Snacks are a great pick-me-up throughout the day. For seniors, snacking helps you feel full and maintain a healthy diet. Some older adults may experience difficulty chewing, limiting their snack choices. Here are some tips to help older adults find the tastiest snacks that will also fit into their soft food diet, because everyone deserves a snack!
Check out our list below of the six best soft snacks that are downright delish.
How To Choose The Best Soft Food For The Elderly
When sifting through soft food ideas, it’s important to keep your dietary needs in mind. Seniors have increased nutritional needs, and depending on your circumstances, you may benefit from a high-calorie, high-protein or another specialized diet.
Beware Of Empty Calories Or Added Sugar
If you’re watching your sugar, checking nutrition labels on pre-made soft snacks is a good place to start. When making your own soft foods, be sure to keep track of how much sugar you’re using. Opt for low-calorie stevia or agave if you need to add some sweetness.
The Six Best Soft Snacks For The Elderly
1. Pudding Or Jell-O
One of the best things about pudding and Jell-O is that they’re quick, easy and come in a variety of flavors. Just follow the recipe on the back of the package and you’ll have a tasty snack in no time.
Try adding extras like cinnamon and cooked rice to pudding for a nice, comforting treat. Or add cut up fruit to your Jell-O for some supplementary nutrients. Switching up flavors and textures are a great way to add variety to your meals.
2. A Bean Salad
Beans are a healthy source of fiber and protein, and when you cook them long enough, they become completely soft. Bean salad is a classic American salad made with canned or cooked beans marinated in a vinaigrette and served cold. It’s a staple at picnics and a great midday snack.
This three bean salad is so customizable, you can even swap the other ingredients based on your preferences. Be sure to boil the green beans until they’re soft enough to melt in your mouth.
3. Soft Cookies And Cakes
If we’re not meant to have a midnight snack, why is there a light in the fridge? Fluffy cakes, fudgy brownies and soft cookies are all excellent soft food options. For those watching their sugar or calorie intake, just be sure to eat these foods in moderation. You can make your own healthier version of a favorite dessert, like this healthy version of edible cookie dough.
4. Fruit Smoothies
Smoothies are an easy-to-swallow snack and one of the easiest ways to sneak more protein, fruits and vegetables into your diet. With smoothies, it’s essential that you use enough frozen fruit (or fresh fruit) to make it perfectly creamy. Not enough, and you’ll end up with more of a liquid drink instead of a thick, slushy consistency. Don’t be afraid to try new flavors. Who knows, maybe green smoothies and you are mint to be!
Related: The Best Nutritional Drinks For Seniors: A Complete Guide
5. Egg Salad
If you’re looking for a tasty midday snack, opt for egg or tuna salad. Egg salad is a healthy protein and it’s easy to chew, making it a great soft snack for the elderly. Another positive feature of egg salad is that it’s a food that’s great pureed or mashed. Pureed egg salad tastes the same, just with a smoother consistency. Serve a creamy egg salad on a bed of lettuce or on whole wheat bread for a quick, soft snack.
6. Mashed Potato Cake
Potato chips are a beloved snack, but fried chips are high in fat and can be difficult to eat. Mashed potato cakes are a tasty alternative to grabbing a handful of potato chips as a snack. They recreate the crispy taste of a potato chip, but they’re easier to swallow (we’d argue they’re tastier, too.)
To make the perfect potato cake, here’s our tip: use cold mashed potatoes to shape the cake. Fry the cake until golden brown, place on a wire rack to dry and you’ll have a delicious snack in minutes. Try ranch seasoning for a zesty kick of flavor.
Decadent Dining In StoryPoint Group Communities
We all know that snacks taste best when they’re shared with friends. Join us at one of our communities and share a snack! If you’re interested in senior living, experience the various dining (or snacking!) options in our StoryPoint Group communities. Call today to schedule a lunch or dinner tour on us at 1-855-407-8679.