Special Dietary Needs

The Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) provides resources for School Food Authorities to help meet the special dietary needs of infants and children and maintain records to document compliance with meal requirements. Several federal regulations and state statutes apply to accommodating students with special dietary needs.

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) memos contain additional information on special dietary needs.


Forms and Templates


  • Special Diet Guidebook  - 9/19/19
    This guidebook provides a summary of special diet requirements to help sponsors and providers understand when and what type of accommodations they can/must provide for participants who request a special diet. It also includes many key resources, including the special diet request form, a list of approved fluid milk substitutes, a summary chart of allowable beverage options for each Child Nutrition program.
  • 8/26/19
    This document includes multiple resources designed to assist schools in meeting the needs of their students who require accommodations for food allergies.
  • Fluid Milk Substitutions in the Child Nutrition Programs  - 10/25/18
    Non-dairy beverages that meet USDA's fluid milk substitution criteria.