Where’s your protein? My kids hear that question often as I teach them how to build a balanced breakfast for school. Devouring plenty of protein seems to come easy at lunch and dinner but can be tricky at the morning meal, especially if you’re in a rush. Eggs are an obvious protein choice, but not everyone likes eggs. And, even if you love them, eating them every day can grow old. If you find yourself in a breakfast rut, try rotating through these protein packed choices to start your day.
1.) Ham and Veggie Bowl- Dice ham and sauté with a variety of vegetables in a pan with a little olive oil. Once they are soft, transfer the veggie mixture to the inside of a whole wheat pita with the 2 Tbsp. feta cheese. Balance it out with a side of berries (Nutrition bonus: top with tons of tomatoes!)
2.) Breakfast Wrap- Fill a whole wheat or corn tortilla with black beans, 1/3 c whole grain rice, 2 Tbsp. avocado and 2 Tbsp. Salsa. Balance it out with a side of fruit. (Nutrition bonus: wrap some dark green leafy vegetables inside too)
3.) Greek Yogurt- Mix some slivered almonds and berries (or dried fruit) into 4 ounces of Greek yogurt. Balance it out with some low-fat granola or a whole wheat mini-bagel. (Nutrition bonus: Put the yogurt, fruit and nuts into a blender with 1 cup kale and make a veggie and fruit smoothie out of it)
4.) Eggless Breakfast Sandwich- 1 slice Canadian bacon, 1 slice cheddar cheese, 2 tomato slices, and 1 Tbsp. hummus between a whole wheat English muffin. Serve with ½ banana. (Nutrition Bonus: Top with green and red peppers)
5.) Protein Packed Hot Cereal- Make a meal of out your basic bowl of oatmeal by swirling in ¼ cup cottage cheese, a few diced walnuts and cinnamon.) (Nutrition Bonus: Add 1-2 diced prunes for a fiber boost)