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Low-Glycemic Potato and Squash Gratin

Potatoes au gratin is a creamy, cheese-spiked potato dish that may not sound compatible with a low-glycemic diet. You just need to know how to choose and eat your potatoes to make them a little lower in the glycemic department.

Russet potatoes have one of the highest glycemic loads of any plant-based food, but potatoes in general are also loaded with healthy nutrients like fiber and vitamin C. By using medium-glycemic potatoes like new potatoes (the little red, gold, and purple thin-skinned varieties) instead of russets — or by reducing the number of potatoes in your dish and increasing the number of other ingredients, you can enjoy your low-glycemic lifestyle and eat potatoes.

In this recipe, any new variety of new potato works well; and if you can’t find Jarlsberg or Emmentaler cheese, you can use a basic Swiss cheese.

Low-Glycemic Potato and Squash Gratin

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: 1 hour, 10 minutes, plus resting

Yield: 6 servings

2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme

2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, stems removed, chopped

Nonstick cooking spray

1 butternut squash, peeled and sliced into 1/2-inch cubes

4 large new potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch round slices

1 medium onion, finely chopped

Salt to taste

Black pepper to taste

2 cups fat-free half-and-half

1/3 cup coarsely grated Jarlsberg or Emmentaler cheese

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. In a small bowl, combine the thyme and rosemary. Set aside.

  2. Spray a 9-x-13-inch glass baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Place the squash, potatoes, and onions in the baking dish, and mix well. Sprinkle the veggies with the thyme and rosemary, and toss to coat evenly. Add salt and pepper to taste.

  3. Firmly press down on the squash and potatoes with a large spatula to evenly disperse them in the pan. Slowly pour the half-and-half over the top and down the sides of the dish, adding just enough to barely cover the vegetables so that you still see just their tops — you may need less than 2 cups.

  4. Cover the baking dish with foil, and bake for 45 to 50 minutes. Remove the foil, and sprinkle with the cheese. Continue to bake, uncovered, for 10 to 20 more minutes, or until the vegetables are tender, the cream is nearly absorbed, and the top is lightly browned.

  5. Let the veggies au gratin rest for about 10 minutes before serving.

Per serving: Calories 278 (From Fat 18); Glycemic Load 18 (Medium); Fat 2g (Saturated 1g); Cholesterol 4mg; Sodium 211mg; Carbohydrate 54g (Dietary Fiber 6g); Protein 9g.

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