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The keto egg fast has seen a lot of hype — and I get questions about it often. It was about time I compiled all my research into a handy guide for you. How does the egg fast diet work? What are the egg fast rules? And, can you make different enough egg fast recipes so you won’t get bored? If you’re asking these questions, this guide is the ultimate resource for the answers — complete with delicious recipes starring eggs.
First and foremost, know that an egg fast is not a permanent diet or a replacement for a healthy keto diet — and it’s best to consult your doctor before doing one. Much like a whole30 (but way more restrictive and on a shorter timeframe!), this is a reset. If you’re just getting started with a low carb lifestyle, these keto beginner tips are worth reviewing first.
What is An Egg Fast?
The egg fast diet is a naturally ketogenic, temporary diet, typically lasting 3-5 days, that focuses on eating eggs, cheese, and pure fats, with the goal of losing weight or breaking a weight loss stall. It is intended to be very short-term and can act as a reset, but not a replacement for eating well long-term.
Since eggs are naturally keto, an egg fast (sometimes called a “boiled egg diet”) creates the perfect conditions for low carb, moderate protein, and high fat macros that encourage fat burning and ketosis.
Many people do this fast as part of new year’s resolutions, but it’s a good option for keto dieters anytime that a reset is needed.
Why does an egg fast diet work?
While there haven’t been any scientific studies to support this topic specifically, there are several reasonable theories, which do have scientific evidence:
- Eggs are more satiating than many other foods. [*] This allows you to go for longer periods of time without feeling hungry and achieve more benefits from fasting between meals.
- Eggs are loaded with choline and amino acids that improve the body’s fat burning ability. [*]
- Daily calories consumed during an egg fast is naturally lower. Temporarily reducing the variety of foods has been shown to translate to consuming less [*], and supports weight loss.
- Extraordinarily low carbs ensure consistent ketosis. Daily carbs on an egg diet are much lower than even the strictest long-term keto diet. This has an amazing ability to regulate blood sugar and virtually eliminate insulin spikes.
How long should you do an egg fast for?
A 3-day egg fast is ideal, but you can do it a little longer if you want — up to 5 days but no more. You don’t need a longer timeframe to break your stall, and doing so would certainly lead to nutritional deficiencies.
Egg Fast Rules
Many people modify the rules to suit their needs, but below are the basic egg fast guidelines. I’ve broken them down into the most critical so that they aren’t overwhelming, and the additional recommendations to follow for best results.
Most Important Egg Fast Rules:
- Eat at least 6 whole eggs per day. This is the basis of the diet.
- Eat a tablespoon of pure healthy fat for every egg you eat. These can be butter, mayonnaise, or healthy oil like coconut oil, olive oil or avocado oil. (You can eat them with the egg or use them to cook it.) Ideally, incorporate at least 1 tablespoon of MCT oil into your daily fat intake.
- Eat up to a tablespoon (1/2 ounce) of full-fat cheese with every egg. All full-fat hard or soft cheeses will work, and you have lots of options – get the full keto cheese list here.
Additional (Recommended) Rules:
- Use the highest-quality eggs, cheese, and fats possible. Even if you don’t usually buy cage-free eggs or grass-fed butter, this would be a good time, since they are the only things you’ll be consuming for multiple days.
- Eat one whole egg within 30 minutes of getting up in the morning. This will keep you full.
- Have an egg fast meal every 3-5 hours, even if you’re not hungry, and stop eating at least 3 hours before bed.
- Use seasonings, spices, and (sugar-free) condiments in small amounts. Keep them under 1 gram of net carbs per serving and up to 5g net carbs total per day. That means you can keep flavors fresher with sugar-free condiments or small amounts of spices from my list of low carb foods.
- Use small amounts of sugar substitutes in moderation, but no sugar alcohols. Pure liquid monk fruit, liquid stevia, or monk fruit allulose blend (my favorite!) are all fine.
