Diabetic Thanksgiving Recipes

Having diabetes doesn't mean you have to skip out on all the tasty treats of Thanksgiving. From Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes to Miniature Apple Galettes, these classic Thanksgiving recipes make for a decadent diabetes-friendly holiday.

Staff Picks

Mini Brie & Apple Quiches

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We love the way Brie and apples taste together in these mini quiches. Mini phyllo cups make it swift and simple to create an elegant appetizer.

Dill Mustard Sauce

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This tangy mustard-dill sauce recipe is delicious served with smoked salmon, used as a vegetable dip or spread on a sandwich.

Steamed Butternut Squash

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Butternut squash steams quickly, making this a great cooking technique to enjoy this fall vegetable as a weeknight side dish. For extra flavor, toss the steamed butternut squash with salt, pepper and a little bit of olive oil, butter or Parmesan cheese after cooking.

Sautéed Butternut Squash

Sautéeing butternut squash in olive oil quickly yields perfectly cooked results and slighly caramelizes the squash for extra flavor. This recipe makes a delicious vegetable side dish to pair with roasted meats.

Spinach Salad with Warm Maple Dressing

Rating: Unrated
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Pure maple syrup, as opposed to artificially flavored and colored “pancake” syrup, is an extraordinary cooking ingredient. Here it adds body as well as rich flavor to the dressing, providing a perfect counterpoint to the smoked cheese.

Nutty Pimiento Cheese Balls

Rating: Unrated
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These bite-size pimiento cheese balls from Jamie and Bobby Deen are a huge hit with kids (of all ages). They're the perfect appetizer to bring to a summer picnic. Jamie and Bobby share a passion for great home-cooked food with a Southern flair with their celebrity-chef mom, Paula Deen. These brothers are following in their mom's footsteps with their own TV shows, books and website. Our favorite part of what they're up to: healthy makeovers of some of Paula's recipes! Recipe adapted from The Deen Bros. Get Fired Up, by Jamie & Bobby Deen and Melissa Clark (Ballantine Books, 2011).

Roasted Honeynut Squash

Rating: Unrated
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Honeynut squash looks just like mini butternut squash, but on the inside you'll find an even sweeter, deeper orange flesh. This winter squash has only been available at farmers' markets and in select grocery stores for a few years. If you see it, grab a few to try! This simple roasting method enhances the natural flavor of the squash with butter and spices.

Brown Sugar-Glazed Beets

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Try a sweet glaze on beets or other root vegetables to help balance their earthy flavor. This easy recipe will work with steamed carrots, turnips or rutabaga too.

Sautéed Brussels Sprouts with Bacon & Onions

Rating: Unrated
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Fresh herbs, onion and bacon sauté alongside Brussels sprouts in this easy vegetable side dish recipe. This savory dish is delicious in the fall and winter months, when Brussels sprouts are in season. If you can find them still attached to the stalk, don't be intimidated--buy them, as they're likely more fresh. Recipe adapted from The Art of Simple Food by Alice Waters.

Smashed Spiced Sweet Potatoes

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Chile powder, cumin and ginger combined with a touch of maple syrup create a spicy-sweet flavor addition to a traditional Thanksgiving player.

Oven-Roasted Squash with Garlic & Parsley

Rating: Unrated
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Winter squash becomes tender and sweeter when roasted--a delicious side for a holiday dinner. Look for interesting squash like kabocha or hubbard at your farmers' market and try them in this recipe. Recipe adapted from Alice Waters.

Chile-Lime Peanuts

Rating: Unrated
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These spicy nuts were inspired by ones sold by street vendors across Mexico. If you can only find salted peanuts, omit the added salt. Add the maximum amount of cayenne pepper if you want an extra hit of spice.

Inspiration and Ideas

Light and Diabetic-Friendly Pumpkin Pie

If pumpkin pie is a must for the holidays, this diabetic friendly version fulfills that holiday tradition without derailing your meal plan.

Diabetic-Friendly Sweet Potato Casserole

This lightened-up take on the classic Thanksgiving sweet potato casserole is spiked with crushed pineapple and toasted pecans. We top it with an airy, slightly sweet meringue.

Wilted Kale with Warm Shallot Dressing

Rating: Unrated
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Vinegar is the key to making this sautéed kale recipe special. Look for vinegar that's cloudy--it likely still has some of the mother in the bottle and will give you a sweet acidity rather than a harsh bite. Organic apple cider vinegar is usually your best bet. For the most eye-catching version of this side, use different colored varieties of kale.