Questions, Comments, or Corrections? Let us know!

Meal Pattern Requirements for Children Ages 1-12

FOOD CHART

AGE 1-2 YEARS3-5 YEARS6-12 YEARS
BREAKFAST
Fluid Milk1/2 cup3/4 cup1 cup
Juice or fruit or vegetable1/4 cup1/2 cup1/2 cup
Grains/Breads1/2 slice*
(or 1/2 serving)
1/2 slice*
(or 1/2 serving)
1 slice*
(or 1 serving)
or cold dry cereal1/4 cup
(or 1/3 oz.)
1/3 cup
(or 1/2 oz.)
3/4 cup
(or 1 oz.)
or cooked cereal1/4 cup1/4 cup1/2 cup
SNACK select two different components from the following four components **
Fluid Milk1/2 cup1/2 cup1 cup
Juice or fruit or vegetable1/2 cup1/2 cup3/4 cup
Meat or meat alternate1/2 ounce1/2 ounce1 ounce
or yogurt2 oz
(or 1/4 cup)
2 oz
(or 1/4 cup)
4 oz
(or 1/2 cup)
or peanut or other seed or nut butters1 T1 T2 T
or egg (large)1/21/21
Grains/Breads1/2 slice*
(or 1/2 serving)
1/2 slice*
(or 1/2 serving)
1 slice*
(or 1 serving)
LUNCH/SUPPER
Fluid milk1/2 cup3/4 cup1 cup
Meat or poultry or fish 1 ounce 1 1/2 ounce 2 ounces 
or cheese1 ounce1 1/2 ounce2 ounces
or cottage cheese, cheese food, or cheese spread2 ounces
(1/4 cup)
3 ounces
(3/8 cup)
4 ounces
(1/2 cup)
or egg1/23/41
or cooked dry beans or peas1/4 cup3/8 cup1/2 cup
or peanut butter, soynut butter or nut or seed butters2 T3 T4 T
or peanuts, soynuts, tree nuts or seeds1/2 oz. = 50%3/4 oz. = 50%1 oz. = 50%
or yogurt4 oz.
(or 1/2 cup)
6 oz.
(or 3/4 cup)
8 oz.
(or 1 cup)
or an equivalent quantity of any combination of the above meat/meat alternative   
Vegetables and/or Fruits (2 or More)1/4 cup (total)1/2 cup (total)3/4 cup (total)
Grains/Breads1/2 slice*
(or 1/2 serving)
1/2 slice*
(or 1/2 serving)
1 slice*
(or 1 serving)

POINTS TO REMEMBER  

  • Keep menu production records
  • The required amount of each food must be served
  • Use full-strength (100%) juice
* or an equivalent serving of an acceptable grains/breads such as cornbread, biscuits, rolls, muffins, etc., made of whole grain or enriched meal or flour, or a serving of cooked enriched or whole grain rice or macaroni or other pasta products. Refer to the grains/breads list for correct weights. 

** For snack, juice or yogurt may not be served when milk is served as the only other component.