2020 4-H Food Festival

Location: Lewis Vincent Elementary
Date: January 23, 2020
Registration: 5:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Judging: 6:00 p.m.
Special Program/Activities: 6:00 p.m.

General Rules:

  • Each 4-H member may enter only one (1) dish in each contest. (Example: 1 Seafood, 1 Egg, 1 Beef, & 1 Poultry.)
  • Members may submit one serving of their dish for judging. However, the whole dish may also be entered.
  • Parish winners will go on to area competition. No one except contest officials will be allowed in contest area while judging is in progress.
  • All dishes must be prepared at home and brought to the contest ready for the judges to taste. Microwaves will be available for judges to reheat if necessary.
  • All contestants must have 2 copies of their recipes (use the form provided below); one with name and one without name.
  • Recipe must include an estimate of calories per serving and cost per serving. Calories per serving should be 500 calories or less.
  • Please follow the food safety guidelines as listed in this packet. Dishes will be disqualified if they do not arrive at the contest completely cold and packed in ice or an insulated ice chest. This is necessary for food safety.
  • Special note about food transport items such as ice chests: Insulated pharmaceutical and floral boxes, etc. are not considered acceptable for transportation of food. Any insulated container not designed to transport food for human consumption will be disqualified.
  • Anything used to enhance the appearance of the dish must be in or on the serving container. Example of items not allowed: placemats, flowers and table arrangements, figurines, etc.
  • Follow the guidelines for the correct recipe format.
  • The highest scoring dish in each division exhibited by a Livingston Parish 4-H member will compete in the Area Cookery Contest in the spring.

Dietary Guidelines:

Care should be taken that added ingredients and preparation methods do not contribute excessive amounts of fat and sodium. Consider the nutritional aspects of all the ingredients in your recipe. Explain in your recipe any changes you make in your ingredients of preparation methods to modify fat or sodium.

Tips you might try to lower fat:

Make lower fat food or ingredient choices. For example, you might:

  • Choose low-fat or skim milk instead of whole milk.
  • Choose low-fat or nonfat yogurt instead of regular yogurt or sour cream.
  • Choose reduced calorie margarine instead of butter or regular margarine.
  • Choose oil instead of solid shortening.
  • Choose lean ground beef instead of regular ground beef.
  • Choose reduced calorie mayonnaise instead of regular mayonnaise.
  • Reduce the oil in recipes. Start by reducing it by 1/4. For example, if the recipe calls for 1 cup of oil, use 3/4 cup.
  • Frying adds extra fat. It is best to choose another method of preparation such as baking, broiling, grilling or steaming.

Tips you might try to lower sodium:

  • Salt is our major source of sodium which is needed for healthy bodies. Too much salt can be harmful. Salt in recipes can be reduced by one-half without affecting the taste. Try reducing the salt in your recipe.
  • Canned vegetables and soups are high in sodium. Choose canned soups labeled “1/3 less salt” or “no salt added.” Choose fresh or frozen vegetables or canned vegetables with reduced salt or sodium.

Food Safety:

Food safety is an important consideration. The risk of food-borne illness greatly increases when foods are held at room temperature for extended periods. Therefore, the dish should be prepared and chilled in the refrigerator temperature and transported on ice in an ice chest to the contest. Dishes Not Chilled and Transported In This Way Will Be Disqualified By Contest Officials. Entries that need to be heated to taste their best will be heated at the time of judging.

Recipe Format:

Be sure your recipe is written correctly. The recipe should include the following parts:

  • Name of recipe given
  • Ingredients listed in order used in instructions – No brand names used
  • Clear instruction for combining ingredients given
  • Size of pan stated
  • Temperature and cooking time stated
  • Number of servings given
  • Dish meets contest and division requirements

*Special recipe format requirements for contestants entering one of the Beef Cookery Contest. In the Beef Cookery Contest, each category requires special items listed on the recipe, i.e. Low-Calorie Main Dish requires special items listed for each ingredient and calories per serving listed.

Place your name, grade and school on back of your recipe form.

Scoring Factors: (100 points total)

  • Recipe – 20 points (Recipe form is on back page)
    • Does the recipe state the name of the dish?
    • Does the recipe meet the contest and division requirements?
    • Does the recipe contain clear instructions
  • Taste – 50 points
    • Does the finished dish have flavor that appeals to most people?
    • Do the flavors blend together?
  • Appearance – 15 points
    • Does the finished dish look appetizing?
    • Garnishes and accompaniments will not be considered in scoring.
  • Ease of Preparation – 15 points
    • Procedure is relatively uncomplicated.

Place your name, grade, and school on back of your recipe.

Egg Cookery Contest:


  • Appetizer/Salad
  • Main Dish
  • Dessert

Ideas for Egg Division entries:

  • Appetizers – egg dip, deviled eggs, bacon stuffed eggs, egg ball.
  • Salad – seafood salad, meat salad, chef salad, potato salad, egg salad, macaroni salad.
  • Main Dishes – casseroles, eggs and meat, eggs and seafood, eggs and cheese, omelet, quiche.
  • Desserts – cakes, custards, tarts, ice cream, bread pudding, pie.

