This easy Low FODMAP Keto Philly Cheesesteak Skillet dinner allows you to enjoy the best parts of a classic American sandwich without the carbs! Featuring mouthwatering steak and low FODMAP quantities of green bell pepper and canned mushrooms topped with ooey gooey melted cheese, this simple yet delicious easy low FODMAP dinner can be on your table in about 20 minutes! Low FODMAP, Keto, low carb, grain-free, and gluten-free with options for lactose-free.
Easy Low FODMAP, Low Carb Dinner Recipe
When I first started eating low FODMAP and Keto, one recipe I noticed that was incredibly popular in the Keto space was a Philly cheesesteak skillet. With its roots in Philadelphia, PA, a Philly cheesesteak is a simple sandwich containing steak and cheese on a hoagie bun with peppers and onions as common toppings. Regular hoagies being too high in carbs for Keto, the Philly cheesesteak skillet features just the contents of the sandwich. It has no bun and is eaten on a plate like an incredibly simple steak and veggie stir fry covered in cheese.
Buns and bread in general are a complicated subject in the low FODMAP space. While low FODMAP sourdough and gluten-free baguettes are possibilities for a sandwich bun (like in my Low FODMAP French Dip Sandwich), they are not ideal replacements for regular wheat-based buns, in my opinion. By taking away the bun in this low FODMAP Philly cheesesteak skillet recipe, you are enjoying the best parts of the sandwich without being underwhelmed by your sub-par low FODMAP bread options. Unlike the French Dip, which really requires a bun to fully enjoy due to the dipping part, a Philly steak sandwich doesn't really need a bun to be enjoyed.
Low FODMAP, Keto, Low Carb, Grain-Free and Gluten-Free
As mentioned, this Philly cheesesteak skillet recipe is suitable for the low FODMAP, Keto, and low carb diets. Due to it not having a bun, it's also grain-free and gluten-free. However, it calls for real cheese, so it does contain dairy and small amounts of lactose. I use a mixture of mozzarella and parmesan cheese, which are low FODMAP in small quantities but still contain lactose. There are lactose-free mozzarella options available but not parmesan. If needing fully lactose-free, one could use the same amount of lactose-free mozzarella for the parmesan.
The equipment I use to make this Low FODMAP Keto Philly Cheesesteak Skillet includes:
- Large, oven-safe skillet (I use a 10.25-inch cast iron skillet, but the size and type is very flexible)
- Lid for skillet (if not using the broiler to melt the cheese)
- Chopping board and knife
- Measuring spoons and cups
- Small bowl
- Fine mesh sieve
- Paper towels
- Large plate
- Flipping spatula
- Scraping spatula
- Tongs (optional, makes it easier to leave juices in the pan)
- Cheese shredder
Low FODMAP Keto Philly Cheesesteak Skillet: Ingredients, FODMAP Information, and Success Tips
Ideal cuts of steak to use
A Philly cheesesteak isn't a Philly cheesesteak without the steak. The selection of the cut of steak is important for this recipe. Due to the lack of carbs, using leaner cuts of steak in this recipe will leave you feeling hungry. Although more expensive, fattier cuts of steak such as ribeye (what's traditionally used) or sirloin with marbling are most ideal.
I typically use 1.25-1.5 pounds of sirloin steak with significant marbling. Budget friendly tip: as steak and beef in general is extremely expensive at the moment, I buy steaks in bulk at Costco and freeze them until ready to use.
How to slice the steak
It is important to slice the steak thinly and evenly or else it may come out tough. To make it stiffer and easier to slice, I put the steak in the freezer for about 30 minutes prior to slicing into ⅛-inch thick strips. Then, I place it on a cutting board, and holding the steak firmly with the palm of my left hand, I slice the steak thinly against the grain with my right hand.
If the steak is still too flimsy to cut thinly, I stick it back in the freezer for 10 more minutes or until it's firm enough.
Garlic-infused olive oil, coconut aminos, and seasonings
Once I have all of the ingredients prepared and I'm ready to start cooking, I place a large, oven safe skillet on medium high heat on the stovetop and add garlic-infused olive oil. As FODMAPs are not oil-soluble, I use garlic-infused olive oil to add garlicy flavor without the FODMAPs. It's also way easier than mincing garlic!
While the skillet is heating up, I add the steak strips to a small bowl. Then, I pour in coconut aminos, tamari or soy sauce. Coconut aminos, a soy-free soy sauce substitute, has been tested by FODMAP Friendly and is low FODMAP in servings 5 grams (about 1 teaspoon). Tamari sauce and soy sauce (if not needing gluten-free) can also be used and are low FODMAP in servings of up to 2 tablespoons or 42 grams.
I also add the following seasonings to the bowl:
- Dried chives - one of my all time favorite low FODMAP ingredients, found in the seasonings aisle of most grocery stores.
- Salt and pepper
I toss the steak strips with my hands until evenly coated in seasonings.
Once the skillet is hot, I add the seasoned steak strips and stir fry for 5 minutes. I remove the steak strips to a large plate using tongs. This it makes it easy to leave the steak juices in the skillet.
