All Entries For breakfast
My love of donuts started on my sixth birthday, when my parents bought me donuts instead of a birthday cake. Ten years later my parents led my family through a pretty amazing lifestyle change that included diet and exercise. I’ll never forget walking into a well-known donut chain where you could watch them come off the line. My Mom and I asked for one without icing. They were shocked at the request, not able to comprehend. After convincing them we were serious about the no icing request, we asked for three. They delivered three dozen to the register.
Apparently, customers order them by the dozen there. This got me thinking how to enjoy the warm soft sweetness of donuts without the fat, calories and sugar of the traditional recipe. Here’s what I learned: start by substituting whole wheat flour, then use plain yogurt instead of oil and butter. Add natural ingredients—like berries, pumpkin, and banana—to add nutritional sweetness. Have fun with toppings too, using lemon zest, orange zest, cinnamon sugar, or add icing in moderation. Try baking instead of frying or make smaller ones to help with portion control. If you don’t own a donut pan, try a muffin pan instead. Donuts are a wonderful treat, but these recipes give you all the flavor, but not wreck your health goals. Read More ›
For my family, spring signals the beginning of little league baseball and a renewed level of busyness that makes staying on top of nutrition a bit of a challenge. Recently, I've been using berries, another spring/summer favorite, to keep my kids fueled up. Using a simple blender, I can have a tasty treat whipped up in minutes that includes many greens that my kids wouldn't normally eat.
Berries are sweet, but also contain a boost of disease-fighting antioxidants, fiber and vitamins. It's fun to hear my kids ask for a second glass, especially when I know it's loaded with spinach, kale, or chia or flax seed to add fiber, protein and healthy omega fats. I make it a goal to get at least three servings of fruits and vegetable in each smoothie I make.
When I see deal on berries, I buy double what I need and put half in the freezer. Then I can just pull out what I need, whenever I need it, and clean up is easy too: just pop the blender parts in your dish washer or hand clean with hot soapy water. Fuel yourself with berries and other great smoothies by trying these SparkRecipes. Read More ›
Spring gardens are in full bloom and the beauty of the season is reaching its peak. It's as if the gardens themselves are working overtime for Mother's Day, celebrating the proverbial "busy bees" in our lives, our moms.
Mother's Day brunch is a tradition for many families, but it often includes endless buffet tables chock-full of high fat, salt saturated, and sugar laden dishes. The high price tag of these "all you can eat affairs" wreak havoc on our common sense, leading us to rationalize eating more than we our stomachs are designed to hold. We enjoy the company of our loved ones, yes, but do we welcome the bathroom scale the following morning?
Give Mom the gift of love through a healthy and fun meal. I've gathered our best brunch recipes for you to enjoy. Many of these are from our Chef Meg. Her gourmet recipes are simple to prepare and don't require an endless list of ingredients, highlighting spring fruits and vegetables. They are perfect for dads and children to prepare together too, making the cooking as fun as the eating, if not more. Here are some other ideas to make this Mother's Day memorable: visit your local farmer's market; create a customized playlist with songs that celebrate memories with Mom; pick some fresh flowers from the garden; and adorn the table with china. Most importantly, don't forget to clean up the kitchen so Mom can spend the evening basking in the love of her loved ones. Read More ›
Are you caught up on the latest juicing craze? Regardless making homemade juices are a great choice for those wanting to take control of their health. Homemade juices are healthier than store bought as you can control what ingredients are being used and nothing unnecessary is added. It’s a great way to use those fruits and vegetables are ripe and ready to use. I’ve come up with some of the best combinations by throwing in everything on the container that needs to be eaten today into the juicer. It also a great way to eat fruits and vegetables you may not enjoy on their own. All of these recipes require a blender or juicer. Stay hydrated and filled up on nutrition with these delicious juice recipes. Read More ›
Start your day right with these delicious 300-calorie breakfast ideas.
Breakfast burrito: 3 scrambled egg whites + 1/2 cup diced tomato* + 1/4 diced yellow bell pepper + 1 Tbsp chopped sweet onion + 1/4 cup no-salt-added canned black beans + 1 Tbsp salsa, wrapped in an 8" whole-wheat tortilla
Peanut butter—pear toast: 1 slice whole-wheat bread + 2 Tbsp unsalted peanut butter + 1/2 sliced pear*
Orange-apricot quinoa: 1/4 cup quinoa* cooked in 1/4 cup calcium-fortified orange juice + 1/4 cup water; stir in 4 chopped dried apricot halves + 1 Tbsp sliced almonds
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Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, not only because that’s "what my Mom used to say," but because, as my kids will tell you, their Mommy (me) gets pretty grumpy when she doesn't have a good breakfast. In all seriousness, several studies point to the importance of breakfast for metabolism, mental acuity, as well as other key health and wellness factors. SparkPeople has made breakfast a key priority in its programs too.
