Serving Sizes

Serving Sizes

A Food Guide Serving is simply a reference amount to help you understand how much food is recommended from each of the food groups.  Serving sizes also appear on nutritional labels of food.  We often serve ourselves far more than the serving size.

Here are some guideline serving sizes.

Fruit and Vegetables – 1 serving:

½ cup (125ml) of fresh, frozen or canned

1 (250ml) cup leafy greens or salad

1 piece of fruit

Grains – 1 serving:

1 slice of bread (35g) or ½ bagel (45g)

½ pitta or ½ tortilla (35g)

½ cup (125g) cooked rice, cous cous, pasta

¾ cup (175ml) oatmeal

Milk and alternatives – 1 serving:

1 cup (250ml) milk or soy milk

¾ cup (175ml) yoghurt

1½oz (50g) cheese

Meat and alternatives – 1 serving:

2½oz (75g) cooked fish, poultry, lean meat, shellfish

¾ cup (175ml) beans

2 eggs

2 tbsp (30ml) peanut butter

There are some useful serving size visualisations:

  • a serving of vegetables of fruit is about the size of your fist
  • 1 thumb length is about one serving of cheese
  • a serving of meat, fish or poultry should be the size of a deck of cards or the palm of your hand
  • a golf ball is about 1/4 cup of dried fruit or nuts
  • a tennis ball measures about 1/2 cup of food
  • tip of your thumb equals about 1 teaspoon of peanut butter