Mediaplanet  What is your favourite diabetes-friendly dish to serve your family and why?

Chris Smith With the holidays fast approaching, I always get the requests for great tasting desserts.  I have included a few recipes that have the flavors of the season and are also a great example of healthy nutritional recipes.

MP What ingredients or foods are most beneficial for people with diabetes?

CS I recommend to visit with your doctor or registered dietitian to gain an accurate explanation for each particular individual.  With that said, as a chef, rather than “one” particular ingredient, I always promote balance and moderation with each meal.  It is the balance of foods — of fruits, vegetables, lean meats, fresh fish, plus nuts and grains that over the course of time show the most beneficial results.


Makes 14 servings


1 package (8 ounces) fat free cream cheese

3/4 cup (5 ounces) whipped cream cheese

1/2 cup fat free whipped topping, thawed if frozen

1/4 cup Equal Spoonful OR 6 packets Equal sweetener

1/4 cup cold espresso OR strong black coffee

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

28 soft ladyfingers horizontally cut in half

2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder


Combine cream cheese, whipped cream cheese, whipped topping, Equal, coffee and vanilla until well blended. Refrigerate, covered, until ready to use.

When ready to use, portion 1 tablespoon of the mixture over the bottom of each ladyfinger using a spoon or pastry bag. Cover with top of ladyfinger. Sprinkle a small amount of the cocoa powder over the top of each sandwich. Refrigerate, covered, 3 hours before serving OR freeze and serve frozen.*

* Dessert can be frozen up to 2 weeks.

Serving Size – 2 filled ladyfingers

Calories – 104; Protein - 5g; Carbohydrates – 13g; Fat - 4g; Saturated Fat – 2g;

Trans Fat – 0g; Cholesterol – 26mg; Sodium – 161mg

CHOICES: Carbohydrate 1; Lean Meat - 1

% Calorie Reduction – 34%

% Carbohydrate Reduction – 19%



Makes 15 servings


30 mini frozen phyllo shells

1 can (15 ounces) pumpkin

1 cup whipped cream cheese

1/4 cup Equal Spoonful OR 6 packets Equal sweetener

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 cup light whipped thawed, if frozen


Preheat oven to 350°F. Heat phyllo shells according to package directions. Remove from oven and cool completely.

Meanwhile, whisk pumpkin, cream cheese, Equal, spices and vanilla in a large bowl until well blended. Refrigerate, covered, 3 hours.

When ready to serve, place pumpkin mixture in a pastry tube fitted with a medium star tip. Pipe 1 tablespoon of the pumpkin mixture into each phyllo cups. Garnish each with a small amount of whipped topping.

Serving Size – 2 filled phyllo shells

Calories – 81; Protein - 1g; Carbohydrates – 7g; Fat - 6g; Saturated Fat – 2g;

Trans Fat – <1g; Cholesterol – 12mg; Sodium – 57mg

CHOICES: Carbohydrate – 1

% Calorie Reduction – 14%

% Carbohydrate Reduction – 30%



Makes 7 servings


Cooking spray

1 Granny Smith apple, cored, diced

2 tablespoons dried cranberries

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 tablespoon golden raisins

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon chopped crystallized ginger

1/2 cup water

1 teaspoon cornstarch

4 teaspoons Equal® Spoonful OR 2 packets Equal Sweetener

14 mini phyllo shells, thawed

1 tablespoon ground walnuts


Preheat a medium skillet on medium-high heat. Remove from heat and spray with cooking spray. Return to heat. Immediately add apple. Cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in dried cranberries, lemon juice, raisins, cinnamon and ginger.

Combine water and cornstarch until smooth. Add to skillet mixture. Bring to a simmer. Cook 2 to 3 minutes, stirring frequently until liquid is slightly thickened and reduced by half.

Remove skillet from heat. Place mixture in a bowl. Stir in Equal until dissolved. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Preheat oven to 375°F. Divide apple mixture evenly between shells. Sprinkle with walnuts. Place on a baking sheet. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until filling is hot. Serve warm.

Serving Size – 2 filled shells

Calories – 71; Protein – 0g; Carbohydrates – 13g; Total Fat – 2g; Saturated Fat – 0g;

Trans Fat – 0g; Cholesterol – 0mg; Sodium – 23mg

Choices: Carbohydrate - 1

% Calories Reduction – 10%

% Carbohydrate Reduction – 13%