Moist Cooking Methods-Stewing to Control Diabetes


We have been focusing on moist cooking methods because, according to a recent research, they are excellent ways to cook in order to prevent us from getting ill and the bonus is that they are also healthier methods for diabetics to use in food preparation. So far we looked at poaching and steaming. Today we will complete this series by taking a brief look at stewing. I will also share a recipe or two along the way.

What is Stewing?

Stewing is a moist cooking method in which the food is placed in the liquid and allowed to simmer or slow boil. This liquid is usually flavored which is then transferred to the foods being cooked. Seasonings like onions, scallion, thyme, salt pepper, and tomatoes are sometimes used. I also love the flavor and taste of basil, pimento seeds, oregano, Stewed meat and vegetablescoriander, garlic, and ginger.

Meat, fish, and vegetables can be cooked this way. When you place meat in a pot and turn the flame down to its’ lowest, and cover the pot, sometimes the steam alone is enough to cause a water build-up in the pot and stew the meat. Some people say it “cook in its’ own juice.” Note that with stewing, the food is served in the liquid in which it is cooked. This is popularly done with meats.

A stew can sometimes look like a soup, in that the meat, seasoning, and vegetables are stewed in the liquid. It is not uncommon for harder pieces of meat to be stewed. Stewed beef, pork, and chicken are popular stewed meats. Beans are also added to meats and stewed. A popular dish in Jamaica has stewed peas with pigs tail, beef, and rice. Here is a recipe to cook stewed peas, the Jamaican way.

Braising or Stewing?

In my research, I noticed that some people used a little oil in a pot then turn the stove on medium flames to brown the meat or give it a slight color before placing it in the liquid to stew. After giving it some brown color, it can also be placed in the oven with a little liquid. This method is called braising by some professionals in the culinary field. I found a beautiful infographic with some information about stewing beef using this method. My caution here is the reminder that the research proved that diabetics are better off eating mostly plant-based foods in order to control our blood sugar and prevent sudden, high spikes.

Up arrowMeatless Stew

For those of you who prefer, or need to eat mostly plant-based foods, you can stew your peas and or beans without meat and it can be just as tasteful, bursting with flavors as it satisfies the palette. Beans can be combined with other beans, requiring a similar cooking time. They can also be combined with vegetables such as carrots and cho cho, to add variety and nutrients to the dish. Please go to this article for a meat-free recipe for cannellini bean stew. 

Stewed Vegetables

I mostly include vegetables in my stews, with carrot and cho cho being my favorite vegetables to use this way. I must, however, remind you that when vegetables are overcooked they lose a lot of their nutrients. Yes, they add color, a Spinach saladdifferent texture and sometimes flavor to your stew, but you might have sacrificed some nutrients.

I am mindful of these facts and so I like to include a separate dish of a green salad to make up for the fall short. I sometimes steam some other vegetables to go with my stew. The choice is yours, but I am documenting my journey with diabetes in a lot of my articles and so I felt I needed to give you the heads-up on my approach to stewing vegetables. Hey, I am not always a “good girl.” When I eat steamed vegetables for breakfast and maybe a green salad for lunch, I eat my stew with however the vegetables are done and I do so without guilt.


Another moist cooking method for delicious, tender juicy meat and vegetables packed with vitamins and minerals to keep illnesses at bay. Stewing involves placing the meat in a flavored/seasoned liquid and allowing it to simmer until cooked. The result is a nicely flavored, tender and juicy meat. Your vegetables can be less crispy than when you steam and they will also lose some nutrients, but they can be used to add variety, texture, and color to your stew. You can use raw or steamed vegetables to compliment a stew meal to ensure you have the required nutrients.

This post brings the curtain down on the series of moist cooking methods. I trust that you are more informed and that you will find the recipes to be a delicious and nutritious addition to the list of meals you can prepare for your family. Please continue to fight diabetes. I am praying that through these posts, you are seeing that we can use diet to control and possibly eliminate diabetes from our lives. Until next time, be positive and kind to each other. Walk Good.

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  1. // Reply

    Hi Josephine, thank you for making this website it could be quite helpful as I’m a type 1 Diabetic. Do you use bread for carbohydrates when making a stew?

    1. // Reply

      Hi Lisa, no I do not use bread for my stew. I like to use sweet potatoes because they are good for diabetics. I also use a bit of brown rice at times. What’s your favorite stew?

  2. // Reply

    I read the comments above. I also like to use sweet potato for my meals because they have less calories than both potato and bread. I eat potato now and then because I love potato. I don’t eat bread since I can’t eat flour right now. That’s a pity though but on the bright side it’s better for my health.

    One question, Josephine. What’s cho cho?
    When I visit your website I learn something new every time.
    Thanks for sharing


    1. // Reply

      ToveL, welcome to the sweet potato club. I love sweet potatoes done a number of ways-boiled, fried, pudding, and in my stew. What is your favourite way to prepare sweet potatoes?

      Cho cho is really a fruit, but it is used as a vegetable in Jamaica. It takes the taste of what it is cooked in or seasoned with. It is low in calories and so is a good food for diabetics and those trying to lose weight. Here is a link so that you will see the picture and you can read more, if you so desire.

      Thank you for faithfully following our website. You are appreciated and of high value. It is our pleasure to continue to educate, inspire and motivate. All the best.


  3. // Reply

    Hi Josephine,
    This is really good information.I like the part where you talk about “not overcooking your veggies” since you lose a lot of the nutritional value. I also like the tip on having a green to cater for any shortfall.Is OK to use sugar-free wholemeal bread?

    1. // Reply

      Hey Maria, thanks for stopping. I am happy you like a few things you read. I would think that if you can find sugar-free wholemeal bread, then that would be fine. I do eat the best breads that are available on the shelves. Some weeks I am less happy than others, but I make up for the shortfall in other ways. What’s your favourite stew?

  4. // Reply

    Sounds pretty cool, I love good stews but I think they’re rather difficult to make. About how long does it take to cook all the necessary ingredients? Thanks for suggestion!

    1. // Reply

      Timothy, I love stews too and let me tell you a secret, “they are easy to make.” Stews do not need a lot of attention. Usually, the vegetables go in last, but outside of that, they tend to be a “set it and forget it affair.” Give it a try Timothy and let us know.

  5. // Reply

    I really enjoyed your article and appreciate all of the great information you shared. Diabetes is such an epidemic in the U.S. I will definitely be sharing what I learned with others in which this might be helpful. Thank You.

    1. // Reply

      Cary, I am glad you enjoyed the article and I do appreciate your intent to share with others. Do you like stewed meat or vegetables?

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