmesan Chips
There are so many reasons to make homemade Parmesan crisps! Let's talk about some of the benefits, shall we?
These keto Parmesan crisps are pretty much the easiest recipe ever!
I made a video for this recipe that you can check out below, but it's kind of ridiculous. You're basically going to watch me put heaps of cheese on a baking sheet for 1.5 minutes. And yes, I'm wearing pajamas.
Hey, if you've never hung out in pjs making yourself some cheese crisps, you might be missing out on one of the simple pleasures in life. Haha
This is basically a one-ingredient recipe, or two if we count the salt. Really, a sprinkle of salt when they are warm out of the oven is a nice touch. Either way, you won't have much to add to your grocery list when you want to make these.
They're an easy low carb snack idea, plus vegetarian and gluten free.
These low carb cheese chips align well with most of the special diets. Of course, they're not dairy-free, but those with issues digesting lactose may still be able to enjoy these. Check out the FAQ section below for more information on lactose intolerance and Parmesan cheese.
It's no trouble to scale this recipe up to feed a herd or scale it down for just yourself.
Each keto cheese chip requires about ¼-ounce of shaved Parmesan cheese. If you wanted, you could see if you like these by making a single cheese crisp for your first batch. Or, if you're feeding a crowd, you could easily scale this recipe up instead!
Aside from being delicious, these chips are packed with nutritional benefits!
My keto Parmesan crisps recipe is an excellent source of calcium, rich in protein, and kids love them! Who doesn't love cheese?
Parmesan also supplies a variety of other essential vitamins and minerals. This includes riboflavin, vitamin B12, vitamin K, magnesium, and phosphorus.
Keto Parmesan Crisp Ingredients
What do you need to make keto Parmesan crisps? Not very much at all!
- Shaved Parmesan cheese (shredded Parmesan cheese should work as well)
- Salt (or black pepper or seasoning of your choice)
You will also need these three pieces of kitchen equipment:
- Kitchen scale
- Large cookie sheet
- Parchment paper
Using a kitchen scale to measure your Parm helps to ensure you get the same results that I do. Shaved parm pieces come in different sizes, so your cup of Parm may weigh a lot more than mine.
An alternative (if you don't have a kitchen scale) is to estimate based on the weight of the package your Parm came in. For example, if you bought an 8-ounce package of Parm, you'll need a bit more than half for this recipe.
I think that's about it for parm crisp ingredients. Wrangle up your items, preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit, and you are good to go!
How do you make keto parmesan crisps?
If you've been buying parm chips from the store, I think you are going to be amazed at how easy they are to make! As mentioned in the previous section, start by preheating your oven to 400F.
Next, line a large, dark baking sheet with parchment paper (NOT waxed paper). I used a 14" x 17" baking sheet; it fit all of the chips nicely. Weigh out 4.5 ounces of the shaved Parmesan.
Using clean hands, make 16 small and evenly-spaced heaps of cheese on the parchment paper. I arranged them into a 4-heap by 4-heap rectangle.
Feel free to move the cheese between the heaps so that each mound contains about the same amount of cheese. This helps ensure that all of your protein crisps will be about the same size. (If you have kids, this will help you avoid arguments about who got the largest chip!)
Once your cheese piles have all been placed, pop the baking sheet in the top third of the preheated oven. Bake for 7-8 minutes.
The cheese heaps will melt into flat chips that have lightly browned and crispy edges. They'll remain a little soft in the middle.
After baking, remove the parm crisps from the oven and sprinkle them with salt (if desired). Let them cool for at least 5-10 minutes.
You should be able to remove them easily from the parchment paper once they have cooled adequately. It may be tempting, but please don't try to grab a chip right after removing them from the oven. The cheese will be sizzling and needs time to firm up!
Expert Tips from a Dietitian
This is a level 1 recipe (may help support fat loss). The serving size here is only ¼ of the recipe (4 chips). However, I think you'll find these protein-packed chips far more satisfying than your typical potato chip.
Additionally, there won't be leftovers hanging around if you have cheese-loving family members in your household. Over here at least, these chips disappeared shortly after cooling off.
