Minimal time and effort to prepare holiday meals means you have more time and energy to enjoy the day. It is also important to make the right food choices when you have diabetes. Discover 3 delicious, oven ready meals for the holiday season with diabetes.
- Turkey is one of the traditional meals served during the holiday season. Try making a 5-7 pound turkey breast rather than a whole turkey. White meat is less fatty and it eliminates the temptation to stuff the bird. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Pour 1 1/2 cups of low sodium chicken broth and 1/4 cup of white wine into a deep baking pan. Put the turkey breast in the pan. Generously sprinkle parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme on the breast. Add peeled parsnips and carrots to the pan to cook along with the turkey. Baste the turkey every 20 minutes with the broth and wine. Cook for about 1 hour and 45 minutes, until the internal temperature reaches 170 degrees Fahrenheit. Let the turkey breast cool for about 15 minutes and remove the skin. Serve with a platter of boiled low carb pasta mixed with olive oil, fresh garlic and fresh basil. Watch the portion of pasta even though it is low carb.
- Frozen fish fillets are one of the easiest, oven ready meals for the holidays. Purchase fish fillets with no breading. Consider popular favorites such as flounder, salmon, cod and tilapia.
- Defrost the fillets in the refrigerator the night before you intend to use them, unless the instructions on the packaging indicate they can be cooked frozen. Brush them with olive oil and sprinkle them with parsley, pepper and fresh lemon juice. You can add a few spoons of crushed nuts to coat them for a bit of crunch. Bake until the fish are cooked and the nuts are golden brown, approximately 20 minutes. Serve over a fresh bed of spinach greens. For a side dish, heat prepared brown rice in the microwave then mix with a can of Mexi-corn, which includes corn, red peppers and green peppers. If you want to skip vegetables in a can buy frozen corn and microwave. Sauté fresh peppers for 5-8 minutes and add to the corn. Put in a microwave-safe bowl and heat for another 20 seconds. Microwave 2 bags of French-style green beans and mix with a dash of olive oil and a handful of slivered almonds, then heat in a pot on the stove on medium heat. This makes another tasty side dish that has few carbohydrates.
- Lasagna is a favorite dish for the holiday season. This recipe is a simple one that can fit into your diabetes food plan. The ingredients include 1 pound of ground lean turkey, 1 diced onion, 2 jars of low sugar pasta sauce, 1/2 cup of water, 1 cup of low-fat ricotta cheese, 1 slightly beaten egg and 1 cup of low-fat, shredded mozzarella cheese. Preheat the over to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Cook the ground turkey and onion in a skillet until brown. Add the low sugar pasta sauce, water and some of your favorite Italian seasonings, such as dried basil, garlic and rosemary. [You can make your own red sauce with just canned crushed tomatoes and spices which contains less sugar.] Mix egg and ricotta cheese in a bowl. Coat the bottom of a 9″ x 13″ inch baking pan with the sauce. Layer the lasagna noodles, then the sauce and then ricotta cheese mixture. Top with lasagna noodles, sauce and shredded mozzarella cheese. Bake for about an hour. Add a large tossed salad that includes mixed greens such as lettuce and spinach, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers and onions. Watch your lasagna portion size to maintain proper blood sugars.
- Appetizers for the holidays can include a handful of nuts such as walnuts and cashews and a vegetable platter with fat-free, sugar-free dips or dressings. Sugar-free cherry Jello with fresh cranberries and baked apples with cinnamon are festive desserts. Serve the meal with flavored, sugar free sparkling water in fancy glasses. Add citrus slices for decoration and flavor.
These over-ready meals for the holiday season are tasty and fit into your diabetes food plan. Everyone is sure to enjoy these healthy options. Best of all, you don’t have to spend a lot of time in the kitchen.