When you’re following a low-carb diet, you can get away with a lot of things— slacking off on cardio, losing your temper, and eating plenty of fat (really). When you’re too low on carbs to fuel your body, your body actually turns to fat for fuel, and eating more fat can actually encourage you to lose it. This duck recipe takes full advantage of the extra fat you’re eating and makes the most of its flavor.

Duck is an undereaten but perfectly good source of protein. The cashews complement it, helping to keep you full for hours. For maximum flavor, we did include a little brown sugar with the nuts (very little, just ½ teaspoon), but the remaining carbs are from the cashews. The nuts contain fiber, which has no impact on blood sugar, and carbs from nuts are generally negligible anyway—they don’t cause as rapid an insulin response as starches do.


  • 8 oz boneless duck breast
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • ½ cup cashews
  • ½ tsp brown sugar
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 425° and take the duck out of the fridge to let it warm to room temperature.
  2. Season the duck with salt, pepper, and turmeric on the nonskin side.
  3. Place a stainless steel sauté pan over high heat, and when it’s hot, place the duck skin-side-down in the pan. The fat should start to melt off.
  4. After about two minutes, place the pan with the duck in the oven. Then heat a medium nonstick sauté pan. When hot, toss the cashews in with the brown sugar and toast for 2 minutes.
  5. Then add the cayenne pepper, mix well, toast for 3 minutes and remove from heat.
  6. Stick a thermometer in the duck. It will take about 12 minutes to reach medium rare (about 145° internal temperature).
  7. When the duck is done, pull it out of the oven, put the cashews on a plate, slice the duck down the middle, and serve.
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