General Requirements:

Each dish must contain a minimum of four (4) eggs. This can be four egg whites, four egg yolks, four whole eggs, or any combination, as long as four (4) eggs are broken. The recipe with four eggs must make only one standard size dish. For example, a recipe with four eggs that makes two pies of standard size will not qualify. No raw eggs will be allowed in the final product. The recipe should include an estimate of calories per serving and cost per serving.

Poultry Cookery Contest:

Categories/General Requirements:

  • Chicken – a dish which contains a minimum of two pounds bone-in chicken or one pound de-boned chicken meat. Chicken includes any of the following: fryer, capon, roaster, broiler, baking hen, or Cornish hen.
  • Process Poultry Products – a dish which includes a minimum of 12 oz. of processed poultry products. Examples include: ground turkey, turkey bacon, turkey sausage, smoked turkey, turkey ham, turkey rolls, ground chicken, chicken nugget, chicken franks, smoked chicken, chicken strips, and canned chicken. All dishes containing any turkey item, (whole, part or processed) should be entered in this division.
  • Other Poultry Meats – a dish which contains a minimum of 2 pounds bone-in or 1 pound de-boned poultry meat from a bird other than chicken or turkeys. You may choose poultry meat from any of the following: duck, quail, pheasant, pigeon, guinea, goose, grouse, ostrich, emu or dove.
  • The recipe should include an estimate of calories per serving and cost per serving.

Seafood Cookery Contest:


  • Oyster
  • Crab
  • Shrimp
  • Fish or Other Seafood
  • Crawfish

General Requirements:

  • Bring a prepared seafood dish to the contest. The dish must use at least one (1) cup of seafood. The seafood must be fresh, frozen, pasteurized or dried. Canned seafood is not acceptable. Surimi, an artificial crab made from fish, cannot be used. There can be no raw seafood in the final dish. Entries in divisions 1 and 5 may contain a small amount of a second seafood but not more than ½ of the amount of the primary seafood. For example, a recipe could contain one cup of crab as the primary seafood and ½ cup of shrimp as the secondary seafood. All seafood used in the contest must be listed on the attached Louisiana Seafood List.
  • The recipe should include an estimate of calories per serving and cost per serving.

Beef Cookery Contest:


  • Low-Calorie Main Dish – a dish which provides less than 300 calories per serving. Calculation of calories must be stated on recipe. Use “Calories and Weight, the USDA Pocket Guide”. Calculate also the number of calories per serving. Use 1000 calories per pound of beef if raw beef is used. Use 850 calories per pound if beef is browned and drained before adding to dish.
  • Quick and Easy Main Dish – a dish that is ready to serve in less than one hour. Simplicity of steps is very important. The time for each step and for cooking or baking must be stated on recipe.
  • One-Dish Meal – a dish that provides foods from at least three of the main food groups from “My Pyramid”. Foods and food groups will be stated on recipe.

General Requirements:

  • Bring to the contest a prepared ground meat dish. A minimum of one pound of ground beef must be used.
  • The recipe should include an estimate of calories per serving and cost per serving.

Sugar Cookery Contest:


  • Cakes
  • Candy
  • Cookies
  • Pies

General Requirements:

  • Bring a prepared sugar dish o the contest. The dish must use at least one-half (1/2) cup of sugar. The sugar used in the recipe may be granulated sugar, brown (light or dark) sugar, powdered sugar, or any combination of he above. Mixes are permitted as long as 1/2 cup of additional sugar is added to the recipe.

Healthy Boxed Lunch or "Bento" Contest:

A bento lunch is a compact, balanced, visually appealing meal packed in a box. "Bento" is Japanese for packed lunch or meal. Each competitor will create a lunch to be eaten at school by a student age 9 to 12. the beverage to accompany the meal will be water and does not need to be included.

General Requirements:

  • Bring a prepared Bento lunch to the contest. It should be representative of "MyPlate" recommendations.
  • Each competitior will transport their Bento lunch to the contest packed in a portable, lock-top, and leak proof container, chilled and on ice. The food should be exhibited in a disposable serving container, not to exceed 18". To allow adequate space for all entries you will be asked to remove items not directly related to the dish. Non-edible items are not to be used as garnish. No serving utensils will be allowed.

“Just For Fun” Categories:

  • There will be no area or state competition for the “Just for Fun” categories.


My Favorite Dish

  • Dessert
  • Game
  • Other

Recipe Evaluation:

  • Name of Recipe stated
  • Ingredients listed in order used in the instructions
  • Include size and weight of cans, packages, etc. (Examples: 10 ¾ ounce can of cream of mushroom soup, 2 ounce package of chili seasoning)
  • Clear instructions
    • Do not use abbreviations; spell out measurements (i.e. use “teaspoon” instead of “tsp.”)
    • Use generic names for ingredients rather than name brands (i.e. “creole seasoning” instead of “Tony Chachere’s”, “can of diced tomatoes and green chilies” instead of “Rotel”.)
  • Size of pan stated (i.e. 12-inch skillet, 5 quart pot, 9X13 inch baking pan, large mixing bowl.)
  • Temperature and cooking time stated (i.e. “350 degrees for 45 minutes” – if using the oven or “medium heat for 10 minutes” if cooking on stove burner)
  • Number of servings given (i.e. 6-8)
  • Dish meets contest and division requirements.
1/8/2019 9:44:34 PM
Rate This Article:

Have a question or comment about the information on this page?

Innovate . Educate . Improve Lives

The LSU AgCenter and the LSU College of Agriculture