With Thanksgiving right around the corner, it’s time to start the last minute preparations for a diabetic-friendly Thanksgiving meal. Make this year the year you serve it all up without the side of guilt that often accompanies the holiday.
All of the recipes listed here are between 10-20 grams of carbohydrate per generous serving. Being in the culinary challenged group of diabetics, all are borrowed from other gourmands (links provided), but have been taste tested and recreated by one of the most kitchen-challenged diabetics I know: ME
Trust me–if I can make these dishes come out tasting delicious, anyone can! Scroll down for five of the tastiest diabetic comfort foods you’ll ever taste.
P.S. Break the rules this year and try the chocolate cloud cake in lieu of pie–it’s the best! I promise you won’t be disappointed!
1.)** CHOCOLATE CLOUD CAKE** (15g/carbs per big ol’ slice!)
Before you strike down the idea of cake for Thanksgiving, read this! If you like chocolate even a little bit, I’m about to introduce you to the most wonderful cake ever. Really. Why, you ask? Let me explain:
- This cake uses normal sugar, no sweeteners and STILL has only 120 grams of carbohydrates per BIG WHOLE CAKE!!!
- Let me repeat: 120 g/carbs PER CAKE!! You can get a good 8 big slices out of this cake which means it’s only about 15 carbs of carbs PER SLICE!!
The cake is called Chocolate Cloud Cake that has been modified by a fellow diabetic to make it diabetic-friendly and low carb! The original recipe (by the immensely talented Nigella can be found here).
This dessert is essentially a flourless (score!) fallen chocolate souffle. It takes a bit of effort, but if you are willing to put forth the effort, you will be rewarded with an incredible, rich, dark chocolatey, warm, light-as-air miracle of a desert. All you looking for something you can actually eat on Thanksgivings, birthdays, anniversaries, etc., here’s your answer.
- 9 ounces of dark chocolate (Lindt Excellence 70% Cocoa Dark Chocolate. Comes in bars, usually in the dessert or baking aisle. 9 ounces is 2.25 bars.)
- 1/2 cup butter
- 6 eggs (these get separated, etc, so read through the recipe before making)
- 1/4 cup superfine or baker’s sugar
- 2 cups whipping cream
- 2 tablespoons sugar or equivalent substitute
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Melt the chocolate in a microwave. When it is beginning to melt, add the stick of butter and melt until completely melted.
- Get out two bowls for the eggs. In one bowl, put two whole eggs, and four egg yolks. In another bowl, put** four egg whites.** Make sure there is no yolk in the whites bowl, or it will not beat properly.
- Beat the egg whites with an electric mixer on high. Add the sugar after a minute or so, and continue beating until the egg whites form dairy-queen-ice-cream like peaks when you insert and remove a spoon.
- Stir the chocolate / butter into the egg yolks bowl.
- Add a glob of egg whites to the chocolate / butter / egg yolk bowl, and mix it up.
- Fold in the rest of the egg whites carefully, until well mixed.
- Pour into a greased 12"³ round pan or a square casserole or something of similar volume, and bake at 350 degrees for 30 + minutes. The cake is done when you jiggle the pan and the center does not jiggle. The top will be cracked, and the cake will have risen a bunch. It will mostly fall again when you take it out of the oven.
- Whip the cream, add the sugar and vanilla and serve big, fluffy heaps of cake (it’s easiest to scoop it out, rather than worry about slices) topped with cool vanilla whipped cream.
2.) Easy-Peasy Butternut Squash Soup (17g/carbs/cup)
CARBS PER SERVING:
- 11g / butternut squash
- 3.2g / coconut milk
- 0.5g / onion
- 2.5g / brown sugar
TOTAL: 17.2g carbohydrates / 1 cup servinngredients:
- 1 butternut squash, large and preferably a long (as opposed to fat) one.
- 1 1/2 cans light coconut milk (or 2/3 can light coconut milk and an equal portion of skim milk)
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 yellow onion, large
- 2 tablespoons butter
- nutmeg for decorating
- Cut the squash in half lengthwise. You may need a chainsaw. Or at least someone very, very strong. Be careful of your fingers.
- Scoop out and discard the seeds. Rub the squash with about 1 tablespoon of melted butter, and sprinkle with salt.
- Roast the squash cut-side-up on a cookie sheet for at least an hour at 375. Roasting it for a long time gives the squash a lovely, complex caramely flavor. A butter knife should go in very easily.
- While the squash is roasting, slice and saute the onion in the remaining tablespoon of butter, and when it is soft, add the brown sugar and continue cooking for about 3 minutes. Remove from heat.
- When the squash is finished, scoop the flesh out with a spoon, and put it in your blender. Add the onion/brown sugar mixture. Add the coconut milk. Blend until smooth. If your blender is small, you may need to do this in batches.
- Just heat and serve!
