We hear it over and over, "Eat your vegetables!" While we all know the importance of including vegetables in meals, we can get pretty bored with the same lineup of veggies.

If that's the case with you, consider preparing Southwestern Roasted Vegetables as a solution to your daily veggie dilemma. Featured in Holly Clegg's book "Holly Clegg Trim & Terrific Diabetic Cooking," this simple combination of crispy, roasted sweet potatoes (yams) with an assortment of vegetables goes great with almost any entree.

As healthy foods go, the sweet potato is hard to beat. Touted as one of the most nutritious vegetables, the bright orange, fiber-packed tubers are rich in vitamins and minerals, and are a great choice for any diet.

When it comes to diabetes, the sweet potato is a very wise choice. Sweet potatoes are a low glycemic index (GI) food. Low GI foods release glucose slowly into the bloodstream, helping avoid spikes in blood sugar levels -- an important factor in managing diabetes.

In addition to earning stellar health ratings, sweet potatoes are easy to prepare. The natural sweetness of the yams in this recipe contrasts with the mild zucchini and bold portabella mushrooms. Roasting is a simple method of cooking, and if you line the baking sheet with foil, clean up is a cinch. The end result in both color and taste is amazing. Have fun creating your own vegetable combinations to pair with colorful, nutritious sweet potatoes.

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Southwestern Roasted Vegetables

Roasted vegetables with taco seasoning mix turns a simple selection of vegetables into a trouble-free Southwestern side. Pop any leftovers into a soup pot with some chicken broth for a terrific Southwestern vegetable soup.

Yield: Makes 8 (1/2-cup) servings

Ingredients

  • 4 cups peeled, cubed sweet potatoes (yams), cut in 1-inch cubes
  • 1 1/2 cups zucchini, cut into small chunks
  • 1 small red onion, cut into small chunks
  • 1 6-ounce package portabella mushroom slices, halved
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons reduced-sodium taco seasoning mix (about half a 1.25-ounce packet)
  • Salt to taste (optional)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 425F. Coat baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray or line with foil.
  2. In large bowl, combine sweet potatoes, zucchini, onion and mushrooms. Toss with olive oil to coat. Sprinkle with taco seasoning and spread vegetables on baking sheet.
  3. Bake 40 minutes, shaking pan every 15 minutes, until vegetables are tender and roasted.

Nutritional Information Per Serving:
Calories: 110g
Total Fat: 4g
Cholesterol: 0mg
Protein: 2g
Carbohydrates: 17g
Sodium: 209mg

This recipe is from Holly Clegg's Trim & Terrific Diabetic Cooking (Holly Clegg, American Diabetes Association). Louisiana Yams are the sweetest variety of sweet potatoes. For information about Louisiana sweet potatoes, including nutritional information and free recipes, click here.