Current Projects

Montana Team Nutrition Annual Report

This pdf report includes a summary of current Montana Team Nutrition projects and outreach outcomes for FY2020. 

Harvesting Montana Recipes Project


Montana Team Nutrition hosted a statewide recipe contest, Harvesting Montana Recipes, to collect recipes featuring local and indigenous Montana ingredients. These ingredients included barley, beets, bison, chokecherries, sweet cherries, lentils, and winter squash. Six winning recipes were selected.  Students and school staff are actively engaged in the recipe development and testing through a sub-grant program to support  nutrition education, student taste-testing, and meal service.  Once the winning recipes have been verified and standardized, these Montana recipes will be featured at the state and national level for other schools to serve and enjoy.

Please note that the success story links on this page lead to accessible pdfs. 

Harvesting Montana Recipes Success Stories 

Knowledge Increase about HOM foods

Harvesting Montana Recipes Project Expands Student Minds and Taste Buds  

The Harvesting Montana Recipes Project wraps up with all 6 test schools completing the Nutrition Education and School Meal Service phase. Read this success story to learn about the impact of this project on students knowledge of local foods and willingness to try new foods. 

Lentil Hummus

Somers Middle School Prepared Montana Lentils 

Somers school nutrition staff prepared a delicious meal featuring Luscious Lentil Hummus for the middle school students in March of 2022.

Bison lentil chili

Gardiner School Features Montana Bison 

Gardiner school nutrition staff highlighted some of Montana’s best with their special lunch featuring local Montana bison and lentils on March 8, 2022. 

Cherry Berry Sunrise

Monforton School Serves Montana Cherries

Monforton school nutrition staff highlighted some of Montana’s local charms in a special meal featuring Sweet Cherry and Chocolate Overnight Oats in December of 2021. 

Staff from Gardiner

Montana Schools Roll Out Local Recipes with Local Flair

The Harvesting Montana Recipes Project continues with recipes being served at Monforton, Gardiner, and Somers School Districts. 

Photo of student with lunch tray

Belfry School Serves Montana Grown Sweet Cherry and Beet Recipes

Belfry celebrates Veteran's Day with a special holiday meal featuring local Montana recipes.

Photo of lunch tray

Philipsburg School District's Taste of Montana Meal

Learn more about the Taste of Montana Meal that Philipsburg served in December 2021!

Girl with Bison HOM materials

Story Creek Elementary Serves Montana Bison and Barley Soup

Belgrade school nutrition staff served up a local meal featuring the new Montana Harvest of the Month food: bison! 

Bowl of mixed beets

Local Montana Recipes Served with a Smile in School Lunch Meals 

Three Harvesting Montana Recipes were served in school lunch meal events! 


Montana Cook Fresh Initiative Project


The Montana Cook Fresh Initiative is a comprehensive (one-year) training program to help schools serve high-quality meals through cooking from scratch that appeal to Montana students. This program builds the knowledge, skills, and self-efficacy of all school food service staff from management to front line staff through professional development and technical assistance. 

Montana Cook Fresh Success Stories

Montana Meal

The Montana Cook Fresh Initiative Leads to Increases in Scratch Cooking

Learn about the evaluation outcomes from the Montana Cook Fresh Initiative.

Preview of Roadmap

The Roadmap to Building Quality School Meals 

Learn more about this new resource for quality school meals, including the Roadmap Pilot Project! 

Person with Bakers Rack

Mini Grants Awarded to Nine Montana Schools

Learn more about how these funds supported schools in purchasing equipment and training for quality school meals. 

Cook Fresh Group Photo

2021 Montana Cook Fresh Leadership Institute 

Learn more about the hybrid culinary and school nutrition management training.

Photo of whole grain dinner rolls

Cooking Up Comfort With Whole Grains 

Learn more about our virtual whole-grain baking workshop.

Picture of roasted chickpeas

On Demand School Nutrition Culinary Training 

Learn more about our on demand culinary videos focused onusing legumes and wholegrains in school meals.

Group photo of Libby team

Virtual School Nutrition Leadership Institute 

Learn more about the virtual 2020 Montana Cook Fresh Leadership Institute

Montana Farm to School


Farm to school enriches the connection communities have with fresh, healthy food and local food producers by changing food purchasing and education practices at schools and preschools. Students gain access to healthy, local foods as well as education opportunities such as school gardens, cooking lessons and farm field trips. Farm to school empowers children and their families to make informed food choices while strengthening the local economy and contributing to vibrant communities. Farm to school implementation differs by location but always includes one or more of the following core elements:  Procurement, Education, and School Gardens.

Montana Farm to School Stories

Visit the Montana Farm to School Stories page to to learn about Farm to School projects around the state!