You know the drill: You have every intention of eating a nutritious breakfast, but then you oversleep, have to iron your shirt, or have an important call you completely forgot about. Whatever your reason, when you’re rushed in the morning, the first thing to go is breakfast. It is just too easy to hit the McDonald’s drive-through or skip breakfast completely. When doctors and nutritionists say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, they mean it. Eating within two hours of waking up changes the way you metabolize glucose the rest of the day, which impacts your metabolism and health. Studies show that when you skip breakfast your “hunger hormones” will spike, leading you to overeat at lunch and dinner.
All this said, you still have to get out the door in the morning and sometimes steel-cut oats or eggs just aren’t going to happen. Adhere to the must-eat-breakfast rule and make it to work on time with these quick, healthy breakfast ideas.
1. Avocado toast
Avocado lovers will rejoice with this quick and healthy breakfast option. Throw a piece of multi-grain or whole wheat bread in the toaster, and smear half an avocado on top. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, and you’re good to go. This breakfast is portable enough to put on a paper towel and eat in the car or the bus on your way to work. The protein and healthy fats in the avocado paired with high fiber bread will keep you full for three to four hours. Want to get creative? Then peruse your kitchen for creative toppings such as salsa, sliced tomatoes and cilantro, slivered almonds, cream cheese, or even an egg if you have time.
2. Yogurt and grains
If you’re constantly rushing out the door, buy some single servings of plain natural yogurt or plain Greek yogurt so you can grab and go as needed. Throw some granola or a high-fiber cereal in the bag, and you can mix the two together when you’re settled in at work. Bonus if you can grab some dried fruit or nuts to throw on top. This quick breakfast provides plenty of fiber to keep you full, protein from the yogurt and nuts, and healthy fats.
3. Peanut butter waffles
Peanut butter is a complete power food with plenty of protein, monounsaturated fat, and vitamins like B6, magnesium, and vitamin E. It is a great way to start your morning and will be delicious on top of a whole-grain frozen waffle (leave Eggos for the kids). Up the health benefits by throwing some sesame seeds, raisins, or even more peanuts on top of this yummy peanut butter creation. You can take this quick and easy meal with you to go.
4. Instant oats
Pour half a cup of plain instant oats in a Tupperware and bring along a banana, dried fruit, or nuts. Love peanut butter? Throw a dollop right in the oats. Pack this breakfast with you to eat at work. Most offices have a hot water spout on the water cooler, so you can make your breakfast at work within a minute. Oatmeal is high in fiber meaning it will keep you full until lunch, especially when you add protein or fruit.
5. Fruit and cheese
These two ingredients are easy to find even in the most barren of kitchens. Grab an apple and slice one to two ounces of cheddar cheese. If you’ve got them, grab some protein-rich pecans, which go well with the fruit and cheese. Throw everything into your workbag, and head out the door. Talk about easy.
6. Granola bar and fruit
When you’re really in a rush, there is nothing easier than grabbing a piece of fruit and a granola or energy bar. The fruit is a no-brainer, but be careful when selecting your bar, as not all bars are created equal. Look for low sugar, high fiber, and simple ingredients. (Don’t know what soy protein isolate is? Skip it.) Bars that have beat the test of taste and nutrition include Kind bars, Lara bars, and Annie’s, but feel free to taste-test and ingredient-read until you find the perfect breakfast substitute.