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Meal Pattern Minute: Serving Juice More Than Once Per Day

February 17, 2023

When serving juice in the Child and Adult Care Food Program, it should be 100% full-strength juice and pasteurized. Full-strength juice is part of a healthful diet and helps provide nutrients you body needs in the form of vitamins and minerals. The full-strength juice whether it is fruit, vegetable, or a combination of both may only be used to meet the vegetable or fruit requirement at one meal or snack per day. So, what happens if you serve juice twice in one day? Can you still claim the second full-strength juice in the CACFP meal pattern? 

Get the answer by listening to our nutrition education specialist, Isabel Ramos-Lebron, MS, RDN, LD, explain when full-strength juice is reimbursable in the CACFP meal pattern.


For more information on full-strength juice and how it credits in the Child and Adult Care Food Program, check out the resources below. 

  • Memo Code: CACFP  09-2017: Vegetable and Fruit Requirements in the CACFP: Q&As  
    • Under the updated child and adult meal patterns, fruit juice or vegetable juice may only be used to meet the vegetable or fruit requirement at one meal or snack per day. This limitation is based on the Dietary Guidelines’ recommendation that at least half of the fruits consumed per day should come from whole fruits (fresh, canned, frozen, or dried).  While 100 percent juice can be part of a healthful diet, it lacks the dietary fiber found in whole fruits and vegetables and when consumed in excess can contribute to extra calories.  If a center or day care home serves fruit or vegetable juice at more than one meal (including snack), the meal with the lowest reimbursement rate containing juice would be disallowed.  
  • Crediting Handbook for Child and Adult Care Food Program
    • Full-strength 100% fruit and vegetable juice may count toward the entire fruits or vegetables component at 1 meal per day, including snack. 


Interested in making your own full-strength juice blend? Try blending these fun combinations! 

  • 100% Orange Juice + 100% Mango Juice 
  • 100% Cherry Juice + 100% Cranberry Juice 
  • 100% Carrot Juice + 100% Orange Juice 

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