Now that school has started, mornings are more stressful than ever, whether we’re short on time, have picky eaters, or kids with no appetites in the morning. With all that going on, it sometimes seems simpler to skip breakfast or grab whatever is available while running out the door. However, eating breakfast is important.
Research shows that eating a balanced meal for breakfast may significantly increase health and well-being, especially for youth. It can also improve behavior and school performance in youth.
Even with all the morning craziness, healthy breakfast options are available with a little planning. Here are some simple solutions.
Woke Up on Time
· Scrambled Eggs: Serve with whole grain toast and fruit.
· Whole Grain Waffles: Try a whole grain waffle mix. Top with yogurt and fresh fruit.
Slept in A Little
· English Muffin Sandwich: Layer a toasted whole grain English muffin with cheese and ham. Melt cheese by microwaving it. Pair with fruit.
· Breakfast Tacos: Serve scrambled eggs, salsa and cheese in whole grain tortillas.
· Yogurt Parfait: Layer yogurt with fruit and granola or whole grain cereal.
Slept in A Lot
· Instant Oatmeal: Choose without added sugar. Add boiling water. Stir in dried fruit and nuts.
· Fast Scrambled Eggs: Whisk eggs and a splash of milk in a bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds. Stir. Microwave for 10 more seconds.
· Peanut Butter Sandwich: Add a banana.
· Easy Smoothie: Blend milk, frozen strawberries and a banana. Enjoy with a bran muffin.
When Time is Tight
· The Night Before: Plan for breakfast the next day as you clean up dinner. Set the table with bowls and spoons for cereal. Set out nonperishable food and items needed for breakfast preparation to save time.
· Prepare Ahead of Time: Prepare favorite breakfast foods ahead of time. Store in refrigerator or freezer. Reheat when ready to eat.
· Brown Bag Breakfast: Grab a banana and a bag of trail mix (whole grain cereal, nuts and dried fruit).
For Picky Eaters
· Instead of Doughnuts: Offer whole grain toaster waffles or pancakes. If serving doughnuts, use doughnut holes and add other foods for extra nutrition.
· Banana Dog: Spread peanut butter on a whole grain hot dog bun. Place a peeled banana inside. Eat it like a hot dog. Pair with milk.
· Peanut Butter Toast: Use whole grain toast for fiber and peanut butter for protein. Add milk or 100% juice.
· Lower Sugar Cereals: Choose low-sugar, whole grain cereals. Pair with berries.
· Dinner for Breakfast: Offer leftovers, a quesadilla or cheese and crackers.
For Those That Don’t Eat Much in The Morning
· Spread it Out: Have your child eat a little before they leave. Then, when at school, they can have a small snack.
· Grab and Go: Put breakfast foods in an easy-to-grab place (like cereal on a lower shelf in the pantry or fruit in a bowl on the counter).
· Be a Role Model: Make time to eat a healthy breakfast. Your children will be more likely to follow your example.