- Enjoy zero-carb, unsweetened drinks like coffee or tea. This includes butter coffee with no milk or cream. Since we encourage clean keto here at Wholesome Yum, try to avoid diet soda, but if you feel like you need it to get through, limit yourself to 1-2 cans per day.
Keto Egg Fast RulesPin It For Later!
3-Day Egg Fast Meal Plan
If you’re worried you’ll get bored or sick of eggs, don’t be (as long as you like eggs in general). This 3-day egg fast menu has lots of different types of egg fast recipes and will keep your meals varied!
FYI: This sample menu focuses on breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
You’ll probably want to also keep hard boiled eggs on hand, as well as cheese cubes, slices, or sticks, for snacks.
- Breakfast: Cream cheese pancakes + 1-2 Tbsp Wholesome Yum Keto Maple Syrup
- Lunch: Quick egg salad (omit the celery and onion) + cheese cubes
- Dinner: Omelette filled with havarti cheese and fresh dill
- Breakfast: Sweet cinnamon cloud bread (add a combo of Besti Brown and cinnamon to the yolks before folding with the whites), slathered with butter
- Lunch: Deviled eggs (skip the bacon) with paprika
- Dinner: Sunny-side-up eggs + cheese crisps
- Breakfast: Cream cheese pancakes + 1-2 Tbsp Wholesome Yum Keto Maple Syrup
- Lunch: Cloud bread with butter or mascarpone
- Dinner: Coddled eggs with cheddar and fresh chives
Keto Egg Fast Diet Meal PlanPin It For Later!
10 Easy Keto Egg Fast Recipes
Who knew there were so many ways to enjoy eggs and cheese? See for yourself with these delicious dishes that you can enjoy during your fast:
Can’t go wrong with a classic! You’ll definitely want a big batch to have on hand for your egg fast, for snacks, fighting cravings, and making some of the other recipes below that rely on them.
Just omit the bacon to make them egg fast-friendly!
To make it sweet, mix equal parts keto brown sugar and cinnamon, and stir into the yolks before folding them with the whites. You could also sprinkle over the top before baking.
To make savory cloud bread, add up to 1/8 teaspoon of your favorite dried herbs and spices to the “dough” before baking.
Omit the celery and onion to make this dish fit a keto egg fast diet.
Omit the veggies in the recipe and opt for fresh herbs and any cheeses you like inside, instead.
Firm whites, runny yolks, and a sprinkle of cheese — perfection!
As long as you eat an egg with them, they’re a perfect snack or garnish!
The interesting texture of the whites is a nice change of pace from the same old egg fast recipes.
Drizzle this over your scrambled eggs (or your favorite kind) and sprinkle with fresh herbs.
Keto Egg Fast RecipesPin It For Later!
FAQs About Egg Fast Diet & Weight Loss
This diet is pretty strict, so you might be wondering, is it worth it and what results can you expect?
- What results can you expect? The egg fast diet ramps up many of the main benefits of standard ketogenic diets. You can expect to see less hunger, fewer cravings, deeper ketosis, and weight loss.
- Can you lose weight by eating only eggs? Yes, and that’s what the egg fast is! Anecdotally, you can lose weight by eating eggs because they’re highly satisfying on their own — and I say anecdotally because I’m not aware of any studies on this specifically. This diet also ensures you can enter ketosis by increasing your fat intake, which can support weight loss.
- How fast can you lose weight on the egg diet? Based on anecdotal evidence, people following egg fast rules lose between 5 and 10 pounds in the 3-5 day fasting period. I lost 6 pounds when I did the fast, and kept off 4 of them after resuming to normal eating.
- Can you do the egg fast if you are not following a keto diet? Yes, you can, but it will be a lot more difficult, and you are more likely to experience the keto flu. If you’re new to low carb eating, transition to a regular low carb or keto diet first, then try an egg fast once you’ve gotten used to that. It will be much easier on your body.
FAQs About Egg Fast Rules
With so many rules, it’s easy to get confused about what to do. Here are some of the most common questions about what you can and can’t have:
- What fats can you have on an egg fast? Eat the highest-quality, pure fats you can find. Excellent choices include grass-fed butter, coconut oil, avocado oil, quality lard, ghee, avocado oil mayonnaise, and MCT oil.
