Diabetes Quick Fix: Chicken and Shiitake Yakitori

Yakitori is Japanese grilled chicken kabobs made with a sweet Japanese barbecue sauce.

The secret to quick and even kabob cooking is to leave a little space on the skewer between each piece of chicken. This way the chicken can cook through on all sides.

Helpful hints:

  • Any type of mushrooms can be used.
  • If using wooden skewers, soak them in water for about 30 minutes before use.
  • The skewers can also be cooked under a broiler or an outdoor grill.


  • Make sauce and marinate chicken and mushrooms.
  • Make rice and set aside.
  • Heat a stovetop grill.
  • Skewer and cook kabobs.

Shopping list:

To buy: 3/4 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, 1 small bottle low-salt teriyaki sauce*, 1 small bottle rice wine vinegar, 1 small bottle honey, 1 package microwaveable brown rice, 1 bottle sesame oil, 1/4 pound shiitake mushrooms, 1 red bell pepper.

Staples: olive oil spray, salt, black peppercorns.

* Look for low-sodium teriyaki sauce containing per tablespoon: 8 calories, 1.5 g carbohydrate, 168 mg sodium.

Chicken and Shiitake Yakitori (Japanese Grilled Chicken Skewers)

Olive oil spray

2 tablespoons low-salt teriyaki sauce*

4 tablespoons rice wine vinegar

2 tablespoons honey

3/4 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1-inch cubes

1/4 pound shiitake mushrooms (about 1 2/3-cups)

1 red bell pepper, cut into 2-inch pieces (about 1 1/2-cups)

4 skewers

Heat a stove-top grill over high heat. Spray with olive oil spray. Mix teriyaki sauce, rice wine vinegar and honey in a small saucepan. Add chicken, mushrooms and pepper and marinate 5 minutes while rice is started. Remove chicken, mushrooms and pepper from sauce, making sure to reserve sauce. Place chicken, mushroom and red pepper on skewers, alternating the ingredients until the skewers are full. Leave at least 1/4-inch space between ingredients. Place on stove-top grill and cook 5 minutes turn and cook 5 more minutes. Bring reserved sauce to a boil and cook 3 minutes. Spoon over cooked kabobs.

Yield 2 servings.

Per serving: 347 calories, 63 calories from fat, 7.1 g total fat, 1.3 g saturated fat, 2.8 g monounsaturated fat, 108 mg cholesterol, 547 mg sodium, 29.5 g carbohydrate, 2.9 g dietary fiber, 24.6 g sugars, 40.2 g protein

Exchanges: 1 carbohydrate, 2 vegetable, 5 lean meat

Sesame Rice

1 package microwaveable brown rice (1 1/2-cup used)

1 tablespoon sesame oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Microwave rice according to package instructions. Measure 1 1/2-cup cooked rice and reserve remaining rice for another meal. Add sesame oil and salt and pepper to taste.

Yield 2 servings.

Per serving: 240 calories, 84 calories from fat, 9.4 g total fat, 1.3 g saturated fat, 3.5 g monounsaturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 11 mg sodium, 29.3 g carbohydrate, 1.5 g dietary fiber, 0 g sugars, 3.8 g protein

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