Boulder, Colo.-based Chef Ann Foundation (CAF) announced the release of 12 yogurt-based school food recipes in partnership with Danone North America, based in Broomfield, Colo., and White Plains, N.Y. The recipes come out of last fall's Real School Food Recipe Contest.

School districts across the country were challenged to find creative new ways to use bulk yogurt, thinking outside of smoothies and parfaits, CAF said. Together, CAF and Danone North America selected 12 final winning recipes, ranging from breakfast pizza and cheddar soup to chicken salad and turkey stew.

A versatile ingredient, yogurt is packed with key nutrients to keep students going throughout their busy day and can be used as a healthy replacement to foods such as cream cheese, mayonnaise and sour cream. In April 1997, the USDA approved yogurt as a meat alternate in school meals (4 ounces of yogurt equals one meat alternate serving). As vegetarian diets grow in popularity, yogurt can add quality protein to many school food staples, CAF noted.

The 12 final winning recipes are:

  • Broccoli cheddar soup — Trumansburg Central School District, Trumansburg, N.Y.
  • Chicken salad with fruit — Evansville Vanderburg School Corp., Evansville, Ind.
  • Curry turkey stew — Cherry Creek School District, Denver, Colo.
  • Maple peach muffin — Addison Central School District, Shoreham, Vt.
  • Potatoes au gratin — Cherry Creek School District, Denver, Colo.
  • Pineapple chia pudding — Evanston Township High School, Evanston, Ill.
  • Summer squash lasagna — Apalachee High School, Winder, Ga.
  • Veggie wrap — South Bend Community School, South Bend, Ind.
  • Vegilicious pasta salad — Williamsville Central School District, Amherst, N.Y.
  • Very berry yogurt pizza — Coppell Independent School District, Coppell, Texas.
  • Whey good white pizza — Darien Public Schools, Darien, Conn.
  • Yogurt chia composite — Brunswick Central School District, Troy, N.Y.

Each winning recipe was tested in a school production kitchen, taste-tested by students and is currently featured on All recipes are complete with nutritional analysis, cost evaluation and USDA meal compliance.

The prize for each winning school is seven professional development course scholarships to the School Food Institute, CAF's online learning platform. Courses available to contest winners include School Food 101, Plant Forward and Sustainable Lunchrooms, CAF said. These online courses leverage Chef Ann's extensive experience in transitioning school food programs to cook from scratch, serving whole fresh, healthy food to kids.