You’ve just fasted for 8 to 12 hours overnight; you have a big day of school or work ahead of you; you’re in a rush….you know that it is important to eat breakfast, but don’t have time for more than a cup of coffee and a piece of toast, or a quick bowl of cereal with a little milk—definitely not enough to fuel your body and brain until lunch time! You end up eating a pastry or other high calorie, low nutrient, easy to grab snack when you get to school or work…….No wonder you feel sluggish and have a hard time concentrating!

Breakfast is truly the most important meal of the day, BUT, it is also the most neglected. Research has shown that people who eat breakfast are less apt to be overweight than those who skip this meal. We need quick but nutritious  foods that meet 20 to 30% of our calorie and protein needs for the day before we head out, BUT, who has time?

Here are a couple ideas –the first is a “baked oatmeal” that can be made ahead and eaten cold or heated in the microwave. The second is  a quick yogurt, fruit, nuts and cereal mixture that can be put together in 1 minute (really!)


Baked Oatmeal
3 servings; 290 calories, 21 gm protein, 32 gm carbohydrate, 8 gm fat; 340 mg sodium (WITH SALT), 245 mg sodium (WITHOUT SALT); and 5 gm dietary fiber;

2 large servings  428 calories, 31 gm protein, 48 gm carbohydrate, 12 gm fat, 513 mg Na (WITH SALT), 366 mg sodium (WITHOUT SALT), and 7 gm fiber

  • 2 ounce (2/3 cup) Old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 1/3 cup non-fat milk (‘could use soy milk or goat’s milk, if you don’t drink cow’s milk)
  • 1 whole, extra large egg
  • 1 1/4 cup egg whites (buy in a carton at the grocery store–typically in the same area as whole eggs)
  • 1 ounce almonds (about 25 almonds), coarsely chopped
  • 1 ounce (1/4 cup) dried apricots, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt (OPTIONAL)

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F. Put oats into a large mixing bowl and cover with milk. Beat eggs with a fork and add to oats and milk. Add all the rest of the ingredients and mix well. Spray a pie plate or shallow baking pan with Pam or other cooking spray. Pour mixture into pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until eggs are “set” and knife inserted into the middle comes out clean.

Alternatives: Substitute 1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries, a chopped fresh apple, or 1/4 cup raisins or other dried fruit for the apricots. Fresh or frozen fruit will require a little longer cooking time. ‘Could also use spices such as nutmeg, cardamom and/or cloves for interesting flavors.

Greek Yogurt, Fruit, Nuts and Oats
1 serving
410 calories, 30 gms Protein, 52 gm Carbohydrate, 11.4 gm Fat, 152 mg Sodium  8.7 gm Dietary Fiber–for smaller appetites, use 3/4 of this recipe for 310 calories and 22.5 gm protein.

  • 1 cup Nonfat, Plain Greek Yogurt
  • 3/4 cup fresh or frozen blueberries or 3/4 cup chopped other fruit (chopped orange, peach, banana…)
  • 1/2 ounce, 12-13 whole almonds (coarsely chop, if desired)
  • 1 ounce (1/3 cup) rolled oats (raw)

Mix together and eat! Can also blend in blender with a little milk for a breakfast shake.
Can use left over cooked rice, quinoa or any unsweetened dry cereal (with milk as desired) in place of rolled oats. (this is my “go to” breakfast OR lunch when I don’t have a lot of time!)