Why Standardize Your Recipes?
A true standardized recipe is a recipe that has been tried, tested, evaluated and adapted for use by a food service professional. It produces a consistent quality and yield every time when the exact procedures, equipment, and ingredients are used.
To be standardized recipes must include:
- All ingredients in recipe.
- Correct measures and specific weight/measure of each ingredient.
- Serving/portion size(s) for each age/grade group.
- The true yield made by recipe.
- Clear and complete preparations steps/directions.
The best part of standardized recipes is that they can make your job easier!
Product Quality Will be Ensured
- The same amount of product is produced each time the recipe is made.
- The portion size is the same each time.
Costs can be Controlled Easier
- Exact amounts of ingredients are specified, making inventory easier.
- Storage and purchasing can better be managed.
Better Menu Planning
- The yield is predictable allowing for better forecasting.
- Helps eliminate unexpected leftovers or shortages due to accurate portion sizes.
- When food taste and quality are consistent, children are happier with knowing what to expect.
Recipes that have been created and standardized by others, such as the USDA recipes, can be used, but all changes, including the addition or elimination of ingredients, need to be noted on the recipe so recipe results and portions are standardized.
Don’t Forget Annual Recipe Reviews!
Each year before menu planning, review recipes to see if product changes have been made so that proper updates can be made and possibly even re-testing.
As a reviewer, I frequently see a product listed in the recipe that does not match the label provided. If the product credits differently, even slightly, it could mean the difference of not meeting one of the meal pattern requirements.
Another area to look out for is the age of the recipe. I see schools submitting 5-year-old USDA recipes that used to meet the grain requirements when they were based off of the enriched amounts. With whole grains now being required, ingredient weights for grains need to be reviewed and adjusted to ensure they are still providing the same amount of ounce equivalents stated.
Using Health-e Pro to plan and prepare your recipes makes it easy to have all of your documentation in one place. Swapping out ingredients, and making adjustments to ingredient amounts are done with ease providing a powerhouse of information at your fingertips.
Health-e Pro and standardizing your recipes makes meeting USDA requirements Simple!