At the same time, not everyone feels the same about breakfast. Too big a breakfast and my husband will feel ill. The wrong breakfast choices and my kids will stage an uprising, of which they’re usually on the verge anyway in the morning. To help other Sparkers who find breakfast challenging, I've gathered our best recipes that have a proper balance of complex carbs, proteins, and fats that are also quick, easy, and affordable to prepare. Start your day right with these breakfast gems. Read More ›
For many of us, Christmas morning is a time to indulge in a big, leisurely breakfast that we normally wouldn't partake in on most other days of the year. But if you're not careful, a festive a.m. meal could cause you to blow through a day's worth of calories and fat before Christmas dinner! If you were to choose a special and indulgent holiday breakfast to keep you satisfied without stuffing you silly, which would you pick: One medium-size iced cinnamon roll, or a plate of two fried eggs and two strips of bacon? Read More ›
If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it 937 times: Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Why? You just spent eight hours without food or water while your body continued to use energy. You’re dehydrated, your blood sugar is low and you have little energy. And now it’s time to start a hectic day.
Breakfast eaters typically cruise until lunch, while beaming with energy compared to those who skip the meal and tend to snack before lunch and throughout the day, and tend to be drawn to unhealthy, high-calorie options. While quick and healthy breakfast ideas help with meal selection, they don’t help make breakfast a habit. If breakfast isn’t part of your morning routine, use these three tips to help you develop a new daily habit.
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If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it 937 times: Breakfast is the most important meal of the day—for you, and for your kids. You just spent eight hours with no food or water. You’re dehydrated, your blood sugar is low and you have little energy. And now it’s time to hurry the kids off to school before the eight-hour workday. More so than any other point in the day, you all need nourishment. Breakfast eaters typically cruise until lunch, while beaming with energy.
Scratch those unhealthy breakfasts. Here are some healthy and quick ideas for the whole family: Read More ›
Recently we surveyed our members about their cooking and eating habits. Most of you spend 30 minutes or so making dinner but only five minutes making your other meals and snacks.
Some nights, you just don't have 30 minutes. When your schedule doesn't allow enough time to make a home-cooked dinner, why not serve breakfast for supper instead? Breakfast meals tend to be fast, and ours are healthy to boot. This week's downloadable and printable menu has seven nights of suppers that are as good for you at night as they are in the morning.
Keep reading to see the menu!
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A "cultured milk product" may sound foreign, but if you've ever eaten yogurt, you're closer to kefir than you thought. Find out what makes it just a little more special.
What Is Kefir?
Kefir has the mild tang of yogurt, only with a thinner and more drinkable consistency. Plain is the traditional variety but its increasing popularity has caused manufacturers to produce flavors like cherry, strawberry, chocolate, cappuccino and pomegranate. Low-carb flavors are also available but are sweetened with artificial sweeteners.
Kefir is available in non-fat, low-fat and whole milk forms. Brands such as Lifeway also offer frozen, scoop-able versions, with a texture similar to frozen yogurt. Read More ›
You have heard it said that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. While some people question this recommendation, others have quick and healthy breakfast favorites they regularly include at the beginning of their day. Many of us enjoy a warm bowl of oatmeal during cold winter months and have created healthy recipes to tickle our taste buds. As the weather changes, some of us seek out cooler healthy breakfast alternatives like fruit smoothies, yogurt or cold cereal.
With all the food-labeling loopholes, selecting a healthy cereal can be tricky. Ignore the catchy claims on the front of the box and go straight to the nutrition facts label instead. Here's what to look for:
- Remember the "Rule of Fives": Choose cereals with at least 5 grams of fiber per serving, and less than 5 grams of sugar.
- Look for each serving to contain at least 3 grams of protein.
- Read the ingredients list. The top ingredients should be "whole wheat," or "wheat bran"—not just "wheat." These whole grains are naturally low in fat, and high in fiber.
- Avoid cereals that list hydrogenated oils, artificial dyes or colors, and chemical preservatives as ingredients—these have no place in a healthy diet!
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