Green bell pepper and canned mushrooms
After the steak is cooked, I add green bell pepper and canned mushrooms to the skillet. I sprinkle them with salt and pepper, to taste, sauté for 3 minutes, and remove the skillet from heat.
FODMAPs and green bell pepper
Containing the FODMAP fructans, Monash University has found green bell pepper low FODMAP in quantities of up to ½ cup or 75 grams per serving. We're adding 1 ½ cups across 4 servings, which is 75% of the tolerable amount per serving.
FODMAPs and canned mushrooms
As canned mushrooms leach out FODMAPs during the canning process, they are lower in FODMAPs than most types of fresh mushrooms. Containing the FODMAP mannitol, Monash University lists canned mushrooms as low FODMAP in servings of 75 grams or 6 whole mushrooms. A 14 ounce can of sliced mushrooms that's been drained of its brine is about 162 grams of mushrooms. When divided among 4 servings, that leaves about 40.5 grams of mushrooms per serving, well below the tolerable amount per serving. See my Low FODMAP Creamy Bacon Mushroom Chicken Thighs post for more FODMAP details on on canned mushrooms.
To make sure I leave as many FODMAPs behind as possible, I add the canned mushrooms to a fine mesh sieve, rinse them in cold water, and pat them dry with paper towels. This washes off the FODMAPs that leached out in the brine during the canning process.
I have also tested this recipe using regular fresh oyster mushrooms, which are also low FODMAP in small quantities. They fall apart when sautéed. King oyster mushrooms, which are a bit more robust, may work, although I have not tested them with this recipe. I am no longer able to find them locally.
Mozzarella and parmesan cheese
After the produce is cooked, I remove the skillet from heat and add the steak and its juices back to the skillet. Then, I mix the steak and veggies together and top the skillet with shredded cheese.
I use a combination of shredded mozzarella and parmesan cheeses as I enjoy that flavor combination. Although mozzarella and parmesan contain the FODMAP lactose, the quantity of lactose is low enough that the cheese is still low FODMAP in small quantities even though it is not fully lactose-free. Mozzarella is low FODMAP in servings of up o ¼ cup or 40 grams per serving. We're adding ½ cup across 4 servings. We're also adding ½ cup of parmesan cheese, which has been recently tested by Monash University. It contains trace amount of FODMAPs and remains low FODMAP in servings of up to 500 grams.
If you require fully lactose-free, you can omit the parmesan (as it doesn't come in lactose-free versions) and increase the amount of mozzarella to 1 cup.
Once the cheese has been added, I either cover the skillet with a lid and let it sit off heat for a few minutes until the cheese is melted, or I put it under the broiler for 3-4 minutes until the cheese starts to brown.
Easy Low FODMAP Keto Philly Cheesesteak Skillet (Low Carb, Gluten-Free)
- 10.25-inch cast iron skillet or any large, oven-safe skillet
- 2 tablespoons garlic-infused olive oil
- 1.25-1.5 pounds ribeye or sirloin steak, sliced against the grain into ⅛-inch-thick strips (see note)
- 1 tablespoon coconut aminos, tamari or soy sauce*
- 2 teaspoons dried chives
- ¾ teaspoon salt, plus more for sprinkling
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper, plus more for sprinkling
- 1 ½ cups green bell pepper, diced
- 10 ounce can sliced mushrooms, drained, rinsed, and patted dry
- ½ cup mozzarella, finely shredded*
- ½ cup fresh parmesan, finely shredded*
- Scallions, green tops only, chopped, for garnish (optional)
- Place a large, oven-safe skillet (I use a 10.25-inch cast iron skillet - other oven-safe skillet types and sizes will work) on the stovetop on medium high heat. Add garlic-infused olive oil.
- While the skillet is heating up, add steak strips, coconut aminos, dried chives, salt and pepper to the bowl. Toss the strips with your hands until evenly coated in sauce and seasonings.
- Once the skillet is hot, add steak and stir fry for 5 minutes. Using tongs, remove steak strips to a plate, leaving the juices in the pan.
- Add green bell pepper and mushrooms to the skillet and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Sauté for 3 minutes. Remove skillet from heat.
- Add steak back to the skillet, scraping any juices from the plate to the skillet with a spatula (leave no flavor behind!). Mix steak and vegetables together. Top with cheese and allow the skillet to sit off heat, covered, until cheese is melted, or preheat broiler and set under the broiler for 3-4 minutes, until cheese is melted and starting to brown.
- Serve skillet on its own or alongside a green salad. If not needing low carb / Keto, you can also serve on low FODMAP sourdough or gluten-free baguettes (see my Low FODMAP French Dip Sandwich post for options).
- FODMAPs: See post above for detailed FODMAP information on each ingredient.
- Steak: it’s best to go with steak with some marbling. Using leaner cuts of steak will leave you hungry. Stick the steak in the freezer for 20-30 minutes prior to slicing to make it easier to slice thinly. Alternatively, you can ask a butcher to slice it for you.
- Coconut aminos, tamari or soy sauce: use coconut aminos or tamari sauce if needing gluten-free.
- Cheese: If needing fully lactose-free, omit the parmesan and increase mozzarella to 1 cup (don’t use provolone).
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