Mornings can get crazy, especially if you are trying to get ready for work and get the kids ready for school. It can be tempting to just let the kids have breakfast at school because it’s convenient. Trust me, it’s not worth it. Just to give you an example of some of the breakfast items served at school: my daughter was getting fruit loops (full of refined sugar and dyes, among other things), a cinnamon roll (do I need to explain that one?), french toast sticks w/fake syrup (see below on what is usually in fake syrup), and other sugary items. Kids need a healthy breakfast to start the day off right, especially when they need to go to school and learn all day. They have to be able to focus and give it their all. Here are some easy healthier breakfast choices, some which can be prepared ahead of time. My kids love these! These are good for kids or grown-ups. 😉
Note: I serve fruit with every breakfast.
- Hard Boiled Eggs – You can make these the night before or just always have some handy in the fridge and the kids can just grab one. Fill a small pot with water, ¾ full. Bring to a boil, then turn down the heat to medium. Gently place the egg in the pan (I use a soup ladle) and cook for 12 min. Remove from heat and drain the water out. Let cool. You can add cold water and ice to cool the egg down quicker before peeling.
- Oatmeal – This can be made the night before so you can just warm it up in the morning or it is pretty quick and easy to make the morning of. I buy the 100% whole grain quick oats and follow the directions on the container. Then I add pure maple syrup and cinnamon. You can add other things like fruit, honey*, vanilla. This is just how my son likes his. And we also tried adding apple sauce and cinnamon to his oatmeal. He loved it! Tip: You can use whole milk instead of water when making the oatmeal, my son likes it with milk. (*Honey is not recommended for children under one.)
- Yogurt Parfait – Just add fruit and granola (or cheerios – we use Mom’s Best brand) to their favorite yogurt. Organic preferred or as natural as possible. I know there aren’t a lot of good options out there. We like Stonyfield organic vanilla whole milk yogurt. Trader Joe’s has a good plain yogurt but we didn’t like the taste of it, even after we sweetened it with maple syrup or honey*. But the ingredients are good. (*Honey is not recommended for children under one.)
- Leftover Pancakes – I make pancakes on the weekend sometimes and there are usually leftovers, or you can double the recipe. Then you will have some to eat during the week. Just warm up 1 or 2, with real butter and 100% pure maple syrup or organic jam. We have also put honey* on them instead of syrup, or even just butter and cinnamon. This is our usual pancake recipe: Apple Cinnamon Pancakes – http://organicfibromommies.com/2014/04/apple-cinnamon-pancakes/. I experimented with different types of pancakes recently. My recipe for Pumpkin Pancakes can be found here: http://organicfibromommies.com/2014/10/pumpkin-recipes/. For Zucchini Pancakes, go here: http://organicfibromommies.com/2014/07/zucchini-recipes/. You can also make Banana Pancakes using just 1 banana and 2 eggs, mix them up really good using a whisk and fry them up. (*Honey is not recommended for children under one.)
- Cereal – There are organic cereals out there but you really have to read labels, or you can just use granola. For homemade granola, 100 Days of Real Food has a good recipe: http://www.100daysofrealfood.com/2010/04/04/recipe-granola-bars-cereal/. I found some good granola at our local food co-op. Just add milk and maybe some fruit and serve. For the kids I use whole milk and for me I use hemp milk. The kids aren’t crazy about the hemp milk but they don’t mind it in smoothies. My son loves organic O’s (like cheerios) with whole milk and some fruit on top.
For maple syrup, I use Trader Joe’s organic maple syrup. It has one ingredient: 100% organic pure maple syrup. It usually costs around $7.99 but it’s worth it to get real maple syrup instead of the fake stuff that usually has high fructose corn syrup, lots of sugar, artificial flavors and preservatives, and usually no maple syrup even in it! A bottle will usually last us a month or longer, depending on if I am using the syrup in recipes too.