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What's Cooking? USDA Mixing Bowl: A Collection of Recipes for Schools and Child Care Centers

Posted by Cheryl Jackson Lewis, Director, Nutrition Promotion and Technical Assistance Division, Child Nutrition Programs, USDA FNS in Food and Nutrition Initiatives
Feb 21, 2017
Girl holding sandwiches
Many of the quantity food service recipes found in the What’s Cooking? USDA Mixing Bowl have been taste-tested and student-approved!

This is the third installment of the What’s Cooking? Blog Series. In honor of the Let’s Move 5th Anniversary, and the commitment USDA shares with Let’s Move to promote healthy eating and access to healthy foods, this month-long series will high­­light the various features of the What’s Cooking? USDA Mixing Bowl recipe website.

USDA Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services is excited to have an interactive website that can help Child Nutrition professionals expand their portfolio of recipes.  The newly released What’s Cooking? USDA Mixing Bowl Web site is a searchable database of recipes that can be used by school nutrition and child care center professionals in their foodservice operations.

The What’s Cooking? USDA Mixing Bowl includes more than 1,000 mouth-watering recipes that are scaled for large quantity foodservice.  Most recipes for school nutrition yield 50 or 100 portions per recipe, while most recipes for child care centers yield 25 or 50 portions per recipe.  So that these popular dishes can be shared with parents and prepared at home, many of these recipes are available in the household search with fewer portions per recipe.

More than 400 large quantity recipes have been standardized by USDA and include information on how the recipe contributes toward the updated meal pattern requirements for the National School Lunch Program and other USDA Child Nutrition Programs.  Many of the remaining recipes are being analyzed for nutritional and crediting information, and will be available in the coming year.  In addition, most recipes are available in both English and Spanish.

Large quantity recipes found in the What’s Cooking? USDA Mixing Bowl were compiled from a variety of resources, including the popular Recipes for Healthy Kids Cookbook for Schools and Cookbook for Child Care Centers.  Recipes from this series of cookbooks were taste-tested and student-approved as part of the 2010 Recipes for Healthy Kids Competition.  Many of these recipes have become quite popular in the lunch line, so school nutrition and child care professionals should definitely give them a try!

One of the exciting functions of the What’s Cooking? USDA Mixing Bowl is the unique voting component which allows users to rate each recipe up to 5 stars.  This allows school and child care professionals to search and sort the database according to these star ratings, making it easier to find tried-and-true large quantity recipes for their food service operations.

The What’s Cooking? USDA Mixing Bowl offers school nutrition and child care professionals a one-stop-shop for delicious and healthy large quantity and home recipes.  Go online today and spice up your meal program with some new and exciting recipes!

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Comments

Ken
Feb 26, 2015

I know most of you are well intentioned with this social experiment, even though your arms are being twisted to comply in fear of loosing your job. This program as it stands needs to be a student and school choice. Not a mandate. Because some kids have issues with making a good choice for lunch is no reason to force the majority of students to spend our money on lunches that do not fill their needs. Most are athletes or are in great shape on their own accord. Please stop making other peoples problems a problem for all.

William
Apr 28, 2015

I think this is a fantastic idea for schools and childcare centers. Every child deserves a nutritious, filling meal but it can be difficult to prepare on a budget and therefore many children miss out. All educators need more information on healthy eating which they can pass onto the children in their care. In many cases, the meal at school is the healthiest of the day for children from poorer backgrounds.

Sandra Dixon
Oct 21, 2019

Hi I am wanting to know what happened to the link for the large quantity recipes. When I click it it says it can't be found. I would really like to have this working, as the school recipes were very good and I would like to make some for my family. Thanks so much for your time.

Ben Weaver
Oct 24, 2019

@Sandra Dixon - thank you for your comment. The USDA’s standardized recipes for school meals and the Child and Adult Care Food Program are available on The Child Nutrition Recipe Box, hosted by the Institute of Child Nutrition. On September 20, 2019, the What’s Cooking? USDA Mixing Bowl recipe website transitioned to ChooseMyPlate.gov and focuses on recipes for households. If you need help finding the recipes you are looking for, please contact us at teamnutrition@usda.gov.

Rosa Hernandewz
Nov 01, 2019

Would like access to school Nutrition Recipes for large quantity.

Ben Weaver
Nov 01, 2019

@Rosa Hernandewz - thank you for your comment. The USDA’s standardized recipes for school meals and the Child and Adult Care Food Program are available on The Child Nutrition Recipe Box, hosted by the Institute of Child Nutrition. On September 20, 2019, the What’s Cooking? USDA Mixing Bowl recipe website transitioned to ChooseMyPlate.gov and focuses on recipes for households. If you need help finding the recipes you are looking for, please contact us at teamnutrition@usda.gov.

Chris m Flood
Nov 12, 2019

Where do we submit recipes for consideration? Thank you.

Ben Weaver
Nov 13, 2019

@Chris m Flood - On September 20, 2019, the What’s Cooking? USDA Mixing Bowl recipe website transitioned to ChooseMyPlate.gov and focuses on recipes for households. The USDA’s standardized recipes for school meals and the Child and Adult Care Food Program are now available on The Child Nutrition Recipe Box, hosted by the Institute of Child Nutrition. At this time, there is not a feature to submit recipes for consideration on ChooseMyPlate.gov or for the Child Nutrition Recipe Box. If you need assistance, please contact us at teamnutrition@usda.gov.