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Although it’s no fun to think about, there may come a time in your life or the life of a loved one when pureed foods become a necessary dietary restraint. Pureeing foods is the process of putting them in a blender or food processor until they become about the consistency of mashed potatoes. Unfortunately, relying on pureed foods often also means a lack of nutrient-rich meals.
Pureed Diet FAQs
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What is a pureed diet?
A pureed food diet is one in which you blend food down to a consistency similar to that of mashed potatoes. The menu can consist of a wide variety of foods, although some foods are easier to puree than others. This diet will generally be more work than most other diets because of the preparation that goes into pureeing foods.
Why would you need a pureed diet?
There are a few different reasons why you may need a pureed food diet. The most common is the loss of teeth by someone who is elderly or who has gum disease, but other reasons may include recent bariatric surgery, dental surgery, head or neck radiation treatments or ulcers.
How We Reviewed
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To create our list, we went over recipes recommended for individuals with all kinds of reasons for eating a pureed food diet, and with all sorts of dietary restrictions and preferences. We narrowed our list down to the best food for post-bariatric surgery, the best for individuals without teeth, and the best vegan pureed meal.
Overall Price Range for Pureed Foods
If you buy your foods pureed, you’ll usually need to go through a senior care center or a specialty market where meals can be made to order. If you’re pureeing your own foods, the overall cost shouldn’t vary much from that of your average grocery trip. However, if you’re new to the diet, you will need to factor in the cost of a powerful blender or food processor upfront.
Pureed Meals Buyer’s Guide: How to Choose the Best Meals
The first step is to ensure that whatever you’re using to help cream your previously solid food is smooth to begin with. That means you’ll want to opt for smooth applesauce, milk, water, or non-chunky soups as your base.
Make sure you choose foods that are nutritious as well so that you don’t have to puree too many items for each meal. Otherwise, you can select food items that taste good together as a mixture. Doing so will help you be able to blend meals all at once instead of in several stages.
We’ve found that the best-pureed foods are fruits and vegetables, but you can puree chicken, fish, and some red meats, as well if you’re feeling adventurous.
Three Best Pureed Meals for Every Type of Pureed Dieter
Now that you know a little bit more about our process for ranking our meals and about pureed diets in general, let’s get into the real meat and potatoes, if you will, and talk about our top four recipes.
Best Meal for Post-Bariatric Surgery: Peaches and Cottage Cheese
It sounds simple, but cottage cheese and peaches have plenty of nutrients for a simple breakfast or lunch. The cottage cheese contains the right amount of protein for a lighter meal, while the peaches add vitamin A and dietary fiber.
- Helps keep cholesterol in check
- Meets daily dietary fiber requirements
- Adds protein and vitamins to your system
- Both items are either already semi-liquid or come in their own juices
- Nutritious and easy to digest
- Can be eaten in whatever quantity you choose and preserved for later
- Simple, with only two total ingredients in the meal
- A light meal, not good for dinnertime
- Very few vitamins and minerals
- Won’t work for those who are dairy intolerant
Best Meal for Elderly with No Teeth: Mac & Cheese
Let’s be honest, there are very few people in this world who don’t like mac & cheese, especially in the older generation. For this reason, it seems logical to select it as the best pureed meal for seniors. It’s also simple to blend by just adding milk, and can be dolled up to include all kinds of other nutritious foods to help ensure a healthy and well-rounded meal.
- Milk and cheese are good sources of protein
- Can add peas, mushrooms, or other veggies for additional nutrients
- Can use both boxed and fresh-made varieties for blending
- Easy to prepare
- Simple to add on additional healthy foods
- One-step pureeing process
- Turns an old favorite into an easy-to-eat meal
- Can have trouble with consistency
- On its own, it’s not all that nutritious
- May need practice to get the right flavor profile with additional required milk
Best Pureed Meal for Vegans: Mango and Banana Smoothie with Kale
This smoothie is a nutritious option for individuals who prefer a vegan lifestyle. You can create this smoothie using coconut milk or water to avoid dairy. The fruits and greens found within this smoothie provide many of your daily vitamin and mineral needs. You can even add hemp seeds or any type of nut for additional protein.
- Many health benefits derived from the various ingredients
- Customization options include the addition of nuts, applesauce, seeds, or vegan yogurts
- Nice and cool for hot summer days
- Can be personalized to fit your preferences
- Very nutritious
- Could be made non-vegan through use of dairy milk if necessary
- Simple to blend all at once
- Lacks protein without seeds or nuts included
- Can be too sweet for some people
- May not keep you as full as some other meals
|Cottage Cheese and Peaches||Mac & Cheese||Mango and Banana Smoothie with Kale|
|Best for post-bariatric surgery diet||Best for elderly or individuals without teeth||Best for vegan or vegetarian individuals|
|Two ingredients total||Two or more ingredients depending on taste||Four or more ingredients depending on taste|
|Breakfast or lunch option||Lunch or dinner option||Any meal option|
There are plenty of potential meals you could puree for a pureed diet depending on your preferences, dietary restrictions, and situation, but the three we’ve listed above are our favorites for bariatric surgery, individuals without teeth, and vegans. We think that these options are both simple and nutritious for all.
Overall, fruit and vegetable smoothies are the pureed foods we like best because they can be customized so easily and have incredible amounts of nutrients in them. We would recommend getting acquainted with these types of smoothies if you believe you or a loved one will soon require a pureed food diet as a part of daily life.