5 Diabetes-Friendly Comfort Food Swaps for Fall
1. Swap Hot Oatmeal for Ancient Grains
Hot cereal is a perfect way to warm up a chilly morning. While steel-cut oatmeal is always a good choice, other whole grains make tasty breakfast cereals, too. One good alternative is quinoa, which is high in protein as well as fiber. Farro, bulgur, barley, and polenta also make excellent breakfast options. Just add protein with Greek yogurt, low-fat milk, almonds, or walnuts, and toss in dried fruit or cinnamon for more flavor.
2. Swap Mashed Potatoes for Sweet Potatoes
Mashed potatoes are one of the ultimate comfort foods, but white potatoes can cause blood sugar to spike, so swap out regular spuds for sweet potatoes. While still a starchy carbohydrate, sweet potatoes are much lower on the glycemic index and have more flavor than their white counterparts. Try mashing baked apple slices along with the baked sweet potatoes to add more flavor. They’re also good just baked, or used in potato pancakes.
3. Swap Pasta for Spaghetti Squash
Pasta is a hearty meal, but the carbs can add up fast. Instead of regular wheat pasta, substitute spaghetti squash. When cooked, this flavorful winter squash separates into long, yellowish-orange strands that mimic pasta, but without the high carbohydrate count (a cup of spaghetti squash has just 10 grams or so of carbs). Cut the squash lengthwise, scoop out the seeds, and then bake or steam the squash until cooked. Use the tines of a fork to scrape the insides and top with your favorite sauce for a filling lunch or dinner.
4. Swap French Fries for Roasted Vegetables
If you're craving crispy veggies, fall is the peak season for a variety of low-glycemic vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts — and is one of the best ways to bring out the flavor. Add a few pieces of squash or sweet potato if you’d like, but remember they are higher in carbs. Toss or spray lightly with a little olive oil, roast until tender, and season as needed.
5. Swap Apple Crisp for Baked Apples
From traditional varieties like Red Delicious and Granny Smith to newer favorites such as Honeycrisp and Pink Lady, apples offer more variety than ever. They’re high in fiber, which helps keep blood sugar steady. Love apple crisp and apple pie? Try baking apples whole, or slice them for an easy and satisfying dessert that provides sweetness without added sugar.
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Credit: Pixel Stories/Stocksy
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