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Eating Difficulty: Can I Eat a Plant-Based Diet If I Can’t Chew Properly?

Let’s say you’re in a rut as far as chewing hard or any solid food because of circumstances like:

  • recently removed wisdom teeth
  • missing teeth or tooth decay
  • jaw surgery

Whether your situation is long-term (years) or temporary, you can definitely still enjoy and stick to a plant-based diet.

The key is learning how to prepare delicious and filling soft or liquefied meals.

Be sure to check out our vegan soup recipes roundup.

If You Can Chew to Some Extent

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Focus on soft foods.

The following items will need to be cooked and prepared to become soft, you can then mash or puree them if needed.

Root veggies are excellent options and include:

  • carrots
  • cassava (aka. yuca)
  • celeriac
  • jicama
  • rutabaga
  • sweet potato
  • yams

Root veggies are great for making filling and blended soups.

Soups are also an ideal way to bring in your choice of fats (avocado, coconut meat, or a high-quality oil) and seaweed (flakes, granules or powder).

Other food items to consider:

  • Amaranth
  • Millet
  • Nut butters
  • Quinoa
  • Red lentils

From the fruit category, you can include:

  • avocado
  • bananas
  • berries
  • durian fruit
  • mangoes (soft ripened)
  • pumpkin

If You Can’t Chew at All

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If for any reason, you can’t chew at all, we encourage you to focus on making calorically dense and filling, liquefied meals.

Sweet potato, avocado, pumpkin and coconut products (butter, cream, oil, etc.) are great ways to do this.

Overall, your best bet is:

  • blended soups
  • juices
  • smoothies
  • yogurts (coconut-based)

Here are example recipes to get you started:

For lots of smoothie ideas, see this recipe roundup.

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