Protein Bowl Good for Soft Diets or Anytime

It’s hard to consistently eat a lower sugar, heart-healthy diet under regular circumstances. When I learned I would need a soft diet after oral surgery, I envisioned weeks of boring food.

Oral surgery, strep throat and some types of cancer treatment can necessitate a diet of soft, bland foods. Yuck. Double yuck for foodies with prediabetes, diabetes, or heart disease.

A Better Attitude

My mood brightened when my husband suggested I look at the new restriction as a challenge. Good idea!

I’ve been fooling around in the kitchen, figuring out interesting dishes that are soft and still appetizing. Recently I made a vegan protein bowl with peanut sauce. It’s filling, easy to prepare and a cut above cottage cheese or scrambled eggs.

Vegan Protein Bowl Checks All the Boxes

Sautéed tofu subs for meat, because it is soft, low carb and packs a protein punch. A moderate amount of rice adds heft to the bowl, but very well cooked cauliflower “rice” can be subbed to cut carbs.

Sauteed spinach is soft and packed with antioxidants, which aid in healing. And the peanut sauce? It adds flavor and interest.



– When making peanut sauce, red pepper flakes and/or chopped scallions can be omitted to avoid irritation.

– For those who don’t need a soft diet, add some chopped peanuts or a sprinkle of Chinese noodles for garnish.

– Spinach lovers – be free to increase quantity of spinach!


Savory Protein Bowl for Soft Diet

Prep Time 30 minutes
Course Main Course
Servings 1 Can be doubled or more


  • 4 oz extra firm tofu wrap block tightly in paper towels for a couple of minutes before cutting into small cubes.
  • 3 -4 cups finely chopped fresh spinach
  • 1/2 cup (well cooked) rice (I like jasmine) sub riced cauliflower
  • 2 tbsp Spicy Peanut Sauce See recipe link in post
  • 1 tsp avocado or olive oil
  • To taste reduced sodium soy sauce
  • Light coating cooking spray for skillet


  • Put oil in large skillet, heat. Add chopped spinach, stirring frequently until spinach is cooked (it greatly reduces in volume.) Set aside.
  • Wipe out skillet, spray with nonstick cooking spray and heat on medium or low. Add tofu, sprinkle with soy sauce and brown, gently moving tofu chunks for even color. (Browning will increase chewiness of tofu, feel free to lightly warm tofu instead.)
  • Assemble bowl: Put rice or cauliflower rice in bottom, add thick layer of sautéed spinach, then top with browned/heated tofu. Top with peanut sauce.
Keyword high protein, low carb, soft diet, vegan
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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