Diabetes Cookbooks Everyone Will Like

Cookbooks for diabetics are a growth industry.  The reason is simple: the number of diabetics is increasing rapidly, and diet is central to the treatment of the disease. A cookbook that offers a detailed analysis of each dish makes it much easier for a diabetic to eat a healthy diet.

Two new cookbooks-“Diabetes Superfoods Cookbook and Meal Planner” and the second edition of “The Mediterranean Diabetes Cookbook” - cover all the bases. They’re a valuable resource for diabetics, for everyone who cooks for a diabetic, and-as an added bonus-for everyone whose family includes a diabetic. 

When I browsed through the books, I earmarked recipes that looked appealing. In the end, there were a lot of them. They were all easy-on-the-cook, which is a major consideration. The following recipes can be made ahead of time. Reheat the meatballs at half power in the microwave. Serve the salad at room temperature.

Portion sizes may generate comments. They’re small, at least in contrast to the jumbo portions we’ve come to accept as “normal.” The recipe for Spinach and Turkey Meatballs, for example, calls for 10 ounces of spinach (I used defrosted chopped spinach and squeezed out the water), 1 pound of ground turkey, 1/2 cup bread crumbs and 3 tablespoons of grated Parmesan cheese. 

The recipe makes 24 golf ball-sized meatballs, and the recommended portion is four meatballs. Three-quarters of a cup of whole wheat pasta and one-third of a cup of chunky tomato sauce completes the entree. While the portion size works for some people, others may want to make some adjustments. Having the breakdown on all the components makes it relatively easy to calculate the necessary numbers. 

Spinach and Turkey Meatballs


16-ounces  93% lean ground turkey

1 egg

3 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1/2 cup whole-wheat bread crumbs

2 teaspoons dried basil

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

10-ounce chopped steamed spinach (squeeze out the water)

Nonstick cooking spray


  1. Preheat oven to 400-degrees F
  2. Place all ingredients, except cooking spray, in a large mixing bowl and mix together thoroughly.
  3. Roll into 24 Golf ball-sized meatballs (about 2 tablespoons each).
  4. Spray a 9x13-inch baking pan with cooking spray and place meatballs in the pan. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes.
  5. Remove meatballs from oven and serve hot. Enjoy with 3/4 cup whole-wheat pasta and 1/3 cup of your favorite chunky tomato sauce if desired.

Calories      180

Calories from fat   60

Total fat  7.0 grams

Saturated fat 2.3 grams

Trans fat   0.1 gram

Cholesterol.  90 mg

Sodium.   140 mg

Potassium.  320 mg

Total carbohydrate.  8 grams

Dietary Fiber 2 grams

Sugars       1 gram

Protein.  19 grams

Phosphorus 205 mg

From “Diabetes Superfoods Cookbook and Meal Planner “ by Cassandra L. Verdi, MPH, RD, and Stephanie A. Dunbar, MPH, RD

Published by the American Diabetes Association

Corn, Tomato, Pea, and Dill Salad

Serving size 1 cup

1 cup sugar snap peas 

1 cup frozen corn, thawed

1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half

2 cups baby kale

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

10 fresh basil leaves, torn

1 bunch  fresh baby dill, about 4 tablespoons

4 tablespoons sunflower seeds

1/8 teaspoons unrefined sea salt

Freshly ground d black pepper, to taste

  1. Place sugar snap peas in a saucepan and cover wutg water. Bring to a boil over high heat and cook for 5 minutes, or until tender. Drain and rinse with cold water.
  2. Combine sugan snap peas, corn, tomatoes, kale, olive oil, basil, dill, sunflower seeds, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Toss well to combine and serve at room temperature.


1/2 starch, 1 non starchy vegetable, 2 fat

Calories 160

Calories from Fat 100

Total Fat 11.0 g

Saturated Fat  1.4 g

Trans Fat    0.0.  g

Cholesterol   0 mg

Sodium  85  mg

Potassium   300  mg

Total Carbohydrate  13 G

Dietary Fiber     3 g

Sugars   3 g

Protein   4 g

Phosphorus   145 mg  

From "The Mediterranean Diabetes Cookbook"(2nd edition) by Amy Riolo, published by The American Diabetes Association

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