Our weekday breakfasts are pretty simple around here. I’ve never been one to make elaborate breakfast foods during the work week; though I LOVE large, lazy, gather around the table affairs on Saturday mornings. 🙂 Kids especially seem to make the morning routine even more hectic, am I right? With food allergies added into the mix, we’ve got a short list going at our house. Here’s the breakdown of the foods we rely on to get us going in the morning.
- Cereal – Yeah…really creative, right? Well, I don’t claim to be a foodie, gourmet cook, or food scientist extraordinaire…so cereal has to be on the list. I’m even more boring in that I keep my pantry stocked with just three to four basic types (and the generic versions of the cereals, no less— usually from Aldi). I’m trying to keep it real here!
- Corn Chex or Corn Flakes and Rice Chex or Rice Krispies – for my oldest daughter who is allergic to wheat, soy, milk, egg, peanuts & tree nuts (she prefers to use coconut milk beverage on her cereal as opposed to rice milk)
- Some version of Cheerios – be extra careful on these. The name brand by General Mills now makes most flavor varieties wheat-free/gluten-free. But a lot of the generic brands will still have wheat in their formula. This goes for any boxed cereal though. I’m always amazed at cereals with names like “Oatmeal O’s” that will still be made with wheat!
- Bananas – or some other fruit which is super-handy and fairly neat for kiddos to eat without much fuss in the morning. I’ll be honest, it’s usually just bananas. 🙂
- Oatmeal – Thank goodness my children love oatmeal. For the most part, we try not to use the prepackaged stuff (though my oldest thinks they’re cool and she loves to make them). Instead, we throw 1/3 to 1/2 cup into a bowl, double the water, and microwave for one and a half minutes. We add brown sugar or sometimes a drip or two of chocolate syrup or a spoonful of Enjoy Life chocolate chips (shhhhhh…please don’t tell my super-healthy momma friends) and call it a morning. It is still a super-quick breakfast solution, and I justify the brown sugar or chocolate sauce by thinking how much sugar and fake flavoring I’m avoiding by not using store-bought packets. Not sure that is fair reasoning considering how much brown sugar or chocolate we use though… ahem.
Quick Hot Options
We keep these items in the freezer for some breakfast variety, especially during the school week or for before church when time is at a premium. We pop a few in the microwave and can either eat them at home or in the car if time is running short. Please tell me we’re not the only ones who do this? 🙂
- Allergy-free pancakes – There are lots of gluten-free pancake recipes out there, and even a lot of recipes free of the top eight allergens. However, when I first attempted to make pancakes for Izzy, I used this gluten-free banana pancake recipe that I happened to find in my copy of the April/May 2011 issue of Healthy Cooking. I started with this recipe because I really only needed to have a special flour blend, bananas, and some coconut or rice milk on hand. I didn’t need xanthan gum, flaxseed, or anything else unusual, so I knew I could whip these up almost anytime if needed. Now, we really like this recipe for pancakes. SOOOO GOOD! Just be sure to use a flour mix WITHOUT xanthan gum or guar gum included. 🙂 Like our bread routine, I make these every other week or so, freeze them, and thaw as needed for a quick breakfast in the morning. Izzy actually prefers these without the optional chocolate chips (can you believe that?), so I feel pretty good about these being a decent, quick breakfast. She even likes them plain: no butter or syrup!
- Breakfast muffins – While reading one of my mom blogs, I found a recommendation for these banana chocolate chip oat muffins. Again, this was early on in my oldest’s food allergy diagnosis, so I was looking for foods with simple ingredients that were also fool-proof, easy, & freezable. Tall order, eh? Well, these fit the bill. No special flour blends or ingredients are needed (except the chocolate chips, but you can skip those). We always have the ingredients on hand, and they come together incredibly fast, especially if you make mini-muffins that need less baking time. Like the pancakes, Izzy has started requesting these without chocolate chips, so they are even more economical. My littlest, Tessa, devours these, too. I can never make enough!
- Breakfast cookies – We make these less often, and again- there are a lot of breakfast cookie recipes to be found on the internet, like this one. We usually fall back on Colette Martin’s “Banana Oatmeal Cookies” from one of my favorite resources: Learning to Bake Allergen-Free: A Crash Course for Busy Parents on Baking without Wheat, Gluten, Dairy, Eggs, Soy or Nuts. These have oats, salt, baking powder, oil, bananas, and flaxseed gel (ground flaxseed mixed with water). These can be more on the bland side, so we add raisins or allergy-free chocolate chips to satisfy the sweet tooth a bit. 🙂 The quick prep, bake time, and the basic ingredient list make this my kind of cookie.
As I’m getting more comfortable and knowledgeable about wheat-free, egg-free, peanut/tree nut-free, soy-free, and milk-free cooking, I’m feeling braver about experimenting with some breakfast recipes. I’m thinking about doing a run of tests on various pancake concoctions, for example, as soon as I can get myself organized enough to do so.
Do you have any favorite quick, allergen-free breakfast recipes to share? Got any I should try out and add to the rotation? Please share!