Although it sounds cliché, breakfast really is the most important meal of the day and unfortunately, it’s one of the first things to slip off the radar during the busy Holiday season. Fortunately there are very simple things you can eat for breakfast that don’t require much work in the morning while you’re trying to get out of the door. These ready-to-go breakfast ideas are also great for entertaining guests over the Holidays so you can enjoy your company and not feel like you’re spending hours in the kitchen.
1. Porridge/Oatmeal: The important thing here is to soak your grains 7 to 8 hours before cooking. The soaking process neutralizes enzyme inhibitors and unlocks the nutrients in the grains so that your body can assimilate them. Consider trying a mixture of gluten-free whole grains like buckwheat, millet and amaranth. One of my favorite recipes is my Coconut Ginger Pumpkin Porridge. I used this recipe by Real Food Outlaws as a starting point and then added grated ginger and apples or raisins to the mix. I then top this warming dish with toasted pecans and coconut. Yum! You can make this the morning of or cook on low in the crockpot overnight. By the way, the pumpkin pie spice from Frontier is my go to spice this time of year for porridge and healthy baking.
2. Birchermuesli: I learned about this wonderful breakfast food in Switzerland. My husband’s family there makes this regularly. Basically, you soak oats/muesli overnight in an acidic mixture to help pre-digest the oats. In the morning you add your spices, yogurt and fresh fruit. I love this recipe because you can make it the night before and it’s about done in the morning with the exception of a few additions. Quick, easy and healthy.
3. Fritatta: My body requires substantial protein some mornings which is why I love fritattas. A fritatta is an excuse to load up on your favorite veggies. Some of my favorite ones include, arugula, mushrooms, red peppers, leeks and Swiss Chard. The combinations are endless. I encourage you to stuff your fritatta with as many dark leafy greens and veggies as possible to counteract all of the nutrient depleting foods consumed over the Holidays. Add your favorite fresh or dried herbs for a special punch. I love to include fresh dill or cilantro when I can. If you can tolerate dairy, add a little grated parmesan, cheddar, ricotta or goat cheese for extra body and flavor. Make your fritatta ahead of time and keep in the fridge so it’s ready to warm up for breakfast, lunch or dinner with a nice side salad.
4. Soup: Soup is one of my FAVORITE winter breakfasts. You can pack alot of nutrients in soup and it’s a great way to get in your bone broth. Homemade bone broths pack a lot of minerals that are missing in our diet. I don’t care what kind of soup you make, but if’s chock full of veggies and homemade stock, I’m happy as a clam. The beauty of soup is that you can make it in batches and freeze it. It’s also quite packable and portable. Just reheat and voilé! Breakfast is served anytime, anywhere.
5. Dinner: In this country, we get stuck on eating “breakfast foods” for breakfast and this is just lame. We think nothing of having an omelet or fritatta for dinner so why not wild salmon and a side of collard greens for breakfast? Leftovers for breakfast are a great way to get the day started. You may have to think outside the box a little.
The bottom line is to eat in the morning and keep your mind open about what constitutes breakfast. If you’re not a breakfast eater currently, start slow. You may try a piece of fruit with a little bit of almond butter at first until your body adjusts to having food in the morning. And if you don’t fee like breakfast when you get up because you’re up before the rooster, pack your breakfast and eat it once you get to work. Your body will thank you for it…and so will your co-workers when you’re less cranky due to proper nourishment.
I have some other breakfast ideas on Pinterest that you are welcome to check out. What are some of your favorite healthy breakfasts? Please feel free to share them here.
Last month I attended Louise Hay’s I Can Do It! conference with my good friend and partner in “life is stranger than fiction,” Annette Varoli. We were in the presence of amazing, energetic speakers such as Wayne Dyer, Cheryl Richardson and Caroline Myss. Louise Hay gave a fabulous keynote address on Saturday morning which included her top 10 daily self-love tips. Number 7 on the list was “Bone Broths and Green Drinks.” Sometimes I forget how this simple advice has such a profound effect on our health. I consume green drinks regularly, but I only think of using bone broths when I’m making soup or cooking up a whole grain such as brown rice or quinoa. A vibrant woman in her 80s, Louise drinks bone broth every day. While taking notes, I thought to myself, “why don’t I do that?”
You may be wondering why Louise drinks bone broth (also known as stock) daily? Traditionally, we used all parts of the animal in cooking including the organs and bones because of their health and flavor giving properties. In fact, it was deemed wasteful NOT to use the entire animal. Bone broth provides bio-available nutrients such as calcium, magnesium and potassium. It aids digestion, strengthens cell structures, reduces allergies and boosts the immune system. Because it is rich in collagen which contains two important amino acids, proline and glycine, bone broth nourishes the bones, tendons, joints, mucus membranes and even the skin. Want to loose wrinkles, stretch marks and cellulite? Help yourself to a daily cup of bone broth!
So how does one make bone broth? To make it easy, Louise, keeps a large ziploc bag in her freezer. Each time she has some vegetable scraps or bones, she throws them in the freezer bag. When it’s full, she makes a pot of nutrient-rich stock. Here is what you do next:
- Once you have collected your poultry, beef and/or fish bones and veggie scraps, throw them in a pot and fill with water.
- Add 2 TBSP of vinegar or wine (I like to use raw apple cider vinegar). Let the concoction stand for 30 minutes to an hour.
- Bring the stock to a boil and skim any “scum” that rises to the top. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 6 to 24 hours. The longer you simmer, the more nutrient-rich and flavorful the bone broth becomes
- After the bone broth is complete, remove the large chunks of bone and vegetables and then strain. Cool the strained broth in the refrigerator until the fat rises to the top and congeals. Skim off the fat and pour the bone broth into freezable containers.
- You can also strain the broth and then pour into freezable containers before cooling. Donna Gates feels the layer of fat protects the broth and that you shouldn’t remove it until you are ready to use the broth.
Consume the thawed broth within 5 days. You may be able to extend the life of the broth by a few more days by re-boiling it.
Bone broth can be consumed by itself as a tea or used as a base for whole grains, legumes, soups and vegetables. Enjoy this healthful and tasty superfood as often as you can!