Thinking Outside the Box: Modified Diets That Are Tasty and Appealing!

Submitted by Shelby Donahoo, Therapy Resource, Tucson, AZ
When Sara Mohr, CFY at Sabino Canyon in Tucson, Arizona, was a SLP graduate student at the University of Arizona, the reality for those on modified diets became clear. Often a diagnosis of dysphagia brings confusion and worry. Getting modified diets right seems obvious, but actually can be quite hard. Options seemed few: mashed potatoes, blended meat and yogurt. She found few resources out there for patients in terms of appealing and tasty recipes with easy instructions for cooking and modifying.

She and her colleague, Louisa Williams, had an idea. What if they created a food blog to improve accessibility to quality information on modified diets?

So they established and began creating recipes and posting foods that meet texture requirements of the International Dysphagia Diet Standardization Initiative (IDDSI) while looking appetizing and tasting flavorful!

Sara says her goal with modified diet recipes is that “it should be good enough to bring to a potluck, share with the group, and not be embarrassed.” They do the cooking, test the recipes in various consistencies, and essentially take the guesswork out of modified diets.
If a recipe doesn’t work well modified, they don’t post it. Last year, Sara was working on a potato salad recipe using cauliflower (potatoes would just end up mashed) but reported it was “too soupy, too vinegary.” She’s recently perfected it and it will post the recipe soon.
Recipes include items such as Chicken Pot Pie Puree, Sopa Azteca, Chocolate Chip Banana Bread, Minced Pancakes and Salmon! Portions can be made for individuals or the whole family.

Sara and Louisa are planning a “puree road trip” this summer, with the goal of finding options for those on modified diets to eat when traveling.

What a great resource for our SLPs to share with clients and families!