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November 3, 2023

5 Popular Thanksgiving Foods That Can Stain Your Teeth

Filed under: Uncategorized — sommers_team @ 9:17 pm
an assortment of Thanksgiving food

Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and you’re probably looking forward to enjoying all your favorite foods: fried turkey, sweet potato casserole, and of course, your grandma’s famous pecan pie! However, as tasty as Thanksgiving food might be, some of these dishes aren’t exactly great for your teeth—and some might even leave your pearly whites stained and dull. Keep reading to learn more about which foods can pose a potential threat to your smile’s shine, along with a few things you can do about it—including opting for teeth whitening from your trusted dentist!

Which Thanksgiving Foods Can Stain My Teeth?

Every family celebrates Thanksgiving differently; while there are staples that find their way onto almost every table—turkey, mashed potatoes, and stuffing just to name a few—there’s a very vast range of sides and dishes that can be prepared for the holiday. Unfortunately, some of these options have the potential to stain and discolor teeth! Here are a few choices to be mindful of:

Cranberry Sauce

Cranberry sauce, or cranberry jelly, is a Thanksgiving staple—but it can take a pretty serious toll on your teeth. It’s sugary, acidic, and can leave your pearly whites a dark red color. Be certain to enjoy it in moderation this year!

Balsamic Vinegar

If your family serves salad during Thanksgiving, you should be mindful of any balsamic vinegar-based dressings, as they have the potential to stain teeth, as light and delicious as they may be!

Red Wine

Red wine is well-known for its tendency to stain teeth; however, did you also know that even white wine can cause discoloration? Additionally, other alcoholic beverages enjoyed during Thanksgiving, be they cocktails or mocktails, might be dark in color and have the potential to leave stains.


While pumpkin or pecan pie isn’t too problematic, cherry pie, blackberry pie, blueberry pie, or other berry-based choices can lead to discoloration. Like cranberry sauce, these desserts are high in sugar content and contain staining agents.


Coffee is enjoyed year-round, but it’s a common practice to enjoy a small cup after dinner, sometimes with dessert. Needless to say, coffee has the potential to stain teeth.

What Can I Do About Stained Teeth?

If you can’t bear the thought of giving up some of these items this Thanksgiving, even after knowing the staining risk they pose, don’t fret—stained teeth can often be prevented, as well as treated. In terms of prevention, enjoy these items in moderation and don’t neglect your oral hygiene regimen. By brushing and flossing regularly, you can mitigate much of the staining caused by certain foods and drinks. It’s also very useful to rinse your mouth out with a glass of water after dinner!However, if your teeth are already stained, you might be a candidate for teeth whitening. Your dentist has access to special equipment and materials that are more powerful than anything you can purchase yourself; they can easily whiten your teeth and reverse the staining caused by your diet. That way, you can continue to enjoy all your favorites this Thanksgiving with a big, bright smile on your face!

About the Practice

Under the talented leadership of Dr. Norman Sommers and Dr. Adam Sommers, the team at Sommers Family Dentistry has proudly served the dental needs of the Norwalk, OH area for several years. They’re thrilled to offer a wide range of services, including various cosmetic options like teeth whitening for patients with stained or discolored teeth. If you have any questions about the blog or you’d like to set up a visit for you or a loved one, please visit the practice’s website or give them a call today for information or assistance. Telephone: (419) 668-3606.

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