Breakfast is probably my FAVORITE meal. I prefer a savory breakfast, usually, over a sweet. I do love donuts, but I love scrambled eggs and ham so much more. The problem is, scrambled eggs and ham can take more time and energy than I am willing to commit at 6:00Am!
I TRY to plan ahead the night before and pick a breakfast off of our menu plan for the following morning. BUT, I do often forget or fail to make a plan that night before, so having pre-made breakfasts on hand is ideal for us.
I am not talking about boxed cereal or store-bought instant oatmeal. My kids love those things (and I love the amount of time it takes to open a box and pour!), but the exorbitant amount of sugar in them makes for a rough morning. Just picture five wild animals chasing their prey. Starting school at 8:00 is just a ridiculous attempt after a breakfast of cereal.
So, I plan ahead often and make big batches of foods to freeze or refrigerate. They are not fancy foods. They are not difficult to make. The only serious requirement is time set aside to make them. Most of the time I can make them during naps, unless it has been a rough morning and I just sit and watch episodes of Parks and Recreation to avoid moving or thinking. :)
If you are like me, wanting good breakfasts on hand but don’t want to have to be up super early to make them, check out the list below for ideas of things to make ahead of time for your family…
Pancakes – I love the recipe from the Economides family. It makes about 48 pancakes. I usually put half in the refrigerator for the next few days and half in the freezer for the following week.
Waffles – We only have a belgian waffle maker. I do not make waffles as often as I probably should. We just don’t enjoy the thickness of the belgian waffles, and they don’t fit in our toaster very well, so after freezing they do not taste super great. BUT, waffles are a great item to make a ton of and then freeze to just pull out and make however many you need.
Bagels – Homemade bagels are so good! Yes, they take more time than pancakes or waffles, but they are so delicious. A good recipe can be found HERE. We typically just make plain ones and add cream cheese or butter and a cinnamon/sugar mix. They freeze well and toast up nicely.
“Instant Oatmeal” – I love apples and cinnamon instant oatmeal. But the amount of sugar and salt in store-bought oatmeals is just silly. It can be made at home and stored in snack baggies to use as individual servings. AND the prep work is not long at all! THIS is a great recipe. If you are looking to change it up a little, add in some ground flaxseed to the oats for more fiber. they can be stored in the pantry, but if you don’t end up eating them in a week or two, I would recommend tossing them in the freezer, especially if you have the flaxseed in there. Just keeps them fresher longer.
Coffee Cake – Ok, ours is more cake than coffee cake, but making a huge pan of it feeds us for three breakfasts and I control how much sugar we have in it. (Yes, I do have control issues.) It is yummy, and the cinnamon-sugar taste is pretty much the best. You can find it here in a previous post. It will keep in a tightly closed container for about a week; I have frozen a few pieces that were left over and heated them in the microwave to thaw, and they were still good.
Breakfast Burritos – One of my favorites. Easy to make – scrambled a dozen eggs, cook and crumble a pound of breakfast meat (sausage, bacon, ham), shred some cheese and throw it into tortillas (burrito size work best). I roll them and wrap them in first one paper towel each and then in foil. Then I toss them in the freezer wherever I can find room. Sure, it may be a waste of paper towels, but when you go to warm them in the microwave, the paper towel holds in the moisture a bit (just be sure to remove the foil!). Yum!
Muffins – I am pretty sure almost any muffins can be frozen, so make up 24-30 and freeze them for easy breakfasts! I microwave mine to thaw and warm them OR you can pull them out of the freezer the night before and let them thaw on the counter. Easy!
Quick breads – Similar to muffins, quick breads make for quick breakfasts. I freeze mine in slices, so they are easier to pull out individual servings of and thaw. After slicing, I wrap the whole loaf in plastic wrap then place it in a gallon size freezer bag.
Cinnamon Rolls – Sure, they are pretty sugary, but cinnamon rolls are so yummy especially when homemade! Two ways to freeze: after the rising but before the baking (bake while still frozen before thawing) OR after completely baking (thaw and warm in microwave). Either way works for us; we just like to eat them warm and gooey! THESE are a good batch to make.
Those are some foods that come to mind right now. Do you have anything you make ahead of time for an easy, healthy breakfast??
(Don’t get me wrong here…I still buy cereal at Aldi from time to time, when I just don’t feel like prepping foods or we are having a busy/rough week. I just prefer to be able to feed the family homemade items that I know won’t make the kids bonkers an hour later!) ;)