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Yet another desperate call for Breakfast ideas...

Hello all, I was hoping I could get some suggestions for breakfast ideas from all you creative folks out there. I recently started a new job which entails me getting up at 4:30 in the morning (if you can even call that morning yet!) and biking about 30 minutes to work. I will need fuel for my ride, obviously and am looking for substantial breakfast ideas that can be prepared the night before and heated up or assembled in a few minutes in the wee hours of the morning.

I get bored kind of easily, so I'd love a variety of options. I've already tried the basics: oatmeal with fruit and nuts mixed in, pb&j, cereal... would love something a bit more interesting.

(I eat basically everything, but tend to avoid meat, especially in the morning)

I'd greatly appreciate any feedback! Thanks!

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  1. Since you are a Yankee, fish cakes and beans, my Longfellow wife's favorite. Breakfast tacos, Tex Mex style, not McDucks, my favorite. Both can be prepared the night before, even as dinner left overs and nuked the next morning. I wish I could sleep until 4:30!

    1. Frozen waffles, smoothies (frozen bananas, other frozen fruit (blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, cherries, mango, etc) and oj), leftover brown rice with fruit and nuts/seeds.

      1 Reply
      1. re: lgss

        You can easily make waffles yourself in large batches, then freeze them. Pop them in the oven when you are getting dressed. They can probably be put in the toaster too, I would think. I have a waffler that makes three small round ones and those are a nice manageable size.

        You could make stratas too, and freeze them. A square of strata reheated is a nice hearty breakfast.

      2. When we travel we often have chips and salsa or sometimes chips and hummus for breakfast. At home we make bread (zucchini/tahini, banana, etc) or muffins (peanut butter/apple, blueberry, banana/nut, etc) and have those as a quick breakfast with smoothies. If we make a dozen muffins on Sunday night and each eat two per day, that's breakfast for 3 days. Sometimes we freeze some ahead and move them from the freezer to fridge the day before we need them.

        1 Reply
        1. re: lgss

          I like to do the same thing with pancakes. We usually have them with link sausage on a Sunday morning. I’ll make a dozen or so extra and then freeze two or three of them with a couple of sausage links in sandwich style zip lock bags. Then during the week I’ll pop them on a plate with syrup and microwave them for 2 ½ to 2 ¾ minutes. They're as good as new.

          A nice alternative to oatmeal is Hodgson Mill’s cracked wheat hot cereal. Unlike steel cut oats, it only takes seven to ten minutes to make after the liquid boils. Like oatmeal you can make it with either water or milk. I find that it tastes better and creamier with milk and a little salt and sugar or splenda. I like to add golden raisins to it during the cooking cycle so they plump up and rehydrate. Like oatmeal, I suppose you could make a big batch of it in a crock pot overnight and then refrigerate individual portions to be heated up in the morning.

        2. bagels with ricotta, topped with toasted pine nuts

          huevos rancheros--corn tortillas topped with poached eggs & salsa on bed of refried beans. Sub frozen waffle if desired. Canned La Costena refries are wonderful.

          Burritos stuffed with leftovers and sauced with salsa and guacamole--heated in a toaster oven.

          1. In colder weather, I like to heat up a can of soup. In warmer weather, cottage cheese with fruit. My husband eats omelets: put frozen asparagus tips in a pan and heat for a couple minutes, throw in some onions you have fried up in advance, then pull that stuff out, pour in eggs (or Eggbeaters), cook, toss in the veggies and maybe some goat cheese, plate it up and slather on some salsa. Vary the veggies, fry up a batch of mushrooms the night before, etc. I like to toast English muffins, then melt cheese on top, then add salsa. Protein is important. I also love granola and pourable yogurt or kefir.

            1. Japanese eat miso soup. I tried it recently and find it very satisfying - chunks of tofu add protein. I make it from scratch. AT 4:30 - ladle into bowl or mug and microwave - warm, good - ready to bike.

              Also consider reheated rice or rice in chicken soup. I think the best alternative bfast is soup of any kind - good to eat veggies in the morning.

