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September 21, 2016
3 Easy Back to School Breakfasts

3 Easy Back to School Breakfasts

The Hood Answer Mom, Elizabeth M. Ward, M.S., R.D.

The days are getting “shorter” and the air has a bit of a nip to it now.  You know what that means: it’s time to get back into the swing of things, including healthy eating habits.

Summer may be waning, but fall is full of opportunity. Children are starting a new year of school, and adults are settling back into their own routines, which can be a refreshing change from unstructured summer days. 

Planning ahead for healthy meals, particularly breakfast, is a surefire way to stay on track.  Here are three recipes to prep for more nutritious eating. 

Make-Ahead Smoothies

Mornings can be chaotic and breakfast often gets lost in the shuffle. Adults and kids alike will appreciate the fun and convenience of freezing smoothie ingredients ahead of time to make smoothies in about one minute.  

Healthy smoothies are the basis of no-brainer breakfasts and nutritious after-school snacks.  The basic smoothie recipe provides 1 ½ servings of fruit/vegetables, nearly a serving of dairy, and no added sugar. Using frozen produce means you don’t need ice in your smoothie, which can dilute the flavor.  

Sip your smoothie at home or take it with you on your way to work or school. For more nutrition, pair your drink with a Spinach, Egg, and Cheese Cup, or Protein Pancakes. You can make both recipes ahead of time.  

Make Your Own Smoothie Kits

Makes 1 serving.

Basic Smoothie:

1/2 medium banana, cut into 1-inch slices

1 cup total in any combination: unsweetened frozen fruit, such as sliced peaches, strawberries, blueberries, pineapple, and mango; cooked vegetables, including sweet potato, canned pumpkin, and chopped beets; fresh vegetables such as baby spinach or kale 

3/4 cup Hood Milk

Here's a favorite you can try: Strawberry Peach Smoothie.

Optional Add-Ins:

2 T. uncooked oats

3 T. protein powder

2 T. chia , flax, hemp, or sunflower seeds

1/8 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract* 

2 T. nuts 

1/4 whole avocado*

1 T. peanut butter or other nut butter, sunflower seed butter, or soy nut butter*

4 Medjool dates

*Do not freeze these ingredients. Add when you combine the produce with the milk. 

Place the banana, the other fruits and vegetables, and the add-ins of your choosing in re-sealable plastic bags or containers. Label each smoothie and place in the freezer.

Place the smoothie kit ingredients and any last-minute add-ins in a blender or food processor with the milk and blend until smooth, about 1 minute. Drink immediately.  

Elizabeth M. Ward

Elizabeth M. Ward

Elizabeth M. Ward, M.S., R.D., is a writer, nutrition consultant, and mother of three. She is the author of several books, including MyPlate for Moms, How to Feed Yourself & Your Family Better and Expect the Best, Your Guide to Healthy Eating Before, During, & After Pregnancy . Ward is also a contributing writer for Muscle & Fitness Hers and Men's Fitness magazines.

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