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Meal Pattern Minute: Maximum Serving Sizes

June 30, 2023

In the Child and Adult Care Food Program, the meal patterns are outlined to indicate minimum quantities of the food components required for breakfast, lunch/supper, and snack. However, you have hungry children in your care and you would like to provide a larger portion of the food components. If you serve more than the minimum requirement for a food component at any meal, is the meal reimbursable in the CACFP? 


It only takes a minute to find out! Listen in as Isabel Ramos-Lebron, MS, RDN, LD, talks about serving larger quantities of food in the CACFP meal pattern. 


Handy Resources for Serving Sizes

  • Not sure what the minimum requirements are for each food component based on the age(s) you are serving? Download and print our free Meal Pattern Reference Cards.
  • If you are a sponsor and would like to give out glossy card stock versions of these to your CACFP providers, visit NCA Marketplace for purchase. 
  •  Serving 3–to-5-year-olds, but not sure what the meal pattern minimum serving sizes look like even though you know the measurements? Review this free online resource, “A Day in CACFP,” for a more visual look on what a CACFP creditable meal and snack could appear to be when serving 3- to 5-year-olds.  


Here are a few fun recipes to try in your next menu cycle. 


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