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Aug 15, 2008 03:00 PM

Custom Diabetic Recipe

If you have a regular old recipe for say....cookies. Is there a way to alter the recipe to accomodate for diabetics?

Or do you have to stick witth the already-made diabetic recipes?

For example I have a meringue cookie recipe that is really good and I want to make a special batch for my diabetic friend. Is this possible?

I have found meringue cookies on but I don't want to make them, I want to make my cookies. :)

Is there a way?

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  1. I cook for both diabetics and celiac patients and I rarely use the "standard" recipes printed for these groups. I also avoid purchasing pre-packaged special dietary products for these people because they're are usually either pretty bad or simply terrible. You may find it difficult to use the more versatile sugar substitutes (Altern, Splenda) in a meringue cookie but there aren't any other sugar substitute products that I know of to work towards the goal you've set and it's worth a try (or a couple of tries if your experimenting) if you're really into the cooking thing. Just don't forget the cream of tartar in the meringue ...
    Give this one a shot

    1. As a diabetic, well controlled, I tend to reduce the sugar in any recipe, to help with the carb count. Generally, I don't notice a major difference in the foods ( quick breads, cookies, etc). I'd try reducing the sugar in any recipe.
      Again, I'd rather eat the 'orginal' food and manage the rest of my carbs throughout the day. This may not apply to someone who is fragil in managing their diabetes.

      5 Replies
      1. re: type2runner

        my mother is diabetic, the oral medication variety, and over the years, we've discovered that if i reduce the sugar content i can stick to my original recipes and she can sample in moderation. i don't miss the extra sugar, and judging by the way my coworkers happily eat the excess, i guess they don't either.

        1. re: smalt

          smalt is right...most traditional recipes contain more sugar than they need, & cutting back doesn't typically make a noticeable difference in taste or texture.

          but i still suggest agave nectar. you use less to begin with since it's sweeter, *and* it has a lower glycemic index than sugar.

          1. re: goodhealthgourmet

            ghg: does using agave nectar change the consistency of batters and doughs? is it like the consistency of honey? thx for the education!

            1. re: smalt

              it's less viscous/sticky than honey. when you bake with agave there are a couple of adjustments to make...

              first, obviously, is to reduce the other liquids [e.g. water, eggs] in the recipe - unfortunately there is no tried & true rule of thumb here, you have to modify each recipe as you go.

              second, agave is 25% sweeter than sugar, so you should reduce the amount of agave in the recipe accordingly [at least 25% - or more - most recipes contain more sugar than they need anyway].

              third, the high fructose content in agave causes it to brown/burn more quickly than sucrose, so it's a good idea to lower your baking temp by 15-25 degrees F.

              and finally, there are different grades & types of agave, so they vary in color & flavor. light agave has the mildest/most neutral flavor, and is obviously the lightest in color. there are also amber & dark syrups, both of which have more complex flavors than the light [sort of like a cross between honey & maple syrup or molasses].

              hope that helps!

              1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                thanks! now if the weather would cool down so i can play in the kitchen, i'd like to give it a try! perhaps in a marinade, where the browning could be a bonus!

      2. agave nectar is my favorite sweetener, and diabetic-friendly thanks to its low glycemic index. plus, it's sweeter than sugar, so you use less.

        one teaspoon of agave nectar = a free food
        two teaspoons = ½ carbohydrate exchange

        i've actually used it successfully in meringues [but i will warn you that due to the color of the agave syrup, the meringues won't come out pure white]. just replace the sugar in your recipe with 75% as much agave, and give it a shot.

        note: when baking with agave it's recommended that you reduce the oven temp by 25 degrees F.

        1. I think it is best to know the kind of meal plan the person uses to keep their diabetes in check (e.g. carb counting, exchange system, etc.), use a nutritional analysis of a serving (which can be done easily using free reliable software available on the internet) to see how the treat fits/doesn't fit into the plan, and assess from there. (e.g. is it too high in carbohydrate? too high in fat?)

          For some people with diabetes, it's just fine to eat a "regular" cookie as long as they aren't eaten in excess all in one sitting.

          1. These are such awesome tips. Thanks. I will try all these things and see what works best.