Getting a yummy breakfast onto the table can be so difficult on busy mornings with everything we need to do for our families. Enter: These make-ahead breakfasts that are both nutritious and kid-friendly!
When you take preferences of little kids into account, and add on the pressure of getting out the door or ready for the day at home, it can make serving up a healthy breakfast that the kids will actually eat a tall order.
One thing that can help and that I’ve come to rely on is making part of the breakfast ahead of time at least some days of the week.
While that might sound like a lot of work, it can be as simple as making a batch of muffins on Sunday or stirring together some overnight oats after dinner.
Tips for Healthy Breakfasts for Kids
One of the biggest challenges with serving healthy breakfasts to kids is getting them to actually eat the food. Here are a few tips for serving up healthy breakfasts to kids:
- Keep food simple.
Kids don’t need a buffet of choices each day and simple options tend to go over better with little ones anyway. Take this opportunity to simplify what you’ve been doing if it’s been feeling like too much.
- Make a rough breakfast menu.
In our house, we have oatmeal on Tuesday and Thursday so at least two of the days of the week we all know what’s in store and we all eat the same thing. It sounds like a simple thing, but it has helped to calm our mornings so much. You can pick whichever foods your family likes and slot them in for specific days of the week.
- Rotate foods over a longer span of time.
If the kids are insisting on only eating the same thing every single morning, remember that’s normal. To work in some big picture variety, I buy different kinds of bread, bagels, cereal, etc so that over time we have a mix of foods. I worry less about whether we eat the same foods a few times in one week.
TIP: Kids thrive on routine. That’s why preschool classrooms and daycares usually have very set schedules. So if the kids know what to expect at meals, that should help them know and learn how to behave. Which can take some of the stress out of it!
Make-Ahead Breakfasts with Eggs
Eggs are a great source of healthy protein and fats for kids (and adults) and are a budget-friendly option to keep in the fridge. Here are 5 ways to make breakfasts with eggs ahead of time.
1. Mini Egg Muffins with Veggies and Cheese
These have a super moist texture and are a nice balance of protein, veggies, and cheese. They store well in the fridge in an airtight container for 3-5 days. Simply reheat for about 10 seconds before serving.
These soft breakfast egg cups are packed with protein and vitamins—and can be made ahead of time! Add any veggie you like, whether carrots, butternut squash, broccoli, or spinach.
2. Egg Muffins with Bacon and Cheese
A complete breakfast in one bite-size form! Store these in the fridge in an airtight container for 3-5 days. Simply reheat for about 10 seconds before serving.
I like adding the thyme in these for extra flavor, but it’s optional! Be sure to grease your muffin tin well with nonstick spray to help prevent these from sticking to the pan. A nonstick mini muffin pan works best here.
3. SPINACH EGGS
Blend greens right into a batch of scrambled eggs, give them a funny name if the kids prefer “Hulk” eggs, and pair with toast for an easy breakfast. These reheat in seconds, too.
Packed with spinach (and iron!), these bright green eggs are fun and delicious. You can serve them as you would scrambled eggs, or use in a breakfast burrito or egg sandwich.
4. Hard Cooked Eggs with Toast
Make a batch of hard cooked eggs ahead of time (even if your child only wants the white or yellow part!) and serve it up with a slice of whole grain toast. Done and done! Store in an airtight container lined with a paper towel (to absorb any excess moisture) for up to 5 days.
TIP: Remember that it’s okay if the kids only like the whites or the yolks…that’s normal!
This is meant to be a cheatsheet for the best basic ways to cook eggs. Refer back to the body of the post for links to making egg muffins.
5. Baked Banana French Toast
You can use any sliced bread that you like. I typically use whole grain or sourdough. You can also bake full slices of bread, then cut into sticks with kitchen scissors. See Notes for allergy-substitutions.
6. French Toast Casserole
Bake this up whenever you have time, then stash it in the fridge until you’re ready for breakfast. Warm it quickly or serve it at room temperature.
Learn how to make the easiest French toast casserole with this simple method. It works with any fruit and is a great option for using up leftover bread!
7. 2-Ingredient Pancakes
In whichever flavor you prefer, these pancakes reheat in seconds and are perfect for all ages.
