Last week I received an email with the request for diabetes friendly recipes. In a dietitians world this is very common. Whether it’s for heart disease, cancer, diverticulitis, IBS or following any recent diet fads, people WANT recipes!

I love this.

It means people are still COOKING.

Take out hasn’t taken over.

However, my dilemma especially when it comes to diabetes is that there’s no ONE right way to manage your diabetes. Personally I like the old school way of carb counting. There’s more consistency in the amount of carbohydrates consumed, it’s easier (and dare I say fun?) to play detective in seeing why your blood sugar numbers might be higher than normal and it’s simpler to incorporate some of the those favorite “once forbidden” foods into your meal plan. Hello Grandma’s famous grasshopper pie!

Not a fan of carb counting, per a 2013 statement by the American Diabetes Association, the Mediterranean diet, vegetarian, vegan, plant based, low fat, low carb, ultra low carb and DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diets have also proven quite successful.

So what’s a dietitian to do when asked for recipe recommendations?

She gives you what she just had for dinner. This past weekend I needed a recipe that was “boat” friendly and able to feed the masses if need be. This is what happens when your husband is excited about the weekend being away on the boat and invites EVERYONE to meet up with us, but doesn’t bother asking for a specific RSVP.

“Just come over! We’re at dock 1139! We’ll have plenty!”

Thankfully, blog reader and friend Michelle commented on my Death by Chicken post with a great recipe recommendation to avoid boring, dry boneless skinless chicken breast. Check out the article here.

In the comments, Michelle reported to just grab a pound of BSCB, a jar of salsa, can of black beans and a can of corn. A clarifying panic text to her the night of prepping called to drain the juice from canned items, but feel no need to rinse. Into the crock pot with 4 hours on high, shred that bad boy and you are ready to go! My 2 alterations were I had a ton of fresh corn leftover from my endless supply thanks to my local CSA which I used the corn from roughly 2 large ears and I cooked it (maybe) 8 hours on low while at work. Oh and I used close to 2 pounds of chicken, 5 breasts to be exact.

Of course as fate would have it on that glorious, blue sky day my power goes off which I don’t discover until I’m home frantically trying to pack up 3 kids, their insisting toys, lovies and I swear half my kitchen to get to the dock before guests arrive. Thankfully though, the chicken was completely cooked through and I’m happy to report NO food-borne illness happened around MY table.

SO is this recipe diabetes friendly?

You bet ya!!

As I mentioned before, one of the preferred methods I like to teach for my newly diagnosed diabetes clients is teaching them not to be scared of the CARB. And I do this in a way of simple carb counting and teaching them roughly how many carbs to have and when.

So when looking at a recipe, first look at what ingredients have carbs in them.

Chicken? No.

Black Beans? Yes…….  49g Carbs for the WHOLE can.

Corn? Yes……. 46g Carbs for the WHOLE can.

Salsa? Maybe. (If jarred it might have some added sugar or corn which would then be a Yes. If just tomatoes, onions, garlic and cilantro..Not really).

Rounding off nicely we have 100g carbs, but for how much?? That’s when estimating comes in handy. 2 pounds of chicken yields around 3-4 cups of shredded. We also have the whole can of corn and beans. So let’s say we just cooked up 7 cups of yumminess. So if each person got a WHOLE cup of shredded chicken, bean, corn, salsa mixture you are really looking at roughly 15g of carbs. Plus you got one dish full of FIBER and PROTEIN that is going to slow down that glucose rushing right into that cell.

No sugar highs here!

Most women with diabetes can allow themselves 45 -60g of carbs for dinner. So plenty of room for a tortilla or 2 or even a small amount of rice. I served this meal with a pile of fajita style peppers and onions, roughly chopped romaine for those wanting a taco salad, more fresh tomatoes, avocado, sour cream, limes and Coronas! 

And dinner is served!

Have a recipe you need help breaking down? Send it my way!

Feeling lost on how to manage your diabetes, come check out my Work With Me page here.

And as always, please like these posts and share away! Hugs!