Breakfast Is Served

A random topic I know, but breakfast has been on my mind.

Do you love it? Hate it? Eat it everyday? Skip it? Want it mid-morning or first thing after you wake up?

I find routines absolutely fascinating, so let’s chat about breakfast.

Growing up, breakfast was non-negotiable. We always ate breakfast. Together. It was usually toast or boxed cereal; my Mom would set the table the evening before, a trait which I now find absolutely endearing (but never do myself).

I continued on with a regular breakfast routine through university (my favourite: English muffins with PB + banana). Then I happened to catch a nutrition segment on a morning talk show that mentioned breakfast isn’t necessarily the most important meal of the day and we only need to eat first thing if our body naturally leads us to do so.

Up until that moment it had never once crossed my mind that breakfast was a meal that could be skipped or postponed. As silly as it might sound, that 10-minute clip changed the way I viewed breakfast forever.

Because of health challenges, which often translate into low energy, I found when I skipped breakfast my metabolism seemed to hum along at a more predictable level and I didn’t “crash” mid-morning.

I started using intermittent fasting for both weight maintenance + anti-inflammation benefits and have, for the majority of the last 5 years, skipped breakfast 75% of the time.

Do I miss breakfast? Sometimes. Mostly because I love breakfast food.

Do I feel hungry? Sometimes. So I go ahead eat! But most of the time once I get moving I feel good until 11:00 am or so when I’ll eat a late breakfast/early lunch. When I do eat breakfast, I almost always have an energy crash mid-morning and have learned to go into a morning meal with that expectation.

Lately, I’ve been having a tea with oat milk (so I’m not technically staying in a fasted state). I don’t find the tea impacts my energy levels and I really enjoy it, so I’ve put it back into my morning routine.

That’s how I eat breakfast; let’s switch gears and talk about breakfast foods.

breakfast foods

If I had to pick items from one meal to eat forever, it would be breakfast. I LOVE breakfast food.

I love waffles and pancakes and toast (with PB + banana, obviously). I love eggs and bacon and roasted potatoes. I love yogurt and granola. I love breakfast sandwiches (more eggs). I love oatmeal loaded with fruit and nuts. I love it all. (Except for quiche. Quiche is the disgrace of the breakfast buffet in my opinion.)

We have waffles for supper most Fridays and I have started enjoying a bowl of oatmeal Sunday evening for supper. I have eggs in various states almost daily. I mostly avoid gluten, so don’t eat bread/toast very often, but when I do it’s delightful (especially if it involves PB and banana).

I am not, interestingly enough, a big fan of smoothies. I find them to be a hassle to make/clean up and find they require a lot of fruit and/or sugary things like juice or yogurt to taste good. Also, in general, I prefer to eat, not drink, my calories.

As for my most memorable breakfast? That was in Paris – we got the most delicious coffee/hot chocolate and ham croissants in the shadow of Sacre Coeur. The food that morning and my conversation with John over breakfast – it is one of the happiest moments of my life thus far. That’s a big statement, but it’s true…and all because of breakfast.

Your turn. Do you eat breakfast every day? Do you love breakfast foods, or are you happy to avoid them outside of breakfast hours? Any specific breakfast that stands out as being especially memorable?

Header photo by Mae Mu on Unsplash

32 thoughts on “Breakfast Is Served”

  1. I do eat breakfast almost 90% of the time, the time I consume breakfast depends. Unless I can’t control what time I eat, I like to eat when I’m hungry so it could be 8, 9, 10 or 11. If it’s later than 11 then I’ll just have lunch. I love oatmeal as staple breakfast food and avocado toast as brunch food. Both of these are not blood sugar friendly so I’ve adjust the way I make them to be low carb high fat instead but with the same palate experience. My family eats breakfast everyday, the typical waffle/pancakes type with occasional lemon yogurt cake when I feel like baking.

