Satisfy your craving for french fries with this lower-carb option.
Sometimes you just want fries. And we aren't here to say don't eat them. But, for those who look for ways to decrease total carbohydrate intake, you can bake carrots as a substitute for potatoes. You might be surprised by the flavor and satisfaction. Make carrot fries at home.
Why substitute potatoes?
Starchy foods like potatoes can significantly raise blood sugar. Choosing vegetables low in starch provides about half the carbohydrates as starchy vegetables. So if that aligns with your diabetes management goals, this substitution of carrots for potatoes is an excellent way to go.
This recipe is for making garlic carrot fries. Add or exchange seasonings to suit your flavor preferences. Here's your template to get started.
- 2 medium carrots
- 2 TBSP olive oil
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp parsley (you can use dried or fresh chopped)
Preheat your oven to 425°F. While it is heating up slice the carrots into fry shapes, as thick or thin as you like.
In a large mixing bowl, add all ingredients (carrots, olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper and parsley) and mix by hand to fully coat the carrots.
Place the carrots in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, spaced evenly.
Bake for 25 minutes, turning the carrots over halfway through to cook evenly. Once they are done, serve immediately with the dip of your choice. Be mindful of the carbohydrates in sauces. There are hidden sugars!
Do you have an air fryer? If so, you can also cook your carrot fries that way! Air fryers are basically mini convection ovens that simulate frying in oil. The oven circulates hot air at a very high speed, giving your food a nice crispy layer. There are lots of options when purchasing an air fryer, from basic low cost friers, to more expensive models — there is one for almost any budget! Air fryers are great for all kinds of food.
More about condiments
There are low-no sugar options available, so you don’t have to avoid yummy condiments. Just read the labels and make sure you know what you are getting when purchasing condiments.
Condiments like mustard, mayonnaise, and soy sauce are all naturally sugar-free. Watch the salt content in these condiments, though (especially in soy sauce). Moderate salt intake is fine, but many people over-do their salt consumption on a daily basis since it’s hidden in so many processed pantry foods that are part of the standard American diet.
Although salt doesn’t affect blood glucose levels, too much salt can increase blood pressure, and people with diabetes are already at high risk for this. Knowing this, you want to make sure that managing salt intake is part of your diabetes care plan.
More about carrots
Carrots are a great healthy snack for everyone. Because carrots are sweet, it is easy to think that carrots are high in sugar, but this is not the case.
Carrots are a non-starchy vegetable, similar to broccoli and lettuce, and don’t cause huge spikes in blood sugar.
Carrots also have essential vitamins and fiber. Vitamin A is abundant in carrots and helps organs like the heart, lungs, kidneys work properly. Vitamin A also plays an important role in normal vision and maintaining the immune system. Beta-carotene, which your body converts into Vitamin A, is also abundant in carrots.
Studies have shown that both Vitamin A and beta-carotene could lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. The fiber found in carrots helps manage blood sugar by slowing digestion of carbohydrates and sugar absorption into your blood, which helps promote a more gradual rise in blood sugar. Carrots also contain calcium, important for bone health.
Why is this recipe “low-carb” and why is that important for people living with diabetes?
Carbohydrates are important to monitor when you are living with diabetes because your body breaks carbohydrates into sugar (glucose). In fact, glucose is the simplest form of carbohydrate, and watching your carbohydrate intake can help you manage your blood sugar levels.
By choosing low carbohydrate substitutes for your favorite dishes, you can better manage your glucose levels while eating the foods you love.
Other kinds of fries
Tofu fries are a tasty option. They are packed with protein and pair perfectly with your favorite low sugar dipping sauces!
Parsnips are another optional “fry” choice along with artichokes, zucchini, green beans, asparagus, and turnips.
Try them in the oven or air fryer and see which ones you like best!