5 Gestational Diabetes Friendly Summer Desserts

by | Aug 1, 2023 | Blog | 0 comments

Last updated 22 days ago.

When you think of gestational diabetes, desserts might not be the first thing that comes to mind (unless you’re thinking about how much you miss them). However, as an intuitive eating dietitian, I believe that a healthy relationship with food includes eating foods you actually enjoy, even for expectant parents who are working to manage gestational diabetes.

If you’re wondering “what are gestational diabetes friendly summer desserts?”, “can you eat dark chocolate for gestational diabetes?”, or “what are some gestational diabetes dessert recipes?” then read on for my top tips and recommendations on how you can enjoy dessert while also managing your blood sugars.

Plus get access my free gestational diabetes recipe eBook!

How to eat dessert intuitively while also managing gestational diabetes

When we use intuitive eating principles to manage gestational diabetes we recognize that desserts provide pleasure and satisfaction to the eating experience. 

If you are new to intuitive eating I encourage you to check out my blog series on how you can use this eating framework to support blood sugars (psst: it doesn’t include any diet talk or cutting carbs. YAY). Read about intuitive eating principle #1 here.

5 Gestational Diabetes Friendly Summer Desserts
5 Gestational Diabetes Friendly Summer Desserts 4

Typically, desserts are used in times of celebration and enjoying local seasonal flavors. Out right banning or restricting these foods may lead to preoccupation with food, obsessive thoughts, rigid thinking, guilt and shame if you do eat a dessert, and may impact your relationship with food now and into the future. 

It’s important to remember that intuitive eating involves giving yourself unconditional permission to eat and enjoy all foods.. Recognizing, honoring, and respecting that your body may have different nutritional needs right now is also part of intuitive eating. If eating desserts feels tricky right now, please know that you are not alone and your previous desserts did not cause gestational diabetes. 

If giving yourself permission around all food without feeling out of control feels impossible right now, know that you aren’t alone. It can take time to learn how to practice the intuitive eating principles, and it can be even more challenging if you’re also navigating a health concern like gestational diabetes.

For that reason, I highly encourage anyone with gestational diabetes to reach out to an intuitive eating dietitian. Even if you feel like your relationship with food is generally “okay”, gestational diabetes can cause a lot of stress and strain if you’re navigating it on your own. Book a free information call here.

Be open and get creative

Intuitive eating encourages us to add to meals and snacks rather than focusing on what we “should avoid”. This is especially helpful for us as we discuss managing blood sugars and choosing a gestational diabetes friendly summer dessert. For example, I encourage you to stay open and look for other sources of sweetness that you may normally overlook. 

Things like fresh fruits (berries, peaches, watermelon, etc.) can be great to add a touch of sweetness to your day. Fruits are also full of vitamins and minerals which is great for pregnancy! Whether you enjoy these foods on their own or add them to things like Greek yogurt, I encourage you to make note of foods that can satisfy that sweet tooth while also making sure they are foods you actually enjoy. 

Remain open to trying new things and shifting what you label as a “dessert” as you try new gestational diabetes desserts.

Balance your carbohydrates

When it comes to managing gestational diabetes and building a gestational diabetes friendly summer dessert, of course we have to talk about balancing blood sugars. If you are feeling lost about where to begin or what it really means to “balance your plate”, I encourage you to check out this post on gentle nutrition (the 10th principle of intuitive eating).

Opting for complex carbohydrates (whole grains) like oats, quinoa, and buckwheat can help us form the foundation for blood sugar friendly desserts. For example, experimenting with these carb sources could look like creating a batch of oatmeal cookies using whole-grain oats, or experiment with a quinoa pudding flavored with cinnamon and vanilla.

It’s important to remember that carbs are not the enemy, even when you have gestational diabetes. It’s all about balancing them with other macronutrients. Read on for how to do this!

Look for healthy fat and fiber sources

Incorporating healthy fats and fiber into your desserts can not only enhance flavor but also aid in blood sugar regulation. Including fiber-rich ingredients in your gestational diabetes desserts can help slow down the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream and prevent rapid spikes in blood sugar levels.

Fat sources include things like:

  • Avocados
  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Olive oil

Fiber sources include things like:

  • Chia seeds
  • Raspberries
  • Apples
  • Popcorn
  • Nuts and seeds

You can use ingredients like these (and the knowledge of pairing macronutrients for blood sugar support) to create desserts like avocado chocolate mousse and nut butter energy balls that are delicious and will also support blood sugars!

5 Gestational Diabetes Friendly Summer Desserts

5 Gestational Diabetes Friendly Summer Desserts
5 Gestational Diabetes Friendly Summer Desserts 5
  1. Baked Apples: Core an apple and fill the center with a mixture of chopped nuts, and cinnamon. Bake until the apple is tender and serve it warm. Top with a dollop of homemade unsweetened whipped cream.
  1. Crustless Cheesecake: Prepare a cheesecake batter using cream cheese, eggs, vanilla extract, and your choice of a sugar substitute. Pour the batter into a greased pie dish and bake until set. Let it cool before serving. Top with fresh berries.
  1. Coconut Macaroons: Mix shredded unsweetened coconut, egg whites, a small amount of sweetener, and vanilla extract in a bowl. Form small mounds on a baking sheet and bake until golden brown.
  1. Almond Flour Blueberry Muffins: Use almond flour as a base for your muffins and sweeten with a sugar substitute of choice. Load them with fresh blueberries (yum) and you’ve got a muffin that is lower carb and rich in fiber for blood sugar support!
  1. Chocolate Avocado Mousse: Blend ripe avocados, unsweetened cocoa powder, a sugar substitute, a splash of almond milk, and a hint of vanilla extract until smooth and creamy. This mousse is rich and full of delicious chocolate flavor!

More gestational diabetes friendly summer dessert recipes and tips

Download my FREE gestational diabetes dessert ebook for even more gestational diabetes dessert recipes!

Recipes inside:

  • Grilled Peaches with Coconut Cream
  • Chocolate-Covered Frozen Banana Bites
  • Frozen Yogurt Bark
  • Mixed Berry Cobbler
  • Cookie Dough Protein Balls

Download your FREE copy here

Get 1:1 nutrition support

Be sure to leave a comment down below if you try any of these gestational diabetes desserts. Also, know that helping folks with gestational diabetes create meals, snacks, and desserts that support blood sugars but are also delicious and truly satisfy them is my specialty! As a weight-neutral and intuitive eating dietitian you can trust that I am here to educate and empower you to make the choices that are best for you and your pregnancy.

If you are looking to manage your gestational diabetes while either creating or maintaining a healthy relationship with food, I am here to help . Get started by booking a free discovery call with me to learn more about what I do and see if your services are covered by insurance.

Click here to book your call. I can’t wait to hear from you.


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Emily PiazzaHi! I’m Emily.

I’m a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, Full Spectrum Doula, Certified Intuitive Eating Counselor and mom of 3.

Emily helps pregnant and postpartum folks with gestational diabetes, disordered eating and eating disorders, and body image struggles. Through a weight inclusive, anti-diet lens she helps people confidently feed themselves for a healthy pregnancy and healing postpartum journey.

Schedule a free 15 minute discovery session with me.

As a special gift to anyone who books a discovery call, you will have access to my Intuitive Eating: Explained video lesson.

Diabetes Tracking Sheet

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