Post 25: Talking Seriously about Diabetes menus: Tofu Recipes From Savvy Vegetarian; My Whole wheat panko crumbs; Quick Easy Modified Tofu Mini-Burger (Falafel) and Tofu Sloppy Joes – Recipe Kid Friendly Veggie Burgers, Great Vegan Grill Recipe

If we have Diabetes we can still enjoy our meals. I say we because if a member of the family has diabetes it effects all the members of the family.

If you have diabetes, or are borderline diabetic or you prepare meals for your spouse who is diabetic, then you are in for some surprises. There is also the necessity to consider maintaining kidney function and how this relates to phosphorous, sodium and calcium consumption. All prepared on the shelf “foods” contain these additives.

To put it bluntly, some of the restrictions are hard to swallow. A diabetic menu should not contain dairy except the limited types mentioned as a “garnish”.

For most of us, dairy products seemed a great source of protein and calcium.

I plan to include several recipes for nut cheese sea vegetables in future blogs.

Today, I prepared a “modified” stir fry. Used frozen string beans, broccoli, peas, cooked adzuki and white beans, 1/2 potato sliced thin, cooked corn and raw red pepper, onion, slivers of carrots, celery, mushrooms, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds and sprouts. Added sesame oil and the dish was very satisfying to a diabetic:

1. Started with large saucepan ( you can use a wok) with bottom coated with olive oil

2. Added roasted garlic and some miso broth to the pan and added the raw vegetables (except the sprouts) and slightly defrosted frozen vegetables. Steamed a few minutes, and added the cooked vegetables and beans.

3. Added the remaining seeds and sprouts. At the table added sesame oil.

4. It had the starch of the potato, peas and corn and the crunch of the seeds.


Milk and non-dairy Recommended:
skim or fat-free milk, plain yogurt, sugar-free yogurt, goat yogurt. Very low salt quark cheese **Portions of dairy products are often limited to 4 ounces due to high protein, potassium or phosphorus content. Check sodium contents.Avocado small amounts, No cultured dairy products
Limit: No hard aged cheese, mozzarella, sour cream, etc.Avoid:Buttermilk
Grains, breads and starches cream of wheat, grits, noodles, whole wheat pasta, brown rice, bagel (small), hamburger bun, unsalted crackers, cornbread (made from scratch), some whole wheat flour bread, rye, spelt, brown rice bread, soda bread, soba (buckwheat) noodles, oat bran, millet, amaranth, pearl barley and whole barley. Soak grains overnight before steaming. Limit whole grain bread crackers limit corn
Fruits and juices

Fruits and juices apples, applesauce, apricot halves, berries including: strawberries, raspberries, cranberries juice, blackberries and blueberries, low sugar cranberry juice, cherries, fruit cocktail, grapefruit, grapes,kumquats, mandarin oranges, pears, pineapple, plums, tangerine, watermelon

Note: Papaya is excellent for diabetics. Fruit canned in unsweetened juice is usually recommended.

limit nuts, Less often: avocados, peaches bananas, cantaloupe, No dried fruits including: dates, raisins and prunes, fresh pearsLimited Amounts:honeydew melon, kiwis, kumquats, star fruit, mangos, nectarines, oranges and orange juice, pomegranateNote:  Fruit canned in syrup is usually avoided.
Starchy vegetables Limit: corn, peas, spinach, baked potatoes, sweet potatoes, yams, baked beans, dried beans (kidneys, lima , lentil, pinto or soy), succotash, pumpkin, winter squash about 1/2 cup to a meal
Non-starchy vegetables Recommended:asparagus, beets, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, carrots, cabbage, cauliflower, celery, cucumber, eggplant, frozen broccoli cuts, green beans, iceberg lettuce, kale, leeks, mustard greens, okra, onions, red and green peppers,Sliced eggplant, cabbage, green beans, celery, carrots (in moderation), onion: typical choices radishes, raw spinach (1/2 cup), snow peas, summer squash, turnips, beans (rubia) artichoke, fresh bamboo shoots, beet greens, fresh seasonal greens, cooked Chinese cabbage, kohlrabi, rutabagas, sauerkraut, cooked spinach, tomatoes, tomato sauce or paste,oat, rye, bean wheat sprouts

Meats, poultry beans, cheeses. eggs and fish seeds, lean cuts of meat, poultry, fish, eggs, crab substitute, cottage, ricotta cheese, beans (check sodium content) beef and chicken liver if need for iron.  omit;cheeses (including American, cheddar and Swiss), excessive nuts, salami, salmon, sausageLimit:Lentils, garbanzo beans, tofu, edamame, tempeh, only in modest amounts 1X per weekadzuki beans because of phosphorous

Seasoning and calories low fat mayonnaise, low fat cream cheese, olive oil Check salt content:tehina, nut butters, wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, mustard, zatar, white miso, wasabi ginger, umboshi vinegar Avoid:butter, cream in limited amounts.

