After a night of fasting, our bodies need fuel. This is where the name “breakfast” comes from, as we break the fast with an early meal. While we have been told since childhood that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, how many times do we run out the door in the morning, giving it little priority? To counter this breakfast neglect, consider the many grains that can be used for a quick, convenient homemade breakfast.
The Overnight-No Cook-Oatmeal recipe is a perfect fuel to start your day. Adding chia seeds helps provide antioxidants, fiber and protein. Make 4-6 servings of these on Sunday, and have breakfast for your weekday mornings. Or if variety is needed, make the Quinoa Egg Muffins ahead of time so that you can alternate throughout the week. Of course, granola is good for breakfast, but it is also a nice snack to have on hand. I’ve included my three go-to breakfast recipes, which are packed with nutrients and protein.
- ¼ cup old-fashioned oats
- 1/3 cup low-fat milk (or unsweetened almond milk)
- ¼ cup plain Greek-style yogurt
- 1 tsp. Chia seeds
- 1 tsp. Honey (or substitute with Splenda, Stevia, maple syrup, brown or white sugar)
- ¼ cup fresh, frozen or dried fruit, or peanut, cashew or almond butter
- 1 tsp. Flavoring, such as vanilla, cinnamon or cocoa
- ¼ nuts of choice (optional)In a pint mason jar, place oats, milk, yogurt, chia seeds and honey. Shake and refrigerate overnight or until ready to eat. When ready to eat, add coconut, berries, bananas, cocoa powder, peanut butter, dried apricots, apples, peaches, nuts, etc. or flavoring.
A few combinations that I think work well together:
- Peanut butter and cocoa
- Blueberry and almonds
- Banana and pecans
- Orange and vanilla
- Apple and cinnamon
Quinoa Egg Muffins
Similar to a crustless quiche, but these breakfast cups have more protein because of the quinoa. Cook quinoa in 2 cups of water until water is absorbed.
• 1 cup cooked quinoa
• 1 cup diced vegetables (zucchini, peppers, broccoli, onions)
• ½ cup reduced-fat feta cheese
• 2 eggs
• 4 egg whites
• Dash of hot sauce or 1 Tbsp. of salsa
Preheat oven to 350°. Whisk eggs and egg whites together. Add all other ingredients until well combined. Line your muffin tin with six liners and spray with cooking spray. Because you are using so many egg whites, these will stick a bit, so liners make for an easier clean up.
Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until golden brown on top.
Makes three servings, with approximately 185 calories per serving. Each serving is two muffins.
• 3 cups rolled oats
• 1 cup mixed nuts and seeds
• ¾ tsp. Ground cinnamon
• Dash of salt
• ¼ cup honey + maple syrup (1/8 cup each)
• ½ cup dried apricots + dried cherries (¼ cup each)
Heat oven to 350°. Combine oats, nuts and seeds, cinnamon, salt, honey and syrup in a bowl. Spread evenly on baking sheet and bake for 30-40 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from oven and add apricots and cherries.
Cool and store at room temperature in an airtight container for up to one month. Makes 4 cups.
About the author: Debbie Denissen is a McKinney food connoisseur who travels the world with her husband learning about the latest culinary trends. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.