One ounce of regular potato chips provides approximately 150 calories and 2 grams of protein. In comparison, one serving of these cheese crisps weighs 1.125 ounces and is about 100 calories with 10 grams of protein. I consider these high protein chips to be a nutritional win over your standard potato chip.
That said, if you know you have a propensity to overeat cheese, this might not be the best snack option for you. One factor that can stall weight loss in those following ketogenic or low-carb diets is the overconsumption of cheese and nuts. These foods pack a lot of calories into a small volume.
Even if you are not explicitly counting calories, you still need to maintain a calorie deficit to lose weight. It can be useful to know which items are more energy-dense if you have a weight loss goal, regardless of your dietary approach.
What to Serve with Parmesan Crisps
These keto parmesan crisps are great on top of a salad, or you can snack on them with your favorite dip! I like to think of these high protein chips as a healthy substitute for croutons. Here are some salad recipes that would be great with parm cheese crisps:
- Baked Popcorn Chicken Salad Bowl
- Spicy Beef and Black Bean Taco Salad
- Homemade Egg Salad Meal Prep (add the parm crisps on the side, instead of cheddar cheese cubes)
I also like these cheese chips alongside a burger, a sandwich, or soup! You can lighten up my Quick Black Bean Soup recipe by swapping out the herbed cheese crackers for a few of these keto crisps.
Frequently Asked Questions
I have lactose intolerance. Can I eat these Parmesan cheese crisps?
Here's some good news! Aged cheeses, such as Parmesan, are naturally very low in lactose. You should be able to enjoy these Parmesan crisps comfortably if you have lactose intolerance.
Lactose intolerance may better be thought of as "limited lactose tolerance." Many with this condition can tolerate small amounts of lactose-containing foods in the diet. When in doubt, you could always try a small amount of the food to see how it makes you feel.
On the other hand, those with a dairy allergy should not have these Parmesan crisps. Dairy allergy is not the same thing as lactose intolerance.
Those with a dairy allergy may develop a severe reaction to the protein in dairy. Those with lactose intolerance have difficulty digesting lactose, a milk sugar.
What is the keto diet?
The ketogenic diet was traditionally used as a medical nutrition therapy (MNT) to treat intractable epilepsy. Keto as epilepsy MNT is not quite the same as the relaxed versions of the keto diet that have caught on as a tool to help with weight loss. Keto diets may also be used, with medical supervision, to help control blood sugar in diabetes.
Ketogenic diets prescribed for epilepsy typically had very high fat, moderate protein, and very low carbohydrate content. The "keto diets" that have become popular for weight loss are always very low in net carbs. However, the protein and fat content of these diets may vary.
By the way, did you know that I have TONS of super yummy keto recipes on this website? Here are a few of my personal favorites:
- Keto Zucchini Boats with Chorizo
- Keto Blueberry Smoothie Recipe
- Air Fryer Radish – Loaded! (Low Carb, Keto)
- Keto Lemonade (Sugar-Free, Low Carb Recipe)
What are some cheap high protein foods for students on a budget?
This website isn't really geared towards younger folks, but I know that "students" can encompass all ages. Heck, I did not receive my graduate degree until I was almost 40! Here are some suggestions for low-cost foods that are high in protein:
- Canned fish, and not just tuna! Don't forget about other types of seafood, including salmon, sardines, and oysters. One of the least expensive ways to enjoy seafood is by buying it in cans.
- Milk: dairy milk, cottage cheese, and Greek (dairy) yogurt are high in protein and inexpensive.
- Chicken: keep an eye out for sales on the front page of the store ads (loss leaders). Additionally, some stores have cooked rotisserie chickens on sale for $5-6, less than you'd pay to buy a whole raw chicken! Canned chicken chunks are another budget-friendly option.
- Dried beans: legumes are my top pick for plant-based protein. Dried beans tend to be cheaper than canned, but both dried and canned are usually a bargain.
Note! Many non-dairy cheeses, non-dairy yogurts, and milk alternatives are more expensive than dairy foods and lack protein. Be sure to check the nutrition label of these products to see what you are getting.
Jackfruit, mushrooms, and cauliflower are not good substitutions for foods that are high in protein. Even if they are cheap and taste "meaty," these foods are not adequate nutritionally as protein alternatives.
Are protein chips healthy?
