Thursday, January 30, 2014

What's cookin'? - A Healthy Start

They say you should start the day off with a good breakfast. Many times in the past that meant me running out the door to work with a cup of coffee in hand -sometimes with a banana, sometimes a bagel - whatever I could manage to drive with!

Now that I'm home I have more time to devote to what goes in my mouth! If your morning is rushed, you could probably make many of these the night before so that you could have a good breakfast too! Say goodbye to that morning run to DD for that coffee and a muffin!

I've already shared with you that many mornings I have a Nutribullet smoothie. I am still trying out different combinations and I have a few others I will share with you real soon!

My other favorite healthy breakfast choices these days are egg mugs and different oatmeal creations.

What's an egg mug, you ask? Basically. it's scrambled eggs that you make in a  mug and cook in the microwave. 

I bought a cookbook about a year ago called  Hungry Girl - 300 Under 300. In it  are several recipe variations to the egg mug. My favorite is the Say Cheese! Egg Mug. It is so good, it's hard to believe that it is only 172 calories the way it is prepared in the book! 

Here's what you need:

The recipe calls for Egg Beaters. We don't buy those because my boys like to eat a lot of whole eggs. So what I do for the egg mug is use one whole egg and 2 egg whites.

*Scramble that up in your mug or small bowl. Put in the microwave for 1 minute.

*Add the following:
1 wedge Laughing Cow light creamy Swiss cheese
1 Baby Bel cheese round
1 T ricotta cheese (light)
1 t dried minced onion
Dash garlic powder
Dash black pepper

*Cook 1 minute in microwave.

*Add 1 t grated Parmesan cheese. Stir.

*Enjoy, then soak your mug/bowl immediately. They really stick on there! I'll nag you like I nag my husband!..."Soak your bowl!" Haha
Growing oatmeal

The cookbook also features several variations of the "growing oatmeal" bowl. They call it that because you only use a small amount of oatmeal, but when you double-up on the liquid and cook it for a longer time on the stove, you get a lot!

I love oatmeal, and sometimes I throw in frozen berries, nuts or even a little organic granola. I consider these oatmeal bowls a special treat because you throw in a little bit of indulgence foods - chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, mini marshmallows, etc. But they are such scant amounts that it keeps the recipe just under 300 calories. Sometimes for extra chocolate flavor the recipe uses a packet of 25 cal. hot cocoa mix (Swiss Miss makes this).

You always start off the same way:
1/2 c oatmeal (Slow cooking, not quick oats or instant)
Dash salt
1 c unsweetened almond milk
1 c water

* Mix starter ingredients together.
* Bring to boil.
* Reduce heat to low .Simmer 12 to 15 minutes.
*Add "extras" and stir.

The Banana Split Bowl: Add 1/2 sliced banana, 2 t chocolate chips, 1 t sugar-free strawberry preserves, and 2 t of a fat free whipped topping.

The Smores Bowl: Stir in a 25 cal. packet of hot cocoa in the beginning. When done, stir in 2 t chocolate chips, 2 t mini marshmallows,1quarter sheet of a graham cracker (crumbled).

The Almond Joy (my own creation)
Add 1packet of 25 cal. hot cocoa mix in the beginning. After cooking, add 2 t chopped almonds, 2 t chocolate chips, 2 t sweetened coconut flakes.

There are many more in the cookbook (Like peanut butter chips and chocolate - mmm!) and I'm sure you could also create your own, like I did. Oatmeal is great just be careful not to overdo it on the sweet things you add at the end!

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