P.S. This soup is incredible with a sprinkling of nutmeg, and is very rich and subtly sweet and flavorful without being heavy on sugar carbs, and while being naturally rich in fiber and beta carotene! It also freezes well.
3.) Low Carb Potato & Green Bean Salad (20g/carbs/cup)
CARBS PER SERVING:
- 15g / potatoes
- 4g / green beans
- 1g / garlic
TOTAL: 20g carbohydrates / 1 cup serving
Five ingredients makes it simple, healthy, and a super alternative for traditional potato salad, which is higher in carbs and fat and calories. If you love potato salad like this German-American does, this recipe may quickly become a staple! Why? Simple:
- It’s easy to make, and delicious!
- By replacing half the potatoes with green beans, you cut the carbs by 10g per cup (1 whole cup of this salad is 20g carb :15g potatoes, 4 grams green beans, 1 gram garlic), and add a yummy crunch and vitamins.
- By replacing the mayonnaise with olive oil, the potato salad becomes more awesome.
- It just tastes good. And unlike mayonnaise salads, it keeps on tasting good for days.
- It’s inexpensive.
- 4 cups potatoes (I use a mix of the little red ones and the little yellow ones)
- 4 cups green beans
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 3 tablespoons pressed garlic
- 2 teaspoons salt
- Cut up the potatoes into uniform, bite sized pieces, and boil until soft. Drain them.
- Cut the green beans into 1 inch pieces, and steam them until done.
- Combine the pressed garlic and salt, and let the mixture sit for about 1/2 an hour.
NOTE: It’s important to actually let them sit for that long. The salt chemically changes the garlic and makes it about half as spicy, so three tablespoons of garlic doesn’t knock you over!
- After 30 minutes, squish the garlic and salt up with the back of a spoon until pasty.
- Put the garlic/salt paste into the 1/4 cup of olive oil and stir it up.
- Put the potatoes and green beans in a bowl, and toss with the olive oil mixture.
- Serve cold. Enjoy!
This fool-proof recipe makes great fried green tomatoes. My friend and Type 1 diabetic, Beth, makes hers with a southwestern flair. They’re delicious! This recipe as is isn’t very spicy at all; add more of the hot stuff if you’re brave!
- 5 Tomatoes (Note: They don’t have to be green (I actually like yellow the best), but they do have to be hard! Get the hardest, most awfully unripe tomatoes you can find!
- 1 cup milk
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1/2 cup yellow corn meal
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder (salt-free)
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon (or more) ground chipotle or cayenne pepper
- 2 teaspoons salt
- olive oil
- OPTIONAL: salsa, guacamole, sour cream (toppings)
- In a bowl, combine all the dry ingredients. Stir with a fork.
- Put the milk in a separate bowl.
- Slice the tomatoes about 1/3 of an inch thick. Only keep the pretty, center slices; pitch the tops and bottoms.
- Cover the bottom of a NON-STICK pan thinly with olive oil. Heat it on medium until hot, but not smoking.
- Dip your tomato slices into the milk, then flop them in the dry ingredient mixture. Pat the mixture around them till well covered.
- Place them in the pan, and fry. Resist the temptation to flip them until you see the edges begin to curl slightly up" waiting helps keep the breading on the tomatoes, instead of loose in the pan.
- When fried to a lovely golden brown color on both sides, remove from the oil to a paper towel.
NOTE: This recipe is great because the breading gets really crispy, which is hard to achieve on vegetables without a deep-frier. And save the leftovers for breakfast in the morning! Serve with any of your favorite southwestern (or other favorite) condiments!
P.S. *Cayenne pepper is often associated with frightening bogus claims to "cure" diabetes, or treat it naturally, etc. While publications like the highly respected Science News have reported it possibly helps a bit with increasing insulin sensitivity, it is absolutely no cure-all.
5.) Zucchini Frittata (10g/carb/slice)
This recipe is easy to the point of being foolproof (2 steps), warm, delicious, and only 10g or so of carbs per serving (1/8 of the recipe). Plus, those carbs, while coming mostly from the white flour in the Bisquick, are nicely tempered by the protein and fat in the eggs and cheese. Give it a try, I promise you won’t be sorry. And, for you vegetable haters out there, it doesn’t taste anything like zucchini.
- 3 cups grated zucchini
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 1 cup Bisquick mix
- 2/3 cup grated cheddar cheese
- 4 eggs
½ cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle or cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt
2 Step Directions:
- Mix all the ingredients in a bowl and pour them into a pie plate. Don’t forget the Pam.
- Bake @ 350 degrees for 45 minutes, or until a knife into the center comes out clean
- Serve warm & enjoy!
Note: If these don’t strike your fancy, I’ll be posting more tomorrow for those of you out there who tend to procrastinate (like me!).
Enjoy your Thanksgiving feast, and please leave a comment and report back how these turned out!
Amylia wrote for HealthCentral as a Patient Expert for Diabetes.