Kidney Diet Tips


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Blending Special Diets into Meal Planning

Having a special renal diet where you will eat differently than the rest of the family can feel isolating for a person with chronic kidney disease (CKD). Meal planning takes on a larger role in preparing family meals. In addition, there is extra pressure on the home cook. Who wants to make two meals?

Instead of turning towards processed foods that may be high in phosphorus and sodium, try blending your special diet in with the rest of the family.

Meal Planning Options

With the DaVita Today’s Kidney Diet cookbooks and recipes on there are hundreds of kidney-friendly recipes to try. Here are some suggested recipes that may become the new go-to for the household recipe rotation:

Once you decide on your weekly recipes, use the meal planning feature in DaVita Diet Helper to plan additional foods to complete your meals.

Here’s how break each dish down into the individual ingredients. You’ll start to see where small adjustments can tailor the recipe into two separate but similar dishes. Here are specific examples:

Spaghetti Sundays

For a lower potassium spaghetti dish make a basic white sauce using butter, flour and a milk alternative. It can be mixed up in the time it takes the pasta to boil. A red marinara sauce can be made at the same time. (For a lower potassium red sauce try DaVita’s Roasted Red Pepper Tomato Sauce.) Simply boil a large pot of pasta and cook the meat portion separately. Add your portion of meat and enjoy!

Taco Tuesdays

A taco bar is the easiest way to feed a crowd and make everyone happy. This way you can have full control to individually portion your own toppings. You can choose the lower sodium and potassium toppings and still enjoy a taco meal with the family.

Pizza Party

A personal pizza created on pita bread or with DaVita’s Easy Pizza Dough can go a long way to reducing sodium. Our recipe has only 34 mg sodium per serving. Pizza dough can be frozen for up to 3 months or refrigerated up to 3 days. In addition to saving sodium, your personal pizza does not stand out as a special diet food.


Check out the Today’s Kidney Diet cookbooks that feature advice to help you choose the best foods for your stage of chronic kidney disease (CKD). The Today’s Kidney Diet Sandwiches, Burgers & Pizza cookbook includes a pizza dough recipe in addition to this Grilled Chicken Pesto Pizza recipe.

Perhaps you are new to kidney disease and the kidney diet. Here are 3 steps you can take to help manage your health and your diet.



This article is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment. Consult your physician and dietitian regarding your specific diagnosis, treatment, diet and health questions.

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Heidi Bennett RD, CBE

Heidi Bennett RD, CBE

Heidi Bennett is a busy mother of two who believes eating well is possible with limited time . She has worked as a clinical dietitian in Wisconsin and now California for over twelve years. Through her experience in a variety of settings , she has found her true calling as a renal dietitian for DaVita. In her free time Heidi loves traveling with her husband and growing fresh ingredients for cooking and preserving.