This guide will help you find the best cream cheese brands for keto diet. All of the products below contain only 1 to 2 grams of carbs per serving and we classified each one depending on your specific needs.
Here is the list of low-carb keto-friendly cream cheese brands you can enjoy:
- Best Overall: Philadelphia Cream Cheese
- Best Organic: Organic Valley Organic Cream Cheese
- Best Lactose-Free: Green Valley Creamery Cream Cheese
- Best Vegan: Kite Hill Cream Cheese Style Spread
- Best Texture: Arla Original Cream Cheese
- Best Organic Runner-Up: 365 Everyday Value, Organic Cream Cheese
- Runner-Up: Challenge Dairy Cream Cheese
Top Rated Cream Cheese Brands For Keto
Best Overall: Philadelphia Original Cream Cheese
Philadelphia Cream Cheese is our top pick mainly because it has the lowest carb and sugar content among other cream cheese brands. You can also easily buy it from Amazon Fresh or any other grocery store since it is one of the most popular cream cheese brands.
This brand also has excellent reviews from Amazon.com customers, proving that it is one of the gold standards of cream cheeses in terms of taste and texture.
On the other hand, Philadelphia cream cheese is not organic since it is usually harder to mass produce an organic product. If you are following an organic keto diet, then we would recommend the next pick on the list.
Best Organic: Organic Valley Organic Cream Cheese
Organic Valley has an excellent reputation for its dairy line of organic products. Unlike other brands, they are certified by FDA as Organic and Non-GMO so you can be sure that your cream cheese does not include any harmful toxins.
Another good thing with Organic Valley is it’s available most of the time in both Amazon Fresh and most grocery stores nationwide.
On the downside, it contains 2g of carbs per serving, which is 1g higher than most brands. Just make sure that you are not exceeding your daily carb limit, and the 1g difference per serving should not be a big factor in reaching or breaking your ketosis.
Most people who used to buy Philadelphia Cream Cheese are saying that Organic Valley has almost the same taste and consistency and they could not tell the difference between the two. However, for some people, they still prefer the classic taste and texture of Philadelphia Cream Cheese over Organic Valley.
In our opinion, you really can’t go wrong with these two brands especially if you’re just looking for a keto-friendly cream cheese. Just try both of them so you’ll know which one you prefer.
Best Lactose-Free: Green Valley Creamery Cream Cheese
Green Valley Creamery Cream Cheese has something hardly any other cream cheese has: the fact that it’s lactose-free. If you’re someone who doesn’t drink milk, whether you’re lactose-intolerant, allergic, or simply not a fan of milk, this cream cheese is the perfect fit.
The downside to this cream cheese is that it doesn’t have the same consistency as regular cream cheese. It resembles more of a sour cream consistency than a cream cheese consistency. Moreover, this cream cheese brand is not always available on Amazon Fresh or in grocery stores.
Best Vegan: Kite Hill Cream Cheese Style Spread
Kite Hill’s innovation to create “dairy” products out of almonds is one of their specialty and they do it very well.
The lack of dairy would automatically mean that this cream cheese is both vegan and lactose-intolerant friendly. It also has the lowest calories compared to other keto-friendly brands since it does not contain sugar from lactose.
We also found that it has a softer texture than traditional cream cheese. However, you might find that the taste is not that creamy compared to traditional cream cheese brands.
Best Texture: Arla Original Cream Cheese
Arla Cream Cheese has the softest cream cheese that we have tried so far. This is because it doesn’t have any artificial thickeners or stabilizers, unlike other brands.
On the other hand, Arla is not certified organic and it also contains 1g of sugar per serving which is not that great for keto. Still, if you can manage to stay within your carb limit for the day, then you can definitely have this cream cheese on your diet.
Best Organic Runner-Up: 365 Everyday Value, Organic Cream Cheese
This cream cheese is another organic option apart from Organic Valley. It is FDA-certified as organic and their cows were not injected with synthetic hormones so this is a solid choice for organic cream cheese.
The downside of this cream cheese is that it contains locust bean gum that might upset the stomach of some individuals who are sensitive to locust bean gum. However, this is not usually the case for most people.
365 Organic is a solid choice if in case Organic Valley is not in stock and you are looking for a keto-friendly organic cream cheese.
Runner-Up: Challenge Dairy Cream Cheese
The good thing about this cream cheese is the milk used to make the cream cheese came from cows that were not treated with synthetic hormones.
However, you must take note that this brand contains 2g of carbs per serving so you have to be mindful of the serving size and make sure that you don’t exceed your daily carb limit.
Frequently Asked Questions About Cream Cheese
Is cream cheese keto-friendly?
