Smoky Sweet Potato Corn Chowder

Article written and reviewed by Cyrus Khambatta, PhD
Published October 30, 2023

Rain or shine…this flavorful chowder is a great comfort food that you can enjoy anytime. So easy to make.

This hearty and wholesome chowder is a symphony of flavors, combining the natural sweetness of sweet potatoes with the smoky allure of paprika and a hint of liquid smoke. It's a bowl of comfort that warms both your heart and your taste buds, making it the perfect addition to your autumn and winter menu. Packed with nutritious ingredients and a velvety texture, this chowder is not only a treat for your palate but also a nourishing choice for your body.

Sweet Potatoes: Nutrient-Rich Allies for Balanced Blood Glucose Levels

Sweet potatoes are a nutritional powerhouse and can be an excellent choice for people living with diabetes. 

Sweet potatoes are rich in a variety of essential vitamins and minerals, making them a valuable addition to a balanced diet. 

Some key nutrients found in sweet potatoes include:

  • Vitamin A: Sweet potatoes are exceptionally high in beta-carotene, which the body converts into vitamin A. This vitamin is crucial for maintaining healthy skin, vision, and immune function.

  • Vitamin C: They contain vitamin C, an antioxidant that supports immune health and collagen production.

  • Vitamin B6: This vitamin is important for brain development and function, as well as for the metabolism of carbohydrates.

  • Potassium: Sweet potatoes are a good source of potassium, which helps regulate blood pressure and supports heart health.

  • Dietary Fiber: They are rich in dietary fiber, particularly when consumed with the skin. 

    Fiber aids in digestion, promotes a feeling of fullness, and helps regulate blood glucose levels by slowing down the absorption of glucose.

Sweet potatoes have a moderate glycemic index (GI) and glycemic load (GL), making them a favorable choice for people with diabetes. The GI measures how quickly a carbohydrate-containing food raises blood glucose levels, while the GL takes into account both the GI and the portion size.

The exact GI of sweet potatoes can vary depending on factors such as variety and cooking method. On average, boiled sweet potatoes have a lower GI (around 44-61) compared to baked or roasted sweet potatoes (around 94). The glycemic load of a food is also influenced by its portion size, and sweet potatoes generally have a moderate glycemic load.

Because of their moderate GI and GL and their high fiber content, sweet potatoes are considered a diabetes-friendly carbohydrate source. They can help maintain stable blood glucose levels when consumed in appropriate portions and as part of a well-balanced meal.

Sweet potatoes offer a plethora of essential vitamins and minerals, making them a nutritious choice for people living with diabetes. Their moderate glycemic index and glycemic load, combined with their high fiber content, generally make them a suitable addition to a diabetes-friendly diet.

Celery: The Crisp, Low-Glycemic Veggie for Diabetes-Friendly Nutrition

Celery is a low-calorie vegetable that offers several nutritional benefits, making it a potentially favorable choice for people living with diabetes. This crunchy and hydrating veggie is a rich source of essential vitamins and minerals. 

It contains vitamin K, which supports blood clotting and bone health, as well as small amounts of vitamins A and C, which contribute to immune function and skin health. Celery also provides a notable amount of potassium, a mineral that helps maintain healthy blood pressure and supports heart function.

One of the key advantages of celery for individuals with diabetes is its low GI and GL. Celery's GI is very low, as it contains minimal carbohydrates and sugars. Furthermore, its glycemic load is negligible, indicating that celery has virtually no impact on blood glucose levels. 

This makes celery an excellent choice for those seeking to manage their blood glucose effectively, as it can be included in meals and snacks without causing significant fluctuations in blood glucose levels. 

Additionally, celery's high water and fiber content contribute to a feeling of fullness, which can aid in weight management—a crucial aspect of diabetes care. Therefore, incorporating celery into a balanced diet can be a healthy and diabetes-friendly choice.

Onions: Flavorful Nutrition with Diabetes-Friendly Appeal

Onions are a versatile and flavorful vegetable that can be a part of a healthy diet, including for individuals living with diabetes. Here's an overview of the nutritional benefits of onions, including their vitamins and minerals, and their suitability for diabetes management.

Onions are a rich source of several essential vitamins and minerals, including:

  • Vitamin C: Onions contain vitamin C, an antioxidant that supports immune health and collagen production.

  • Vitamin B6: This vitamin plays a role in metabolism and brain function.

  • Folate: Onions provide folate, which is important for cell division and the synthesis of DNA.

  • Potassium: They are a good source of potassium, a mineral that helps regulate blood pressure and supports heart health.

  • Quercetin: Onions also contain quercetin, a flavonoid with antioxidant properties that may have various health benefits.

Onions have a GI that ranges from moderate to low, typically between 10 and 15, depending on the type and preparation method. Their glycemic load is also low, indicating that they have a mild impact on blood glucose levels when consumed in reasonable portions.

One noteworthy benefit of onions for individuals with diabetes is their fiber content. Onions are a good source of dietary fiber, which can help regulate blood glucose levels by slowing down the absorption of glucose in the digestive tract. Fiber also promotes a feeling of fullness, which can assist in weight management—an important aspect of diabetes care.

In summary, onions offer a range of essential vitamins and minerals and have a relatively low glycemic index and glycemic load. They can be a valuable addition to a diabetes-friendly diet when incorporated into meals in a balanced and flavorful way.

