thanksgiving dinner - Idaho Falls orthodontist

Braces-Friendly Foods To Enjoy On Thanksgiving

The temps are getting colder, and the stores are getting busier and people are putting up their Christmas trees already, just like they usually do around this time of year. With Thanksgiving only two weeks away and Christmas just shy of six weeks away, it’s time to get cooking, literally. However, if you have braces or have a child with braces, this time of year can be especially tricky to navigate in terms of what food to eat and which foods to avoid. No one wants to see the dentist for a broken wire on Thanksgiving. To combat potential snapped wires or broken brackets, we’ve created a list of what foods are appropriate for braces and which are not. You’ll also find links to recipes that are simple and quick to make so that if you’re making Thanksgiving dinner or just bringing a side dish, you’ll be prepared this season.

Continue reading for more information about how to survive Thanksgiving while wearing braces. If you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to call our Idaho Falls orthodontics office today. 

What Foods To Steer Clear Of At Thanksgiving


Many homes across the nation that celebrate Thanksgiving usually offer finger foods before the main course occurs. Foods that are often offered include chips, fruit and veggie dips, popcorn, nuts, crackers, soft cheeses, etc. Some of these are ok for braces, but some are not, avoid these appetizers if you’re sporting braces this year:

  • Chips
  • Unsliced apples
  • Crunchy raw vegetables
  • Nuts
  • Popcorn and caramel popcorn

 Main Course

When it’s time to feast, try avoiding the following foods from making their way onto your plate:

  • Salads with nuts and crunchy vegetables
  • Corn on the cob
  • Meat on the bone
  • Stuffing if it has nuts or is dry


Luckily during Thanksgiving, there are plenty of dessert options to go around so even though you’ll have to stay away from the following you’ll still be able to satisfy your sweet tooth:

  • Caramel Apples
  • Hard Cookies
  • Pie, cake, or brownies with nuts like pecan pie. 

Foods You Can Enjoy On Thanksgiving

Now that we’ve gotten what you need to avoid this year out of the way here are foods your Idaho Falls orthodontist does recommend indulging in:


Appetizer to enjoy:

  • Soft cheese, sliced cheeses, cubed cheese
  • Fruit or veggie dips with slices of bread or easy to eat fruit like berries
  • Sliced meats, meatballs, cocktail weenies

Main Course

These foods are braces-friendly, eat as much as you want of:

  • Leafy green salads
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Stuffing without nuts
  • Meat if it’s been cut into smaller sizes
  • Cooked vegetables including the classic sweet potato casserole


Pumpkin pie or any cream pies and most fruit pies are fair game even if you wearing braces in Idaho Falls this Thanksgiving. Other desserts you can enjoy brownies without nuts, soft cookies, and cake, and ice cream.

Make sure to brush and floss after dessert even though these foods won’t harm your braces; they can cause cavities, so eat sparingly, but enjoy. 

Braces-Friendly Foods To Make For Thanksgiving

Try your hand at one or all of the following recipes for a braces-friendly feast this year!


Cranberry Brie Dip – This appetizer not only looks impressive, but it will please all the cranberry lovers in your family. Bonus, it takes less than half an hour to make! You can find the full recipe here

Italian Sausage Stuffed Mushrooms – If you want to bring something other than cocktail weenies or a dip this year, try these easy to make but decadent stuffed mushrooms

Prosciutto-Wrapped Butternut Squash – This “fancy” looking appetizer requires minimal effort and only an hour to cook. These delicious appetizers are sure to be a hit every year whether or not anyone is wearing braces. 

Main Course (Sides)

Creamy One-Pot Garlic Mashed Potatoes – It just wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without this classic mashed potato recipe. As far as your Idaho Falls orthodontist is concerned, mashed potatoes are the perfect braces-friendly food around. 

Maple Meringue Sweet Potato Casserole – Yeah, that’s right, this isn’t just your run of the mill sweet potato casserole. Wow your friends and family by making this traditional side with a twist. This recipe does take a little longer than two hours, but we just couldn’t leave it off the list!

The Best Dinner Rolls – Who doesn’t love a hot roll with butter to eat alongside their turkey dinner? These rolls take less than half an hour to make and uses only simple ingredients. 


Pumpkin Cheesecake Roll – We’re sure most of your family members will come bearing pumpkin pies. Still, this year, you can bring it up a notch with this to-die-for Idaho Falls braces-friendly pumpkin cheesecake roll from

Peanut Butter Dessert Lasagna- We love a no-bake dessert just about as much as the next person. If you love peanut butter, this is a must for Thanksgiving.

Cranberry-Orange Cheesecake Swirl Bars – This pretty dessert is sure to take center stage at when it’s time to dish up dessert. Get the recipe here. 

Have a fun and safe Thanksgiving this year from your favorite Idaho Falls orthodontist, Randall Orthodontics