This high protein chip recipe is healthy in the sense that it is a natural source of many essential nutrients. However, it's not the best option if you are looking to lower the amount of saturated fat in your diet.
Again, when we're talking about whether a food is healthy, context is key. What are your health needs, preferences, and goals? Those are the sorts of factors that help determine whether a particular food is "healthy" for you.
There are a lot of different store-bought protein chips available, and most of these count as ultra-processed foods. When you make your own protein chips, you can stick with whole food ingredients, making a better-for-you chip.
Another potential health benefit of protein chips is that you may find them more filling than regular potato chips. Protein is considered the most satiating macronutrient. Ensuring adequate protein intake may make it easier to maintain a calorie deficit if you have a weight loss goal.
What makes potato chips unhealthy? How are these high protein chips a better option?
The main reason that potato chips are considered unhealthy is that they are fried. These high protein chips are a better option because they have been oven baked to get crisp and delicious.
Eating "junk" foods such as potato chips may make it more challenging to maintain a healthy weight. This is because many people don't find the small serving size of chips very filling. It is too easy for some of us to eat 1000+ calories of potato chips in a sitting.
Interestingly, plain boiled potatoes were one of the most filling foods in the Satiety Index. In contrast, both potato crisps (chips in the U.S.) and fries fall to the bottom of the list. It is the frying that is the issue, not white potatoes per se.
What are some other cheap low calorie, high protein snacks?
I have a lot of inexpensive, high-protein snack ideas for those with a weight loss goal. Here are a few recipes to get you started:
- Cloud Bread with Greek Yogurt – Keto Friendly Recipe!
- Ground Turkey Jerky Recipe – No Dehydrator Needed!
- Easiest Deviled Eggs with Chipotle Lime Mayo (or just plain hard-boiled eggs for a lower calorie option!)
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And now for the disclaimer…
All recipes on this website may or may not be appropriate for you, depending on your medical needs and personal preferences. Consult with a registered dietitian or your physician if you need help determining the dietary pattern that may be best for you.
"Keto" recipes on the web may not be appropriate for those using ketogenic diets as part of their medical nutrition therapy. That includes this recipe.
The nutrition information is an estimate provided as a courtesy. It will differ depending on the specific brands and ingredients that you use. Calorie information on food labels may be wildly inaccurate, so please don't sweat the numbers too much.
For more information on how the three recipe levels may help with a weight management goal, refer to my overnight oats with yogurt post. Let's get cooking!
Keto Parmesan Crisps | High Protein Chips
- 4.5 ounces shaved Parmesan cheese
- salt, to taste
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a dark cookie sheet (14" x 17" will fit the entire recipe) with parchment paper. Use a food scale to measure out the Parmesan cheese.
- Divide the shaved Parmesan cheese into 16 small heaps on the cookie sheet. Make sure the heaps are evenly spaced on the sheet.
- Put the cookie sheet in the oven and bake of 7-8 minutes. They will have lightly browned and crisp edges when they are done.
- After baking, remove the cookie sheet from the oven and sprinkle the hot chips with some salt. Let the crisps cool for 5-10 minutes. They should be firm and peel off the parchment paper easily once they have cooled. Bon appetit!
This is a level 1 recipe (may help support fat loss). The serving size here is only ¼ of the recipe (4 chips). However, I think you'll find these protein-packed chips far more satisfying than your typical potato chip. Additionally, there won't be leftovers hanging around if you have cheese-loving family members in your household. Over here at least, these chips disappeared shortly after cooling off. One ounce of regular potato chips provides approximately 150 calories and 2 grams of protein. In comparison, one serving of these cheese crisps weighs 1.125 ounces and is about 100 calories with 10 grams of protein. I consider these high protein chips to be a nutritional win over your standard potato chip. That said, if you know you have a propensity to overeat cheese, this might not be the best snack option for you. One factor that can stall weight loss in those following ketogenic or low-carb diets is the overconsumption of cheese and nuts. These foods pack a lot of calories into a small volume. Even if you are not explicitly counting calories, you still need to maintain a calorie deficit to lose weight. It can be useful to know which items are more energy-dense if you have a weight loss goal, regardless of your dietary approach. Nutrition information is for one serving of the recipe.