              1. I'm not a morning person. I drag myself out of bed with minutes to go before having to shove myself out the door to work. So breakfasts are rarely a leisurely experience for me.

                If you want to stick to a traditional concept of breakfast, then things like scrambled eggs and toast take very little time. (Bittman suggests eggs fried in olive oil and oregano, served over toast, which is also a quick and tasty.) And many batters for things like pancakes can be made the night before and cooked quickly in the morning.

                And if you're willing to reach beyond the traditional definition of breakfast, one of my favorite fast meals in the morning is a quesadilla.

                1. Omsubi or rice balls:

                  Cook up some sushi rice or short grain brown rice, While its warm, form into balls. Wet your hand in a soution of rice wine vinegar and salt to flavor and help with the stickiness. Poke a hole in the side and stuff with filling: flaked salmon, pickles, umeboshi plum, egg, whatever you like. Cover the hole with more rice, wrap in plastic and pack some nori separately (to keep it crisp).

                  You've probably tried this already, but here goes: Muesli.

                  It's basically yogurt, rolled oats, dried fruit and nuts, mixed together and stored in the fridge overnight. In the morning, top with seasonal fresh fruit. I've seen recipes that use bran or wheat flakes, and milk instead of yogurt.

                  I used to mix it in a thermos bottle the night before, toss in the berries in the morning, and take it with me to work.

                  1. Look up bircher muesli online; it's basically rolled oats soaked in apple juice, milk and yoghurt with chopped up apple and other fruit, left in the fridge overnight and consumed the next morning. Still crunchy, very refreshing in the summer.

                    Otherwise, my favourite breakfast food when I know I'll be needing lots of energy is pasta. Not exactly a breakfast food, but some pasta tossed with a tomato sauce takes one minute to reheat in the microwave, and keeps me full (but not heavily so) for the whole morning.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: Gooseberry

                      Savory oatmeal instead of sweet to change things up? Can put shredded cheese, stir in an egg, or just salt, pepper and butter.

                      1. re: allieinbklyn

                        That thought has never even occurred to me! It seems so out there...can you maybe elaborate on the taste? Do you throw in the egg while it's still cooking? Very interesting...

                        1. re: ark1118

                          Yes, while the oatmeal is still cooking (and therefore quite hot) stir in a raw egg - it'll cook in that goopy mostly cooked sense and add protein and a nice richness to the oatmeal.

                    2. A BLT bagel (or cheese, lettuce and tomato). Take an onion bagel, toasted, grilled or sauteed onion rings, cream cheese schmear, thick slice of tomato , romaine lettuce (or fresh spinach), and pre-cooked bacon or good cheddar, assemble and enjoy.

                      1. Peanut, or another nut butter on whole wheat toast or a bagel is a good breakfast. Goat cheese is good too.

                        1. Microwave poached egg with salsa. Egg, bowl, pam, salsa, mix and nuke 170 secs on power 7 of 10.

                          1. wow! thanks for all the new, interesting ideas everyone! i'll definitely have to try some out. I'm especially into the frozen homemade waffles and reheated strata ideas. Thanks for all the suggestions!!!

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: ark1118

                              I also like making pancakes to freeze and toast, but especially if you can include in the pancakes everything you need to make them a complete breakfast. I.e., some seeds, nuts, ricotta or cottage cheese for protein (lemon ricotta is a favorite combo) and even maple syrup so you don't need to bother with putting messy sticky syrup on in the morning but still get that nice mapley flavor and the sweetness!

                            2. I'm a fan of frozen waffles as a vehicle for other spreadables or ingredients. Sometimes I'll take two waffles and make a sandwich sometimes with nut butter and chocolate chips, peanut butter and banana... you could easily scramble some eggs and put them in there with some cheese.


                              1. I'm one of those people that will always prepare breakfast on Sunday for the week, been doing this for years and its an old habit.
                                The favorite is a breakfast burrito, freezable, microwaveable, filling can be anything you wish. As others have mentioned, make pancakes, but I also do french toast and freeze it with a pat of butter. Homemade biscuits make great litte holders for poached eggs topped with cheese ( I add bacon,sausage or ham) as you said you're avoiding meat so do your own thing here.