This recipe makes one small batch of super tender 2-Ingredient Pancakes. It usually makes 1-2 little-kid-size servings. To make more, simply double the recipe. These are delicate pancakes with a texture that’s sort of custardy like French toast, so be gentle when flipping them. See the NOTES at the bottom for the flavor variations.
Make-Ahead Breakfasts with Yogurt
Buy a quart of plain yogurt and use it in all sorts of ways in these make-ahead breakfast recipes throughout the week—and get a hit of probiotics, protein, and calcium.
8. Overnight Oats with Yogurt and Berries
Stir together a batch of these overnight oats after dinner and breakfast is ready for the morning after (or the one after that!).
This overnight oats recipe makes two toddler-size breakfast portions (or 1 mama-size serving). Double it to make additional servings.
9. Overnight Oats with Applesauce
Use applesauce to add natural sweetness to yogurt and oats for a creamy breakfast toddlers will enjoy. (This also works really well for a snack!)
You can easily double (or triple!) the recipe to make more servings. It uses a 1 to 1 ratio of yogurt to applesauce so you can easily scale it up. Mix these up the night before you plan to serve them.
10. Strawberry Drinkable Yogurt
Blend up a batch of drinkable yogurt with fresh strawberries and store in a bottle or jar in the fridge for quick morning meals. Add a piece of toast or dry cereal to round things out.
You can use fresh or frozen berries in this simple Strawberry Smoothie and the results will have a texture that is similar to drinkable yogurt. To make it thicker and to try different flavor options, see the Notes at the end of the recipe.
11. Yogurt Drinks
Save money by blending up a batch of yogurt drinks at home—in any flavor the kids prefer!
Learn how to make homemade Yogurt Drinks to save money, customize them just for your kids, and make a nutritious breakfast or snack to share with the kids in under 5 minutes. See the Notes at the end for the 6 flavor options.
12. Applesauce Granola
Skip the pricy store-bought granolas and make an easy batch at home using applesauce for flavor. This granola is nut-free and easy to stir together and it lasts for weeks in the fridge.
This healthy granola recipe uses applesauce for sweetness and bakes at a lower temperature to lower the risk of burning around the edges. Plus, find an option to make it without added sugar id desired.
12. Fruit-on-the-Bottom Yogurt
Learn how to make the best fruit-on-the-bottom yogurt with all kinds of fruit flavors—and with less sugar and for less money than buying it at the store. This is a yummy way to flavor yogurt for kids and babies.
Scale this up or down according to how many servings you’re planning to make. The directions here are for one small toddler-size serving. (It’s okay if your kiddo wants more or doesn’t eat a whole serving though!)
13. Yogurt Pancakes
Pancakes store so well in the fridge or freezer and this flavor is our fav!
With just a few ingredients and the option to make these on the stovetop or in the oven as a sheet pan pancakes, these Yogurt Pancakes are versatile and so yummy!
Make-Ahead Muffins and Bread
Making a batch of muffins or quick bread on the weekend or when you have time during the week and serving them in the coming days for breakfast is one of the easiest ways to get ahead when serving healthy meals. Store in the fridge or you can freeze the muffins.
14. Zucchini Carrot Muffins
Start the day with a dose of veggies with these easy mini muffins. They have four types of produce and store well in the fridge and freezer.
I prefer to grate my own carrots to ensure that the texture is finer and isn’t very noticeable in the baked muffins. See the Notes for allergy substitutions.
15. Apple Cinnamon Bread with Oats
This easy Apple Cinnamon Bread recipe is moist (and flourless!) and it’s packed with whole grains and fruit. Plus, it has a texture that’s soft enough for even the littlest eaters.
This bread is free from gluten and nuts, and has an alternative if your little doesn’t do dairy. This bread is delicate when warm, so let it cool fully before you slice it with a serrated knife.
16. Blueberry Banana Muffins with Oats
This easy recipe is a favorite—the muffins are sweet enough to taste like a treat, but wholesome enough to fill up little tummies and provide energy for a few hours. And they hold well in the fridge or freezer.