Smoky Sweet Potato Corn Chowder

Beverly Verwey
Servings 2 people
Calories 425 kcal


  • 1/2 cup onion chopped
  • 1/2 cup celery chopped
  • 1 1/2 cup sweet potato diced
  • 2 cup low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 tbsp bay leaf
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 cup corn fresh or forzen
  • 2 cup oat milk or other alternative milk
  • 1 tsp liquid smoke


  • Heat 2 tbsp of the vegetable broth In a large pot.
  • Add the onion and sauté for 4 to 5 minutes. Add the celery and sweet potato and continue to sauté for another 4 to 5 minutes. Add more vegetable broth if needed.
  • Add the remaining vegetable broth, 1 bay leaf, black pepper, smoked paprika and cook for 10 minutes or until the potato is soft.
  • Add the corn, oat milk or milk alternative and liquid smoke and cook until heated.
  • With an immersion blender, blend the chowder to the consistency you like.
  • Serve.


If you don’t have an immersion blender, use a high speed blender to blend the chowder in batches. Be careful, the chowder is hot.


Calories: 425kcalCarbohydrates: 91.9gProtein: 9.4gFat: 5.9gSodium: 239.5mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

About the author 

Cyrus Khambatta, PhD

Cyrus Khambatta, PhD is a New York Times bestselling co-author of Mastering Diabetes: The Revolutionary Method to Reverse Insulin Resistance Permanently in Type 1, Type 1.5, Type 2, Prediabetes, and Gestational Diabetes.

He is the co-founder of Mastering Diabetes and Amla Green, and is an internationally recognized nutrition and fitness coach who has been living with type 1 diabetes since 2002. He co-created the Mastering Diabetes Method to reverse insulin resistance in all forms of diabetes, and has helped more than 10,000 people improve their metabolic health using low-fat, plant-based, whole-food nutrition, intermittent fasting, and exercise.

Cyrus earned a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University in 2003, then earned a PhD in Nutritional Biochemistry from the University of California at Berkeley in 2012. He is the co-author of many peer-reviewed scientific publications.

He is the co-host of the annual Mastering Diabetes Online Summit, a featured speaker at the Plant-Based Nutrition and Healthcare Conference (PBNHC), the American College of Lifestyle Medicine Conference (ACLM), Plant Stock, the Torrance Memorial Medical Center, and has been featured on The Doctors, NPR, KQED, Forks Over Knives, Healthline, Fast Company, Diet Fiction, and the wildly popular podcasts the Rich Roll Podcast, Plant Proof, MindBodyGreen, and Nutrition Rounds.

Scientific Publications:

Sarver, Jordan, Cyrus Khambatta, Robby Barbaro, Bhakti Chavan, and David Drozek. “Retrospective Evaluation of an Online Diabetes Health Coaching Program: A Pilot Study.” American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine, October 15, 2019, 1559827619879106. https://doi.org/10.1177/1559827619879106

Shrivastav, Maneesh, William Gibson, Rajendra Shrivastav, Katie Elzea, Cyrus Khambatta, Rohan Sonawane, Joseph A. Sierra, and Robert Vigersky. “Type 2 Diabetes Management in Primary Care: The Role of Retrospective, Professional Continuous Glucose Monitoring.” Diabetes Spectrum: A Publication of the American Diabetes Association 31, no. 3 (August 2018): 279–87. https://doi.org/10.2337/ds17-0024

Thompson, Airlia C. S., Matthew D. Bruss, John C. Price, Cyrus F. Khambatta, William E. Holmes, Marc Colangelo, Marcy Dalidd, et al. “Reduced in Vivo Hepatic Proteome Replacement Rates but Not Cell Proliferation Rates Predict Maximum Lifespan Extension in Mice.” Aging Cell 15, no. 1 (February 2016): 118–27. https://doi.org/10.1111/acel.12414

Roohk, Donald J., Smita Mascharak, Cyrus Khambatta, Ho Leung, Marc Hellerstein, and Charles Harris. “Dexamethasone-Mediated Changes in Adipose Triacylglycerol Metabolism Are Exaggerated, Not Diminished, in the Absence of a Functional GR Dimerization Domain.” Endocrinology 154, no. 4 (April 2013): 1528–39. https://doi.org/10.1210/en.2011-1047

Price, John C., Cyrus F. Khambatta, Kelvin W. Li, Matthew D. Bruss, Mahalakshmi Shankaran, Marcy Dalidd, Nicholas A. Floreani, et al. “The Effect of Long Term Calorie Restriction on in Vivo Hepatic Proteostatis: A Novel Combination of Dynamic and Quantitative Proteomics.” Molecular & Cellular Proteomics: MCP 11, no. 12 (December 2012): 1801–14.

Bruss, Matthew D., Airlia C. S. Thompson, Ishita Aggarwal, Cyrus F. Khambatta, and Marc K. Hellerstein. “The Effects of Physiological Adaptations to Calorie Restriction on Global Cell Proliferation Rates.” American Journal of Physiology. Endocrinology and Metabolism 300, no. 4 (April 2011): E735-745. https://doi.org/10.1152/ajpendo.00661.2010

Bruss, Matthew D., Cyrus F. Khambatta, Maxwell A. Ruby, Ishita Aggarwal, and Marc K. Hellerstein. “Calorie Restriction Increases Fatty Acid Synthesis and Whole Body Fat Oxidation Rates.” American Journal of Physiology. Endocrinology and Metabolism 298, no. 1 (January 2010): E108-116.