Beverages Water, Crystal Light®, diet clear sodas in moderation (Diet Sprite®, diet ginger-ale), homemade tea or lemonade sweetened with an artificial sweetener Avoid:regular or diet dark colas like Coke®, Dr. Pepper®, Pepsi®; beer,No fruit juices


Phosphorus is a mineral that works with calcium to support bone health. As kidney function worsens, phosphorus can build up in the blood causing itchy skin and bones to lose calcium. This stage of the diet restricts the amount of phosphorus in your diet by limiting beans, legumes, beer and dark colored carbonated beverages. 

These menu choices are not macrobiotic. They include eggs, some dairy, and nightshade vegetables. When I make up a dish I try to limit cheese and the night shade vegetables to 1/2 cup per meal, using either one or the other. Eggs are included in a meal 1-2 times per week. However, care is given to introduce satisfying alternatives to animal sources.

Quick Easy Tofu Burger Recipe

Kid Friendly Mini-Veggie Burgers, (Falafel) Great Vegan Grill Recipe

Tofu Burger

Our quick, easy tofu veggie burger recipe is very kid friendly, and a sure way to get anybody to happily eat tofu.

Our tofu veggie burger recipe holds together well, is an ideal vegan grill recipe or 4th of July recipe.

Make this tofu burger recipe gluten free by using whole grain flour crumbs

Panko Crumbs Recipe

  1. Preheat an oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C).
  2. Push torn pieces of bread through the shredding disk of a food processor to make coarse crumbs. Spread the crumbs on a baking sheet.
  3. Bake in preheated oven until crumbs are dry but not toasted, 6 to 8 minutes. Shake the sheet twice during baking in order to evenly dry crumbs. Remove from the oven and cool completely.
  4. These crumbs stay up to one month in the refrigerator and are without salt.

Total Prep & Cook time: 30 Minutes

18 small tofu burgers Falafel (6 servings)

Nutrition Data Per Serving, 104g:170 cal, 22g carb, 5g fat, 257mg sodium, 3g fiber, 11g protein, low Saturated Fat & Cholesterol, good source Magnesium, Phosphorus, Selenium, Vit K, Manganese. Estimated glycemic load 1

Quick Easy Tofu Falafel mini burger


  • One kilo package soft tofu such as the block Hayvia Kfar

  • 1 cup whole wheat Panko crumbs I omitted

  • 1 cup (total) parsley leaves and/or fresh basil leaves (strip leaves off stems)

  • 1 tsp dried basil (if you’re not using fresh)

  • 1 tsp each hot paprika and sweet paprika

  • 1 tsp gr coriander

  • 1/2 cup celery pieces

  • 1 cup sliced carrot

  • 1 tsp gr cumin

  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme leaves

  • 1/2 tsp dried ginger

  • Optional: 1/4 tsp salt or to taste

  • Optional: 1/2 tsp garlic powder

  • Optional: 1/2 tsp onion powder

  • 1/2 tsp pepper or to taste


  1. Drain the tofu, rinse and blot dry with a cloth or paper towel to soak up excess moisture

  2. Heat a non-stick frying pan on medium or line baking tray with paper.

  3. Cut tofu into 1 inch chunks, and mix with emersion blender; finely chop carrot and celery, and then mix with the parsley or basil with the tofu

  4. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well by hand, or in the food processor, just until the mixture starts to clump together. Don’t over mix.

  5. Form into 20 patties size of falafel balls.

  6. Roll in panko crumbs-I used sesame seeds

  7. Fry in small amount of oil, on medium heat (use your favorite cooking oil or add oil to paper lined tray) or bake on highest setting 15 minutes and turn and bake the second side.

  8. If you fry, fry for 5-7 minutes on each side, or until golden brown

Tofu Sloppy Joes recipe adapted from Cabbages & Roses cookbook, courtesy Debby Nothaft

Tofu Sloppy Joes

Tofu Sloppy Joes is a  kid friendly recipes – one that kids will actually enjoy.

Total Prep & Cook Time: 30 Min

6 Servings

Nutrition Data Per Serving, 103g, not including the bun: 127 cal, 6g carb, 9g fat, 296mg sodium, 1g fiber, 8g protein, low Cholesterol, good source Calcium, Selenium, Vit K and Manganese. Estimated glycemic load 3.

Tofu Sloppy Joes


  • 1 lb-1.5lb firm tofu
  • 2 Tbsp oil
  • 2 Tbsp minced green pepper
  • 1 Tbsp minced fresh garlic OR 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 Tbsp minced onion OR 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 Tbsp minced jalapeño pepper
  • Pinch dried cayenne or chipotle pepper
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1 cup water-may omit if you are adding tomato sauce
  • 1/4 cup catsup
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp fruit syrup
  • 2 Tbsp minced parsley
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Mash tofu and mince the veggies
  2. Heat oil on medium in a large frying pan, fry onion & garlic 5 min
  3. Add tofu, jalapeno & green pepper, fry 5 minutes, on high
  4. Add dry spices and fry for 2 minutes
  5. Add catsup, water, soy sauce, fruit syrup, parsley and simmer 10 minutes
  6. Tofu moisture content varies, so add more catsup and water/tomato sauce as needed if the mixture seems too dry.
  7. Serve over buns with tomato, lettuce, avocado slices & mayo.

Please check top “following” high up on my blog if this suits you.

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