Skip to content

Meal Pattern Minute: Home-Canned Fruits and Vegetables

January 26, 2023

Fruits and vegetables are important food components in the Child and Adult Care Food Program. A serving of fruit or vegetable can be served and be reimbursable in various forms which are fresh, frozen, dried, cooked dried beans and peas, full-strength juice, and canned. Canned foods are nutritious and the fruits and vegetables that have been canned are already cooked! This could help speed up your cooking time or serve soft foods when needed. But what if you have fresh cucumbers from your garden or local farmers’ market, but don’t have plans to use them right away? Can you preserve them through home canning methods? Would home-canned pickled cucumbers be reimbursable in the CACFP? 


Well, it only takes a minute to find out! Listen to our nutrition education specialist, Isabel Ramos-Lebron, MS, RDN, LD, to learn more about how home-canned foods may or may not be creditable in the CACFP.


After watching this video, review the Crediting Handbook for the Child and Adult Care Food Program to read more on home-canned produce. 

  • Home-canned fruit products are not allowed for service in the CACFP due to health and safety reasons.
  • Home-canned vegetable products are not allowed for service in the CACFP due to health and safety reasons.
  • For safety reasons, home-canned foods may not be served in meals reimbursed under the CACFP because they may contain harmful bacteria even when there is no evidence of spoilage.


Here are some recipes using commercially canned vegetables. Look to see how quickly a meal can be made using canned food items! 


Want to share this video on Facebook? Click here, and then you'll find three icons along the right side of the screen. Click on the arrow, and you'll be able to choose whether you want to share it to your feed or to a group. You can also include a short note about why this Meal Pattern Minute is so important! Click on the "Post" button when you're finished, and that's it!