West Michigan chef plans healthy school lunches

West Michigan kids are getting back into the routine of homework, early bedtimes and classes, but sometimes the best taught lessons at school can happen in the cafeteria.

Lunch time can be the perfect opportunity for many teachable moments. Chef Jen Brower with Chartwells Food Services works hard in the garden picking all kinds of fruits and vegetables to inspire lunch menus and healthy eating at schools across West Michigan.

Brower says kids will try anything new as long as you introduce the food with a unique approach.

A connection to food provides hands-on knowledge for what is on their plate. Healthy, garden fresh options don’t seem so gross if you present them with a different spin.

It’s about teaching kids a fun way to expand taste buds and eat different fruits and veggies.

Chef Jen works with schools on new recipes and meal plans packed with proper nutrients. Even trendy lunches come down to the big three: calories, sodium and fat.

Healthy eating habits can become a form of homework too. Parents can use Chef Jen's recipes for dinner since students can bring some key ingredients home.

Lunchtime learning is certainly making a difference with more kids making good food choices.

Over 4,000 USDA approved recipes are given to nearly 170 school districts across West Michigan.

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