Sunday, November 3, 2013

Our Top 10 Nutrient-Dense Breakfasts, Including How to Fry Eggs in Cast Iron

I've always loved breakfast.  As soon as I awake, I always feel a strong desire to eat breakfast.  And since first-thing-in-the-morning is the best time of day for us to homeschool, our breakfasts need to require little time or effort to prepare. Because I periodically make large batches of make-ahead breakfast items, getting breakfast on the table during the week is very quick and easy.

Our Top 10 Nutrient-Dense Breakfasts

These are the staple breakfast items in our home.  Most of these require preparation ahead of time.  I usually spend an hour or two each weekend making breakfast and snack items for the coming week.

  • Applesauce Spice Custard Cake: This is my husband's favorite breakfast.  It is smooth, creamy, a little bit tangy, and wonderfully spiced. This can be served warm or cold, and it works for GAPS, Primal, gluten-free, and grain-free diets.
  • Homemade Freezer Waffles: Smeared with butter and drizzled with maple syrup, this is our version of a classic breakfast.  These waffles are made from soaked whole grain and are gluten-free.
  • Mushroom and Cheddar Quiche: This quiche is an absolute favorite of my 3-year-old son, and the rest of us love it too.  It is great for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, and it works for GAPS, Primal, gluten-free, and grain-free diets.     
  • Pumpkin Pie Clafoutis: In the Fall and Winter months, we particularly enjoy eating pumpkin pie clafoutis.  I use my homemade pumpkin puree to make it, but canned pumpkin works well too. This recipe works for GAPS, Primal, gluten-free, and grain-free diets. 
  • Cinnamon Raisin Bread: This bread is soft, moist, and delicious! We usually eat cinnamon raisin bread as toast, with either a smear of butter or butter/cream cheese/honey on top.  I make a double batch of this bread, then slice it and freeze it in single servings so it is quick to prepare in the morning. It works for GAPS, Primal, gluten-free, and grain-free diets.
  • Fully-Loaded Toast (or Waffle): Both of my kids love to eat "fully loaded" toast. It is made by topping toasted white sourdough bread with butter, cream cheese, peanut butter, and jam. Since my daughter doesn't yet tolerate gluten well, we make hers a Fully-Loaded Waffle instead.
  • Fried Egg with Toast: My favorite breakfast includes a slice of toasted white sourdough bread, slathered with nutrient-dense butter, with a fried egg (or two).  For a side dish, I'll sometimes enjoy some tomato, avocado, or bread and butter pickles along with the toast and egg. My method for perfect fried eggs is as follows:
    • I like to cook my eggs in a well-seasoned cast iron skillet. The trick to preventing the eggs from sticking is to melt plenty of butter in the skillet, swirl it around well, and then add the eggs once the skillet is rather warm. Do NOT add eggs to a cool cast-iron skillet, else they will stick! I use about 2 tsp of butter per egg. 
    • Fry the eggs over medium heat in the melted butter. To make sure the yolks won't break, wait to flip the eggs until the whites are well set.  I then give the skillet a gentle shake to loosen the eggs before flipping them. 
    • I have one very small cast iron skillet that is perfectly sized to fry one or two eggs, and with a quick toss of the wrist I can flip the eggs without having to dirty a spatula.  My kids love to watch me do this, and they call it my magic trick.  If you're not feeling brave enough to flip eggs in that way, use a plastic spatula instead. (Flipping eggs is one of the rare uses for my nylon spatula; I prefer not to use plastic in any heated applications, but I find that my metal spatula breaks the egg yolks very frequently.)
    • As soon as I flip the egg(s), I turn off the heat and let the eggs cook for just a few seconds in the residual heat left in the skillet. Don't leave them too long, else the yolk will cook completely.
    • Sprinkle some celtic sea salt over each egg before serving.
  • Maple Banana Yogurt: My kids enjoy maple banana yogurt for breakfast. It is made by simply topping sliced banana with plain whole milk yogurt and a drizzle of maple syrup over the top. This is grain-free, gluten-free, Primal, and can be used for GAPS by just substituting honey for the syrup. 

  • Homemade Cookies: Homemade cookies make a wonderful breakfast, and my daughter especially likes to have cookies for breakfast. Since they are homemade and loaded with healthy ingredients such as butter/coconut oil, unrefined sweeteners, and pastured eggs, these cookies are a wonderfully nutritious breakfast treat any day of the week.
  • Egg on a Waffle: One breakfast we all enjoy (and sometimes eat for lunch, too) is a homemade waffle smeared with butter, topped with a fried egg, and drizzled with maple syrup over it all.  This unlikely combination is absolutely delicious!

What are your favorite breakfast foods?

This post is part of Traditional Tuesdays, Fat Tuesday, Natural Living Monday and Mostly Homemade Mondays!

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Liz said...

Thanks for all the ideas! I've been needing some inspiration.

Kris said...

Love these ideas, thanks! I am having a hard time with cooking lately, as we have one gluten free and dairy free, and then another with anaphylactic allergies to eggs and peanuts. So, I want to do all these coconut flour or otherwise gaps friendly kind of recipes, but they are all so very egg heavy. Any ideas?
Visiting from Natural Living Monday...

Marianne @ Ragdoll Kitchen said...

What a great list! Thank you :)

Sarah Smith said...

Hi Kris,
Thanks for stopping by! Here are some GAPS-friendly recipes that may help since they don't use eggs (and of course almond butter can be used in place of peanut butter; coconut oil can generally be used in place of butter in most of my recipes):

Anonymous said...

Wonderful new ideas for breakfast! Still love those eggs fried in butter the best. And funny you mention the cast iron. Just pulled one out to have my breakfast egg, even though I have 2 pans(nonstick) on the stove that my husband and son made their French toast and eggs in!

Anonymous said...

it all sounds good, but i found some rust on my cast iron pan do you think its time for a new one?

Sarah Smith said...

Cast iron pans will get rusty anytime they are exposed to moisture if they aren't seasoned well. The rust should scrub right off; then dry it right away and season it with oil.