When you think of cafeteria food, usually you don't think of baked ziti, sweet potato fries or blueberry pancakes.
But at Duval County Public Schools, those are just three of the several options students will see.
DCPS and Chartwells gave First Coast News an inside peek at some of the food students will be seeing this year. Dining director, Nelson Toro, says they really focused on making the food look good and giving students plenty of options. Something they heard frequently from students was that they wanted more ethnic foods and flavors.
"We have some Asian here, we have Italian and we have Mexican food. We also have American food like cheeseburgers, pizzas, chicken patties and things like that. We have Latin foods like rice and beans, so we got different countries from everywhere and we try to keep it diverse here in Jacksonville," Toro said.
Elementary schools will typically get two different options, while high schools could get up to seven different meal options. But the big question is how do they make food look good and actually taste good while following the guidelines that reduce fats and sugars?
"Creatively, with our chefs and culinary folks we like to try different herbs and seasonings and make sure those foods don't lose so much flavor that kids aren't willing to try them," said Brian Giles, Vice President of Operations for Chartwells.
Something else high school students should keep an eye out for are the "Brainfood" food trucks. One has Latin food and the other has more American food. The trucks will be rotating schools everyday to give kids an extra option. The design on the outside of the truck is actually from a Douglas Anderson student.
For more on what goes into DCPS lunches visit: http://www.duvalschools.org/domain/4422
From First Coast News