Photo by Dream79/

I’ll be the first to admit it– I’m addicted to McDonald’s. I love their seasonal promotional items, and I wait almost all year for McRibs and eggnog pies to reappear on the menu. One of McDonald’s most well-known seasonal items is the Shamrock Shake, a mint green sweet treat that comes around every March. While most McDonald’s fanatics try to stop by to grab a Shamrock Shake as soon as St. Patty’s Day rolls around, ketogenic dieters, unfortunately, have to miss out on the fun. A singe small Shamrock Shake has a whopping 86 grams of carbohydrates– almost 4.5 times the amount that a beginning ketogenic dieter be consuming in an entire day!1

Luckily, the internet is full of creative and resourceful individuals, and many of them have shown themselves to be ketogenic dieters.’s r/ketorecipes has invested their own twist on the classic McDonald’s favorite with a fraction of the carbohydrates. Today, I tested out Reddit user firesidefire’s Shamrock Shake, and I also picked up the original from McDonald’s to compare the two!

The recipe

Firesidefire’s Shamrock Shake recipe is as follows:

“1/2 cup avocado.

3/4 cup unsweetened almond milk (or full fat coconut milk).

1/4 cup Jay Robb vanilla protein powder (egg white or whey).

2 TBS cream cheese OR coconut cream, softened.

1 cup crushed ice.

4 TBS erythritol (or Swerve).

1 tsp stevia glycerite (omit if using Swerve).

1/4 tsp mint extract or about 1 tablespoon fresh mint leaves.

1/2 tsp Celtic Sea Salt

Place all ingredients in a blender. Puree until smooth. Pour into 2 glasses.2

This recipe will create two 16 ounce servings, with 8 grams of carbs in each.

As you can see, this recipe calls for a few specialty items that might require ordering from an online ketogenic dieter’s resource to get your hands on. If you’re planning on making the keto shake, you may want to give yourself a little time to order all the items you need in advance.

Avocados in a milkshake?!

One of the first things that surprised me about the recipe was the need for avocados. After all, wouldn’t that make the dessert taste like avocados instead of the creamy minty goodness of the McDonald’s original? However, after doing a little research, I was shocked to learn that avocados are often incorporated into dessert dishes in Southeast Asia! The trend originated in Vietnam, where “Sinh to bo” (avocado shakes) are a common dessert, and are often mixed with fruits that disguise the taste of the avocados.3

The taste test

After picking up my Shamrock Shake, I headed home to whip up Reddit’s keto-friendly copy and give them the all-important taste test. Visually comparing the two drinks, it’s immediately able to tell them apart; the keto-friendly shake lacks the distinct green marbling of the original. If I were serving these shakes at a party, I would mix in a few drops of green food coloring.

The final verdict? The shakes tasted almost identical to one another. The flavor of Reddit’s version was nearly perfect, but the consistency was not. After about fifteen minutes, Reddit’s shake began to lose its form and become more liquid. I theorize that this is because the McDonald’s original likely has added stabilizers to make it keep in a fast food fridge. However, if you’re craving a Shamrock Shake, I think that this copycat is perfect for a quick pick-me-up!


The content on this website should not be taken as medical advice and you should ALWAYS consult with your doctor before starting any diet or exercise program. We provide nutritional data for our recipes as a courtesy to our readers. We use Total Keto Diet app software to calculate the nutrition and we remove fiber and sugar alcohols, like erythritol, from the total carbohydrate count to get to the net carb count, as they do not affect your blood glucose levels. You should independently calculate nutritional information on your own and not rely on our data. The website or content herein is not intended to cure, prevent, diagnose or treat any disease. This website shall not be liable for adverse reactions or any other outcome resulting from the use of recipes or recommendations on the Website or actions you take as a result. Any action you take is strictly at your own risk.

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