  2. I eat breakfast every single day but I definitely wake up hungry! I eat the same thing most days – oatmeal with cinnamon and a cut up banana on top + coffee and water. I make a batch of oatmeal that generates 5 servings so if I happen to be out of oatmeal and don’t have time to make some, I will have a piece of GF toast with PB and sliced banana and a hard boiled egg. Paul eats the same breakfast every day – cheerios with cow’s milk. For Will, it varies on his mood/whether it’s a school day (they get a great breakfast at school but it’s not until 8:30 so we feed them something to tie them over until breakfast). Phil is not a big breakfast eater. He has started to eat toast with PB in the last 6 months, I think mostly because he tends to share it with Will. Otherwise he’ll grab a banana or granola bar to eat at work.

    I like egg bakes and things like that but am not a huge fan of things like pancakes, waffles, etc. I will eat them if my mom makes a GF version of them when we are at their house but i wouldn’t go out of my way to make them. The boys eat banana pancakes multiple times/week for dinner though – it’s mashed banana, 2 eggs/mashed banana, cinnamon and vanilla. We make a big batch once a week, reheat them throughout the week. They are served with PB on top. Phil has learned how to make Spanish Tortilla which is a dish he ate a lot of when he studied abroad in Spain. I had it a lot when I visited Spain in 2016 since it’s GF. It’s made with eggs and potatoes, but we add ham and onions to make it extra filling. We tend to have that as brunch when he feels like making it. I absolutely WOULD NOT EAT French Toast. I think it is absolutely disgusting and I kind of cringe just thinking about it. Bleh.

    1. Another vote for PB + banana. And oh how I love oatmeal.
      I used to make banana pancakes all the time; I should make a batch. I’ve gotten so into the habit of making the GF oat waffles I love, just about other related recipe has fallen by the wayside.
      I don’t like any French Toast except Baked French Toast which I find a much more pleasant texture.

  3. You grew up eating breakfast together?!?! Daily?!?! Wow! That blows my mind! We can’t even get it together to eat dinner as a family on a regular basis, I cannot imagine doing breakfast together! When I was growing up, I was in charge of my own breakfast. Which was usually cereal or toaster waffles or toast… until high school, when it was a Mountain Dew grabbed as I was running out the door to avoid being late. Super healthy!

    Also, I am your food opposite. I despise breakfast food. And I am rarely hungry at breakfast time anyway.

    1. Yup. Every breakfast. Like…every day of my entire childhood almost without exception!
      I remember you mentioning you don’t like oatmeal or eggs which are breakfast (or lunch or supper) staples for me.
      While I don’t typically eat breakfast, I sit with the kids while the eat 6 days a week at least I would say. Though they do more and more of the breakfast prep themselves. They prefer to do their own oatmeal (in the microwave) and I get a talking to if I try to take over.

  4. I LOVE breakfast, but I don’t like to eat it with my kids. On days I go to campus, I have a coffee and a G2G protein bar in the car listening to an audiobook. Other days, I eat PB toast and oranges with Minnie. My other kids all eat together in the AM, but that’s really just because they are on the same basic school schedule. On breaks, the elementary 2 eat together because they are BBF, and the older boys eat whenever they wake up. My husband is never hungry before noon and he always eats a third meal around 9pm.

    I wake up hungry (and sometime snack in the middle of the night when I feed Minnie), but when I did intermittent fasting, I didn’t miss breakfast. Water and black coffee was enough until noon, especially with morning exercise.

    That breakfast looks amazing.

    1. I could always “eat” breakfast, but don’t have any trouble skipping it and it tends to seem to work a lot better for my body.
      But breakfast foods I’d never want to live without!

  5. I eat breakfast every day and so does the rest of the family. Usually I have a spinach smoothie, but if I’m running that morning, I will have toast with chunky peanut butter, and then have my smoothie at lunch. I can’t go without my spinach smoothie! Those are my two favourites, but I also like oatmeal with fruit or Kashi cereal.

      1. I use 8 cups spinach (probably you should work your way up to that, I’ve been having them for years so use lots of spinach), 1 cup nondairy milk, 1 frozen banana, and then some kind of protein – either 2 heaping tbsp nut butter or a scoop of protein powder. Sometimes I sprinkle cinnamon in as well.

        1. Noted. I’ll have to give it another try.
          I did go through a short stretch of making spinach smoothies with avocado and they were…tolerable. I had to laugh when Jenny wrote “cold and damp” – I’d never articulated it in that way, but it’s EXACTLY how smoothies make me feel.

