June 2022

Food Bank Bites

It's Dairy Month!

Decoding the Milk Aisle

Milk is part of the Dairy food group along with yogurt and cheese. Dairy foods provide calcium, a vital mineral for bone health as well as high quality protein. With so many options in the milk aisle, how do you choose the right one for you?

Conventional Milk

  • Is available as Whole milk, 2%, 1% and skim.
  • Each variety contains the same amount of carbohydrates and natural sugars, with only the fat and calorie content changing.
  • Choose 1% milk more often than whole milk.

Lactose Free Milk

  • Milk that has had the lactose (natural milk sugar) removed, making it easier to digest for those with lactose intolerance.
  • Lactose free milk is also available as whole, 2%, 1% and skim.

A2 Milk

  • This milk is produced by cows that only produce the A2 protein, which some claim is easier to digest.
  • This milk may be right for you if you have trouble digesting conventional milk.

UHT Shelf Stable Milk

  • Shelf stable milk is real milk just like you can buy down the chilled dairy aisle but, its special pasteurization and packaging process gives it a shelf life of several months.
  • Once UHT milk is opened, it has a shelf life of 7-10 days and should be stored in the refrigerator.

Dairy-free Milk Alternatives

  • This is an ever-growing category that includes soy milk, almond milk, cashew milk, coconut milk and more.
  • Unlike dairy milk, these alternatives can have less protein and more sugar. Always compare labels when shopping for non-dairy milks.
  • The most comparable non-dairy milk to conventional dairy is soy milk. Soy milk is comparable in protein content to conventional dairy milk.

Georgia Peach Smoothie

Yields 2 servings


  • ½ cup plain Greek yogurt
  • ¾ cup low-fat milk
  • 2 cups frozen or canned sliced peaches
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


  1. Combine all ingredients in a blender. Blend until smooth.

Recipe courtesy of The Dairy Alliance

Easy Black Bean and Cheese Quesadillas

Yields 4 servings


  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • ½ small onion, diced
  • 1 cup low sodium canned black beans (or any type of bean you have)
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese (or any shredded cheese you have)
  • 4, 8-inch, whole wheat tortillas
  • Cooking spray


  1. Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add oil and sauté onion until tender.
  2. Add beans and heat through, about 2-3 minutes. Transfer mixture to a clean bowl.
  3. To make quesadilla, spray cooking spray on pan. Add one tortilla. Spread with tablespoons cheese and ½ of the bean mixture. Top with extra cheese if you’d like.
  4. Top with the second tortilla. When cheese is melted and bottom of tortilla is golden, flip to other size.  Brown for 1-2 minutes. Remove to plate, cut into wedges, and serve. Repeat with remaining ingredients.


Cooking with Kids: Mac and Cheese Casserole Cups

Yields 6 servings


  • 3 cups low-fat milk
  • 2 ½ tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ cups low-fat shredded Cheddar cheese
  • ¾ cup low fat shredded Mozzarella cheese
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 8 ounces elbow macaroni, cooked


  1. Preheat oven to 350°. In medium saucepan, slowly add 1 cup of milk to flour, stirring constantly until all lumps have dissolved. Add remaining milk, stirring thoroughly. Place on stove and simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until sauce thickens.
  2. Add 1 cup of Cheddar, mozzarella, and Parmesan cheese; stir until blended. Add macaroni, stirring gently to coat well.
  3. Line muffin tin with paper muffin cups and place one scoop of mac and cheese mixture into each muffin cup. Top with reserved 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar. Bake 15 minutes or until golden brown.
  4. Let cool for 5 minutes before serving.

How kids can help!

  • Gather ingredients.
  • Line muffin tins.
  • Scoop macaroni mixture into muffin tins.

Recipe courtesy of The Dairy Alliance.


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