by Deanna Segrave-Daly and Serena Ball
Bump up the nutrients — and the flavor — in your basic breakfast. According to the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, many of us don’t consume enough calcium, potassium, dietary fiber and vitamin D. Use these tips to add these important nutrients to your morning meal.
Frozen quick fixes: To control the amount of sodium and calories from saturated fat and added sugars, create your own frozen packaged breakfasts. For breakfast sandwiches, make simple homemade patties using vegetables or lean meat and freeze each with a whole-grain English muffin top. Then make scrambled eggs in round egg rings and freeze each with an English muffin bottom. To serve, warm each half side-by-side (not on top) at 60-percent power in the microwave for 2 to 3 minutes, flipping halfway through.
Use an ice pop mold to make a breakfast treat. Fill the mold with low-fat or fat-free plain yogurt, fruit and granola that’s low in added sugars, then freeze for at least 6 hours or overnight. For best results, use small berries or thinly sliced juicy fruit such as mango, melon, pineapple or kiwi.
Overnight success: Take a few minutes the night before to prepare a ready-to-eat breakfast for morning.
Make savory overnight oats by mixing dry oats, plain yogurt, a drizzle of olive oil and a shake of both kosher salt and crushed red pepper. Refrigerate until morning. Quick barley is chewy and nutty after an overnight soak in milk, yogurt or 100-percent fruit juice. Or soak cooked brown rice, quinoa or farro overnight in a sweet or savory liquid, then add toppings such as dried fruit and nuts or leftover cooked vegetables with salsa or kimchi.
Sandwiches are great portable breakfasts and they’re even better with a smear of mashed avocado. To keep avocado from turning brown, place sandwich fillings tightly against the avocado or use plastic wrap placed smooth against the avocado to prevent oxidation.
Travel mug meals: Pack a spoon to get the goodies out of the bottom of your to-go cup. For a super soup (yes, for breakfast!), heat a can of soup and add any of these nutrition-enhancers: frozen vegetables, canned beans, leftover cooked vegetables or cooked meat.
Use a microwave-safe mug or a 12-ounce canning jar to make a microwave egg scrambler. Mist the inside of the mug with cooking spray, add two eggs and whisk with 2 tablespoons milk or water. Stir in 3 tablespoons of chopped vegetables such as mushrooms or spinach, then microwave on high for 30 seconds. Stir and microwave 70 to 80 seconds more, or until eggs are firm.
Feb 18, 2021; https://foodandnutrition.org/from-the-magazine/breakfast-enhancers/
Add Hearty Flavor to Recipes: Cannellini Beans. Bush Beans website. Accessed February 15, 2021.
Microwave Cheese & Pepper Coffee Cup Scramble. The Incredible Egg website. Accessed February 15, 2021.
U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2020-2025. Dietary Guidelines website. Published December 2020.