14 Protein-Packed Breakfasts to Power You Through the Morning
1 CREAMY BERRY QUINOA PARFAIT
You’ll feel like you’re treating yourself with this breakfast parfait, but there’s no need for a guilty conscience. With one-third of the sugar found in typical store-bought parfaits (which frequently use syrups and added sugars), this healthier version is loaded with protein and good carbs. Combine 1/3 cup cooked quinoa, 3/4 cup plain low-fat Greek yogurt, 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract and 1/8 teaspoon of cinnamon. Using 1/4 cup blueberries and 9 walnuts, create layers of the quinoa/yogurt mixture, blueberries and nuts in a glass. CALORIES: 328, PROTEIN: 25 grams.
2 CHEESY EGGWICH
This much healthier version of a popular breakfast sandwich we won’t mention will satisfy your craving and keep you full for longer. Compared to typical fast food breakfast sandwiches, this version has almost 40 percent more protein and half the saturated fat. To prepare, boil an egg and toast a whole-wheat English muffin. Once the egg is cooked, layer 1/2 cup low-fat cottage cheese on top of the muffin and top with the egg, sliced. CALORIES: 303, PROTEIN: 25 grams.
3 CHIA CRUNCH
Chia seeds add omega-3 fatty acids and fiber (a whopping 10 grams in about two tablespoons) to this already high-protein breakfast. Chia seeds are popular because of their superfood nutritional profile, and research shows they may play a role in improving risk factors for heart disease. For this easy recipe, combine 1/3 cup of cooked quinoa with 3/4 cup low-fat Greek yogurt and two teaspoons of chia seeds. CALORIES: 226, PROTEIN: 22 grams.
4 PROTEIN EGGSADILLA
For this easy recipe, combine one egg with 2 egg whites and then scramble in a pan until fully cooked. Remove eggs and place on a whole-wheat tortilla. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup shredded Monterey jack cheese, one tablespoon of salsa and then roll up the tortilla. You can mix up this recipe up by trying different varieties of salsa and cheese. If you want to cut down on fat a bit more, try a low-fat cheese option. CALORIES: 336, PROTEIN: 25 grams.
5 ALMOND BRAN CRUNCH
Adding protein-packed Greek yogurt takes this bran cereal up a notch from your everyday bowl of cereal. Topping with almonds not only adds crunch — they’re the only nut to offer vitamin E, a fat-soluble vitamin that also acts as an antioxidant. Combine 3/4 cup bran cereal with 3/4 cup plain low-fat Greek yogurt and 10 almonds. For added sweetness you can top with fresh blueberries or a banana. CALORIES: 303, PROTEIN: 24 grams.
6 CINNAMON FRENCH TOAST WITH YOGURT
With this recipe, French toast doesn’t have to be a weekend breakfast splurge. With 28 grams of protein, you’ll be satiated for hours. Soak one slice of whole-grain bread in a beaten egg. Cook in a non-stick pan for approximately one minute on each side until lightly browned. Sprinkle with cinnamon (or any other favorite spice) and serve with 3/4 cup of yogurt. CALORIES: 266, PROTEIN: 28 grams.
7 MUSHROOM AND TOMATO OMELET
Omelets are one of the easiest ways to add veggies to your diet while upping your protein intake. This version incorporates mushrooms and tomatoes but you can add peppers, onions, or spinach too. Combine four egg whites with one egg and beat gently. Using a cooking spray, cook eggs in a non-stick pan. Once the egg begins to take form along the edges, add 1/2 cup low-fat cottage cheese, 1/2 cup sliced mushrooms and 1/2 chopped tomato in the center of the omelet. Cook until eggs are set and fold over. CALORIES: 256, PROTEIN: 36 grams.
8 CASHEW MAPLE YOGURT
This yogurt breakfast bowl is a complete meal offering protein, carbohydrates and healthy fats so you’ll feel fuller longer. The touch of maple syrup offers natural sweetness to the tart Greek yogurt. Mix together 3/4 cup multigrain cereal, 8 chopped cashews and 3/4 cup plain low-fat Greek yogurt. Drizzle with 1 1/2 teaspoons of maple syrup and enjoy! To make this recipe gluten-free, swap out regular cereal for a gluten-free cereal of your choice. CALORIES: 321, PROTEIN: 22 grams.
9 MEDITERRANEAN MORNING SCRAMBLE
The Mediterranean diet is considered to be one of the healthiest in the world; it’s linked to cutting risks of heart disease, cancer and other illnesses. Lightly beat one egg with four egg whites and scramble in a non-stick pan until fully cooked. Top eggs with three tablespoons of part-skim ricotta cheese and 3/4 cup baby spinach. CALORIES: 208, PROTEIN: 27 grams.
10 WALNUT YOGURT BREAKFAST
With only three ingredients and a prep time of less than five minutes, this easy breakfast is perfect for anyone with a busy schedule. Walnuts add a healthy dose of omega-3s. Simply combine 3/4 cup plain low-fat Greek yogurt with seven chopped walnut halves and two tablespoons of wheat germ. To add natural sweetness, top with fresh raspberries or any seasonal fruit. CALORIES: 250, PROTEIN: 25 grams
11 SAVORY PROTEIN OATS
Typically topped with dried fruit or nuts, this oatmeal breakfast recipes adds a savory twist by including turkey bacon and Parmesan cheese. Prepare 3/4 cup dry oats with water according to directions. Cook turkey bacon until crisp. Once oats are cooked, stir in three tablespoons of grated Parmesan cheese. Sprinkle chopped bacon crumbles on top and season with pepper. You can use regular or gluten-free oats. CALORIES: 361, PROTEIN: 25 grams.
12 FLAXSEED AND YOGURT BREAKFAST
Perfect for the summer, this cool yogurt breakfast bowl combines all things healthy. Omega-3-filled walnuts and flaxseeds give this dish a one-two punch for heart health and the satiating protein will save your waistline. Mix together 3/4 cup plain low-fat Greek yogurt with seven chopped walnut halves and two tablespoons of ground flaxseed. Topping with fresh or dried fruit will adds fiber in addition to vitamins and minerals. CALORIES: 278, PROTEIN: 24 grams.
13 TURKEY AND CHEESE SCRAMBLE
Combine one egg with one egg white and beat gently. Using cooking spray, cook eggs in a non-stick pan. Once eggs begin to set, add cottage cheese and turkey (sliced) in the center of the eggs and mix in. Continue to cook until eggs are thoroughly cooked. Deli meats can be high in sodium, so opt for a lower sodium version, which are available at most delis. You can also add different vegetables (onions, peppers, tomatoes, etc.) to bump up the fiber and overall nutrition profile. CALORIES: 247, PROTEIN: 34 grams.
14 KIWI AND YOGURT BREAKFAST BOWL
Kiwi fruit is a refreshing twist for this yogurt breakfast bowl. The sweet fruit combined with the tart Greek yogurt is a perfect balance of flavors and combination of healthy carbohydrates and protein. Slice three kiwi fruits and layer over one cup of plain low-fat Greek yogurt. You can also top with wheat germ or chia seeds to add a nutty flavor. CALORIES: 276, PROTEIN: 25 grams.