Start Your Day Right with These Make-Ahead Breakfasts

Breakfast may be the most important meal of the day. You’ve heard it many times, but did you know that eating within a few hours of waking up can actually jumpstart your metabolism, as well as helping to protect you from developing diabetes and heart disease in the long term?  

Still, though, who has time? Not many of us. (According to one recent survey, most people only eat breakfast three times a week!) 

If you’d like a warm, healthy, home-cooked breakfast but can’t seem to find the time, we’ve got you covered. These tasty recipes are a breeze to prep in advance the night before—so that you can easily put together an epic morning meal any day of the week.

Smoky Sheet Pan Sweet Potato Hash

Only 1 in 10 people eat the recommended daily 2 to 3 cups of veggies. Why not get a jumpstart with this vegetable-packed hash? You’ll rack up 180 percent of your daily vitamin A and a full day’s vitamin C. 

Make it. In a medium bowl, combine 2 large, peeled sweet potatoes (cut into ½ -inch dice), 2 tablespoons avocado oil, ½ teaspoon each chili powder, smoked paprika, and cumin, plus salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a large sheet pan. Bake in a 425°F oven for 20 minutes. Remove pan from oven. 

Add 1 diced yellow bell pepper, ½ diced sweet onion, and 1 additional tablespoon of avocado oil. Toss gently and bake for 15 to 20 additional minutes. Remove from oven. 

Make ahead tip. Roast the veggies a day in advance and reheat in a 375°F oven for 15 minutes. If you’re feeling fancy, sprinkle with chopped cilantro.

Makes 4 servings.

Nutrition facts per serving: 316 calories, 11 g total fat, 1 g saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 139 mg sodium, 52 g carbs, 8 g fiber, 12 g total sugars, 0 g added sugars, 4 g protein 

Spinach Goat Cheese Egg Muffins 

These make-ahead muffins are packed with protein to banish mid-morning hunger pangs. For extra staying power, serve them inside a whole-wheat pita pocket or on a whole-grain English muffin. Then simply grab and go! 

Make it. Spray a 12-cup muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray. In a large bowl, whisk together 12 eggs, 2 cups chopped fresh spinach, 1 cup halved grape tomatoes, ½ cup shredded goat cheese (or any kind of shredded cheese you like!), and salt and pepper. Spoon into prepared muffin tin. Bake in a 350°F oven for 15 to 20 minutes.

Make ahead tip. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days and reheat in the microwave wrapped in a damp paper towel. Or if you’ll have more time in the AM, prep the egg mixture in the evening, refrigerate, and pour into muffin tins and bake in the morning.

Makes 12 servings.

Nutrition facts per serving: 99 calories, 7 g total fat, 3 g saturated fat, 190 mg cholesterol, 90 mg sodium, 2 g carbs, 0.5 g fiber, 1 g total sugars, 0 g added sugars, 8 g protein 

Overnight Lemon-Blueberry French Toast Casserole

This gooey French toast may taste decadent, but it’s jammed with fiber-rich whole grains and antioxidant-filled blueberries. Each serving also supplies 23 percent of your daily calcium.

Make it. Grease a 13 x 9-inch baking dish with 1 tablespoon unsalted butter. In a large bowl, whisk together 2 cups whole milk, 1 cup whole milk ricotta cheese, 8 eggs, ¼ cup sugar, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, the zest of 1 lemon, and ½ teaspoon salt. Add 1 loaf cubed crusty whole-wheat bread and 2 cups fresh blueberries. Stir gently to combine and transfer to baking dish. Bake in a 350° F oven for 45 to 50 minutes, or until golden on top and firm in the center. Cover and refrigerate.  

Make ahead tip. Cut yourself a piece, heat in the microwave, and serve with additional blueberries and a light drizzle of maple syrup, if desired. 

Makes 10 servings.

Nutrition facts per serving: 267 calories, 12 g total fat, 5 g saturated fat, 167 mg cholesterol, 423 mg sodium, 30 g carbs, 4 g fiber, 13 total sugars, 5 g added sugars, 17 g protein

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