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Meal Pattern Minute: Soy Yogurt in the Infant Meal Pattern

December 8, 2023

Adding yogurt to the menu provides a good source of calcium, protein, and other important nutrients. However, some individuals in your care may not be able to consume dairy due to allergies or intolerances. Or perhaps, you are trying to provide an alternative to yogurt due to a parental preference. When looking for alternative yogurts, you can find many on the market. The one that we will discuss in this Meal Pattern Minute is soy yogurt and whether it is creditable or not in the infant meal pattern. 

 Get the answer in under a minute with Isabel Ramos-Lebron, MS, RDN, LD, as she talks about soy yogurt in the Child and Adult Care Food Program. 

 Need more information on soy yogurt and determining its creditable status for each meal pattern? Below, you will find key resources to help you figure this out. 

  • First, you will want to review revised memorandum that was released on November 29, 2023, “Crediting Tofu and Soy Yogurt Products in the School Meals Programs, Child and Adult Care Food Program, and Summer Food Service Program (Revised November 2023).” 
    • This memorandum explains how to credit tofu and soy yogurt in the National School Lunch Program, School Breakfast Program, Child and Adult Care Food Program, and Summer Food Service Program. This memorandum supersedes SP 53-2016, CACFP 21-2016 Crediting Tofu and Soy Yogurt Products in the School Meal Programs, Child and Adult Care Food Program, Aug. 8, 2016.
    • Soy Yogurt 
      • Additionally, ½ cup (or 4.0 ozw) of soy yogurt is creditable as 1.0 ounce equivalent of meat alternate. This is consistent with dairy yogurt crediting and allows schools, centers, day care homes, and summer meals sites to offer a non-dairy alternative to participants. In the CACFP and NSLP infant meal patterns, the serving size of soy yogurt is the same as for dairy yogurt, 0-4 ozw or ½ cup, for infants 6 through 11 months. Soy yogurt must also comply with any sugar limit for yogurt that is in effect within the respective CNP in which it is being offered.
  • Next, you will want to check the Crediting Handbook for the Child and Adult Care Food Program to see if there is any additional information you need to know about serving soy yogurt. Under the “Questions and Answers about Meats/Meat Alternates” section you will find more information on this product, especially about the sugar limit and if it applies to soy yogurt. 
    • Yogurt, including soy yogurt, is a great source of calcium, protein, vitamin A, vitamin D, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, riboflavin, and vitamin B-12. However, some yogurt products have significantly more sugar than others. To promote healthy habits from the start, the updated meal patterns limit the amount of total sugars allowed in creditable yogurt and soy yogurts. Yogurt or soy yogurt may contain up to 23 grams of sugar per 6 ounces.
  • Check out this resource, Is Your Yogurt CACFP Creditable?, to help you determine if the soy yogurt you plan to serve meets the CACFP sugar limits. 

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