finding the perfect portion size for kids

How much you feed your kids is as important as what you feed them. Let us help you figure out what's the right amount for your child

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These charts were developed by a nutritionist to clarify portion sizes for kids ages 2-6 and 6-11.

Print the appropriate age group chart and post it on your fridge for an at-a-glance guide to portion sizes and daily recommended servings for your kids.

** Please note that children ages 2-3 require about 2/3 of the amounts listed below.
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Grains

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Kids 4-6: 6 servings daily
Kids 6-11: 5-7 servings daily

Serving suggestions for bread, rice or cereal:

1 slice whole-grain bread = a floppy disk

1/2 cup cooked rice, pasta, or cereal = a computer mouse
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Vegetables

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Kids 4-6: 3 servings daily
Kids 6-11: 4-6 servings daily

Serving suggestions:

1/2 cup raw or cooked vegetables (a variety of colors) = an ice-cream scooper

1 cup leafy vegetables (lettuce, spinach) = a baseball

1/2 cup legumes = a lightbulb

This group includes beans, starches, and legumes.
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Fruits

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Kids 4-6: 2 servings daily
Kids 6-11: 3-4 servings daily

Serving suggestions:

3/4 cup fruit juice = a 6 oz. juice can

1/2 cup fruit (chopped, fresh, or canned)= a woman's fist

This group includes fresh or canned fruits and fresh fruit juices.
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Dairy

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Kids 4-6: 2 servings daily
Kids 6-11: 3 servings daily

Serving suggestions:

1 cup whole milk = an 8 oz. yogurt container (after age 3, skim milk)

1 1/2 oz. sliced cheese (natural) or 2 oz. (processed) = 3 dominoes

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Protein

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Kids 4-6: 2 servings daily
Kids 6-11: 5-6 servings daily

Serving suggestions:

2 tbsp. peanut butter = ping-pong ball

2-3 oz. cooked lean meat or skinless poultry = a deck of cards

2-3 oz. fish = a checkbook

1/2 cup cooked dried beans = lightbulb

1 medium-sized egg
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Lisa Sasson, M.S., R.D., clinical assistant professor, New York University Department of Nutrition, Food Studies, and Public Health
Important Disclaimer: This information is not meant as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always consult a doctor with questions about your or your child's condition. NickJr.com does not recommend or endorse specific tests, products, procedures, opinions, or other information provided by any sponsors or other third parties. Please also see Terms of Use.
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