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Diabetes Friendly Recipes

Categories: Diabetes Center
Enjoy all of our recipes designed by Nutritionists and tailored to the dietary needs of individuals with Diabetes.

Crab Cakes with Spring Green Salad

Light mayonnaise dressing and an egg white keep these crab cakes low in fat and calories. Served warm atop a bed of greens and tomato tossed with Lime Dressing, they are simply extraordinary.

MAKES: 6 servings
SERVING SIZE: 1 crab cake and 1-1/2 cups salad

  • 1 egg white
  • 3 tablespoons light mayonnaise dressing
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon-style mustard
  • Few drops bottled hot pepper sauce
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped red or green sweet pepper
  • 2 tablespoons snipped fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon sliced green onion
  • 2 teaspoons snipped fresh dill or cilantro or 1/2 teaspoon dried dill
  • 1 pound cooked fresh lump crabmeat or three 6- to 6 1/2-ounce cans lump crabmeat, drained, flaked, and cartilage removed
  • 1 1/4 cups soft whole wheat or white bread crumbs
  • 1 recipe Lime Dressing (below)
  • 8 ounces mixed baby greens (8 cups)
  • 1 head Belgian endive, sliced crosswise
  • 1 medium tomato, seeded and chopped
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • Lime wedges (optional)
  1. In a large bowl, whisk together egg white, mayonnaise dressing, mustard, and hot pepper sauce. Stir in sweet pepper, parsley, green onion, and dill. Add crab and 1/2 cup of the bread crumbs; stir until well mixed. Using wet hands, shape mixture into six 1/2-inch-thick patties. Place in a 15x10x1-inch baking pan. Cover and chill for 30 minutes.
  2. Prepare Lime Dressing; set aside. In a very large bowl, combine greens, Belgian endive, and tomato. Cover and chill until ready to serve.
  3. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Place remaining 3/4 cup bread crumbs in a shallow dish. Dip crab cakes in bread crumbs, turning to coat both sides. Coat an unheated large nonstick skillet with nonstick cooking spray. Preheat over medium heat. Add three of the crab cakes. Cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until golden brown and heated through (160 degrees F), turning once halfway through cooking. Transfer to a baking sheet; keep warm in the oven. Repeat with remaining crab cakes.
  4. To serve, toss greens mixture with Lime Dressing; divide among six serving plates. Top with warm crab cakes. If desired, garnish with lime wedges. Makes 6 (1 crab cake and 1 1/2 cups salad) servings.

Lime Dressing
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 clove garlic, minced1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  1. In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil; lime juice; garlic; salt; and pepper.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
Servings Per Recipe: 6
Calories: 181
Total Fat: 9g
Cholesterol: 78mg
Saturated fat: 1g
Carbohydrates: 8g
Fiber: 1g
Protein: 18g
Sodium: 426 mg

Diabetic Exchanges:
Vegetables: 2
Very Lean Meat: 2
Fat: 2
Carbs: 0

Recipe from Diabetic Living Online (diabeticlivingonline.com)

Cranberry Beef Roast

As this beef brisket slowly simmers, the delicate sweetness of cranberries smoothes out the flavor of the marinara sauce for a dinner that's worthy of guests.

Makes: 6 servings
Serving Size: 5 ounces cooked meat and ¾ cup sauce
Carb grams per serving: 38g
  • 1 pound beef brisket
  • Salt
  • Ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon cooking oil
  • 2 stalks celery, sliced
  • 1 medium green or red sweet pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 16 ounce can whole cranberry sauce
  • 1 15 - 16 ounce can marinara sauce or tomato sauce
  1. Trim fat from beef brisket. Sprinkle brisket with salt and pepper. In a 4- to 6-quart Dutch oven, cook brisket in hot oil about 10 minutes or until browned, turning once. Remove brisket from Dutch oven. Add celery, sweet pepper, onion, the water, and garlic to Dutch oven. Cook and stir over medium heat about 5 minutes or just until vegetables are tender. Add the cranberry sauce and marinara or tomato sauce; cook until bubbly.
  2. Return brisket to the sauce mixture in Dutch oven. Cover and simmer about 3 hours or until brisket is tender. Remove the brisket; cover with foil and let stand while preparing sauce. Boil sauce gently, uncovered, for 5 to 10 minutes or until sauce is slightly thickened. Slice brisket. Serve brisket with sauce. Makes 6 (5 ounces cooked meat and 3/4 cup sauce) servings.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
Servings Per Recipe: 6
Total Fat:13g
Cholesterol: 76mg
Saturated fat: 4g
Carbohydrates: 38g
Fiber: 3g
Protein: 35g
Sodium: 549 mg

Diabetic Exchanges:
Vegetablles: 1
Other Carbs: 2
Lean Meat:

Recipe from Diabetic Living Online (diabeticlivingonline.com)

Cucumber Water Recipes

Lemon & Cucumber Water

  • 1 gallon cold water
  • 2-3 slices fresh lemon
  • 2-3 slices cucumbers


  1. Place all the ingredients into a pitcher & serve.
  2. For a stronger taste, let the water sit in your refrigerator for an hour before serving.