- Can you have coffee or tea on an egg fast? Yes. Coffee and tea, as well as any zero-carb and unsweetened drinks, are acceptable. Butter coffee and butter tea (make these without any added milk or cream!) are okay too, as long as you’re eating an egg with them.
- Can you put cream in your coffee? This is a common question, but the answer is no. Cream is not included in approved egg fast ingredients.
- Can you have fruits and vegetables? No. Sorry. Remember this is short-term.
- Can you have (fill in the blank) on an egg fast? If it’s not on the list in the egg fast rules above, then the answer is no. Is it possible to still have success if you modify it? Sure, it’s possible. But it’s only 3 days, I recommend just sticking to the rules to get maximum results.
- How many eggs do you eat on an egg fast? At a minimum, you need to eat six eggs a day. If you’re really hungry, you can add more eggs — one at a time.
- Can you take vitamins and supplements? Yes, as long as they aren’t the sugary gummy kind. 😉 Take whatever you’d normally take, and as always, consult your doctor on any supplement intake.
How To Avoid Pitfalls
Like the regular keto diet, adjusting to ketosis can cause unpleasant side effects — however, they’re avoidable! There are 2 main things to watch for:
- Drink plenty of water. Water is always important, but particularly for extremely low carb diets like this one. Another reason to drink water is to reduce the chance of constipation, which can happen during an egg fast since you won’t get fiber from keto vegetables. A magnesium citrate supplement can help with this, which brings us to our next point…
- Get enough electrolytes. Take the same ones you would normally take to avoid keto flu symptoms, particularly potassium (you can also use a potassium salt like this) and magnesium (get this one for a calming effect or this one to alleviate constipation). Most important, be sure to use salt on your food generously to get enough sodium. Eggs are delicious with salt!
How To Transition Out Of An Egg Fast
When the fast is over, what comes next? First, just be prepared: expect to gain at least a little weight back, but not all of it. That’s normal! You’ll most likely have a net loss after the fasting period.
Here is how to transition — anecdotally, this approach will help keep most of the weight off:
- For 2 days after the fast, continue to eat eggs for 1-2 meals per day. The easiest method is usually to have eggs for breakfast and lunch, and have a regular keto dinner.
- After 2 days, transition back to your everyday low carb to keto diet. It helps to continue to eat clean, unprocessed foods. See the keto food list here for inspiration, or start using custom keto meal plans right away.
- Re-evaluate your everyday approach to keto to make it as healthy and sustainable for your goals. This fast is a short-term solution for weight loss plateaus, so you’ll need to keep experimenting with what works in your day-to-day eating habits.
Important Reminders Before You Start
While fasting itself has been heavily researched, there aren’t any studies that support the specific benefits of egg fasts. So, proceed with caution! Just some reminders:
- Check with your doctor before you begin, especially if you have a health condition. Don’t do this if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding. Please don’t take this article as a substitute for medical advice – it is not.
- Avoid the egg fast diet if you have egg allergies, a history of disordered eating, or trouble with yo-yo dieting. It will do more harm than good in these cases.
- If you’re already used to following a keto diet and haven’t seen results from it yet, consider getting into the rhythm of things first. Use this keto beginner’s guide and keto grocery list to make sure you’re on the right track.
- Limit egg fasting to 3-5 days. This is not meant to be a long-term plan and can lead to nutrient deficiencies if you do it long-term.
- Listen to your body. If you feel really bad, it’s okay to stop. Everyone is different and if it’s not for you, that’s okay!
Conclusion: Should You Try The Egg Fast Diet?
Only you can answer this question, based on where you are today, your mindset, and your goals. If you’re used to a keto way of eating and stuck in a weight loss plateau, an egg fast might be the reset you need. Follow rules, avoid keto flu, and make a plan for going back to clean keto eating after the fast is over.