Serving Size and Proportions

One portion is the equivalent of a medium-sized fruit such as an apple, a banana, 2 clementines, a handful of blueberries, half a cup of vegetables or a cup of lettuce. However, these amounts should be adjusted at each meal according to the child’s age and appetite.   

More serving size examples:  

  • 125 mL (1/2 cup) fresh, frozen, canned vegetables or tomato sauce 
  • 125 mL (1/2 cup) berries 
  • 250 mL (1 cup) leafy greens or lettuce 


Use the child’s hand as a guide. The size of his or her fist corresponds to one serving of fruit or vegetables.(1) 

In the latest version of Canada’s Food Guide(2), portions are replaced by proportions. On your child’s plate, the recommended distribution of foods is as follows: make half the plate vegetables and fruits, one-quarter filled with grain products and one-quarter protein foods.  

There is no tool that can accurately predict the portion your child should eat. Dietitians say listening to your child is the best guide. Each child is unique, and the portion size may vary from meal to meal depending on hunger, activity, and mood.  

(1) UnlockFood. Dietitian of Canada. Size up your food portions.

(2)  Canada’s Food Guide.