  6. I love breakfast, but rarely take time to make it for myself. My go to options are: Perfect protein bars when I’m at home, or at the office, I have a banana with peanut butter. I work out every morning, so depending on the workout intensity, I get hungrier on some days more than others. I also do IF a few days/week. My body doesn’t love it if I eat before a workout, so I always eat breakfast after working out. If I’m doing a 9 am hike, for example, I’ll likely just skip breakfast & have a bigger lunch.

    1. I sure have loved seeing all the comments for PB and banana. Is there a better combo on the planet?
      I also do better if I don’t eat before a workout, unless it’s in the evening (which is actually my preference for runs; I do so much better in the evening in terms of joints and endurance).
      And lunch (at which I may consume “breakfast” foods) is extra delicious!

  7. If I do not eat breakfast, I will eat everything all the time for the rest of the day. I stop eating after dinner and I wake up absolutely ravenous. You breakfast skippers are absolutely puzzling to me.
    I eat yogurt with homemade granola and seasonal fruit every morning for breakfast. I usually even bring granola with me on trips so I can keep something consistent when I travel.

    1. How do you always make me chuckle?
      “You breakfast skippers are absolutely puzzling to me.”
      Ha. I’m a “breakfast skipper” – guilty as charged.
      I rarely wake up ravenous, but I could almost always feel like I’d want to eat breakfast. But I end up feeling so much better if I don’t…I go through periods where I eat breakfast more regularly. I will say that when I start eating breakfast, I seem to have a hard time breaking the habit, but if I do it day after day I really do feel awful. So it’s a hard balancing act.

      Yogurt with fruit and granola is, after PB and banana, one of the best meal options EVER.

  8. I usually always eat at breakfast time because I am usually hungry! I typically wake up no later than 5:30 am and have black tea right away. Then the kids eat between 7-7:30, so I either eat something with them, or usually right after getting them off to school (so 8:00 ish). So, by the time I eat, I have usually been up for a couple hours already.

    I don’t dislike breakfast foods, but I don’t particularly love them, either. In fact, I regularly ask myself why I don’t just eat lunch foods for breakfast, since I prefer them, but I always feel like I “should” eat breakfast foods at breakfast. Imagined societal pressures?? Haha. Who knows. My husband loves breakfast foods but never actually eats breakfast during the week. In his case, he loves to “go out to breakfast” (well, more like brunch) like at a cafe or something, with the full deal of eggs, bacon, pancakes etc. I’m usually pretty “meh” on doing that but try to do it for him now and then because he just loves it. 🙂

    He is not usually hungry at all in the morning though – literally at least 3x/week he walks into the kitchen while I’m eating breakfast and he’ll say, “You’re eating again?!” (in a nice/teasing way, not truly judging me 😉 (He always says when he wakes up he is still full from dinner the night before and he can’t figure out how I’m hungry again already!) lol!! I have stopped being “annoyed” by this comment and/or rolling my eyes at him and now I just always say, “yup I am!” (I get up way earlier than he does, so my other typical response is, “you realize I’ve been up for 2 hours already, right?) I generally speaking can always out-eat my husband though, which I’m never sure if I should be proud of or embarrassed of. Ha! I feel like I could almost always eat…. what can I say.

    1. Isn’t it so fascinating how different metabolisms work! I am always most hungry at night. People that skip supper (or eat a light/small supper) baffle me.
      Like you, I feel like I could just about always eat! I do love breakfast foods the most, though. I know people that have mentioned just forgoing breakfast foods. I’m sure tacos or soup for breakfast would be great…but breakfast foods just call my name. All of it – except quiche (and mediocre smoothies – haha).

  9. Great topic! I LOVE breakfast! I love breakfast foods and it’s my favorite meal of the day. I don’t at right away- first I run or work out and it’s about two hours later that I eat- but by then I’m HUNGRY. I love oatmeal, rice porridge, waffles, pancakes, or if I’m in a hurry a multigrain bagel with pb and banana (obviously a popular choice!) And, very important, a cup of tea. I love my earl grey! For years I had smoothies for breakfast but finally realized they don’t make me feel good- when I drink a smoothie I feel kind of cold and damp inside. I really need a hot breakfast.
    I can totally understand why you don’t eat breakfast- I think it makes sense for you. I also understand why you eat waffles for dinner on Fridays! I would eat oatmeal and waffles at other times of the day if I didn’t eat breakfast.

