Dysphagia Diet Step Three (1721)

Key points below

Chopped or Mechanical Soft

What is a dysphagia diet?  

This diet is used when a child has a hard time chewing and/or swallowing foods. It is a 3-step diet that gradually adds textures as chewing and swallowing improve.

The foods in this diet are chopped or cut, soft, easy to chew, and moistened to help with swallowing. Your child will need to chew and manage the food easily.  The diet includes liquids as described below and all foods that are allowed on Dysphagia Step One and Two Diets. 

Child may have the liquid that is circled:  

Items in bold may not be allowed if child needs thickened liquid. Ask your speech language pathologist.


Enriched white, soft whole grain breads without seeds or crusts. Muffins, donuts, danish pastries, corn bread, waffles, French toast, Crackers such as Ritz, Saltines, Gold fish®, Cheez-its®. No nuts.


Soft cereal bars, prepackaged instant cereals prepared per package directions. No nuts.


Ground beef/taco meat, flaked fish, grilled cheese sandwich without crust. Cooked dried beans and peas, chopped chicken nuggets, chopped deli meats, scrambled eggs, cheese omelets, casseroles, lasagna. Hot dogs quartered the long way then cut in half to make strips.

Potato/potato substitute

Pasta, white or sweet potatoes without skins, rice moistened with sauce/gravy/butter/oil, tater tots, French fries 


Soft cooked vegetables


Bite sized pieces of drained canned fruit, mandarin oranges, mango, banana, apple without peel, pears, peaches, berries, melons.


Large or small curd cottage cheese, yogurt with or without pieces, soft cheese slices/curds/cubes, milk. Milk may be used in cooked cereal or mashed potatoes


Smooth pureed soups or broths only. Smooth or clear only - no chunks.   


Cake with frosting/snack cakes, fruit pie filling


Butter, margarine, gravy, cream, sour cream


Salt, pepper, catsup, mustard, salad dressings, sugar, jelly, honey.

Sample menu




Morning snack

Afternoon snack

Evening snack

To be sure your child is getting enough fluids, calories and nutrients to grow, certain amounts of foods will be needed.  A dietitian  can tell you how much of each food group your child needs each day. 

For other health and wellness information, check out this resource: https://kidshealth.org/ChildrensWi/en/parents


Call your child’s doctor, nurse, or clinic if you have any questions or concerns or if your child has special health care needs that were not covered by this information.