The largest school system in the nation has made changes to its meal plan for all New York City public school students, including meatless Mondays and vegan Fridays.
The largest school system in the nation has made changes to its meal plan for all New York City public school students to stay on par with Mayor Eric Adams’ effort to serve healthier food in city schools. Mondays and Fridays will be meatless. While public schools will serve all-vegetarian breakfast and lunch menus every Monday, Fridays will be vegan.
“We offer spotlight plant-based meals on Friday,” a spokesperson for the city Department of Education said. Vegan Fridays were implemented in the spring and will continue for the 2022-2023 school year. Though the focus is on vegan meals, there also will be vegetarian options served on Friday.
The dietary practice, which exempts meat and dairy, will replace staples like mozzarella sticks and mac and cheese with plantains, rice bowls, Mediterranean chickpeas and other plant-based dishes, according to the DOE.
Students attending school in person will be offered free breakfast and lunch daily in school. Halal and Kosher meal services will be offered upon request. According to the DOE website, all menus are pork-free. Also, no fried food is served in school meals, and no meals have artificial flavors, colors or sweeteners in them.
The breakfast menu and lunch menu are posted on the DOE’s website, but are subject to change.
Vegan options available this year include:
- Black Bean and Plantain Power Bowl with Vegetable Rice and Pico de Gallo
- Green Garden Salad
- Italian Green Beans
- Veggie Burger
- Salad Bar Fresh Marinated Vegetable Salad
- Sweet Potato Waffle Fries
- Crispy Tortillas served with Salsa
- Three Bean Chili served with Rice
- Veggie Nuggets
Vegetarian options include:
- French Bread Pizza
- Buttermilk Biscuit
- Garlic Knots
- Roasted Chickpeas With Basil Pesto
- Mozzarella Sticks
- Southwest Burrito
- Homemade Grilled Cheese
- Classic Cheese Pizza
- Salad Bar Caesar Salad
- Cheese Sandwich
- Hummus Grab & Go