Keto Old Fashioned Cocktail Recipe

The regular version of this drink has too many carbs to be low carb friendly, so making a Keto Old Fashioned has been long overdue on our list. It’s a perfect combination of sweetness with some bitter and spicy ingredients to balance each other out.

Is Old Fashioned a classic cocktail?

Sure thing! It’s a simple alcoholic drink that used to be considered a morning thing back in the day when it was just called a “whiskey cocktail”. Time went on and then bartenders began to add more complex ingredients to this classic cocktail.

Surprisingly, people loved the original so much that they began to ask for the “old fashioned” version. If you ever wondered where did this drink get his name from, that’s the reason.

Traditional Old Fashioned version

Originally the old fashioned cocktail is made by mixing sugar together with bitters and water, then adding regular whiskey or really good bourbon, garnishing with orange zest, orange peel or a cocktail cherry.

We had to swap out the sugar to make a low carb, keto old fashioned recipe but I have to admit adding stevia in lieu of sugar adds a delicious twist to this classic drink. Of course, that also means lower net carbs.

Can I drink alcohol on keto?

We know that keto has several restrictions you need to keep in mind, but alcohol is somewhat of a grey area. You can technically drink alcohol on keto as long as you know what to choose and you do it in moderation.

Let’s recall the basics for a moment – the keto diet is a high fat, low carb diet. Once you deprive your body of carbs and glucose, it starts to use fat as a source of energy. Then, your liver produces ketones.

Weight loss on keto and drinking

Now, if weight loss is your top reason why you decided to go low carb, drinking may stall your progress.

It doesn’t even matter if they’re low carb drinks, and here is why – the moment you consume alcohol, your body will try to metabolize it and get rid of it first before it starts burning fat.

If you do decide to drink, here is our comprehensive guide about Keto Alcohol – Everything You Can & Cannot Drink.

Keto Old Fashioned Cocktail Recipe

Grab a lowball glass or simply an old fashioned glass and let’s get right to it! If you’re a whiskey bourbon lover, you’ll go nuts for this low carb drink recipe.

After a long day of work and waiting for the kiddos to go to sleep, it’s a heaven sent. You can get a fancy large ice cube (regular ice cubes are fine too) and garnish it with a bit of orange peel.

Old Fashioned Keto cocktail recipe

Take a look at the ingredients we used in our Keto Old Fashioned:

Cocktail ingredients


Since whiskey is the star ingredient of our Keto Old Fashioned cocktail, I suggest you go for the high quality one.

We used Four Roses, but you’re more than welcome to use anything you like. Rittenhouse Rye is also a good choice.

Orange Bitters

We don’t use a lot of it so no need to worry about going over your carb limit. A lot of classic cocktails use orange bitters which are made from orange peel and anise seed.

Even a dash (which is what you need for this recipe) makes a difference, so try not to omit this ingredient. It’s sweet, tangy but bitter at the same time and make for a perfect addition to our Keto Old Fashioned cocktail.

Angostura Bitters

All you need is literally two small splashes of these aromatic bitters to give this drink the “oomph” it needs.

It adds a layer of complexity to any old fashioned cocktails, brings out the other ingredients and takes away the harshness of the whiskey itself. This is an absolute must!

Brown Sugar Replacement Syrup

Regular bourbon old fashioned recipes call for simple syrup, regular sugar or brown sugar. This drink definitely doesn’t taste the same without it, so we had to make a low carb, keto friendly alternative.

  • Water – regular water, no fanciness here.
  • Stevia – we used Better Stevia, but you can use any other liquid sweetener you want to. You can definitely make it with erythritol as well, but since it doesn’t dissolve as well we decided to go with stevia to ensure it’s smooth and super easy to make.
  • Molasses – in general, this ingredient is not keto due to a high carb count. However, we only use a tiny bit of it here to darken our keto syrup and give it a bit of that distinct flavor.
  • Xanthan Gum – used here to thicken up the liquid and make it into a smooth syrup without starches.


Even with easy low carb recipes as this one, we usually answer a few questions you may have while making our Keto Old Fashioned cocktail recipe.

Is an orange peel high in carbs?

That’s simply a garnish idea and it’s not meant to be eaten, only stirred to give it a bit of flavor. Oranges are not keto but again, we’re not adding any orange juice here.

Grab an orange, slice a bit of the peel with a knife and add to your drink. When you’re ready to consume, gently stir and enjoy the drink.

Again, because it’s not candied it won’t transfer any sugar to the drink itself and you’ll be perfectly fine.

Can I use a different keto sweetener?

In theory, you can. For this Keto Old Fashioned recipe we used stevia because it’s easier to use when you’re making a syrup. It’s sweet and there’s no need to worry about dissolving it.

You can use erythritol, monk fruit or any other keto friendly sweetener but it will be more time consuming because you need to make sure it fully dissolves and combines together with other ingredients to make a smooth syrup.

how to make Keto Old Fashioned cocktail

More Keto Drink Ideas

Love a classic cocktail but want to see more options? Check these out:

Have you tried our Keto Old Fashioned Cocktail Recipe?

Do you drink while on keto at all or have you stopped altogether? Let us know what has been working for you! There’s no one perfect way to do keto and we’d love to know your thoughts.

Leave us a comment below!

Keto Old Fashioned
Classic Keto Old Fashioned Recipe

Keto Old Fashioned

It’s a perfect combination of sweetness with some bitter and spicy ingredients to balance each other out.


“Brown Sugar” Simple Syrup

Nutrition Facts

Keto Old Fashioned

Amount Per Serving

Calories 93
Calories from Fat 9

% Daily Value*

Fat 1g2%

Saturated Fat 1g5%

Polyunsaturated Fat 1g

Monounsaturated Fat 1g

Sodium 26mg1%

Potassium 269mg8%

Carbohydrates 14g5%

Fiber 1g4%

Sugar 14g16%

Calcium 47mg5%

Iron 1mg6%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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