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Meal Pattern Minute: Mixing Cereals

November 17, 2023

In the Child and Adult Care Food Program, there is a sugar limit when it comes to serving ready-to-eat breakfast cereals. You can serve cereals that have no more than 6 grams of totals sugar per dry ounce. But what if you purchase a cereal containing low-sugar that meets the sugar limits and mix it with a high-sugar cereal that does not meet the sugar limits and serve it for breakfast? Would this new cereal blend be creditable in the CACFP? 

Tune in to Isabel Ramos-Lebron, MS, RDN, LD, as she answers and clarifies this question in the Meal Pattern Minute. 

 Looking for more information and references for this topic? Check out the resources below. 


  • Crediting Handbook for the CACFP 
    • You may not mix a non-creditable food item with a creditable food item to make the new food item creditable. For example, a provider cannot mix a cereal with 8 g of sugar per dry ounce with a cereal with 4 g of sugar per dry ounce to create a cereal that has 6 g of sugar per dry ounce (the sugar limit for breakfast cereals). It would be challenging for providers and monitors to determine that the mixed cereal meets its respective sugar limit during preparation or review.
  •  Identifying Cereal Sugar Limits
    • If you’re having trouble figuring out if the breakfast cereal you purchased meets the sugar limits, use this resource to help you determine if your cereal is creditable in the CACFP. There are 3 ways to identify if your cereal meets the sugar limits. 
  •  Another question you might have is, “Are all WIC cereals reimbursable in the CACFP?” Check out the answer here: Meal Pattern Minute: WIC Cereals 


Get creative with your creditable cereal like adding it on top of yogurt for a nice crunch or mix it with dry fruit to make a trail mix for snack time.


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