3 quick breakfast ideas for kids
March is National Nutrition Month - start your child's day off with a good breakfast
We all know mornings can be hectic. The bus is coming, the kids are throwing on theirs shoes and grabbing their backpacks, and you realize they haven’t eaten breakfast! Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, especially for growing children! Eating breakfast kick starts our metabolism for the day, feeds our brain and improves behavior and performance at school.
“The key ingredients to a good breakfast include a whole grain (fiber!), a protein rich food, and a calcium rich food source. The fiber and protein help us feel full until the next meal arrives; the calcium food source is a great opportunity to build up our bones,” says Rachel Riddiford, MS, RD, LD, pediatric dietitian.
Here are three quick breakfast ideas from Rachel:
- Choose: whole wheat toast, English muffin or waffle (first ingredient should be “whole wheat”)
- Pair with: 1 egg, natural peanut butter, lean meat, Greek style yogurt, or cheese
- Drink: low fat milk or ½ cup of calcium fortified juice
- On the go: Make the sandwich ahead of time. Drink the beverage at home and eat the sandwich on the way
- Choose: Cooked cereal or unsweetened cereal rich in fiber (greater than 3 grams fiber per serving). If you get an argument, try letting your child choose a sweetened cereal and mix equal parts to your choice of cereal for the extra fiber and less overall sugar.
- Pair with: fresh or dried fruit on top; applesauce to the hot cereal; low fat, high fiber granola
- Drink: low fat milk or top the hot cereal with yogurt
- On the go: Baggie it the night before or make the hot cereal in a coffee cup and bring on the way
- Choose: yogurt (Greek will add extra protein while boosting your calcium intake)
- Pair with: fresh/dried fruit with low fat, high fiber granola
- Drink: water or low fat milk
- On the go: make the night ahead in a container and eat on the way - add granola in the morning if you like the crunch
The bottom line is that breakfast starts the day right. Be sure to include the key ingredients in your child’s first meal of the day. So whether you have an easy morning or everyone is rushing out the door, you’ll have some quick breakfast ideas ready for whatever comes your way. For more kids nutrition and recipes, check out Dayton Children’s Pinterest Board – Kids Recipes and Nutrition Tips.