Health & Wellness

My Breakfast Staples

I don’t have a ton of variety in my breakfast options, I typically just rotate a few tried-and-true’s. In the mornings I want something simple, filling, and nutritious to get me through till lunch.

My Go-To’s:

Sweet Potato & Raw Almond Butter

Why

Potatoes get a bad rap, but they’re actually more nutritious than you might think (we just tend to load them with lots of not-so-nutritious add-ons). Sweet potatoes are even more nutrient dense than the regular ones. A great source of beta-carotene, sweet potatoes also provide a host of other beneficial vitamins and minerals.

How

I always have my sweet potatoes with raw almond butter, not only because it tastes amazing, but because the fat from the almond butter helps with the body’s absorption of beta-carotene. The almond butter also helps with satiety, though even sweet potatoes alone aren’t too shabby at keeping you full.

I bake sweet potatoes for 45 minutes or so, until they’re really soft. I also leave the skin on for added fiber.

Oatmeal

Why

melissa-belanger-544371-unsplashReal oatmeal (not the instant kind) is a great breakfast food because it keeps you full. It’s also full of heart-healthy, cholesterol-lowering fiber, as well as vitamins, minerals, and even antioxidants. Oats are also a prebiotic!

Steel cut oats and oat bran are more nutritious than rolled oats, but anything is better than instant oatmeal, which is largely processed and devoid of nutrition. It takes longer initially to cook real oatmeal, but if you make a large batch for the week, all you have to do is heat up leftovers for the rest of the days.

How

I always add a few things to my oatmeal to give it a little more excitement. These are typically:

  • Berries (raspberries, blueberries and blackberries) for antioxidants
  • Raw almond butter as not only a great source of healthy fat and protein (which makes it much more filling), but also flavor. I prefer the taste of raw almond butter to that of roasted almond butter, and it’s healthier too. Raw almonds taste different when they’re made into a nut butter, raw almond butter is so creamy and naturally sweet!
  • Caramelized walnuts for extra flavor. I make these myself using maple syrup and vanilla extract.
  • Chia seeds are an easy and tasteless way to add nutrition and healthy fat.
  • Manuka honey for days when the berries, caramelized walnuts and almond butter don’t provide enough sweetness (though I usually add little if any).

Sweet Mung Bean Soup

Why

It’s so delicious. I can’t really think of anything with comparable taste or texture, so you’ll have to try it yourself!

Mung beans are highly nutritious, containing large amounts of potassium, magnesium, folate, fiber, vitamin B6 and fiber. They also have protein to keep you feeling full.

How

Mung beans can take a while to get soft, but a slow cooker makes cooking a breeze. I leave the slow cooker on at night and in the morning I wake up to a fresh batch of soup 🙂

I like my mung bean soup sweet, and the recipe couldn’t be simpler. I add only mung beans and water to the slow cooker, I add honey later (so that the heat doesn’t wipe out all the benefits of manuka honey). You can also add ginger for flavor and/or milk for creaminess, but I usually prefer mung soup with just water and honey.

Kabocha Soup

Why

I love the taste of Kabocha squash (like pumpkin, but better), and its nutrition profile is an added bonus. It’s another excellent source of beta-carotene which is great for the skin and the eyes. It also provides a hefty dose of fiber, as well as other vitamins.

How

You can cook Kabocha in a variety of ways, but I’ve only ever had it as a sweet soup. It’s super easy to make, the hardest part is cutting up the squash. I leave the skin on (for the fiber), and cook in boiling water for 30 or so minutes until it’s soft and falls apart at the touch. When it’s about ready, I add (almond or cashew) milk, a tiny bit of soy sauce, and maple syrup for flavor. I don’t really have a recipe, I just taste as I go. You can also put the soup into a blender for a puree.

Smoothies

Why

alison-marras-361007-unsplashWhen I’m working, I have these every weekday morning because it’s the fastest and easiest thing to bring with me to have after my workouts. I like to work out before work and I rely on my smoothies to get my post-workout protein fix. Over the weekend, I make a batch of smoothies for the week and freeze in mason jars like these to grab as I head out the door in every morning.

How

I put a whole lotta crap in my smoothies so I won’t bore you with the details here, let me know if you want the full ingredient list. The main thing I make sure to include is protein, which I source from ingredients such as collagen, nuts, seeds and good old protein powder. If I’m gonna be working out I might as well work out hard, and my body needs protein and nutrition to refuel, so post-workout smoothies are a must.

 

What are your favorite breakfast recipes?

 

Yours,

Shirley

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