By Erik Loney
Spokane, WA (KXLY/CNN) - Lunch at one Washington state school is getting a lot fresher.
The cafeteria is trading in canned and frozen foods in favor of fresh foods straight from the campus garden.
"We are making Hummus to go on our fruit and vegetable bar," said school chef Rene Sellgren.
Sellgren is not your old school lunch lady.
"Later today, we'll do a chicken pesto penne for lunch," said Sellgren.
She's the chef behind the new scratch cooking project at the Spokane School District's Community School.
"What we're really doing is getting away from cans and bags and already prepared food, and using whole food that we actually do all do all the cooking instead of it coming frozen or in a can where we open the cans," said Sellgren.
As much as possible, Sellgren uses food grown right on campus.
"The kids actually bring in the produce, and I actually work my menu around what the kids bring in from the garden," she said.
The project is just one of the unique programs at the Community School.
It's a place for students who aren't successful at traditional high schools.
"Our students tie their learning to the community and they spend 10 to 12 hours a week in the community investigating things, looking at careers, just learning that's authentic and real," said Principal Cindy McMahon.
The food is real too, and new to many students who before often ate fast food for lunch.
"The kids are eating everything. I peek in the garbage cans every once in a while and there's is nothing in them, so they're eating," said Sellgren.
"It's really good and I think it's really healthy for the students and us, and I like the change. It's a break from the normal, which fits our school," said junior Annie Baker.
"It's a really good idea. It's a lot healthier for us," said junior Emily Williams.
Sellgren is testing whole food and scratch menu items in hopes of getting them in cafeterias district-wide.