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The Most Satisfying Diabetic-Friendly Dinner Ideas

Living with diabetes means there's a constant focus on making the best possible food choices, a challenge that can feel, at time, like a burden. While the guidelines laid out by organizations such as the American Diabetes Association have remained fairly static over the years -- avoid sugar, eat complex carbs and healthy fats -- the good news is that cooks have become much more clever about making the most out of healthy ingredients. Of course, it's always essential to discuss your diet with a health care provider, but this round-up of top-rated diabetic-friendly recipes -- all, with nutritional information included (click on the calorie tab to pull down the full details) -- should provide some tasty meal time inspiration.

Meaty Mains

Protein-rich meat and seafood preparations are the centerpiece of meals that fill you up. These selections go big on flavor and are fairly quick and easy to make.

Pork Tenderloin Diablo

Pork Tenderloin Diablo | Photo by naples34102

Hooray for Beans!

Beans and legumes get huge nutritional high fives for delivering complete proteins when partnered up with grains such as rice. And a big bowl is incredibly filling, yet still remaining on the lean side.

Lentils and Spinach

Lentils and Spinach | Photo by Sharon Embry

Very Good Veggies, On the Side

The American Diabetic Association recommends filling at least half your plate with non-starchy vegetables. (A list of widely available non-starchy veggies from that organization's site is listed below.) Fortunately, veggies are endlessly interesting and immensely enjoyable when cooks make very little effort. These recipes demonstrate just that.

edited-3708175_original-roasted-cauliflower-rice-photo-by-buckwheat-queen

Roasted Cauliflower Rice. Photo by Buckwheat Queen

Here's the list of common non-starchy vegetables, which are an important part of diabetic diets:

Amaranth or Chinese spinach
Artichoke
Artichoke hearts
Asparagus
Baby corn
Bamboo shoots
Beans (green, wax, Italian)
Bean sprouts
Beets
Brussels sprouts
Broccoli
Cabbage (green, bok choy, Chinese)
Carrots
Cauliflower
Celery
Chayote
Coleslaw (packaged, no dressing)
Cucumber
Daikon
Eggplant
Greens (collard, kale, mustard, turnip)
Hearts of palm
Jicama
Kohlrabi
Leeks
Mushrooms
Okra
Onions
Pea pods
Peppers
Radishes
Rutabaga
Salad greens (chicory, endive, escarole, lettuce, romaine, spinach, arugula, radicchio, watercress)
Sprouts
Squash (cushaw, summer, crookneck, spaghetti, zucchini)
Sugar snap peas
Swiss chard
Tomato
Turnips
Water chestnuts
Yard-long beans

Explore More than 500 Healthy, Diabetic-Friendly Recipes

About Leslie Kelly

Always hungry to learn, never had my fill of oysters, Memphis dry rub ribs, wild salmon, chocolate chip cookies or a well-rolled lumpia. Washington state wine lover, bourbon fan. Totally obsessed with brunch!