I admit, like many I struggle to find time for a healthy breakfast for both me and the kids. School busses screech up to our corner before 7:00, which leaves little time for a leisurely bowl of cereal over the sports pages or comics.
When thinking about filling breakfasts for our active kids, I look for foods with protein and whole grains to keep them full until lunch, and without too much added sugar or artificial colors or flavors, which can slow them down. We don’t rule out traditional lunch and dinner foods, such as cold pizza or quesadillas, or even healthy varieties of protein bars and muffins in a pinch.
Below are some breakfast ideas that can fuel our growing (and groggy) children during those hectic mornings on the go:
- A sandwich of rice cakes (or a whole wheat bagel or tortilla) with a thick layer of peanut butter, and all-fruit jelly or sliced banana or apple in the middle.
- A bagel with cream cheese and smoked salmon, or a whole grain English muffin with melted Cheddar cheese (add a slice of tomato or avocado for the more sophisticated teenage palate.)
- Hard-boiled eggs alone, or diced and mixed with cubed and buttered toast or cheese.
- Egg sandwiches, such as these On the Go Egg Muffin Sandwiches: http://www.pbs.org/parents/kitchenexplorers/2011/03/03/breakfast-on-the-go-egg-muffin-sandwiches/
- Healthy homemade muffins, such as these Blueberry Raspberry Oatmeal Muffins: http://www.pbs.org/parents/kitchenexplorers/2011/07/04/blueberry-raspberry-oatmeal-muffins-2/ or Pumpkin, Chocolate Chip Corn Muffins: http://www.pbs.org/parents/kitchenexplorers/2012/10/18/pumpkin-chocolate-chip-corn-muffins/ (Muffins can be baked in advance and stored in the freezer to keep them tasting fresh.)
- Unsweetened applesauce mixed with cottage cheese and cinnamon.
- Yogurt with dry cereal or granola, and/or fruit, or even instant oatmeal mixed in.
- Bags of homemade trail mix with nuts, raisins (or other dried fruit), sunflower seeds, whole grain cereal or popcorn, and even semi-sweet chocolate chips.
- Breakfast smoothies: Store the unblended smoothie (made with yogurt, fresh or frozen fruit, and juice, or peanut butter, banana, milk and chocolate syrup) in the refrigerator overnight, and blend it in the morning.
For an ultra-healthy way to start the day, try these Green Power Smoothies:
Green Detox Smoothie (Incredible Hulk Power Smoothie)
- 2 cups kale, stemmed and chopped
- 1 cup spinach leaves
- ½ avocado (optional, makes it creamier and more filling)
- 1 banana
- 1 apple, chopped (no need to peel)
- 1 cup orange juice, preferably fresh squeezed
- 1 cup fruit flavored kefir or vanilla yogurt
- 1 cup ice
- 1 Tbsp. chia seeds (optional)
Combine all the ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth.
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