Nebraska Farm to Preschool Toolkit


Getting Started

Where To Buy Local


What’s In Season


Produce Pick Spotlight Summer 2017 – Carrots



Photo credit:

In season locally: June through October.

Health benefits of carrots: Carrots are a root vegetable rich in antioxidants (cancer prevention), fiber and beta carotene.  They are also rich in Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, and Vitamin B8.  Carrots are a good source of pantothenic acid, folate, potassium, iron, copper, and manganese.  They are low in calories and high in fiber (good for digestive health). 

Nutrient     Health Benefit
Fiber Promotes digestive health
Beta Carotene /Vitamin A Vision health
Vitamin C Strengthens immune system
Vitamin K    Bone and heart heath
B8  Cognitive function, blood pressure, metabolism,
Folate  Skin health, cell development, cancer prevention
Potassium   Anxiety/stress relief, health heart & blood pressure 
Iron     Hemoglobin formation, oxygen carrier, muscle function
Copper     Aids metabolic process for a healthy existence

 You can find carrots at local farmers markets nearly all summer in Nebraska. Find local farmers who grow carrots on a great website called Agrilicious:



Produce Pick Spotlight Recipes and Serving Ideas

Fresh Hummus with Rainbow Carrots


Carrot Fries





Perfectly Cooked Carrots





Carrot Soup with Parmesan Crisps



Menu Planning With Local Foods as Sample Menus

Weekly Menus/Sample Menus
*RFHK = Recipes for Healthy Kids cookbook
*PPS = Produce Pick Spotlight recipe
*ISL = In Season Locally

  Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday



Strawberries (ISL)


Scrambled Eggs

Black Beans





Whole Wheat Waffle
With peanut butter and bananas







Baked Tilapia
Broiled Asparagus (PPS, ISL)

Mix Greens Toss Salad w/Kale (ISL

Brown Rice


Chicken Alfredo (RFHK pg.25)

Perfectly Cooked Carrots

Mango chunks


Black Bean and Corn Tostada




Turkey Porcupine Sliders
(RFHJK, pg. 9)

Carrot Fries (PPS, ISL)

Apple Slices

Wheat Bun


Grilled Cheese on Whole Wheat

Carrot Soup with Parmesan Crips (PPS, ISL)




Rainbow Carrots (PSS, ISL) w/ Fresh Hummus Dip

Pretzel sticks


Mini Pizza –
whole wheat English Muffin w/ marinara and mozzarella cheese


Radishes (ISL) w/Ranch Dip and

Wheat Crackers


Orange smiles

Snap Peas


Whole Wheat Tortilla Roll-up w/  peanut butter and bananas



Recipe Resources


Featured Farmer

Pairieland Dairy

June is National Dairy Month. Our first Featured Farmer is Prairieland Dairy.  A locally owned dairy near Firth Nebraska. At the heart of the farm is family. The Obbink family started the farm in the 1920’s. In 1998 the Rice family joined the operation and finally in 2004, the Eickhoff and Goosen families joined the operation to create a different kind of dairy farm – one aimed at sustainability and remaining open and transparent about their practices.

Prairieland’s dedication to sustainability and creating the ideal conditions to produce the most perfect milk starts with the soil. Healthy dairy products can be traced back to the feed the cows eat and ultimately the soil that grows the feed. Fertile, living soil is full of earthworms and microscopic creatures called microbes and you can bet the Prairieland fields are filled with both.

Prairieland’s dedication to the soil begins with compost made from the farm’s waste. Rich, Prairieland Gold compost is spread on the fields to minimize the use of commercial fertilizer. The dairy operation also uses crop-rotation techniques to reduce the use of pesticides and herbicides.

Prairieland Dairy also understands the value of water and has adopted a process to recycle and re-use water at every stage of their farm operation. First, the water is used to cool the chilling system in the milking parlor. From there water is piped to the cow barn where it provides drinking water for the herd or feeds the spray misters that keep the cows cool during the hot Nebraska summers. Clean facilities are also important at Prairieland, so water from the chillers is also used to clean and sanitize the facilities. After the water is used for cleaning it is captured and pumped into the irrigation pond where is can be used to water crops and provide the moisture needed to make Prairieland Gold compost.




At Prairieland Dairy, the 1400 cows are part of the family. The farm operates 24/7 on a well-regulated milking schedule, with the herd being milked three times a day, seven days a week. Prairieland Dairy cows are closely monitored. Each cow wears an ankle bracelet that transmits specific information on the status of their health. This assures the cows receive the care they need to remain healthy while confirming only the best milk makes it to your table. In the midst of a hot Nebraska day, our cows are regularly misted with water to cool off and provided enough water to stay hydrated. After the cows are milked, they return to the Prairieland barns. Built strategically for sustainability, the barns provide shelter from the elements and are filled with sand beds for each cow to lounge. The beds allow the Prairieland Dairy herd to relax comfortably, as the sand forms to their heavy bodies and provides relief after each milking. The barns are also where the cows enjoy their meals, a feed made from plants grown in the Prairieland Dairy fields and a balance of nutrients to keep the herd healthy and produce the highest quality of milk.

Prairieland Dairy completes its full circle of sustainability by turning the farm’s organic waste into a rich compost called “Prairieland Gold.” The compost is cultivated from cow manure and food-waste from local communities, schools and sporting arenas. Prairieland Gold compost is used as a natural soil amendment to build your earthworm and microbe population in gardens, lawns and landscapes. (Source:

Prairieland Dairy is truly one of this country’s most prized dairy farms and a great farm to tour.





Check out Pairieland Dairy’s Website for more on their story, store finder, recipes, products, tours and much more!




Gardening & Educational Activities


Lesson Plans

Taste Test Activities



Other Resources

  • University of Nebraska Lincoln, Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources: UNL Foods: