Breakfast starts the day. From smoothies and waffles, to eggs, pancakes, and french toast – our ideas will help you make simple breakfast foods more special and get the day going on the right foot.
Cereal with milk:
Have two or three acceptable cereal choices. Your children will feel in control if you let them pick which bowl they like and show you their choice of cereal. There are lots of options for mix-ins to make it extra special: bananas, fresh or dried berries, honey, almonds, raisins. You can also mix cereal with yogurt or chocolate milk. If you have concerns about all the sugary cereal on the market – just don’t buy them!
The trick here again is to offer choices. Those instant oatmeal variety packs work great. You can say: “Would you like blueberry, strawberry or peach oatmeal today?” To make it extra yummy and nutritious top with yogurt, apple sauce, fruit, berries, maple syrup or honey. Just a few colorful sprinkles on top will make it look like a treat!
Most kids like eggs, and there are lots of choices. You can ask your kids if they want an omelet, scrambled eggs, or sunny side up. You can serve eggs with bacon or sausage, on top of toasts, bagels, croissants or english muffins. Eggs also go well with lots of cheeses and cold cuts. They are yummy, easy to make, and will keep the kids full and happy for hours.
Pancakes are very quick and versatile. If you are in a rush, put some frozen pancakes in the toaster, top with maple syrup and voila. If you are taking things slow on a weekend morning, have kids help mix the batter and get creative with the fillings. Chopped apples, cranberries, peaches, raisins, sprinkles, chocolate chips, even marshmallows – they are all great! Top with your favorite jam or maple syrup and enjoy. Make sure to compliment the chefs!
Waffles and Drinkable Yogurt:
For a very easy and healthy breakfast on the run, waffles are the best. Toast some waffles and grab a drinkable yogurt with a straw. It is nutritious, not messy, and can be eaten quickly on your way to the car, at your desk at work, or while waiting for class to start. Kids will be happy if they can choose from two flavors of yogurt or waffles.
French toast is everybody’s favorite and is also a good use for old bread. It does take a few minutes, but it will smell and taste delicious and will put a smile on everybody’s face. With a little bit of milk, eggs, cinnamon, and brown sugar, any old bread will have a new life. Experiment with french bread, raisin bread, challah bread for an awesome french toast. For a very special treat try french toast with bacon!
Bagels with anything:
This is a fast, easy and nutritious breakfast with lots of ways to personalize. Would you like your bagel toasted, would you like plain or strawberry cream cheese? Kids enjoy mini-bagels with flavored cream cheese, but cream cheese is only one of many toppings – try peanut butter and jelly, hummus, salmon, egg salad, tuna salad, cheese or turkey. For little kids, it is a good idea to cut into smaller pieces to minimize the mess.
Smoothies can be very easy and nutritious. Bananas, regular or chocolate milk, yogurt, ice cream, orange juice, honey, strawberries, blueberries, peanut butter – whatever is in season and whatever is in the fridge can go inside the smoothie. Blend for 30 seconds and you are energized and ready to face the day! Kids love them!
Baking muffins are a great project to do with the kids on a weekend morning. You get to spend quality time together, everybody gets a chance to tweak the recipe to their taste and the house will smell awesome. In addition, muffins always come out right and taste good most of the time.
Donuts, pop-tarts, breakfast pastries:
There is nothing wrong with an occasional breakfast pastry. So what if it has a lot of sugar and fat? It also has protein and carbohydrates and lots of energy for an exciting day. A weekend or a holiday morning can be made extra special if first thing in the morning everybody goes to a bakery and picks a pastry of their choice and then goes out for a picnic in a park, beach, or a backyard.
If you are running late you can always grab something to eat on the road — poptart, banana, granola bar, an orange. Relax and have fun with breakfast, don’t stress out about it and pretty soon it will become kids’ most favorite meal of the day!