Assess a long day care menu


How to:


Use FoodChecker to plan healthy menus according to the Victorian Menu planning guidelines for long day care. You can review one week or one day of your menu at a time.

After entering all of the foods and drinks that you provide, you will get instant results on screen, and a PDF report to download and save. Your report will contain feedback on where your menu is doing well, and provides recommendations for healthy changes.

We recommend that you learn more about the  Victorian Menu planning guidelines for long day care before using FoodChecker. We have provided a brief summary below.

About the Menu planning guidelines for long day care.

In general, the Menu planning guidelines for long day care recommend:

  • the types of food that should be on a long day care menu, and the amounts
  • the types of foods and drinks that should not be on a long day care menu
  • limits on added fats, sugar and salt


The guidelines also include advice on:

  • how to include enough food variety
  • how to adapt the menu to meet the cultural and religious needs of each child
  • tips for meal planning for babies under 12 months.

You can learn more about the Victorian Menu planning guidelines for long day care here.

 

What to enter in a FoodChecker long day care menu assessment

Meal time

What to include

Breakfast

INCLUDE all foods and drinks that you provide at breakfast time. 

Morning tea
+
Lunch
+
Afternoon tea

INCLUDE all foods that you provide at morning tea, lunch, and afternoon tea.

DO NOT INCLUDE any drinks that you serve at morning tea, lunch or afternoon tea.
Enter these in the ‘Drinks’ category instead.

Late snack

INCLUDE all foods and drinks that you provide as a late snack.

Drinks

INCLUDE all drinks that you provide with morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea.

 

Instructions

Before you begin an assessment, we suggest you have the following information on hand:

  • Every recipe, food and drink provided on the menu, including each ingredient, and exact quantities. We recommend measuring weight in grams or kilograms, and measuring volume in teaspoon, tablespoon, millilitres or litres). 


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Start new assessment

  1. Sign in
  2. Click START NEW ASSESSMENT .
  3. Select “Assess one week”, or “Assess one day”.
  4. Enter a name for the menu (eg, “Summer Week 1”), and enter the number of children the menu caters for each day, then click START ASSESSMENT.
  1. Click ADD ITEM.
  2. Select the time of day it appears on the menu. A pop up box will appear.
  3. Enter the recipe or item name, such as “chicken stir fry” or “apple slices”.
    (If asked, select which “Day of the week” it appears on the menu)
    NOTE: If your main lunch meal is vegetarian, you must select “Yes” when asked.
    NOTE: If your morning or afternoon tea is a baked item, you must select “Yes” when asked.
  4. Start typing the first ingredient. A list of matching options will appear. Click on the option that best matches your ingredient. You can type a little or lot of the name. For example, “chick”, “chicken”, “thigh” or “chicken thigh”. 
    NOTE: use generic item names only, not brand names. Eg, enter “wholemeal bread”, not “Tip Top wholemeal bread”. 
  5. Enter the amount and unit of measurement.
    For example for 500g type “500”, then select “Grams” from the list. For 6 apples type “6”, then select “Whole” from the list.
  6. To add another ingredient, click ADD MORE INGREDIENTS and repeat the steps above.
    NOTE: Include all condiments, seasoning or finishes used in the recipe, including salt, sugar and oils/butter.
    TIP: Click SAVE TO RECIPE BANK to store this recipe/item for future menus.
  7. Once you have entered all the ingredients, click ADD TO YOUR MEALS.

To add a saved recipe or common recipe

  1. Click COMMON RECIPES or MY RECIPE BANK.
  2. Search the list for the recipe you want, click ADD TO MENU.
  3. A pop up box with the recipe will appear. You can edit the name, day, mealtime, ingredients and quantities.
  4. Click ADD TO YOUR MEALS when finished.

To finish assessment

  1. Continue adding foods and drinks until your menu is complete, then click SUBMIT FOR ASSESSMENT. 
  2. Answer a few more questions on the next page and click FINISH ASSESSMENT.
  3. Your assessment report will appear on screen. 
  4. Click SAVE ASSESSMENT AS PDF to save a copy of this report, click save menu or save shopping list.