How to Use

  • Each recipe is analyzed for the USDA meal components; that information can be found on the “Food Groups/Meal Patterns” tab.
  • From each recipe page, you can scale the recipe, save as a pdf or Excel file, and view and save the nutrient analysis. To scale the recipe, change the “Standard Yield” number and click the “Scale” button. To return to the default standard batch size, click the “Reset” button.
  • The recipes default to their tested batch sizes. We recommend scaling batch sizes to be compatible with your equipment and operational model.
  • Ingredients reflected in the recipes are commonly found USDA Foods or are products available commercially. Items that are unique to a specific manufacturer will be identified in the ingredient description. 
  • Note that many recipes reference subrecipes as an ingredient. The user must search for the subrecipe and scale according to the amount specified once the main recipe has been scaled.
  • Ingredient yield factors, where applicable, can be found at the top of the Recipe Instructions tab in “Pre-Preparation Instruction” fields.
  • Since seasonings are particularly affected by increased scaling, we suggest taste testing as you increase quantities.
  • We recommend that any recipe selected for use in your district be tested in your kitchens prior to adding to your menu to ensure that the methods and yields are compatible when prepared with your equipment.
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The Lunch Box Recipes and Menus Webinar

Train on recipe writing in the scratch-cooking environment, creating menu cycles, and navigating The Lunch Box recipe database


We hope to hear from our users and look forward to adding your scratch recipes and successful menu cycles to The Lunch Box database so that we can share your expertise and expand our school food community.

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