Scratch Cooking at Randolph High

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School Lunch – from Scratch I can’t wait to taste the food they’ll serve this year! – Bruce Randolph Senior High Student

This summer, Denver Public Schools Food Services kicked off an exciting project they call Back To the Future With Scratch Cooking.

With the help of Slow Food Denver, they launched a 3-week long training program at Denver’s Bruce Randolph school teach food service staff all across the school district how to make school lunches with fresh, local foods in cooking, baking, salad bars and more. Professional chefs volunteered their time to help with the trainings. Food service employees . . . and school students say they’re excited to give the program a try!

Bruce Randolph Principal, Cesar Cedillo, says students wanted healthier, fresher, tastier food than the typical school lunches of warmed up pizza and the same old sandwiches, and he told them to make it happen.


Bruce Randolph Students and food service staff both wanted less prepackaged, highly processed “warm it in the microwave” lunches and more, fresh, tasty, healthy food, “made from scratch.”


Denver Public Schools food service staff learned to make fruit salads with cantaloupe, honeydew, watermelon and blueberries. They even made pretty fruit flowers for the salad.


Some local schools grow garden vegetables for “made-from-scratch” lunches, such as these crisp, fresh green beans.


Bruce Randolph Senior Valentin says that he’s an athlete who wanted healthier and tastier food for school lunch. Valentin joined a student group that worked with school and food service staff to push for healthier, tastier food. During the 3-week “scratch cooking class,” he saw food service staff making marinated chicken, veggie lasagna with sauteed mushrooms, black bean/tortilla casserole, penne pasta, fresh salads and homemade breads. Valentin says this school year, he can’t wait to taste the food!