Like a cross between a fluffy blueberry muffin and baked oatmeal, these muffins are moist and packed with yummy nutrition.
17. Yogurt Muffins
With a base recipe that bakes up perfectly fluffy and just-sweet-enough muffins, and 6 options to add flavors from fruit, veggies, spices, and chocolate chips, this Yogurt Muffin recipe is as versatile as it is delicious!
This is an epic of a basic muffin recipe that you can then add flavor to in all sorts of ways—from fruit to veggies to chocolate chips. The batter is packed with protein too, so the muffins are great for breakfast or snack. (The allergy-friendly substitutions are listed in the Notes section at the bottom.)
18. Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins
I love to have a batch of muffins in the fridge or freezer during the week for fast breakfasts and snacks, so whenever I have overripe bananas, I turn them in a batch of these super yummy Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins! (Looking for a gluten-free option? Try these Banana Oatmeal Muffins.)
TIP: Find my best Healthy Muffins for Kids for more ideas.
These muffins are best with very ripe bananas (they should have a lot of brown spots, which indicate sweetness). Then, simply stir everything together in one bowl and bake up a batch of delicious Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins to share with the kids.
19. Spinach Banana Muffins
Bright in color and naturally sweet in flavor, these healthy muffins are delicious cold served right out of the fridge.
These healthy muffins taste like a delicious banana muffin, but with the added nutrition of a big handful of spinach. These store well, so you can make them ahead of time and pull them out of the fridge or freezer to serve.
Make-Ahead Oatmeal, Breakfast Cookies and Bars
Start the day with long-lasting complex carbohydrates (and fiber!) with these whole grain breakfast ideas that all store really well for a few days.
20. Banana Raisin Breakfast Cookies
Whether you’re looking for a make-ahead breakfast option for your toddler or a relatively mess-free option to give them as you head out the door in the morning, this Banana Oatmeal Breakfast Cookie Recipe fits the bill!
21. Soft Granola Bars
Easy, rich with whole grains, and they store well in the fridge and freezer for future meals—these granola bars are a good option for quick breakfasts…especially if they need to be eaten on the go.
We like to have these granola bars as a snack or toddler breakfast with milk or a smoothie—and they’re an excellent lunch box component too. You can make them plain or choose a flavor to add!
22. Oatmeal with Fruit
You can make this ahead or simply store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge and then warm individual servings as needed for about 15-30 seconds in the microwave.
The base recipe makes a large amount so you can use it throughout the week. Feel free to cut it in half to make less, or just make one serving at a time using the instructions in the NOTES section below.
23. Baked Oatmeal with Blueberries and Coconut
Stir together this wholesome Baked Oatmeal recipe before bed, pop it into the oven when you wake up, and you can sit down to a hearty bowl of oatmeal with the family without any standing by the stove and stirring! (You may also like my Overnight Steel Cut Apple Oats.)
24. Healthy Breakfast Bar with Jam
With wholesome ingredients and not a lot of added sugar, you can bake up Healthy Breakfast Bars with a layer of yummy jam to serve for breakfasts or snacks throughout the week. This recipe is naturally egg-free and can be made nut- and gluten-free.
Use Sunbutter to make these nut-free. You can cut these into smaller bars if desired. If you want them a little softer, serve them at room temperature rather than chilled.
25. 3-Ingredient Cereal Bars
In just about 10 minutes, you can make seriously delicious Cereal Bars made with just three super simple ingredients. They’re crispy, flavorful, and a perfect make-ahead breakfast for kids.
Made with just 3 pantry staples, these bars make an excellent kids snack. They hold their shape best when stored in the fridge and served cold.
26. Healthy Pumpkin Bars
These are easy to stir together and bake and have a delicious pumpkin flavor.
These bars are tender when warm out of the oven, so do be sure to let them cool completely before slicing.
Best Tips for Success
- Prep one recipe when you have time, then stash in the fridge or freezer until ready to serve.
- Add milk and/or a side of fruit to round out the meal.
- Start with small portion sizes to reduce potential for food waste, then always offer more as you have it according to the child’s unique hunger.
What do you like to make ahead for breakfasts for your family? I’d love to hear in the comments!