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How Big Is a Serving?

Many people have trouble knowing the quantity of food to eat in order to stay healthy. MyPyramid shows you how many servings you need from each food group to maintain a healthy diet. But what, exactly, is a serving? A serving is a specific size that can help you build a healthy meal. For example, a single serving of chopped vegetables, like carrots and lettuce, is one cup. This guide will help you know how much to put on your plate so that you can eat your way to good health!


One serving of fruit equals:
  • 1 medium apple, banana, peach, orange, or other fresh fruit
  • 3/4 cup (6 ounces) of pure fruit juice
  • 1/2 cup of berries
  • 1/4 cup of dried fruit back to top
One serving of grain equals:
  • one slice of bread
  • half a bagel, pita, or English muffin
  • one 6-inch tortilla
  • 1/2 cup of cooked rice, pasta, oatmeal, or other grains
  • 1 cup of ready-to-eat cereal back to top
One serving of vegetables equals:
  • 1/2 cup cooked or chopped, raw, nonleafy vegetables such as green beans, broccoli, carrots, peppers, asparagus, squash, or corn
  • 1 cup chopped, raw leafy vegetables like lettuce, spinach, kale, or other greens
  • 1 cup of vegetable juice
  • 1 small baked potato back to top
One serving of protein equals:
  • 2 to 3 ounces of lean meat, poultry, or fish (3 ounces is about the size of a deck of playing cards)
  • 1 cup of tofu
  • 2 soy burgers
  • 1 cup of cooked dried beans or peas
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup of tuna
  • 2 slices of sandwich meat
  • 4 tablespoons of fresh, ground peanut butter back to top
One serving of dairy equals:
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) of milk, yogurt, or frozen yogurt
  • 1/2 ounce of cheese (a portion about the size of your thumb)
  • 1 1/2 cups of ice cream back to top
Last Modified Date: 11/6/2000