If there’s one thing nutrition experts agree on, it’s this: Eating balanced meals is essential for optimal health.
Breakfast means something different for everyone: It might be the first thing you eat when you wake up, or it might be your mid-morning break. It doesn’t matter when or where you eat it, what matters is that you do. If you can eat a healthy meal for breakfast instead of a granola bar on the way to work, even better.
Here are 10 breakfast recipes nutrition experts would love to see on your personal menu this week, and why.
1. Cinnamon-apple Steel Cut Oatmeal
Not a morning person? This breakfast recipe is for you. Not only is it made with fresh ingredients and full of natural cinnamon flavor, but you can also make it the night before so it’s all ready to go when you wake up. You could be eating breakfast before the coffee’s even done, and it’s completely healthy.
2. Spinach and Feta Quiche
Not a huge fan of vegetables? Try this recipe. Spinach is the ideal vegetable if you don’t like the taste of most vegetables, because it’s easy to incorporate into recipes so you can still reap its benefits without having to taste it. Who doesn’t love eggs and cheese, even with a little spinach mixed in?
3. Bagel with Homemade Hummus
When you’re pressed for time, it’s tempting to just skip breakfast at home and zip through the nearest drive-thru to grab a bagel loaded with cream cheese. It takes two minutes to throw a bagel in the toaster, and with a little homemade hummus spread on top, you’re in for a delicious surprise. Chickpeas have all kinds of hidden health benefits, and making your own hummus requires a food processor and very minimal knowledge of how to cook things.
4. Homemade Biscuits
Biscuits and…well, anything you want! Baking your own biscuits means you’re not limited to whatever your favorite restaurant might automatically pair with them. Make your own gravy, or spread a little butter or jelly on top for great flavor (without so many added calories).
5. Plain Greek Yogurt with Granola and Fresh Fruit
Maybe you’re not a big breakfast eater. That’s okay: plain yogurt with fresh add-ins still counts. Starting with plain Greek yogurt gives you a blank culinary canvas to pair with whatever you want. Add fruit for a healthy sugar boost and granola for a little extra crunch.
6. Egg White Omelet with Spinach
Bored with your basic omelet? Try whisking up an egg white omelet for a subtle yet delicious change in your dietary morning routine. If you’re worried about too much cholesterol and want a lower-calorie option, skipping the egg yolk is this recipe’s claim to fame. It tastes good, too.
7. Peanut Butter Banana Flax Smoothie
Sometimes it’s still okay to drink your calories, especially if you choose something that has protein and naturally-occurring sugar instead of a lot of artificial ingredients. Making a smoothie with banana and peanut butter is the perfect to-go breakfast if you’re a little short on time. This recipe will also keep you full until lunch, improving your concentration throughout the rest of your morning.
8. Fruit Salad
There aren’t any fancy techniques to mastering a quick, fresh fruit salad to start your day off right. Simply scoop two cups worth of cottage cheese into a bowl and mix in your favorite fresh fruit (blueberries and strawberries work, but feel free to experiment with flavors). Carbohydrates, the sugars each of these ingredients contain, will keep you going even on a Monday.
9. Oatmeal Pancakes
Can’t decide whether you want oatmeal or pancakes for breakfast? Problem solved. Oatmeal pancakes taste good, but they’re also good for you. Oatmeal gives you an energy boost to get you through the morning and has been proven to promote good heart health.
10. Breakfast Tortilla
Feeling creative this morning? This recipe takes everything you love about breakfast and tosses it all into one pan. You’ll pack in the protein after just 15 minutes of preparation. Once again, the fresh ingredients will leave you feeling filled (and fulfilled) without dedicating your entire morning to the kitchen.
Eating healthy isn’t just about the food itself: it’s about enjoying what you eat, and making time to prepare meals with as many fresh ingredients as possible as often as you can. Nutrition experts want you to eat well, but they want you to be happy while doing it, too.
Enjoy your breakfast!
Featured photo credit: regan76 via flickr.com