No Excuse Breakfasts
It’s been one week since my proposed Back to School Challenge of monitoring the meals purchase to eat outside of the home and tallying up the money spent. How did you do? What did you learn? If you learned that breakfast is either skipped or bought way too frequently, then it’s time to revisit an old friend. Poor breakfast is the first meal to fall by the wayside. Breakfast is always ready for you- now it’s your turn to show up for it. Here’s some tips for how you can fit breakfast into any busy lifestyle- no excuses!
The Night Before
Take some time out of your night to prep for the next day. Set the alarm, pick out your clothes, and get breakfast and lunch packed and ready to go. If you know that you’re always running out the door in the morning because you want to catch as much sleep as possible, then these are the tips for you. Prepare these items a night or two in advance and they will be greeting you in the morning:
- Start your day off with a filling breakfast of Overnight Oats– this hearty breakfast combines high fiber oats, calcium-friendly dairy, probiotic yogurt, and antioxidant-rich fruit to keep you away from the bagel tray at work. Swap the oats for muesli to change up the texture and flavor.
- One night after work prepare a muffin tin full of Breakfast Egg Cups and enjoy throughout the week. These muffins are full of protein and veggies to give your brain a healthy boost to start the day. Microwave on your way out the door or when you get to work.
- Prepare a batch of scrambled eggs the night before and place in a microwave-safe travel container. Pack a whole wheat tortilla and a slice of swiss cheese to go along with it and you have a breakfast burrito or tacos to enjoy at work. Maybe there’s even a leftover veggie from dinner that can join in on the action.
- Have leftover quinoa from dinner the night before? Place in a microwave-safe container with your favorite low-fat milk, some fruit (fresh OR frozen), natural sweetener (honey or maple syrup) and favorite spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, or cocoa powder) and zap when you get to work for a protein-powered hot cereal.
- Rather than grab a bar from a box, make your own healthy protein bars packed with protein, fiber and healthy fats.
The Morning Of
Maybe planning ahead isn’t one of your strengths. It doesn’t mean you can make a quick breakfast that can come with you in the morning to enjoy along the way or once you get to work. Multi-task in the morning and these meals take under 15 minutes to put together:
- Cereal can be messy to eat on the go… unless you swap out milk for yogurt to help keep it all together. Don’t forget some healthy fruit topping and a sprinkle of chia, hemp, or flax seeds for added protein and healthy fats to get your brain going!
- Mix a low-fat Greek yogurt along with fruit and sliced almonds for a healthy yogurt parfait that will make you think you’re having dessert first thing in the morning.
- Let the toaster do some work while you get ready. Heat up frozen whole grain waffles or an English muffin while you’re doing your finishing touches. As you get ready to head out, top with healthy proteins such as cottage cheese or peanut butter and add some fruit for a complete breakfast that took minutes to make and keep you full for hours.
- Give your toast a make-over! Top your whole grain toast with a smear of 1/4 ripe avocado and a slice of tomato for an open faced treat. Or check out one of these variations.
- Make an avocado egg bake while you get ready and place in a container to enjoy during your commute or when you get to the office. Unless you can take 10 minutes to sit and enjoy a meal in the comfort of your home.
Despite your best efforts, we all know that there will be days where you’re going to leave home empty-handed. And while it’s tempting to stop at your favorite deli, or pick from the leftovers from you colleagues’ catered morning meeting, your best bet is to keep items handy at your desk and in your office for quick access. For items that will go in common places, like the fridge, don’t forget to put your name on them or place in a distinguishable bag to prevent other hungry co-workers from stealing your food. Start stocking up on these items to bring to work and leave there to enjoy on rushed mornings getting out of the house:
- Cereal and granola (also makes a great snack for later!)
- Fruit such as bananas, apples, and citrus that require no refrigeration
- Package of English muffins or bagel thins
- Nut butter to use for toppings/spreads
- Fresh or frozen fruit
- Low fat milk (unless you’re lucky to work somewhere that provides it)
- Chia seeds to make a quick breakfast pudding
- Oatmeal packets to microwave
Image courtesy of Serge Bertasius Photography at FreeDigitalPhotos.net