Kidney Diet Tips


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Best Lunch and Dinner Choices for Dining Out on a Kidney Diet

Grabbing a fast meal on the run or going out for a nice dinner may be more challenging when following a renal diet. Here are some tips to help kidney patients keep sodium, potassium and phosphorus in check.

Steak and Pasta dinner
  • Choose grilled, broiled or roasted beef, chicken, pork chops, fish or seafood. Avoid breaded items—these add extra sodium and fat.
  • Kabobs or fajitas are usually made from fresh meats and vegetables. Ask for sauces or toppings on the side.
  • Buttered noodles, plain pasta with olive oil and garlic or steamed rice are lower in potassium compared to potatoes and tomato sauce pastas.
  • Checkout the fresh vegetables available. Make lower potassium choices like green beans, cauliflower, broccoli, summer squash or carrots.
  • Go for a grilled or broiled chicken, fish or hamburger on a bun with lettuce, onion, mayonnaise, mustard or tartar sauce. Limit ketchup to 1 packet. Forget the high sodium pickles and processed cheese.
  • For sandwiches, choose turkey, roast beef, tuna or egg salad instead of cured and heavily processed meats. Top with onions, lettuce, a thin tomato slice, bell peppers, cucumbers, alfalfa sprouts and a small amount of mayonnaise, mustard or oil and vinegar.
  • Choose a side salad with dressing on the side, macaroni salad or coleslaw instead or potato salad, chips or French fries.

For more ideas on eating out read Fast Foods and the Dialysis Diet on

Sara Colman, RDN, CDCES

Sara Colman, RDN, CDCES

Sara is a renal dietitian with over 30 years experience working with people with diabetes and kidney disease. She is co-author of the popular kidney cookbook "Cooking for David: A Culinary Dialysis Cookbook". Sara is the Manager of Kidney Care Nutrition for DaVita. She analyzes recipes and creates content, resources and tools for the kidney community. In her spare time Sara loves to spend time with her young grandson, including fun times together in her kitchen.