It’s that time of year again. Goodbye long, lazy mornings in pyjamas and my peaceful two hours before everyone wakes up. Hello to the whirlwind that is getting the kids up, dressed, fed, teeth brushed and out the door all before 7:30 am. In other words it’s Back-to-School week. And that means no-fuss, filling breakfasts that will see them through to the lunch bell.
What makes a good breakfast for kids? According to paediatric dietician Judy More it means “some carbohydrate, protein, some fruit or vegetables and a little bit of fat which could be in the form of full fat milk or yoghurt”.
For breakfasts that fit the bill, we’ve put together 5 Easy Back-to-School Breakfast Ideas that tick all the boxes.
The issue I have with my children is not so much that we’re pressed for time in the morning (we are) but that they’re just not very hungry when they wake up. That’s where smoothies really deliver. They’re quick to make, more palatable for smaller appetites and can be packed chock-full of nutrition; the ingredients are pretty much up to you.
For a smoothie you need a base liquid such as juice, milk or a non-dairy alternative like almond or coconut milk. Throw that together with some fruit and some sneaky veg in a blender and you’re basically there. You can experiment with thickening the smoothie with yoghurt or ice cubes or add avocado to create a really creamy nutrient-packed drink. To give a smoothie staying power, add a handful of porridge oats (oatmeal); when blended they add thickness and creaminess and help deliver slow-release energy throughout the day. Our most popular smoothie in the MoKL Kitchen is our deceptively easy Frozen Banana Smoothie. Or go with a combination of berries and bananas for a BananaBerry Breakfast Smoothie. But my kids’ absolute favourite is the decadently chocolatey but surprisingly good for you Avocado & Chocolate Smoothie.
Imagine coming down to breakfast to the delicious smells of apple and cinnamon wafting round the kitchen. This Overnight Apple and Cinnamon Porridge recipe means you put everything in the slow cooker before you go to bed, and it’s done when you wake up. Perfect school fuel – with slow-release energy oats, fruit and a little bit of sweet spice.
I know, who am I kidding? Who has time to make pancakes or bake anything for breakfast on a school morning? Well that’s what I used to think until I learnt that the trick to lovely hot pancakes and fresh-bakes on a school morning is to do all the work ahead of time. For fuss-free Classic American Pancakes, pour the batter into a resealable food bag, seal the bag and stand it in a jug in the fridge overnight. In the morning, snip off the pointed end and you have an instant piping bag to pipe pancakes directly onto a hot frying pan. Pancake batter can be frozen for up to three months or you could also make up whole pancakes ahead of time, freeze or refrigerate and when you’re ready to eat, pop them in the toaster for a couple of minutes. Have a look at How to Refrigerate or Freeze Pancakes for some handy how-tos. Okay, so we’re not saying we’re going to do this every day but once in a while it’s a nice treat.
If You’ve Got Eggs, Milk & Bread
My kids love our Easy French Toast recipe and it’s one they can help you make quite easily. The clue is in the name; it’s a lot simpler to make than some other French Toast recipes we’ve seen, with just a handful of ingredients and a simple dip and fry process. I usually serve with fruit and if I’m in the mood, some grilled bacon or pancetta. A variation on the theme is this yummy Ham Eggy Bread, a childhood favourite that seems to stand the test of time. Again, it’s simple to make and goes in seconds in the MoKL Kitchen. Both recipes are great for using up bread that’s lost its youthful glow.
It’s a Wrap
Using up leftovers from yesterday’s dinner is a perfect way to start the day. A personal favourite of mine is leftover home made lentil soup but I’m not sure my kids are quite up for that. What they do love however is anything that comes in a wrap. So grab that cold chicken or ham, or last night’s sausages, add some cheese or veggies or a spoon of hummus, pesto or ketchup, wrap it in a tortilla and bingo – breakfast in a jiffy (for a sweeter version, try cream cheese and strawberries or bananas). If you have a little extra time to make eggs, you can’t beat a Bacon & Egg Burrito for flavour and for keeping the kids happy.
So there you have it – our top 5 Easy Back-to-School Breakfast Ideas to get the kids’ day off to a good start.
Now all I need to do is get on with the uniform labelling.