Menu Monday: Breakfast 2

Greetings and good morning. It’s time for another installment of Menu Monday.

Last week, I shared our basic breakfast plan with you. This week, I thought I would share how I put the plan into action.  As a reminder, our standing breakfast menu is pretty simple.  I don’t have a fully functional kitchen yet (thanks to the remodel) so we keep things pretty basic.   Right now, we have a standing selection of items to pick from.

Once a week, I check the supplies and add anything we need to a grocery list.  I assemble breakfast items throughout the week as I have time.  The rest of the time, my kids are pretty self sufficient.  This is important because I am genuinely not a morning person. My kids have not always been so self sufficient.  There are times when they still ask me to get their breakfast (and lunch, and snacks).  I don’t mind.  We started working with the kids on being able to make their own breakfast over two years ago.  It’s a slow process worthy of a blog entry of it’s own.

Our menu includes: cereal with milk, oatmeal, yogurt and granola with fruit, healthy smoothies or popsicles, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and cheese sticks with applesauce and a breakfast cookie.

I do cook hot breakfasts with eggs or pancakes, but I generally save that meal for an easy dinner. I tend to serve french toast or quiche for a special occasion breakfast.

For a week’s worth of breakfast (and some snacking) for four people, I need:

  • Oatmeal (plain instant in the big round container) about 4 cups, plus more if i make granola from scratch
  • Oatmeal (steel cut) about 1 cup.  no one eats it but me.
  • Milk – about a 1/2 gallon for cooking, plus an additional 1/2 gallon for drinking during the week
  • Cereal – only about 1/4 of a box of boring cereal a week.  The kids are limited to cereals that are low in sugar and high in fiber.
  • Yogurt – about 1 quart of unsweetened greek yogurt, 1/2 a quart of vanilla greek yogurt
  • Fruit – 28 servings of fruit (combination of fresh, frozen, and dried) that sounds like a lot, but it’s 1 serving per person per day
  • Bread – half a loaf (includes mid-morning snacks)
  • Cheese sticks – 4 (plus more for snacking)
  • Apple sauce – 2 to 4 cups (plus more for snacking).  My kids like the squeeze kind for portability.
  • Breakfast cookies or power bars – A dozen or so.
  • Peanut butter and jelly – no idea, I just make sure I have it in the house.
  • Granola – 2 cups to buy or make (more if its a popular snack item)
  • Smoothie and granola ingredients (nuts, chia seeds, pb2, honey, etc)
  • Coffee and maple syrup for me
Once a week:
  1. Portion the oatmeal into small bags that are the right size for small children.  My family uses 1/2 cup of oatmeal, 1/2 cup of applesauce (the snack cup size) and 1/2 cup of milk.  They can easily add variety by using a flavored oatmeal.
  2. Make steel cut oatmeal.  Place in fridge.
  3. Portion out the yogurt into individual servings.  Add fruits and flavorings for variety.
  4. Make breakfast cookies or power bars.
  5. Clean out the fruit bin and make smoothies.  I generally make two flavors.  Half become popsicles and half are stashed in the fridge in one cup servings.
  6. Make granola or portion it out into 1/2 cup servings.
Daily for the kids (sometimes they do more than one of these):
  • Kids can make oatmeal with assistance.  They rinse the bowls and place them in the dishwasher if I nag them.
  • Kids can get yogurt and granola without assistance.  They clean up if I nag them.
  • Kids can make cereal on their own.  Cleaning happens with nagging.
  • If we are on the go, everyone gets a cheese stick, apple sauce, and breakfast cookie.
  • Kids can drink smoothies or eat popsicles without assistance.  I generally clean up the drips.
  • Kids can make pb&j on their own.  I end up cleaning the mess up.

Daily for the adults:

  • Same as above options
  • Steel cut oats with cut up fruit and yogurt
  • Leftovers
  • Dry toast with apple slices and peanut butter (the kids can’t slice apples yet)

The astute will observe that this menu is very light on kitchen usage.  With slight modification, it worked for me in a hotel room with a mini-fridge and microwave.   With a little creativity, it is possible to feed your family healthy food in just about any circumstance.

Are your kids independent breakfast eaters?  What tricks can you share?


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Susan Baker
I have a passion for encouraging weary worn out mothers to find joy in everyday motherhood and peace in unlikely places. I have two elementary school boys, one nerdy husband, and two cats. I have a strange fascination for bad puns, the color pink, socks, and books. I worry about running out of toilet paper, wine, and chocolate.. I serve an amazing God. I live an ordinary life filled with wonder.
Susan Baker
Susan Baker

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