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Basic Brown Gravy and Creamy Pumpkin Custard

Gravy and pie are two Thanksgiving diet busters. These recipes can help you keep your fat and calorie content down while enjoying traditional Thanksgiving taste.

Basic Brown Gravy


1½ tablespoon corn oil
¼ cup all-purpose flour
2 cups fat-free (skim) milk
½ cup cold water
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 cubes reduced-sodium beef bouillon dissolved in ¼ cup hot water
Kitchen Bouquet (usually found in spice aisle),optional


  1. Place oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Combine flour, milk, ½ cup cold water, pepper and salt in a jar, cover tightly, and shake to mix well. Pour milk mixture into hot oil and cook, stirring constantly with a wire whisk, until it begins to thicken, about 1 or 2 minutes.

  2. Add bouillon dissolved in hot water and continue cooking, whisking constantly, until thickened, about 3 minutes. If a darker brown gravy is preferred, add several drops of Kitchen Bouquet until desired color is achieved.

Nutritional information Per Serving
59 calories; 2 grams protein; 3 grams total fat; less than 1 gram saturated fat; 6 grams carbohydrate; 1 milligram cholesterol; 65 milligrams sodium; less than I gram dietary fiber; 2 grams sugar.

½ starch; ½ fat

Creamy Pumpkin Custard
(makes 9 servings)


Cooking spray
3 2-inch graham cracker squares, finely crushed
1 15-ounce can pumpkin
1 12-ounce can evaporated skim milk
¼ cup packed dark brown sugar
¼ teaspoon brown sugar substitute
1 whole egg + 2 egg whites
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup + 1 tablespoon fat-free whipped topping


  1. Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees F. Coat an 8 by 8-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Sprinkle graham cracker crumbs evenly across bottom of pan.

  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine pumpkin, milk, sweeteners, eggs, cinnamon, allspice and vanilla extract. Mix well using an electric mixer on medium speed.

  3. Pour custard into baking dish and bake for 50 minutes to one hour or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.

  4. Place pan on a cooling rack and cool for 20 minutes. Cut into 9 equal servings and top each with 1 tablespoon whipped topping. Chill if desired. Refrigerate leftovers.

Nutritional information per serving
122 calories; 5 grams protein; 2 grams total fat; less than 1 gram saturated fat; 21 grams carbohydrate; 48 milligrams cholesterol; 102 milligrams sodium; less than I gram dietary fiber; 3 grams sugar.

1½ carbohydrate

P. Geil and T. Diabetes Meals on $7 a Day or Less. American Diabetes Association. Alexandria, Virginia, 22314, 1999.

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