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Gobble Up These Low Glycemic Thanksgiving Dish Ideas

We love food. There, we admitted it. Thanksgiving is by far our favorite time of the year. But Thanksgiving is a carb overload. A carb fest, a carbapalooza – well, you get the point. But that many carbs aren’t healthy for our diabetic friends. The mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, stuffing, rolls, desserts. It can all be too much for a diabetic. Luckily, we have a few great recipes which you can add to your Thanksgiving meal based on our low-glycemic-index Cahokia rice. Move over stuffing, there’s a new dish in town.   

Multigrain Pilaf with Sunflower Seeds

Nutty flavors, whole grains and packed with nutrition.


4 teaspoons canola oil, divided

1/3 cup sunflower seed kernels

½ teaspoon salt, divided

2 teaspoons butter

1 cup thinly sliced leek

2 ½ cups of water

1 ½ cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth

½ cup quick-cook barley

½ cup Cahokia brown rice

½ cup dried currants

¼ cup uncooked bulgur

¼ cup chopped fresh parsley

¼ teaspoons freshly ground black pepper

Over med-high, heat a Dutch oven. Add the oil, sunflower seeds, and salt. Sauté for 2 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove and set aside.

Heat pan over medium heat; add remaining 2 teaspoons oil and butter. Add the leek and cook 4 minutes or until tender, stirring frequently. Add water, chicken broth, barley, and Cahokia rice. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 35 minutes. Stir in currants and bulgur; cover and simmer 10 minutes or until grains are tender. Remove from heat; stir in remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, sunflower seeds, parsley, and pepper. Serve immediately.

Cornish Hens with Rice

Rice, mushrooms, and dried cranberries with Cornish hens is a great way to mix up a Thanksgiving meal.


2 tablespoons butter

½ cup chopped celery

¼ cup sliced fresh mushrooms

12.4 ounces of Cahokia brown or white rice (or both!)

2 cans (14.5 ounces each) reduced-sodium chicken broth

½ cup water

2/3 cup sliced water chestnuts, drained, and chopped

½ cup dried cranberries

½ cup chopped green onions

2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce

5 Cornish game hens (20 to 24 ounces each)

Preheat oven to 375. Coat a large saucepan with cooking spray. Heat butter over medium. Toss in celery and mushrooms and cook until tender. Stir in Cahokia rice with the water and broth and then cook for about a minute. Bring to boil then reduce heat and let it simmer while covered until rice is tender. Stir in water chestnuts, cranberries, onions, and soy sauce. Stuff the hens with rice mix. Place hens in a shallow roasting pan and bake until juices run clear, and thermometer is at 170 (about 50 minutes to an hour.) Cut hens and serve.

Happy Thanksgiving!