It was always extremely important to me that our boys go to school after having had a good breakfast. With them leaving at different times, to four different schools, mornings around our house tended to be chaotic and the thought of a sit-down breakfast was out of the question. It was definitely everyone fend for themselves time, made doable only by preparing large batches of make ahead breakfast foods. Every month we made up gallons of instant breakfast cereal (recipe), yogurt, granola and dozens of frozen toaster pancakes.
Make Ahead Breakfast Foods Favorites:
Instant Oatmeal Cereal: This cereal was a favorite breakfast food at our house. It was less than half the price and much healthier than the purchased product. It was also simple to make, easy to serve and yummy to eat. We started making it because it just wasn’t practical to buy the ready-made stuff – the packages were simply too small, each one containing only 1/4 cup of cereal. It was not unusual for our teenage boys to use a large soup ladle – equivalent to one cup – to scoop out their breakfast cereal. One other advantage to making it was that I was able to leave out the additives and add-in healthy ingredients, like the wheat germ.
The following recipe makes about 12 cups – equivalent to six packs of the ready made stuff. If that’s too much, simply cut all ingredients in half.
- 8 cups of quick oats
- 1 ½ cups dry milk powder (optional)
- 1 cup toasted wheat germ (optional)
- 1 and 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 cup golden raisins
- 2 tablespoons cinnamon (optional)
To make, pour 3 of the 8 cups quick oats into a food processor and process until finely ground. Pour the ground oats into a large bowl. Add the remaining 5 cups of quick oats, the optional ingredients if desired, the brown sugar and the raisins. Mix well. Pour the final product into a large container with an airtight lid.
To serve: Scoop out as much of the instant oatmeal cereal into a bowl as desired. Add enough hot water to cover. Stir. Let stand 2 minutes and serve. It’s that easy.
Notes: The dry milk powder, wheat germ and cinnamon are optional ingredients, but I always added them for the extra goodness they provided. We had really good well water so the boys just used the hot water from the tap. Otherwise it may be necessary to heat filtered water in the microwave or kettle. I think wheatgerm is an under-utilized food. It’s super healthy and tastes great sprinkled on yogurt or ice-cream or added to smoothies.
More Favorite Make-Ahead Breakfast Foods:
Yogurt: Yogurt is very easy to make and was also a favorite with our boys. They would add granola or fruit, and of course, wheatgerm. I’m adding the link to my previous post about yogurt that included the instructions for making it. My Yogurt Instructions.
Granola: Another breakfast standby we counted on was granola. Because of the large quantities we needed, I used our large roaster to make granola once a month. Since very few families need the quantities we made, I’m including Susan’s homemade granola recipe instead.
Pancakes: The frozen toaster pancakes were especially good on mornings when everyone was running behind. The boys could just quickly grab a few from the freezer, stick them in the toaster, spread them with flavored butter and you’re good to go. Any pancake recipe can be used – there is just one thing to keep in mind. When doubling or tripling a pancake recipe, doubling or tripling the milk may make the batter too runny, therefore start with a little less than called for. You can always add more if the batter is too thick. To freeze the pancakes, place on a no-stick cookie sheet and place in freezer. Once they’re frozen solid, put each pancake into a sandwich bag (the cheapest you can find), then place these into a well-labeled freezer bag or container and return to freezer.
Honey or Maple butter: These butters were great to have on hand because they go with just about everything – toast, biscuits, muffins, pancakes, raisin bread, etc. They also eliminate work – everyone who has placed honey or maple syrup on the table knows the sticky mess they leave behind. These make ahead breakfast foods butters do away with that problem.
Directions: Bring all the ingredients to room temperature. With electric mixer, whip 1 cup of butter until fluffy, then beat in 1/2 cup of honey or maple syrup and continue beating until well blended. Spoon into a small, wide-mouth glass jar with a lid and refrigerate.
To use, remove from fridge the evening before so the butter will be spreadable in the morning. Note: It may be necessary to make smaller batches if the butter can’t be used within a reasonable amount of time – I would think two weeks would be a good rule of thumb.
Having a variety of self-serve breakfast foods on hand certainly made our mornings run much more smoothly. I hope these breakfast ideas will make your mornings do the same.
Talk to you again soon, Lenie @ Frugal For Everyone
Time to eat…