The peel of the native Brazilian fruit jaboticaba is rich in anthocyanins, which are known for their anti-obesity effects in animal models. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effects of freeze-dried jaboticaba peel powder (FDJPP) on a number of metabolic parameters in a model of diet-induced obesity. Mice (n 8 per group) were initially fed on a high-fat diet (HFD, 35 % w/w) for 4 weeks and then switched to a HFD supplemented with FDJPP (1, 2 or 4 % w/w) for an additional 6 weeks. Energy intake, weight loss, glucose tolerance, insulin resistance and lipid profile were determined, and the results were evaluated using ANOVA and Tukey's tests. The FDJPP exerted no protective effect on HFD-induced weight gain, hyperleptinaemia and glucose intolerance. However, the supplementation was effective to reduce insulin resistance, as evidenced in the insulin tolerance test, and subsequently confirmed by improved signal transduction through the insulin receptor/insulin receptor substrate-1/Akt/forkhead box protein pathway and by the attenuation of HFD-induced inflammation in the liver, verified by lower expressions of IL-1β and IL-6 and decreased phosphorylated IκB-α protein levels in all jaboticaba-treated mice. These results suggest that FDJPP may exert a protective role against obesity-associated insulin resistance.