How to Cook for Someone Who Can’t Chew Hard Foods

At least once in your life, it is very possible that you are going to help a loved one who temporarily cannot eat hard foods. Maybe their jaw has been wired shut, maybe they have braces – but regardless, it will be your responsibility. Here are some tips to help you know what to cook!

Make Soup

This option really is just the best. Soup is easy, delicious, and incredibly versatile. If you wish, you can pour lots of time and effort into concocting an incredible homemade stew – or in a pinch, you can grab some cans from your local supermarket. They’ll still be quite tasty! The key here is to make sure that you find soups that don’t have chunks of meat, or other things that are hard to chew. Some chunky soups are still soft enough that they’ll be okay to eat. Depending on the condition of your loved one, chicken noodle soup (for example) should be soft enough to gently eat. But you should probably steer away from most stews that contain red meat (like beef), as well as certain vegetables that may be too difficult to eat. This might include potatoes, carrots, or mushrooms.

Make Soft Foods

Luckily, you don’t only have to stick to soup and stew. All food exists in a spectrum between hard and soft, and there will definitely be softer foods that exist in that gray area in-between. Don’t be afraid to try some of them out (although be careful not to push the boundaries of what limits your doctor has set for you). Certain soft foods will be better or worse for certain situations. For example, softer foods are easier on braces and can avoid issues within the first few days. But you may want to avoid bread – even though it could be considered a softer food – because of the problems that it can cause for someone who just got braces for the first time. Other options to consider are mashed fruits, veggies, potatoes, pasta, and more.

Make Dessert Alternatives

Fear not – a lot of tasty desserts fall within the category of soft foods! You can still enjoy a soft-serve ice cream or a fresh donut. But desserts shouldn’t be the cornerstone of anybody’s diet. There are many healthy dessert alternatives that you can find recipes for online. Although it may take a little more time and effort, it will be well worth it in the end. A great example of this is the awesome variety of healthy smoothies that are available for you to make. You can put just about anything you like into a smoothie – kale, fruit, vanilla, protein powder – and it’ll taste fantastic!

Cooking for someone who cannot eat hard foods is, honestly, a hassle. But when life gives you lemons, make a lemon smoothie! There are so many options for you to explore, and so many fun possibilities that you can experiment with.

Check out this article on important lessons to teach your kids about cooking!

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