Diabetic-Compatible Breakfast: It is possible!

Breakfast Choices.jpg

This guest post was written by type 2 diabetic and chef Ward Alper. It originally appeared on his website, The Decadent Diabetic, and was republished on Information About Diabetes with permission.

There is no reason that a person with Diabetes can’t have a wonderful breakfast. It is the hardest meal of the day if you are trying to control your carbohydrate intake. What we have always been accustomed to eat at breakfast tends to be very high in carbohydrates. It doesn’t have to be a carbohydrate budget buster. some groups recommends up to 45 grams of carbohydrates for breakfast. Except as a treat, for me that is a bit high. But it is up to you and your carbohydrate budget. Remember: breakfast that is Diabetes-Compatible… CAN be wonderful.

It can even be fast and easy if you make it in advance. Yuck you say? Who wants day old eggs? Think about muffins and quiche. Both are often made in advance, frozen and then defrosted or re-heated. Many people can grab a sugary muffin, juice and coffee and call it good. A Diabetes- compatible cinnamon or blueberry crunch muffin tastes just as good and won’t bust the budget. There is even an orange juice on the market that is 50% lower in sugar and carbohydrates. Even if you like “flavored coffees, you can still be Diabetes-Compatible. “Season the coffee with vanilla extract or cinnamon. Even a sprinkle of dark cocoa powder works for a café mocha and adds only 1 gram of carbohydrate to the coffee.
You know me, I have some decadently delicious ideas to make breakfast treats…a treat!

Except my days off, I have a slice of low carbohydrate bread with butter and cheese, a 4 ounce glass of lower carb orange juice and coffee, some really GOOD coffee. For me, the coffee is the key. But that is what I have time for in the morning. For those of you that are not coffee drinkers, a Chai will do the same thing for you. Some mornings, I do switch it up and have some “Cinnamon Sugarless” (I make it in batches, four parts sugar substitute to one part ground cinnamon) toast. While it makes a nice “sweet” change, I find I am hungrier by 10 AM than when I have the protein from the cheese.

There are other “quick” make ahead choices. You can make a crustless breakfast quiche, cut it into four good sized portions and have it for the week. All you have to do it pop it into the toaster oven or microwave and you are good to go. You can take that same mixture and bake it in muffin tins and that wonderful egg (and vegetable?) goodness is ready to go to work with you. Most of the Greek Style yogurts are fairly low in (carbohydrates 9-15 grams for Yoplait, Dannon, and Oikos), especially the vanilla and plain varieties. I like to top these with fresh (or frozen) berries and toasted almonds for sweeter breakfast with a good amount of protein (about 13 grams).

For me anyway there is the weekend and that is the time to splurge.

Bird in the nest

There is something almost indulgent about the taste of fried bread. This is a simple and fun way to have a delicious breakfast. Make a hole in the center of a piece of low carbohydrate bread butter it and place it into a frying pan. Place the “hole” in the pan along with the slice. Crack an egg into the open hole and fry it to your personal preference.


The sky and your imagination is the limit here. Add a slice of low carb bread or low carb English muffin (Thomas has a “lite” muffin with only 17 grams NET of carbohydrate) with a sugar free jam and you have an elegant low carbohydrate, filling breakfast.

Eggs Benedict

This is a snap. I Used the Thomas’ “Light” English muffin topped with bacon (my choice over ham) a slice of cheese and topped off the egg (either poached or fried). You certainly can do the regular version with the Canadian bacon and Hollandaise sauce, but it is your day off and don’t you have more to do with your time?

Breakfast Pizza

Using Joseph’s Flax, oat bran and Wheat pita (5 grams of carbohydrates) or sandwich thins (16 g. per thin) to make your own breakfast pizza. Lightly scramble eggs with a little parmesan cheese for your “sauce”, and top with your favorite cheeses, peppers, tomato, sausage and anything else you want on YOUR OWN pizza!

Waffles and Pancakes

Oddly enough there is a frozen waffle made by Kellogg (Eggo) that actually works. It is a whole grain “like” waffle with 14 grams (NET) of carbohydrate. The trick is the “syrup.” Maple syrup, even “sugar free” maple syrup is too high in carbohydrates for me. Instead, I make my own breakfast sauce. For added decadence, I will top the waffle off with a dollop of sour cream or vanilla yogurt.

Last week I experimented with making French toast using a couple of slices low carbohydrate bread (Sara Lee or Arnold). It was great.
And last but certainly not least are my whole wheat and nut pancakes. These are 4 inch pancakes with only 3.5 grams of carbohydrate per pancake. The best thing is you get to choose just how many you want. You are the master/ mistress of your breakfast carbs.

Important: Don’t forget the crown on your breakfast. Try a big cup of coffee or tea topped with steamed and frothed milk. Now sit back on your couch like a Royal. CAUTION: Your day off will be over before you know it.. Oh well…

Enjoy, be happy, be healthy, be creative, and BE DECADENT! –w!

Ward Alper, The Decadent Diabetic