I often get questions about what are the best fruits to eat for people with diabetes. As most people know, the amount of carbohydrates in your diet will affect your blood glucose level. Fruits do contain carbohydrates and sugars but some have more than others. Consider including in your diet these 5 delicious fruits as long as there are no allergies or intolerances. I hope you find these recipes delightful! 

5 low carb fruit recipes for people with diabetesRhubarb

Is this a fruit or a vegetable? Rhubarb is something special. It is a member of the buckwheat family. Although botanists consider it a vegetable, in 1947 the U.S. customs court in Buffalo New York ruled that it is a fruit. The reason is that it is used in the way that fruits are in recipes. At the time this made rhubarb subject to a duty rate of 35% rather than the 50% that was charged to vegetables. (1)

Nutrition fast facts for 1 cup diced raw rhubarb:

Calories 26
Carbohydrate 5.5 grams
Fiber 2.5 grams
Protein 1.1 grams

According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, the leaves of the plant are poisonous, do not eat them. Only the stalks are edible. Rhubarb grows in cooler climates where summer temperature is less than 75 degrees F. and the winter temperatures are below 40 degrees F. Rhubarb thrives when given full sunlight. (2) Most people think of rhubarb jelly or jam, grilled rhubarb or rhubarb as an ingredient in muffins or soups. Diabetescare.net is pleased to feature a rhubarb recipe from the “Farmer’ Market Favorite Recipes Cookbook” published by Cornell Cooperative Extension Saratoga County, New York edited by Diane Whitten. Click here to go to their site: www.ccesaratoga.org

Rhubarb Chili

(Makes 8 servings without beef and 10 servings when made with beef)

Ingredients

2 pounds tomatoes (about 3 cups)
1 large onion, diced
2 garlic cloves minced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound ground beef (85 % lean) optional
3 cups low sodium vegetable broth
1/3 cup raisins
1 tablespoon chili powder
¼ teaspoon allspice
2 cups rhubarb diced
30 ounces black beans (cooked from raw without salt)

To prepare tomatoes blanch, remove skin and chop. In a large saucepan on medium heat, sauté onions and garlic with olive oil and ground beef (if desired). Drain fat, if necessary. Add broth, blanched tomatoes, raisins, chili powder and allspice. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Stir in rhubarb and black beans and simmer for another 20 minutes.  

Rhubarb Chili Without Beef
rhubarb chili with beef recipe nutrition facts

Diabetes exchanges for recipe without beef:
Starch: 1.5
Very lean meat: 1.0
Vegetable: 2
Fruit: 0.5

(This recipe made without beef is high in fiber, low fat, low cholesterol, high in vitamin C, high in iron, good source of calcium)

Diabetes exchanges for recipe with beef:
Carbohydrates: 1.5
Vegetables: 2
Lean meat: 2

(This recipe made with beef is high in fiber, high in vitamin C, high in iron, good source of calcium)

Rhubarb Chili With Beef

rhubarb chili with beef recipe nutrition facts

Star fruit

(also known as carambola and kamrakh, bilimbi and five-finger) is native to southeastern Asia, the Pacific Islands and China. In the United States it is now grown in Florida and Hawaii. (3) 

Nutrition fast facts for 1 cup sliced star fruit: 

Calories 33.5 calories
Carbohydrate grams 7.3 grams
Fiber grams 3 grams
Protein gram 1.1 grams
Fat 0.4 gram

I consider star fruit a treat and I would like to share with you one of my favorite recipes. It is very healthy in providing 90% of the Vitamin A and Vitamin C needed per day by most individuals.

Daringly Delicious Grilled Star Fruit Salad

(Serving size 1)

Ingredients

1 cup chopped romaine lettuce
¼ cup chopped fresh basil
½ cup sliced cucumbers
1 medium star fruit (cut into 5 stars)
4 walnut halves
Dressing (mix together these ingredients)
1 tsp olive oil
1 packet sugar substitute (used Splenda in the analysis)
1 oz fresh orange juice
2 tsp apple cider vinegar

Spray cut star fruit pieces lightly with canola or olive oil cooking spray. Broil until slightly brown. (If you have a grill going at the same time you can grill the star fruit instead of broiling)
In salad bowl mix lettuce, basil, cucumbers, and walnuts. Top with broiled star fruit. Top with Dressing. Eat immediately. Yum. High source of vitamin A and vitamin C, good source of fiber

Diabetes exchanges:
Fruit 0.5
Vegetable: 1.5
Fat: 2
starfruit salad recipe nutrition facts

Strawberries

Most people in the world are familiar with strawberries. A trivia fact is that this fruit is one of the most widely consumed fruits in the world and the United States is tops in producing the strawberry. (4) 

Nutrition fast facts for 1 cup sliced strawberries: 

Calories 53 kcals
Carbohydrate 12.7 grams
Fiber 3.3 grams
Protein 1.1 gram  
Fat 0.5 grams 
I would like to feature a recipe that is already on our website for strawberries. 

Frozen Strawberry Pops Recipe

Watermelon

Watermelon is an excellent pick for a lower carbohydrate fruit but be careful! It is one of the fruits that many people can eat just too much of!  As with any fruit, portion size does count. Enjoy but do not go overboard. For watermelon, my favorite time to eat it is at a backyard bbq on the 4th of July. I love a salad made with watermelon mixed with a few blueberries for color. I think of it as a very patriotic salad here in the USA! 

Nutrition fast facts for 1 cup watermelon balls:
Calories 45 
Carbohydrate 11.6 grams
Fiber 0.6 grams
Protein 1.0 gram  
Fat 0.2 grams 

Watermelon Blueberry Salad

1 cup cold watermelon balls
1/8 cup blueberries
Mix together ingredients and enjoy!
Diabetes exchanges:
1 fruit
This recipe is high in Vitamin A and high in Vitamin C

watermelon blueberry salad recipe nutrition facts

Cantaloupe

Last but not least we will feature tasty cantaloupe. Eating a cup of cantaloupe by itself will provide more than what most people need in a day for both Vitamin A and Vitamin C

Calories 60 kcals
Carbohydrate 14.4 grams
Fiber 1.6 grams
Protein 1.5 gram  
Fat 0.3 grams

As I did with strawberries, I would like to highlight a recipe from diabetes care.net. This recipe is easy to make and is an excellent choice for breakfast.
The diabetes exchanges for 1 serving is: 
Fruit: 0.5
Low fat Milk: 0.3 (or 1/3 of an exchange)

Creamy Cantaloupe Snack Recipe

Enjoy fruit as a part of a healthy diet. Do be careful as eating too much will raise your blood glucose higher than you would like. 

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