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Diabetes Meal Planning & Batch Cooking

diabetes meal planning and batch cooking

What’s for dinner? 

If you live with diabetes and you’re not sure what to make, or wish you knew how to plan for the week, join us at our Diabetes Support Group on Thursday, Sept. 21, at 11:00 a.m. live at NMC Health or 1:00 p.m. virtual via Zoom. Scroll down for more info!

But, first, here are three tips for making meals stress free.

Batch Cooking

Get your slow cooker out of the cabinet and make some delicious meals with it. 

Here are three tips for making meals stress-free.

Stock up. Before you do that, you need to know what to buy. Start by making a list of basic foods you need to create a healthy plate. Then keep those meal staples in your pantry at all times.

  1. Protein: Frozen fish filets, frozen chicken breasts and eggs are good options to keep on hand. Rotisserie chicken is a great and easy option for casseroles or tacos. You can even prepare turkey meatballs ahead of time. Freeze them, then simply pull out what you need later.
  2. Vegetables: Keep non-starchy, frozen veggies on hand. Frozen spinach, broccoli, and a mix of broccoli, cauliflower and carrots are healthy options. Keep low sodium, canned diced tomatoes on hand. Low or no added sugar pasta sauces like Prego, Barilla, or Kroger brands are good to keep on hand.
  3. Starch: Stock up on healthy pasta that is made with protein like red lentil rotini or chickpea penne. Basmati rice and quick-cooking brown rice are nice to keep on hand, too. Whole-wheat or corn tortillas keep well in the fridge.

Use your slow cooker.
Most meals take 4-6 hours to cook on high heat or 6-8 hours on low heat in the slow cooker. Make sure to follow the instructions on the recipe for precise cooking times. 

Need some inspiration? Try this easy recipe that’s perfect for the upcoming fall season!

Toss skinless frozen chicken breasts or thighs in your crockpot in the morning with some low sodium canned beans, low sodium canned tomatoes (or fresh tomatoes if you have them!), tomato sauce, and diced onions and bell peppers. Sprinkle some cumin, chili powder and garlic powder on top to taste. Add 1/2 cup water. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours. Later that day, you’ll have a chili already cooked and ready to eat. Just shred or dice the chicken and mix well. 

Exchange recipes with others who have diabetes. Ever felt stuck in a rut with the same food and meals? Bring your favorite recipe to the support group meeting! If you need some inspiration, check out the Diabetes Food Hub on the American Diabetes Association website for great recipes. Here’s a simple one we found for a sheet pan meal:

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Spray a 9×13-inch sheet pan with cooking spray. Place raw chicken tenderloins down 1/3 of the pan. Place 2 chopped red potatoes down another 1/3 of the pan. Finally, place some frozen green beans down the last 1/3 of the pan. Sprinkle Italian dressing dry mix over the entire pan. Bake for 20-30 minutes. Check the chicken for doneness after 20 minutes.

Join our Free Diabetes Support Group

Join us at our next Diabetes Support Group led by Humda Reali, NMC Health diabetes educator.

We’ll begin by looking at one meal and then expand it to a weekly menu. We’ll learn about portion sizes using realistic food models. Then we’ll focus on the basics of planning a menu for a week. This menu can be changed each week to help you plan healthy meals for the upcoming week. That means last-minute cooking will be a thing of the past – and you’ll have less stress!

Both in-person and virtual options are available.

11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. LIVE at NMC Health | 600 Medical Center Drive (registration not required)

1:00 – 2:00 p.m. Virtual Zoom Session

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