Recipe from Food.com

Cucumber-Orange Water

  • 6 cups cold water
  • 6 thin slices English cucumber
  • 5 thin slices orange


  1. Combine all ingredients in a large pitcher. Cover and chill in refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.

Recipe from chow.com

Cucumber-Mint Water

  • 4 fresh mint leaves
  • 15 super thin slices cucumber
  • 1 gallon filtered water


  1. Stir everything together in a glass pitcher. Add some ice or put it in the fridge. Let the flavors mingle for a time. If you crush your mint leaves in the water, you can drink it as soon as the water cools.


  • Add the juice of half a lemon or lime for extra tang.
  • Add a few chunks of cut up summer melons like watermelon, cantaloupe or honey dew.
  • Add a few slices of orange.

Recipe from foodrenengade.com

December 12 Cooking Demonstration

Make-Believe Champagne

  • 1 (1-Liter Bottle) carbonated water, chilled
  • 1 (1-Liter Bottle) diet ginger ale
  • 1 (24 Ounce) bottle of unsweetened white grape juice, chilled
  • 1(32 Ounce) bottle diet cranberry juice cocktail


  1. In a large pitcher or punch bowl, combine all of the contents of the bottles.
  2. Pour over the ice cubes in chilled champagne glasses or wine glasses

Nutritional facts per serving (1/20 of recipe):
Calories 0mg
Sodium 5.5 mg
Total Carbohydrate 6g
Sugars 5g
Fiber Og
Vitamin A 0%
Vitamin C 0%
Calcium 0%
Iron 0%

The original recipe was provided by Better Homes & Gardens and was adapted by our Hoag Hospital Chefs.

Bacon and Mushroom Bite-Size quiche

Makes: 3 ½ Dozen
Serving Size: 1 Quiche

  • 8 Slices Bacon¼ pound fresh mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 1/3 cup green onion, chopped
  • 1 2/3 cups Swiss cheese, shreddedPastry for double-crust pie, (homemade or purchased)
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 2/3 cups sour cream


  1. Heat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. On a lightly floured board, roll out the pastry dough 1/16 inch thick
  3. Using a 3-inch-cutter cut out 42 circles; re-roll scraps as needed
  4. Fit circles into bottoms and slightly up sides of lightly greased 2 1/2 –inch muffin pans
  5. Meanwhile, fry bacon slices until crisp, drain; crumble or chop
  6. Chop mushrooms, sauté in butter until limp and liquid evaporates
  7. Combine bacon, mushrooms, green onion and cheese. Divide filling equally among muffin cups
  8. In large bowl, beat together eggs, add sour cream and stir until smooth. Spoon about 1 tablespoon into each muffin cup.
  9. Bake until puffed and light brown, 20-25 Minutes. Cool in pans 5 minutes; lift out.
  10. Serve warm or let cool on wire racks. If made ahead, wrap cooled quiches airtight, and refrigerate overnight
  11. Reheat, uncovered, in a 350 degrees F. oven for about 10 minutes

Nutritional Information Per Serving:

Calories: 95
Protein: 3g
Sodium: 87 mg
Cholesterol 35 mg
Fat: 7g
Dietary Fiber: 0g
Carbohydrates: 4g

The original recipe was provided by the Guide to Terrific Diabetic meals.

Endive “Spoons” with Lemon-Herb Goat Cheese

Yield: Makes about 60 pieces

  • 1-pound soft fresh goat cheese
  • 2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 Generous teaspoons grated lemon peel3 Tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
  • 3 Tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives
  • 8 Long slender heads of Belgian endive
  • Very Small fresh cilantro sprigs (for garnish)
  • 6 Grape tomatoes, cut crosswise into very thin slices, slices halved (for garnish


Using on/off turns, blend goat cheese, olive oil, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, and lemon peel in food processor just until smooth and creamy. Transfer mixture to medium bowl. Stir in chopped cilantro and chives. Season cheese mixture to taste with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate until cold. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Keep refrigerated.) If desired, transfer cheese mixture to pastry bag fitted with small plain tip.

Cut off and discard root ends of endive. Separate leaves. Cut Cores, with some smaller leaves still attached, crosswise into thin strips. Toss sliced endive with remaining 1 tablespoon lemon juice in large bowl to coat. Arrange sliced endive on large platter. Pipe or spoon about 1 ½ teaspoons cheese mixture at wide end of each endive leaf. Place 1 very small sprig cilantro and tomato slice atop each. Arrange leaves in concentric circles atop sliced endive (Can be made 4 hours ahead. Cover and chill.)

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
Calories 35
Calories from Fat 20
Total Fat: 2g
Saturated Fat 1g
Cholesterol less than 5 mg
Sodium 40 mg
Potassium 210mg
Total Carbohydrates 2g
Dietary Fiber 2g
Sugars 0g
Protein 2g
Vitamin A 30%
Vitamin C 10%
Calcium 4%

The original recipe was provided by Epicurious.

