Braces Friendly Recipes
When you first begin wearing braces, you will need to think a little more about the foods that will be suitable to eat and those that will not damage or break your brackets. And at this point you may already have good ideas relative to what you can eat during treatment and foods that are best avoided. But, before you go to the grocery store, it’s worth making a list that includes soft, easy to eat foods that are handy to have, as well as all the ingredients for any new recipes you want to try out. To make it easier, many meals and softer foods can be frozen, so you can plan ahead, reheat em and enjoy. Also, you might need to allow a little additional cooking time to soften up any harder to eat foods. In fact some people look at wearing braces as an opportunity to try out new recipes, so to help we’ve included a few of our favorites for you to try.
Anything with pasta is always a great comfort food. This recipe is easy to make, and leftovers can be frozen.
- 2lbs lean mince
- 1 chopped brown onion
- 3 crushed garlic cloves
- 14oz can tomato sauce
- 14oz can crushed tomatoes
- Spaghetti or fettuccine pasta
- 12lbstbsp olive oil
- Parmesan to serve
Heat the olive oil and brown garlic and onion in a large pan. Add the mince to brown, before adding the tomato sauce. Cook for a few minutes before adding the crushed tomatoes. Simmer until sauce thickens and cook dried pasta according to the packet instructions. Serve with freshly grated Parmesan.
To make this recipe more interesting, you can add grated zucchini or carrots, or even some frozen spinach, adding more tomato sauce if needed. It can be a great way to get kids to eat their veggies during treatment.
Baked Ravioli Pasta
This is another complete meal that is also great for serving a hungry family while being very brace friendly.
- 14oz can diced tomatoes
- 24oz your favorite pasta sauce
- 1-1 1/2lbs frozen ravioli
- 1 cup grated Parmesan
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella
- 2tbsp chopped fresh parsley
- ½ cup water
Preheat your oven to 400°F and lightly oil a 9” x 13” casserole dish. Mix pasta sauce, diced tomato, and water together in the dish, making sure the bottom of the dish is completely covered. Place one layer of pasta on top of the sauce and top it with 1 cup of mozzarella. Repeat with another layer of pasta and the remaining mozzarella and Parmesan, and bake for 45 minutes until the top is golden brown. Garnish with parsley before serving.
This recipe can be great when you first have your braces and while your mouth may be feeling a little sore. It’s packed full of vitamins and we’ve added some protein powder, but you can add whatever you fancy. This recipe also includes a handful of fresh spinach which may sound strange, but you most likely won’t even taste it so it’s a great way to get some extra veggies in your diet. Why not use this recipe as a guide and experiment? All you need do is add all the ingredients in a blender.
- 1 cup frozen or fresh berries
- 2 scoops of vanilla yogurt
- Milk, or almond or coconut milk
- 1 scoop protein powder
- Handful of fresh spinach
- Handful of ice cubes
Just blend everything together, serve and enjoy!
Baked Potato Soup
This is another great recipe to enjoy when you have just had your braces fitted or adjusted as it is warm, soft and soothing.
- 5 medium-sized potatoes that have been peeled, boiled and diced
- 2tbsp butter
- 3tbsp flour
- 2tbsp finely diced onion
- 3 strips bacon
- 3 cups milk
- Grated cheese
Fry onions and bacon together and add bacon fat to a double boiler to melt the butter. Add flour and milk, stirring until sauce is thickened and smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper then add cooked potatoes, onion and crumbled bacon. Garnish with cheese and serve.
Potato chips are not the best thing to eat with braces but if you have a craving then this potato pancake recipe might solve it, especially when served with applesauce.
- 1 1/2 cups raw cubed potatoes
- 1 egg
- 1/2tsp salt
- ¼ small diced onion
- 1/8 cup milk
- 1 1/2tbsp flour
- 1/8tsp baking powder
- Vegetable spray for cooking
Blend all the ingredients until smooth, for about 30 seconds. Warm a frying pan over a medium heat and coat it with vegetable spray. Pour one-sixth of the batter into the pan and cook for approximately two minutes until it begins to brown. Flip the pancake with a spatula and cook for another two minutes until both sides are golden brown. Continue until you have six potato pancakes. Season with salt and pepper and enjoy while they are still hot and fresh.
Some General Advice on Eating Well with Braces
There are lots of great meals that can still be enjoyed while wearing braces. We’ve included two pasta dishes here and of course, Mac and cheese is still the ultimate comfort food. Other options include sloppy joes, especially with mashed potatoes. You probably have your own family favorites and it might be pretty easy to adapt these during treatment, simply by substituting harder ingredients with softer foods. For example, fibrous meats can be replaced with soft chicken or with tofu. If you love nuts, then try them ground up or as a spread. If you have a crockpot, then dust it off and put it to work. Cooking food for longer with help to soften it so it is easy to eat with braces.
In general, it can be better to avoid very spicy or acidic foods, especially after your braces have initially been placed or adjusted, as these foods might aggravate any sore spots in your mouth. Easy breakfast ideas include oatmeal prepared with milk and flavored with cinnamon, and you can even add softly mashed pears or other well-cooked fruit. Other options include scrambled eggs, and smoothies make a great choice for a breakfast on the go. Tuna salad is great for lunch, as is cold pasta salad. Avocados often make a good addition to a salad because they are so soft and nutritious.
The good news is that many desserts are just fine to eat with braces as well but these tend to be high in sugar so please don’t indulge too frequently! If you would like more information or advice about which foods to eat during orthodontic treatment, then please remember that Dr. Rick Ballard or any of our team here at Ballard Orthodontics are more than happy to help you, although we are much better at sharing our recipes with you than preparing the meal.