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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 23, 2015
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!