Tromping through the kitchen, the clock on the front of the stove caught my eye, causing my head to triple take to attention. I saw the green neon numbers 12:14 glowing from the black backdrop, but still I didn’t believe it. It was lunchtime and I hadn’t even considered what to feed my daughter! Naptime was looming and food hadn’t even crossed my mind, for her or…for me!
After years of battling food obsession, I was surprised to learn that many of my food issues were actually rooted in poor nutrition. Or better said–in not eating adequate and nutritious food when my body needed it.
This meant that I was often faced with thoughts about the next time to eat, even after I had just finished chewing. I would try to skimp on my meals in an effort to lose weight, only to have my appetite return with a vengeance later in the day. Much to my delight, many of those insistent thoughts diminished when I served myself a filling and balanced breakfast.
The days when I forgot to remember to eat, those were mornings that I had thoughtful and delicious breakfasts that met my physical and mental appetite for food.
Now, I get it, you are busy. You’re packing lunches, brushing hair, and fishing toys out of the toilet, all before 8 am. But, with these tips and ideas, you can practice starting your day out on the right foot with a healthy and easy breakfast that fits into your mom life.
*Be sure to check out the final section for the tips and tricks to pull this all together!*
HEALTHY BREAKFAST TIP 1: MAKE A BIG BATCH AHEAD OF TIME.
Let’s face it, you don’t have time to make a gourmet breakfast before starting your day. This means that preparedness is number one. Whether you prepare a big batch of breakfast foods once or twice a week or you stock your freezer on the weekends (see the next tip), easy grab-and-go meals are your jam.
BIG BATCH FRIENDLY BREAKFASTS:
- Overnight Oats
- Baked Oatmeal
- Chia Seed Pudding
- Veggie & Egg Quiche
- Yogurt Parfaits
MORE MAKE-AHEAD/BIG BATCH RECIPES:
- Healthy Pepperoni Pizza Frittata
- Chocolate Protein Overnight Oats
- Overnight, Make-Ahead Apple Raisin Oatmeal (try adding in some protein powder, once cooled)
- How to Make Overnight Oats in a Jar + 6 Recipes
HEALTHY BREAKFAST TIP 2: CHOOSE FREEZER-FRIENDLY MEALS.
Breakfast foods that can go from freezer to fridge (the night before) or freezer to re-heat (in the morning) are great for planned meals or for those times when your breakfast plan slips through the cracks.
- Pancakes (reheat in microwave)
- Waffles (reheat in toaster oven)
- Breakfast Burritos
- Pre-assembled Smoothie Packs
MORE FREEZER-FRIENDLY RECIPES:
- Make-Ahead Freezer Smoothie Packs
- Easy Whole Grain Waffles topped with nut butter.
- Healthy Protein Waffles
- Almond Oat Pancakes
- Make-Ahead Freezer Breakfast Burritos
HEALTHY BREAKFAST TIP 3: STOCK UP QUICK & EASY MEALS.
I do my best to keep a few key items around the house that are easy and tasty to make on the fly. These are pantry items that stay on our Grocery Staples Check-List so that we always have them on hand. When Plan A and Plan B don’t pan out, there is contingency Plan C in place!
QUICK & EASY BREAKFASTS:
- Cottage Cheese with Diced Apple, Cinnamon & Chopped Walnuts
- Greek Yogurt with Frozen Blueberries
- Instant Oatmeal Mixed with Protein Powder (let it cool first) and Nut Butter
- Sprouted Grain Toast with Nut Butter or Avocado
- Hard-boiled Eggs & Fruit
- Smoothies: Frozen fruit, protein powder, Greek yogurt, nuts and seeds
MORE QUICK & EASY HEALTHY BREAKFAST TIPS & IDEAS:
- The Power Breakfast Formula for Clean Eating
- Avocado Toast 5 Ways
- 5 Ways to Add Protein to Your Oatmeal
- Microwaved Scrambled Eggs in a Cup
MAKING IT HAPPEN (IN REAL LIFE)
You probably feel a bit overwhelmed after seeing all of these (great) ideas. So much to do, so little time. To get started, follow this template. While it won’t fix your blah breakfast problem overnight, in just a few weeks you’ll have found your groove and be skimming right to lunchtime, focused and energetic, yourself!
- Look at your schedule for next week. Do you see two available time slots? We’re looking for about one hour to plan and shop and 30-60 minutes to prepare. Do yourself a favor and piggyback this onto your other planning and shopping. Rest assured, this process will become much, much easier as you progress. If your initial planning and prep take longer than you anticipated, remind yourself that you are learning a new skill and you’ll be ninja fast in no time.
- Choose one breakfast to assemble or cook ahead that will last 3-4 days (TIP #1).
- Pick one recipe to freeze that will last 3-4 days (TIP #2).
- Choose one recipe to have ready to go, on hand (TIP #3).
Here’s a cheat sheet for you:
- Assemble 4 Basic Overnight Oat Jars.
- Cook one batch of Healthy Protein Waffles and freeze them.
- Purchase a small tub of cottage cheese and frozen berries for a quick back-up.
Keep it as easy as it needs to be to make it doable. Small strides add up over time. Don’t discount little steps forward because these are the changes that stick. As you find your groove, you can begin to introduce additional options, but don’t rush it.
Then, enjoy the physical and mental satisfaction that comes from taking good care of yourself. It’s refreshing to learn that, for some of us, many of our challenges with food are solved with proper prep and thoughtful nutrition. This is a simple practice that you can do to set yourself up for the best day possible!
- 10 Ways to Make Any Meal More Healthy
- 5 Things to Do When Your Family Won’t Eat Healthy Food
- The Ultimate 12-Week Healthy Habit Goal Setting Planner
Brandice Lardner is a Certified Personal Trainer, Nutrition Coach, Author, and Jesus Girl whose mission in life is to help women ditch the diet mentality and find peace with food and their bodies so that they are better equipped to do the great things God has called them to do.