Making Michigan Recipes Work

December 19, 2016

In partnership with Cultivate MichiganMichigan State University Extension produced a set of resources that assist school food service professionals in handling and preparing Michigan produce in school meals.

Access a variety of guides, recipes, and videos that will better equip school food professionals on how to use Michigan produce.

Below you will find a brief description of the resources available on Cultivate Michigan's website.

Go to resources


Making Michigan Recipes Work: From Menu to Tray

This guide covers how to substitute Michigan produce into institutional recipes and ideas for where Michigan produce can be included in institutional menus. For schools, the guide shares which Michigan produce items qualify for the required vegetable subgroups. It also contains an extensive list of Michigan produce items, detailing the child nutrition serving sizes that you can expect to get from various packaging options, including those typical to farm specific packaging, like bushels.

Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for Michigan Procedures

This fact sheet will assist in writing SOPs for receiving and using farm fresh produce by highlighting practices and considerations that will ensure you are receiving fresh and safe produce.


This short guide demonstrates the long-lasting seasonality of most Michigan produce items, differentiating between field fresh, season extension and storage availability.

Storing Farm Fresh Produce

This fact sheet shares the best practices for storing Michigan produce and presents a visual of where different produce items should be located in your cooler. It also lists appropriate storage temperatures for produce items that should not be refrigerated.

Culinary Terms

This fact sheet shares a selection of culinary terms that food service professionals will encounter in scratch recipes when preparing Michigan produce.

Knife Skills

This fact sheet shares best practices for safely and properly handling and using knives in the kitchen. These skills are essential for developing or expanding a scratch cooking meal program.

Washing Techniques

This fact sheet shares the best practices and special considerations for washing Michigan produce, particularly those products that may be coming directly from a farm. This is an important consideration because farm direct products may have gone through a different cleaning and preparation process than the products that are sourced from a distributor.

Produce Yield Maximization

This fact sheet shares ideas about how to use as much as possible of Michigan produce items. This can assist institutional food programs with stretching the cost of purchasing Michigan produce by using parts of the plant that may not be available when purchasing pre-processed produce, or if purchasing from a farm is more costly.

Getting Creative with Culinary Techniques

This short guide highlights a number of different culinary techniques to prepare Michigan produce. It shares recipes for spice blends that can be added to Michigan vegetables to increase flavor without adding sodium. The guide also describes a few pieces of kitchen equipment that can be helpful in beginning or expanding a scratch cooking meal program.


Find and use recipes featuring Michigan produce that kids will love, including:

  • Michigan Fruit & Veggie Dip
  • Michigan Salad
  • Purple Monster Smoothie
  • Roasted Fall & Winter Vegetable Medley
  • Stoplight Pepper & Bean Soup
  • Fruit & Yogurt Parfait


This series of videos demonstrates cooking techniques, Michigan specific recipes and knife skills for people looking to learn more.

Videos include:

  • Introduction
  • Why Michigan Recipes?
  • Handling Fresh Produce from the Farm
  • Basic Knife Skills and Mirepoix
  • Making Vertical Veggies Using Your Sectionizer
  • Michigan Fruit & Veggie Dip
  • Michigan Salad
  • Roasting Veggies - Fall and Winter Crops
  • Stoplight Pepper & Bean Soup
  • Fruit & Yogurt Parfait

Go to resources

Tags: center for regional food systems, michigan farm to ece, michigan farm to institution network, michigan farm to school

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