Yes, cream cheese is keto-friendly since it is high in healthy fats and low in carbs. A 28-gram serving (1 ounce) of cream cheese typically contains 10 grams of fat and only 1 gram of carb. However, you should take note that it still does contain carbs so you should always eat it in moderation.
Is cream cheese gluten-free?
Yes, cream cheese is gluten-free since it is made from milk and it does not contain wheat or any cereal grains. However, you should still read the label since it may vary for certain brands.
Can cream cheese be frozen?
Yes, you can freeze cream cheese but it will make it less creamy and more crumbly. You may use frozen cream cheese in cooked or baked dishes where it will be heated and the change is no longer noticeable.
Can cream cheese go bad?
As with all dairy products, cream cheese will eventually go bad. Unopened, refrigerated cream cheese can last for a month after the expiration date. Opened, refrigerated cream cheese can last for 2 – 4 weeks before it spoils.
Is cream cheese dairy?
Yes, cream cheese is dairy since it is typically made from cow’s milk. However, there are now vegan brands that use almond milk instead of cow’s milk when making dairy-free cream cheese. An example of a dairy-free cream cheese brand is Kite Hill.
Does cream cheese have carbs?
Yes, cream cheese contains carbs because of the lactose that is present in cow’s milk. However, cream cheese does not contain a significant amount of carbs. An ounce (28 grams) serving of cream cheese contains 1 gram of carb.
Is cream cheese pasteurized?
Yes, cream cheese is pasteurized to destroy harmful pathogens from the cow’s milk and to prolong its shelf-life. Cream cheese can be pasteurized either via HTST (High Temperature Short Time) or via UHT (Ultra-High Temperature). UHT-pasteurized cream cheeses have a longer shelf-life than HTST-pasteurized.
Does cream cheese have lactose?
Yes, a typical cream cheese contains lactose since it is usually made from cow’s milk. However, there are now vegan brands that use almond milk instead of cow’s milk when making lactose-free cream cheese. An example of a lactose-free cream cheese brand is Kite Hill.
Can I eat cream cheese when pregnant?
Yes, you can eat cream cheese while pregnant since cream cheese is pasteurized. On the other hand, unpasteurized soft cheeses such as blue cheese, Camembert, Brie, and Feta are not advised to be consumed by pregnant women since it contains listeria – a bacteria, that when infected, may cause miscarriage.
Is cream cheese low carb?
Yes, cream cheese is low in carbs and you can eat it on a low-carb diet. A 28-gram serving (1 ounce) of cream cheese typically only 1 gram of carb.
Does cream cheese have protein?
Yes, cream cheese contains protein. Most cream cheese brands contain 1 to 2 grams of protein per 28 grams (1 ounce) of serving.
Does cream cheese have sugar?
Yes, cream cheese has sugar since it contains lactose – a naturally-occurring sugar in milk. Most cream cheese brands contain 1 gram of sugar per 28 grams (1 ounce) of serving. It is important that you choose cream cheese brands that do not contain any added sugar apart from lactose.
Does cream cheese have eggs?
No, cream cheese does not contain eggs. Cream cheese is mainly made from a combination of milk and lactic acid.
Is cream cheese a protein?
No, cream cheese does not contain significant amounts of protein for it to be classified as protein. Most cream cheese brands contain 10g of fats and 2g of protein per 1 ounce of serving so it is more appropriate to classify cream cheese as fat instead of protein.
Is cream cheese good for diabetics?
Yes, cream cheese is good for diabetics since it contains low amounts of sugar and it does not raise blood sugar levels. However, it is important to choose a cream cheese brand that contains less than 1g of sugar per serving such as Philadelphia Cream Cheese.
Is cream cheese high in cholesterol?
No, cream cheese is not high in cholesterol. Following the dietary guidelines, you may consume up to 300 mg of cholesterol per day. Most cream cheese brands only contain 30 mg of cholesterol per serving so you may safely consume them in moderation.
Does cream cheese have calcium?
Yes, cream cheese contains calcium since it is made from milk. Dairy products such as cream cheese are considered to be a good source of calcium.
Is cream cheese kosher?
Not all cream cheese brands are kosher since it usually requires certification from a kosher authority to be considered one. Philadelphia Cream Cheese is one of the few cream cheese brands that is certified kosher.
Does cream cheese cause constipation?
Yes, cream cheese may cause constipation for some people. Milk or dairy products are known to cause constipation for individuals who are sensitive to proteins found in cow’s milk.
Is cream cheese high in sodium?
No, cream cheese is actually low in sodium compared to other types of cheese. The American Heart Association recommends no more than 1,500 mg of sodium per day. Cream cheese only contains 85 mg of sodium per 1 ounce of serving so you can definitely classify it as a low-sodium food.
Don’t forget to share this guide with your keto friends!