Delicious homecooked food has always been a key part of NCN’s ethos. Back when the company first started, we had a key focus on our menu and trying to make it diverse and tasty. We have always used wholegrain and organic food and have tried hard to consider the nutritional content of each meal. Our cooks work closely with families to support dietary and allergy needs. However, in 2021 we have decided that we need to do more! We need to take into account the bigger sustainability picture and design our menus with both the child’s and planet’s health in mind. Everyone needs to take a considered approach to what they eat and to understand the environmental impact that the food they eat has on the sustainability of the planet. After lots of research (see our Sustainable Food web page), we are gradually (over a 6 month period) moving our menus to be inline with the Planetary Health Diet. (the Diagram below shows the breakdown of food stuffs that should be consumed to meet the Planetary Health Diet guidelines)
A diet which is predominately plant based can still be tasty and healthy, but also sustainable. We are not a Vegan nursery, but we do think very carefully about our menu design to ensure it meets the needs of your family, and the Planet. With the diet predominately plant-based we replace meat-based proteins with tasty vegetable selections or plant-based proteins. Rest assured, your child can have familiar favourites (just made with different ingredients) or explore new exciting tastes and textures. The children at our nurseries eat delicious home cooked food from tried and tested recipes. We are proud of the fantastic food served and make sure the children enjoy what we serve them. Below we share examples of our proposed future 3 week Autumn/Winter Menu (which will only be finalised following consultations with a nutritionist, once we are confident the children love all the recipes and the cooks know the ingredients work well together)
Typical weekly Menus
Babies under 1 years old
Weaning at NCN is very much a parent led approach. We work with you to understand the new foods you are introducing for your child and the timescale of any changes.
We follow NHS and Health Visitor guidance to introduce solid food when your baby is 6 months old. It is parents choice for their baby to be fed pureed food or ‘baby led’ (offering soft finger food that your baby can hold in their fist, explore and chew) Our cooks aim to provide all the nutrients required, including a good source of iron, which is important in first foods.
The full menu can be made available to your baby whatever approach they are weaning, for example a cauliflower and broccoli cheese bake can be offered deconstructed as finger foods or blended into a puree.
Our practitioners continue to offer your babies usual formula milk until they are ready to drop their feeds at a time suitable to them.