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Healthy Breakfast Options for Toddlers and Kids

July 25, 2011

We all know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day…but it’s so hard to get them going early enough and without some issue (“no! not that dress!” , “I want to play for 10 more minutes”!), that actually getting a good breakfast in them is like running a marathon. To get my daughter started on the right foot, I try to serve the healthiest breakfast options like whole wheat waffles, homemade granola, oatmeal and even almond butter sandwiches. Here are some of my favorite options to keep my toddler energized throughout the day. I always love suggestions though and would love some more options- so please add what breakfast options work for you and your family in the comments sections!

  • Homemade Granola. This diverse food can be eaten with yogurt, served with milk as a cereal or as a quick on-the-go breakfast option. I love the Easy Homemade Granola recipe by The Amateur Gourmet that includes oats, almonds, almonds, raisins and dried cherries. Make this recipe in big bunches so you can have it for a few weeks.
  • Whole Wheat Waffles. There are so many healthy waffles on the market right now. I love Nature’s Path line of waffles such as their Flax Plus with Figs Frozen Waffles that I top with fresh berries and some maple syrup.
  • Whole Wheat English Muffins. A quick breakfast option, just pop one in the toaster and add your favorite toppings. I like to add cottage cheese, butter and jam, almond butter, sliced bananas with raisins or sliced apples. If your child doesn’t like English muffins use a whole wheat bread instead.
  • Scrambled Eggs (or however your child likes them) with some cheese, tofu and ground flaxseeds. If you have a toddler that isn’t picky about veggies (are there any?), then add some peppers, spinach, broccoli, mushrooms, kale for a complete meal.
  • Red Quinoa and Yogurt. Instead of serving granola with yogurt, try adding red quinoa, a complete protein and a gluten-free grain. If you can cook the quinoa the night before, then add some raisins, apple, cinnamon, and some yogurt in the morning.
  • Fruit Smoothies. My daughter loves berries, so I usually create a berry smoothie (raspberries, blueberries, blackberries) with some flaxseeds, Greek yogurt, ice and orange juice for a quick and refreshing breakfast. I also love adding strawberries, cantaloupe, watermelon, kiwi and bananas in smoothies.
  • Cereal. The perfect quick breakfast option, I love cereals that are packed nutritional benefits and low in calories – the problem is finding cereals that aren’t packed with sugar. According to Consumer Reports, Cherrios, Wheaties, Life and Kix are the lowest in sugar (of the commercial brands). I like serving an all-bran cereal with some fresh fruit. If my daughter is fussy about this, I’ll give her a cereal combo of bran cereal with some granola.
  • Breakfast Burrito. Breakfast burritos are a great option for hungry eaters where you can add a combination of scrambled eggs, cheddar cheese, tomatoes and avocado that is then wrapped in a whole-wheat tortilla or pita.
  • Oatmeal. Oatmeal is a fantastic healthy breakfast option that is packed with dietary fiber, vitamin B and protein. I love to make a bowl of quick oats and serve it with raisins, dried cranberries, sliced bananas, slivered almonds, flax seeds, cinnamon, some milk and walnuts.
  • Fruit Salad. Add a combination of watermelon, cantaloupe, grapes, honeydew, and berries. Make this the night before and serve as a side with toast or some cereal.
  • Sandwiches. Some kids just don’t like breakfast food. Rather than harp on the fact that they aren’t eating eggs, try to serve the food that they do like. Sandwiches are usually a win such as peanut or almond butter with a light jam on whole-wheat bread or some cheese and turkey on a pita.