Kidney Diet Tips

Kidney-Friendly Valentine’s Day Treats and Menus

Valentine's Dinner


Chocolate covered nuts may not be on the Valentine’s Day menu for sweethearts with chronic kidney disease this February 14th, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the day with special treats.  A few guidelines can help you treat yourself or your sweetie and still stay within the sodium, potassium and phosphorus targets for a renal diet.

Kidney Diet Tips for Eating Out on Valentine’s Day

  • Make dinner reservations!  A long wait and hunger contributes to less control over food choices.
  • Study the menu online before going to the restaurant.
  • Request no added salt to food and sauces or gravies on the side if possible.
  • Bring your binders with you and take them during the meal.
  • Share an entrée or dessert to help stay within your diet goals or take a portion home.
  • Enjoy the ambiance and special meal instead of focusing on food too much.
  • If you are on limited liquids, choose your favorite beverage and stick to one small portion.

Make a special homemade meal together with a friend or sweetheart. You can control the ingredients, keep it kidney-friendly and create a romantic mood with flowers, favorite music and candles. Try some of my favorite brunch and dinner recipes from these menus:

Brunch Menu
Valentine’s Breakfast Eggs (tortilla, eggs, onion, tomato)
Cherry Coffee Cake
3/4 cup Strawberries with sweetener
Hazelnut Cinnamon Coffee

508 calories, 15 g protein, 46 g carbohydrate, 27 g fat, 208 mg sodium, 518 mg potassium, 226 mg phosphorus, 116 mg calcium, 3.8 g fiber;  Renal and Renal Diabetic Food Choices: 1½ meat, ½ vegetable, low potassium, 1 starch, 1½ fruit, low potassium, 3 fat, ½ high calorie, Carbohydrate Choices: 3

Dinner Menu #1
Tender London Broil
Red Wine Vinaigrette Asparagus
Sesame Vermicelli
Cupid’s Cherry Cheesecake
8 ounces Iced Tea with lemon and sweetener

784 calories,  37 g protein*, 67 g carbohydrate, 40 g fat, 141 mg cholesterol, 621 mg sodium, 642 mg potassium, 350 mg phosphorus, 110 mg calcium, 4.4 g fiber;  Renal and Renal Diabetic Food Choices:  3-1/2 meat, 2-1/2 starch, 1 vegetable, medium potassium, 5 fat, 1 high calorie; Carbohydrate Choices:  4-1/2

Dinner Menu #2
Sole En Papillote (Sole in Paper) sole, green beans, peppers & onion
Spicy Lemon Pasta
Cherry Sweetheart Dessert
6 ounces Cherry 7 Up (regular or diet)

700 calories,  32 g protein*, 63 g carbohydrate, 25 g fat, 82 mg cholesterol, 558 mg sodium, 896 mg potassium, 397 mg phosphorus, 130 mg calcium, 6.9 g fiber; Renal and Renal Diabetic Food Choices:  3 meat, 1 starch, 2 ½ vegetables, medium and low potassium, 1 fruit, low potassium, 3-1/2 fat, 1 high calorie; Carbohydrate Choices:  4

*For a lower protein meal, reduce beef or fish portion.  One ounce cooked meat = 7 grams protein
Sweet Treats for Valentine’s Day
Try making one of these delicious Valentine treats from the low sodium, low potassium and low phosphorus recipe collection on  If you have diabetes, stick with the lower sugar choices and watch your portions to keep carbs in check.
Sugarless Heart Cookies
Cheese Tarts
Cherry Cream Cheese Mini-Tarts
Fabulous Hot Cocoa
Easy Low Phosphorus Fudge
Sweet Cherry Cream Pie
Stuffed Strawberries

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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.