Breakfast is my favorite meal of the deal and it’s arguably the most important. “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day” was a slogan popularized by Dr. John Harvey Kellogg, in an effort to promote breakfast cereal-which many now side eye this idea, pushed largely in the name of capitalism. Skepticism aside, break-fast quite literally breaks the overnight fasting period, meant to replenish your body and provide a boost of energy to kickstart your day. And what’s more important than actually eating at any particular time of the day is what you’re actually consuming.
Note, there are varying meal timing schedules, with intermittent fasting being a popular one, which typically involves skipping or delaying breakfast, which I have tried and enjoyed, but always revert back to a more “normal” eating pattern (breakfast, lunch, dinner and light snacks). I’ve found that a wholesome, nutritious breakfast, inclusive of unprocessed, whole foods from a mix of fruits, vegetables, grains, and proteins/poultry, helps me to be my most effective and alert while also helping me to maintain a healthy pattern of eating throughout the day.
Below are a list of my favorite healthy breakfast ideas, let me know which of the items below you’d try!
Acai bowls are basically “smoothies in a bowl” and are typically nutrient-dense, high in fiber, antioxidants and nutrients like Vitamin C and potassium. An average acai bowl typically contains 250 calories. It’s best to make your own bowl as many that are pre-made and sold are high in added sugar and calories and are often sold in a larger portion size than recommended. I typically buy unsweetened acai puree from Trader Joes and add my favorite mix-ins and toppings (bananas, berries, coconut strips, chia seeds and granola).
Check HERE for a list of 5 homemade Acai Bowl recipes.
One of my favorite breakfast meals is a veggie packed omelette, made from beaten eggs, on a frying pan with any filling of choice. I typically fill my omelettes with spinach, onions, tomato, green peppers, mushroom and sometimes a bit of cheese. I also use olive oil to lightly line my pan vs using butter. The average omelette has roughly 100 calories, but with the various fillings you can quickly pack on the calories and the fat content.
Check HERE for a healthy omelette recipe!
Oatmeal is a great breakfast option as a whole-grain food, high in fiber, it can help to keep you feeling fuller, longer! Depending on how you prep it, oatmeal can also be very healthy, made with oat or almond milk for example, and topped with chia seeds, nuts, bananas, or other fruits!
When opting for oatmeal, I would say it’s best to get dried oats, preparing your dish from scratch, versus using quick, easy solutions such as Quaker Oats which tend to be high in added sugars.
Check HERE for a list of 50 great oatmeal recipes.
For folks with busy schedules who’s excuse is finding the time for a full, wholesome breakfast, overnight oats are your answer. Opposed to oatmeal, which you typically cook on a stovetop (or in a microwave), overnight oats are prepared by soaking “raw” or uncooked oats in milk overnight. Just like a regular bowl of oatmeal, you can get creative with both the type of milk that you use and any toppings or mix-ins you want to add. Overnight oats are typically served chilled, straight out of the fridge, but you are more than welcome to heat them up to eat them warm.
Oats are great as they are high in fiber, which helps to keep you satisfied and feeling fuller longer. Additionally, depending on your mix-in and milk of choice, you can keep the calorie, fat, and sugar content relatively low. On average, a cup of overnight oats (with 2% milk) is roughly 200 calories for reference.
Check HERE for a super simple overnight oats recipe.
Breakfast Egg Muffins
Not your regular muffin (which I love a good blueberry muffin), breakfast egg muffins use eggs as the base, mixing in whatever add-ins you choose, from various veggies, cheeses and even meats. Typically, when making egg muffins, I will batch cook for about 3-4 days, cooking 1-2 egg muffins as a serving, filled with peppers, onions, mushrooms, and scallions. I will usually eat my muffins with a side of turkey bacon, avocado, and fruit!
As mentioned, you can batch cook egg muffins as they freeze pretty well and taste pretty yummy even being reheated in the microwave, I sometimes use the oven or my airfryer.
Check HERE for a recipe for healthy breakfast egg muffins.
Whether for breakfast or an after dinner snack, I love a good yogurt parfait. I have been trying to reduce my dairy intake lately, so I’ve been swapping traditional yogurt for fun dairy substitutes, either coconut yogurt from Trader Joe’s or the Oui brand dairy free options. Both are quite delicious, they’re just higher in sugar content than I would prefer. For my yogurt parfaits, I always start with a plain, vanilla, or coconut flavored yogurt, then layering on my favorite fruits, usually strawberries, blueberries and bananas, topping off with granola-and sometimes a drizzle of honey.
Calories for a yogurt parfait range on average from 125-210 depending on milk used, mix-ins and portion size!
Check HERE for a list of 5 healthy yogurt parfait recipes.
Similar to the overnight oats, a breakfast smoothie is great for those who need a quick, no-fuss breakfast solution. I love a good breakfast smoothie and find that my friends who tend to not enjoy breakfast, love them too, they’re just so easy! You can prep 2-3 smoothies at a time and store them in the freezer/refrigerator until you’re ready to consume. For smoothies, there are a few watch-out’s I caution on:
- Buying smoothies vs making them-you aren’t aware of what the exact ingredients are/they tend to carry more sugar than recommended for a healthy serving
- Pay attention to the sugar count of your various add-ins, most fruits then to be naturally high in sugar, like avocado
Check HERE for a list of 20 breakfast smoothie recipes.
Similar to the other breakfast options listed (and almost anything else), avocado toast can be really healthy but you can quickly pack on the calories depending on the way you prep, your toppings and your portion size. Avocados are a “healthy fat”, but they’re still a fat and everything should be eaten in moderation. About 1/3 the size of a medium avocado is roughly 80 calories and should be the portion you’re targeting. And according to Healthline.com, here’s a list of the 7 healthiest breads you can choose:
1. Sprouted whole grain
3. 100% whole wheat
4. Oat bread
5. Flax Bread
6. 100% sprouted rye bread
7. Healthy, gluten-free bread
I typically build my avocado toast on a whole grain rice cake vs using bread-just personal preference and I always sprinkle with everything but the bagel seasoning from Trader Joe’s and a bit of red pepper flake.
Check HERE for a list of 6 avocado toast recipes!
What are some other fun, healthy meals you typically have for breakfast? And should we do a similar post for lunch or dinner?