Duval County Public School students will have a brand new cafeteria menu next year.
The district held a tasting of the redesigned menu held at Paxon School for Advanced Studies on Friday.
Community member Anjelica Bencomo tried a Sweet Chile Chicken wrap, one of the district's new menu items and said it tasted like “gourmet food.”
The school lunch menu was redesigned by chefs from Chartwells, the district’s food service partner. Training Chef Jarrod McManus was part of the process. He said the new items were developed with students’ taste buds in mind.
But the food also has to be healthy, so after the chefs come up with the dishes, dieticians make sure they meet nutritional guidelines like having enough whole grains and vegetables.
McManus said many of the county’s students are on free and reduced lunch programs, and might not get meals that are both healthy and tasty. He wants to change that.
“We (want to) give them that opportunity to expand their horizons, you know; introduce them to new foods, new techniques, new ways of eating the foods they already like and trying some foods they don’t even know if they do like or not,” McManus said.
The new menu will include things like cinnamon apple grilled cheese sandwiches and a bacon, lettuce and tomato salad.