Soft Diet

Author: Courtney Misher, MPH, BS R.T.(T)
Last Reviewed: March 16, 2023

What is a soft diet?

A soft diet is a diet that includes soft, chopped, ground, and pureed foods that can be easily mashed with a fork. They are easily chewed or don’t need to be chewed before safely swallowing them and are easy to digest.

Who should eat a soft diet?

After some surgeries, you must ease your stomach back into a regular diet. This can be done by starting with a liquid diet, then moving to a soft diet, and then to a regular diet. Your provider will tell you when you should change your diet.

Also, if you are missing teeth, have recently had dental surgery, have had radiation to the head, neck or stomach, or have sores and pain in your mouth and throat, a soft diet can be easier to eat than a regular diet.

What foods can you eat on a soft diet?

Foods that can be easily mashed with a fork are considered soft. Chopped, pureed, and ground foods that are easy to swallow are also considered soft.

Examples of soft foods include:

  • Yogurt.
  • Oatmeal.
  • Soft breads.
  • Well-cooked pasta.
  • Cottage cheese or other soft cheeses.
  • Ground and cooked meat.
  • Tuna or egg salad.
  • Fish.
  • Eggs.
  • Tofu.
  • Vegetables that are cooked and can be mashed with a fork.
  • Mashed potatoes.
  • Avocado.
  • Apple sauce.
  • Cooked, diced, or canned fruit.
  • Many foods can be softened further with sauces and gravies.

If you have questions about your diet, ask to speak to a registered dietician. They can help you to make sure you are getting the nutrients that you need and that a soft diet is right for you.


Lee, S. (2019, November). Swallowing problems. Canadian Cancer Society. Retrieved March 13, 2023, from

Nutrition in cancer care (PDQ®)–patient version. National Cancer Institute. (2022, December 9). Retrieved March 13, 2023, from


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