Let’s face it, most of us don’t like mornings. Not until I’ve had my coffee anyway. Then I’m good. And with 2, 3, or more kids, often in different schools (mine are in 3 ), we need to make breakfast time as simple and pleasurable as possible–not to mention nutritious. I’m big on eating a healthy, nutritious meal in the morning and buying as much organic food as I can. But we have grown bored with the same old same old. So here are some breakfast ideas for fast and healthy for the whole family as they get out the door and on their way. Of course, to make it even faster, set the table the night before. Duh! I should remember to do that more often!
- Hard boiled eggs. In a pinch, this may be the easiest way to get some protein in. Sunday night make a dozen or so eggs and have them peeled and ready in a covered bowl in the fridge for AM’s.
- Pancakes. Sure some people buy frozen for convenience, but I make mine a little healthier, with whole wheat flour and flax seed. Make up a very large bunch, maybe even 2 boxes worth, on a rainy day then freeze perfect portion sizes in individual baggies for a quick grab and microwave breakfast. Same goes for french toast. Using your own healthy bread and freezing ahead ensures they eat something you feel good about.
- Smoothies and shakes. Make a large blender of a shake everyone loves so as the troops arrive in the kitchen, all they have to do is pour a glass for themselves.
- Peanut butter balls. A quick nutritious breakfast or part of breakfast. Mix peanut butter with whole oats (not instant) and some honey and cinnamon.Ground flax seed is optional. Form bite sized balls and keep in the fridge for another quick grab n go snack. My kids LOVE these!
- Fruit salad. Keep the fruit bowl handy or make a cut up fruit salad! When I put the bowl in the middle of the island, my kids are more tempted to grab a banana or apple in the morning or sco0p themselves a bowl. Nothing can be easier. Keep some granola nearby in a bowl so they can dip their fruit.
- Instant Oatmeal. Put a pot of water simmering on the back burner on when you wake up. Then as the kids pile in, pour into bowls filled with instant oatmeal. Takes 5 seconds to mix and it’s pretty filling. We buy non flavored and add our own cinnamon , sugar or syrup to it so they are much less sweet and sugary than store versions.It’s a better buy that way too.
- Cereal. Of course, you say! What’s breakfast without cereal? My kids like to mix cereals so I pre-mix them in large covered plastic containers. It makes it easier for kids to pour in the AM without all the scrunching and mess of the dreaded cereal bags.
- Yogurt- While I love most of the benefits and convenience of yogurt, they can be high is sugar ( especially if they are eaten with a glass of juice for breakfast) so be sure to buy a lower sugar one or only offer small bowls along with something heartier. Some kids will even go for a scoop of cottage cheese with some fruit in it. Usually it’s quite a bit lower in sugar than yogurt.
- Cottage cheese and fruit- My daughter loves this one( and so do I!). Nuke a chopped apple with cinnamon and sugar for a few minutes then serve with plain cottage cheese. Peaches, blueberries and strawberries go great too.
- Granola bars- yeah, you can make your own if you’re feeling crunchy, but try the organic store bought ones when they are on sale. Cut in 2 and layer on a plate for kids to grab with a banana or something fast and easy.
- Muffins and breads- So easy and one of our favorites. I try to make homemade healthy versions( see Pinterest for the best ideas!) or at least if i use a store bought box, I use applesauce or greek yogurt instead of oils and cut the eggs in half , using flax seed and water for the other half. Adding in berries ups the nutrient value. Or try a nice pumpkin bread or zucchini bread. The kids feel like they are having cake and may even give you an extra kiss when they leave! hey, it’s worth a shot! Make a few loaves and freeze for a later date.
- Consider making an easy chicken sausage bake ahead of time and just re-warm slices in the microwave in the morning. If your kids don’t like spinach, skip it and put in some peppers or onions if they eat that. Quiches are great for any meal so they work for an afterschool snack or even consider packing it in their lunchboxes for a change of pace from sandwiches.
No one should ever skip breakfast even if they are rushed, so having easy , quick foods to choose from and grab make for a better start to the day for everyone-Moms and kids.