Thai Shrimp Skewers

Yield: 10 Servings
Serving Size: 2 Skewers

  • 20 medium shrimp, cooked and peeled
  • 2 Garlic Cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoons grated fresh gingerroo
  • t½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 20 (3-inch) wooden skewers or long toothpicks, soaked in warm water for 1 hour


  1. Pat shrimp dry with paper towels
  2. Combine shrimp, garlic, ginger, red pepper,sugar, fish sauce, and lime juice in a glass or ceramic bowl. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour
  3. Skewer 2 shrimp onto each skewer. Serve Chilled.

Note: You can marinate shrimp up to 6 hours in advance; skewer shrimp up to 3 hours in advance. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Nutritional Information Per Serving
Calories: 15
Sodium: 5mg
Cholesterol: 18mg
Fat: 0.5mg
Dietary Fiber: 0g
Carbohydrates: 1g
Exchanges: ½ Very lean meat

Recipe provided by The Complete Guide to Terrific Diabetic Meals.

Vietnamese Beef Vegetable & Spring Rolls

Make 16 Appetizers

  • 16 thin slices deli roast beef (about 12 ounces0
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • ½ cup chopped jicama
  • 3?4 cup torn fresh cilantro
  • ½ cup torn fresh basil
  • ¼ cup torn fresh mint
  • 8 rice paper wrappers (8-1/2 inch diameter)
  • 8 green leaf lettuce leaves, ribs removed

Dipping Sauce

  • ¼ cup seasoned rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons red jalapeno pepper jelly
  • 1-teaspoon soy sauce


  1. Whisk dipping sauce ingredients in small microwave-safe bowl until blended. Microwave on high 20 to 40 seconds or until warm; don boil. Set aside to cool.
  2. Toss carrots and jicama with 2 tablespoons of the dipping sauce in small bowl. Set aside. Toss cilantro, basil and min in small bowl to combine. Set aside.
  3. Fill large bowl with warm water. Dip 1 rice paper wrapper into water for a few seconds or just until moistened. Rice paper will still be firm but will continue to soften during assembly. Place on work surface.
  4. Place 1 lettuce leaf at bottom of wrapper, leaving 1-inch border on right and left sides. Top with 2 slices roast beef, 2 tablespoons carrot mixture and 1/8 of herb mixture (about 1/4 cup). Fold right and left sides of wrapper over filling. Fold bottom edge up over filling. Fold bottom edge up over filling and roll up tightly. Place seam-side down on serving platter. Repeat with remaining wrappers and filling ingredients. Cover rolls with damp paper towel during assembly to prevent from drying out. Cut each spring roll diagonally in half. Serve with dipping sauce.

Nutritional Information:
Calories: 77
Protein: 7g
Sodium: 120 mg
Cholesterol 19mg
Fat: 1g
Saturated Fat: 0g
Dietary Fiber: 0.6g
Carbohydrates 9g

Recipe provided by NCBA

Elbows with Cauliflower and Brussels Sprouts

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 12 servings


  • 1 box Dreamfields Pasta
  • ½ pound Brussels sprouts, quartered
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup white wine
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • ½ cup Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, grated
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp parsley, chopped
  • 1 small carrot, diced
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 3 cups cauliflower, cut into small florets


  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil.
  2. In a large skillet, sauté onions in olive oil for 2-3 minutes or until slightly opaque. Add the butter.
  3. Add the cauliflower, carrots and Brussels sprouts and brown well, season with salt & pepper. Deglaze the pan with wine and reduce until nearly dry.
  4. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain pasta, reserving 1 cup of cooking water.
  5. Once pasta is cooked, add the pasta to skillet and toss to combine. Add enough of the reserved cooking water to make the sauce come together.
  6. Remove from heat and add the Parmigiano Reggiano cheese. Toss to combine.
  7. Top with parsley and serve.

Nutrition Facts per Serving:
Calories: 152
Total Fat:5g
Total Carbs:21g
Fiber: 4g
Protein: 6.5g

** According to Dreamfields Pasta claims, one serving of this dish should contain about 2.5g of digestible carbs. Test & see if this is true! Type 1 diabetics should dose as if there are 21g. *****

Mediterranean Grilled Lamb

Serves: 4

  • 3 1/2 tbsp red onion, minced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil, plus 1 teaspoon
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar, plus 2 teaspoons
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp fresh basil, minced
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 4 lamb chops, (each 5 ounces)

Combine all ingredients except lamb chops, then add the lamb chops and marinate in the refrigerator at least 3-5 hours. Grill or broil the lamb chops until done as desired.

Notes : Prep: 5 min, Marinate: 3:00, Cook: 10 min.

Nutritional Information:
Carbohydrates: 1.8g
Diabetic Exchanges: 3 Lean Meats.
The recommended wines are: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, or Pinot Noir.

The American Diabetes Association's Flavorful Seasons Mediterranean Grilled Lamb Recipe provided for you by InformationAboutDiabetes.com​