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Guidelines for Pureed Meals – Proper Nutrition on a Pureed Diet

Pureed Meals


A number of medical and dental conditions require special care to ensure complete and balanced nutrition while maintaining a soft or liquid diet. Information follows to help guide your choices.

To reduce the pain and/or difficulty swallowing while maintaining a balanced diet, make an effort to choose a variety of pureed foods from the five food groups. Choosing a variety of foods from each food group will provide adequate nutrients as well as prevent boredom in your diet. Servings to meet approximately 2000 calories include the following:

  • 6 to 8 ources from the Grain Group,
  • 2 to 3 cups from the Vegetable Group,
  • 1 1/2 to 2 cups from the Fruit Group,
  • 3 cups from the Dairy Group, and 
  • 5 to 6 ounces from the Protein Foods Group.

Sources of Blenderized or Pureed Foods

You may want to buy all food or some pureed foods at the grocery store. Small jars of strained baby food contain about one-half cup of food: larger containers usually cost less per serving than single serving jars. While buying pureed food is easier, it generally costs more than making your own.

You can puree many of the foods you normally prepare at home. Homemade pureed foods can taste better than store bought ones. To puree foods at home, you need:

  • A strainer or sieve
  • A blender, food processor or grinder

Steps for Making Blenderized or Pureed Foods

1. Remove skins, seeds, pits, bones, tough membranes and other inedible parts of foods.

2. Cut food into small pieces

3. Cook food until tender. Food already cooked, such as canned fruits, vegetables or meats and fish do NOT need further cooking.

4. Add small amounts of liquid to food to thin to a drinkable consistency. For instance:

  • Use warm milk to thin pureed macaroni and cheese, or eggs or potatoes.
  • Melt ice cream, sherbet, and gelatin and mix with milk or fruit juice.
  • Use milk to thin pudding or strained yogurt
  • Use fruit juice to thin pureed fruit

This information originally appeared in the Journey Guide Patient Handbook developed by the Ireland Cancer Center at University Hospitals, and was adapted for use on NetWellness with permission, 2013.


More About Pureed Meals


For more information:

Go to the Diet and Nutrition health topic.