“Breakfast is the most important meal of the day,” is something you’ve heard your whole life, right? Well, it’s true. Breakfast is important. But it’s also really hard to get right as a busy parent. But with a little time spent on breakfast meal prep, you can make it easy and healthy.
A few years ago, I went on a no cereal kick. My kids were eating two bowls of cereal each morning and still asking for a snack an hour later, so I said no more! At first, I just stopped buying it, but then we compromised and they could have a bowl after they finished whatever I served.
Your freezer is your best friend, truly. You can prep almost anything in advance, toss it in the freezer, and have a yummy breakfast. Of course, I like to use Once a Month Meals for my meal planning, and their full menus have breakfast dishes included. But you don’t need to limit yourself to those meals.
You can make pancakes or waffles in a huge batch and freeze them. I’ve even purchased the Costco-sized frozen waffles and let that be breakfast for a week. I like to put peanut butter on the waffle for protein instead of syrup.
Egg casseroles, egg muffins, and even regular muffins are all things you can stock your freezer with on a rainy day. I like to have my daughter make 24 muffins and then we freeze them in batches of six for breakfasts.
My relationship with oatmeal is confusing. I’m not a huge fan of eating it myself, but I love making it for my family. Oatmeal is so versatile – and cheap – that it’s truly a staple in our pantry. I’ve talked about oatmeal before on the blog, so I won’t bore you with the details again.
Some of my favorite ways to prepare oatmeal in advance are overnight oats, baked oatmeal bars, and steel-cut oats in the slow cooker or Instant Pot. And, to save money, I make my own “instant oatmeal” mix using quick oats, brown sugar, and cinnamon so that the kids can make up their own bowl.
I remember one morning when I asked my husband if putting a fried egg on the leftover chili was acceptable for breakfast. He looked at me a little funny and then admitted he just did the same thing. Breakfast doesn’t have to be “breakfast items” only. It can be leftovers!
If you can add an egg to leftovers then they’re perfect for the first meal of the day. You can also make sandwiches, fruit salad, or even taco meat into a breakfast meal. When you get past the “need” for traditional breakfast meals, you open a whole new world. And it makes breakfast meal prep that much easier.
Speaking of adding eggs to leftovers to call it breakfast, eggs are really the easiest way to serve a healthy breakfast quickly. It takes just minutes to cook an egg, and there are so many ways to do it. But taking a few minutes to chop veggies or potatoes to go with it will save you time in the morning.
It took a little adjusting, but we now have a regular rotation of breakfast options that can be whipped up in a few minutes, or easily prepared in advance. Make your breakfast meal prep as easy as possible with some of these ideas.