Sure, breakfast might be the most important meal of the day, but finding time for it might be one of the most challenging aspects of your morning routine! Between all the things you need to do first thing in the morning, finding time to cook a wholesome meal might just seem too far out of the realm of possibility.
But these healthy make-ahead breakfasts can be made days or even a week in advance, and help you get yourself fed well for busy mornings. The bonus is that these meals taste great warm or cold, so while they are nourishing and warming in the winter, they can be eaten cold for a quick, cooling breakfast in the summer too.
Granola, a mix of whole grains, nuts, seeds, and fruits, is a great way to have a quick healthy breakfast. Skip the store-bought versions, which are often loaded with sugar and processed oils. Making your own granola is very easy, and takes only about a half hour in the oven. Make up a batch over the weekend, and eat it for breakfast and snacks all week long. You can make granola a cozier breakfast by pouring warm plant-based milk atop the granola and letting it sit for a minute to soften. It’s like instant oatmeal!
You can use whole oats or other whole grains like wheat or spelt flakes, opting for gluten-free rolled oats if needed.
Overnight oats are maybe the easiest recipe here: stir together some oats and plant-milk at night, and breakfast is made for the next day! Add in your favorite oatmeal fixings, like raisins, cinnamon, coconut, or nuts, and enjoy this easy breakfast every day. To serve during the winter, simply warm in the microwave or on the stovetop until warmed through.
Overnight oats are like a choose-your-own adventure: try a zillion different combinations to find an array of delicious breakfast flavors. Check out Becky’s overnight oats tutorial here.
Chia pudding is really similar to overnight oats, but is totally-grain free. It’s made just with chia seeds, which have magical properties that allow them to soak up liquid and turn into a thick, creamy breakfast or dessert. These can be made at night and be ready by morning, and can be eaten cold or at room temperature.
I like to change my flavors up each time I made it: sometimes it’s peanut butter, other times it’s berries and chocolate. Sometimes I opt for just simple flavors of vanilla coconut milk. Here’s the basic recipe I use:
- 1 3/4 cup plant-based milk
- 1/4 cup chia seeds
- a pinch of salt
- optional mix-ins
Always remember to stir it well, or the seeds will clump up in a un-delicious way. I often blend a few soaked dates into the milk, and add in 1-2 Tablespoons of cocoa powder, vegan protein powder, shredded coconut or natural peanut butter before adding chia seeds. You can add fruit while you’re making it or just before you eat it.
Whole Grain Porridge (Sweet Savory)
Whole grains are loaded with fiber, protein, vitamins and minerals, so breakfast is a great to time get in your daily dose. Wheat berries, whole oat groats, amaranth, or teff are great options for creamy breakfast porridge, whether you choose to enjoy them in savory or sweet preparations.
I love eating grains with greens for breakfast when I’m craving something savory, but whole grains are a template for an array of flavors, just like oatmeal would be. It’s recommended to soak most larger grains before cooking (wheat berries, whole oats) but smaller grains (quinoa, teff) can be cooked without soaking. You can cook a large batch of grains, and simply warm a few scoops in the morning for a fast meal.