Meal Requirements

Meal Times and Places

To be reimbursed, meals must be served at the approved site (your home) and during the hours and days agreed upon in the program application.

Breakfast (6:30 a.m.- 9:30 a.m.)
Morning Snack (9:30 a.m.- 11:00 a.m.)
Lunch (11:00 a.m.- 1:30 p.m.)
Afternoon Snack (2:00 p.m.- 4:30 p.m.)
Dinner (4:30 p.m.- 7:00 p.m.)
Evening Snack (7:00 p.m.- 9:00 p.m.)

At least two hours must lapse between beginning times of meals or snacks for the same group of children.  The meal times are USOE recommendations; a meal must occur during the time traditionally considered as normal for the meal.

Child eating strawberries

Meals Allowed

Each child in your care is eligible to be reimbursed for up to three meal services.  One of these three meals must be a snack.  You will only be reimbursed for three meal services, BUT you can claim all meals you serve to the children in your care.  The computer will only allow you to be reimbursed for three meal services in one day, all other meals will be disallowed, but will be on your tax report at the end of the year.

School age children (first grade and up) can not be claimed during regular school time.  If your child is home sick, there is no school, or there is a holiday, indicate this information on your Child Information Form (CIF) for that day if you are using the scannable forms, or if you are claiming  on-line you can put this information on the child’s master calendar or when you are claiming the meal under the enter meal feature in  Make sure you check school out or home sick.

All meals must meet USDA requirements.  If you serve a meal that does not meet all the requirements, do not claim that meal, this includes restaurant, fast food, pizza take out, etc.

Infant Meal Pattern Requirements (1-12 years old)

CACFP Meal Pattern Requirements (1-12 years old)


Meal Pattern Requirements

Nutrient Criteria for Milk Substitutes 

(Minimum Required Nutrients)

Values must be met or exceeded

Per 1 Cup Serving Size

Nutrients Nutrient Values Daily Values % Daily Values
Calcium 276 mg 1000 mg 30% DV
Protein 8 g 50 g 8 g
Vitamin A 500 IU 5000 IU 10% DV
Vitamin D 100 IU 400 IU 25% DV
Magnesium 24 mg 400 mg 6% DV
Phosphorus 222 mg 1000 mg 20% DV
Potassium 349 mg 3500 mg 350 mg or 10% DV
Riboflavin 0.44 mg 1.7 mg 25% DV
Vitamin B 12 1.1 mcg 6 mcg 20% DV