Ingredient quantity guide for long day care menus

Early childhood services

The tables below will help you order and prepare foods and drinks in quantities that meet the Menu planning guidelines for long day care, support children’s nutrition needs and reduce food wastage at the same time.

For centres with more than 60 children see this guide.

a person portioning pasta into bowls

A ‘children’s serve’ refers to the portion of food appropriate for children aged 1–5 years. To be practical in the childcare setting, children’s serve sizes have been adapted from the serve sizes in the Australian Dietary Guidelines.

Please Note: If your centre has more than 60 children, please use the ingredient quality guide for larger long day care menus here.

Lean meat and poultry, fish, eggs, tofu, nuts, seed and legumes/beans

Offer 1 children’s serve of lean meat, poultry, fish or alternatives per child per day.
E.g. for 5 children you need 300g of fish to provide enough for each child.

What is 1 children’s serve?5 children10 children20 children30 children40 children50 children60 children
Lean red meat, pork, poultry (raw)50g boneless250g500g1kg1.5kg2kg2.5kg3kg
Lean red meat (cooked)30g150g300g600g900g1.2kg1.5kg1.8kg
Poultry (cooked, skin off)40g200g400g800g1.2kg1.6kg2kg2.4kg
Fish (raw)60g300g600g1.2kg1.8kg2.4kg3kg3.6kg
Fish (canned/ cooked)50g250g500g1kg1.5kg2kg2.5kg3kg
Egg1 egg5 eggs10 eggs20 eggs30 eggs40 eggs50 eggs60 eggs
Legumes (dry)35g175g350g700g1.05kg1.4kg1.75kg2.1kg
Legumes (cooked/tinned, drained weight)85g (½ cup)425g (2½ cups)850g (5 cups)1.7kg (10 cups)2.55kg (15 cups)3.4kg (20 cups)4.25kg (25 cups)5.1kg (30 cups)
TVP*20g100g200g400g600g800g1kg1.2kg
Tofu85g425g850g1.7kg2.55kg3.4kg4.25kg5.1kg
Hummus60g (¼ cup)300g (1¼ cups)600g (2½ cups)1.2kg (5 cups)1.8kg (7 cups)2.4kg (9½ cups)3kg (12 cups)3.6kg (14 cups)

* TVP stands for Textured Vegetable Protein which is a vegetarian meat substitute. One children’s serve of lean meat, poultry, fish or alternatives is equal to half a serve in the Australian Dietary Guidelines.

Fruit

Offer 1 children’s serve of fruit* per child per day.
E.g. for 5 children you need 375g of fresh/tinned/frozen fruit to provide enough for each child.

What is 1 children’s serve?5 children10 children20 children30 children40 children50 children60 children
Fruit (fresh/ frozen)75g  (½ med piece)375g (2½ pieces)750g (5 pieces)1.5kg (10 pieces)2.25kg (15 pieces)3kg (20 pieces)3.75kg (25 pieces)4.5kg (30 pieces)
Fruit (cooked/ tinned, drained)½ cup2 ½ cups5 cups10 cups15 cups20 cups25 cups30 cups
Dried fruit*15g75g150g300g450g600g750g900g

One children’s serve of fruit is equal to half a serve in the Australian Dietary Guidelines.

* Dried fruit leaves a sticky residue on teeth and can contribute to tooth decay. If included on the menu it should only be offered once per week.

Vegetables and legumes/beans

Offer 1–1½ children’s serves of vegetables and legumes per child per day.
E.g. for 5 children you need 375–500g of vegetables/legumes to provide enough for each child.

What is 1 children’s serve?5 children10 children20 children30 children40 children50 children60 children
Vegetables (fresh/frozen)75g375–500g750g–1kg1.5–2kg2.25–3kg3–4kg3.75–5kg4.5–6kg
Vegetables (cooked/tinned, drained)½ cup2½ - 3¾ cup5–7½ cups10–15 cups15–22½ cups20–30 cups25–37½ cups30–45 cups
Vegetables (salad)1 cup5–7½ cups10–15 cups20–30 cups30–45 cups40–60 cups50–75 cups60–90 cups
Legumes (dry)30g150–225g300–450g600–900g900g–1.3kg1.2–1.8kg1.5–2.25kg1.8–2.7kg
Legumes (cooked/tinned, drained weight)75g (½ cup)375–500g750g–1kg1.5–2kg2.25–3kg3–4kg3.75–5kg4.5–6kg

One children’s serve of vegetables and legumes/beans is equal to one serve in the Australian Dietary Guidelines.

Grain (cereal) foods

Offer 2 children’s serves of grain (cereal) foods per child per day.
E.g. for 5 children you need to provide 5 slices of bread AND 150g of pasta to provide enough for each child.

What is 1 children’s serve?5 children10 children20 children30 children40 children50 children60 children
Bread (all types)1 slice (40g)5 slices (¼ loaf)10 slices (½ loaf)20 slices (1 loaf)30 slices (1 ½ loaves)40 slices (2 loaves)50 slices (2½ loaves)60 slices (3 loaves)
Pita bread½ large pocket (40g)2½ pockets (200g)5 pockets (400g)10 pockets (800g)15 pockets (1.2kg)20 pockets (1.6kg)25 pockets (2kg)30 pockets (2.4kg)
Breakfast cereal flakes30g150g300g600g900g1.2kg1.5kg1.8kg
Breakfast cereal (wheat biscuits)2 Weetbix™10 Weetbix™20 Weetbix™40 Weetbix™60 Weetbix™80 Weetbix™100 Weetbix™120 Weetbix™
Bread roll½ medium2½ rolls5 rolls10 rolls15 rolls20 rolls25 rolls30 rolls
Pasta/noodles/rice/cous cous30g dry150g300g600g900g1.2kg1.5kg1.8kg
Flour¼ cup(35g)1¼ cups (175g)2½ cups (350g)5 cups (700g)7½ cups (1.05kg)10 cups (1.4kg)12½ cups (1.75kg)15 cups (2.1kg)
Cracker biscuit/ crisp bread35g175g350g700g1.05kg1.4kg1.75kg2.1kg
Crumpet/ English muffin1 crumpet/ small muffin5102030405060

Milk, yoghurt, cheese and/ or alternatives

Offer 2 children’s serves of milk, yoghurt, cheese or calcium fortified alternatives per child per day.
E.g. for 5 children you need 500mL of milk AND 400g of yoghurt to provide enough for each child.

What is 1 children’s serve?5 children10 children20 children30 children40 children50 children60 children
Milk100mL500mL1L2L3L4L5L6L
Hard cheese15g (1 slice)75g150g300g450g600g750g900g
Yoghurt80g400g800g1.6kg2.4kg3.2kg4kg4.8kg
Custard100mL500mL1L2L3L4L5L6L
Evaporated milk50mL250mL500mL1L1.5L2L2.5L3L
Milk powder15g75g150g300g450g600g750g900g
Ricotta cheese50g250g500g1kg1.5kg2kg2.5kg3kg

One children’s serve of milk, yoghurt, cheese and/or alternatives is equal to just under half a serve in the Australian Dietary Guidelines.

For more information please phone 1300 22 52 88 or email heas@nutritionaustralia.org.au

Except where otherwise indicated, the images in this document show models and illustrative settings only, and do not necessarily depict actual services, facilities or recipients of services. This document may contain images of deceased Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. In this document, ‘Aboriginal’ refers to both Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. ‘Indigenous’ or ‘Koori/Koorie’ is retained when part of the title of a report, program or quotation. Copyright © State of Victoria 2016

Written and reviewed by dietitians and nutritionists at Nutrition Australia, with support from the Victorian Government.

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