    1. Rice porridge is a new-to-me breakfast suggestion, but I’m sure it’s delicious.
      I’m thrilled so many people love PB and banana. It really is one of my favourite things to eat out of every option at any mealtime. I find it the ultimate comfort food.
      Earl Grey is so good. I’ve been on an Orange Pekoe kick lately, but am meeting someone for tea this morning and I always only get Earl Grey when I go out.

      Your description of the smoothies; I had never thought of it that way, but I 100% relate to the cold/damp feeling. Because they’re thick it also feels like they impart a level of coldness that “sticks to the ribs” where something like ice water doesn’t. I can appreciate the really sweet ones taste good…but they never feel like a satisfying “meal” to me…but I know oodles of people who love their smoothies. Maybe they aren’t naturally cold all the time like me?

      One of my first thoughts waking up this morning was how close we are to the weekend which means waffles and oatmeal!

  10. I agree completely with Jenny! Smoothies also leave me with a “cold, damp” feeling. I wanted to love them but I will only ever have one now in the summer as a treat in the afternoon, but rarely. I find they don’t fill me up in a good way and it can’t be a meal as they leave me not feeling good after. Even the healthy ones that I tried making on my own.
    I also love breakfast foods and am in camp PB and banana. I would add in chocolate to the mix! I will sometimes make breakfast ‘cookies’: mashed banana, vanilla, PB, quick oats, dash of sea salt and a few chocolate chips. Baked in the oven for 12 minutes. They are delicious!

    I eat breakfast everyday, but after you post, I’m really debating about that. Sometimes it is more habit, although part of that habit is I try to limit the night before eating so that I do wake up hungry. I’m wondering though with my RA if I would feel better if I waited. That’s interesting in a reply to a comment you said you could get into the habit of eating but then it doesn’t feel good. I’ve been struggling with feeling off a bit and wonder if this shift might help.
    My son has naturally fallen into a rhythm of eating a huge snack before bed and then he doesn’t eat until lunch time the next day.
    On the note of the types of breakfast food: I love them all! Except I don’t eat most meat so no bacon or sausage for me. But I love eggs, healthy banana bread, pancakes, breakfast potatoes, and toast. In fact last night we had eggs, toast, and potatoes for dinner! A new favourite right now is pumpkin pancakes! I would eat waffles too but we don’t have a waffle iron. I have looked but I tend towards maximizer, and there are too many choices so I shied away. I do love a good quiche but I think it’s hard to find ones that are done really well (many are not).

    1. I know a lot of people do find the IF helps with inflammation. I find it does more for energy levels for me than necessarily fewer aches and pains, but then…I don’t eat breakfast regularly, so it might be a lot worse if I did?

      I DO find, especially when we’re on vacation or visiting family, I can quickly fall back into the routine of eating breakfast and then I do genuinely feel VERY hungry in the mornings but after a few days I start to feel so, so sluggish.

      Your supper sounds SO good. We’re having egg and bacon “breakfast” sandwiches for supper tonight.

      I am an underbuyer, so the thought of a waffle iron just seemed ridiculous to me for a long time (and I actually borrowed one from a friend). But it is now one of my favourite kitchen appliances. Finding a great GF oat-based waffle has been meal-changing; I make a batch almost weekly and they are so filling, yet mostly just oats and egg! (I’m not trying to convert you, but this is the iron I have been using for years and LOVE; I’ve gifted it to others, too:

      Pumpkin pancakes sound delicious. We did a Whole30 a few years ago and though it was technically “cheating” I made this pumpkin, egg, and coconut milk baked breakfast that was SO good. With a skim of almond butter and warm from the oven…my mouth is watering as I type this 🙂

  11. I used to eat breakfast on waking every morning without fail as I was always ravenous and needed to eat. These days I often don’t eat it much before 9am (unless I am going out before then in which case I will most likely have a small breakfast at an earlier time). On the rare occasions that I am getting up really early I have never been able to eat anything before 7am so I skip it and eat later.

    I have lots of different things for breakfast and don’t really have an absolute favourite as what I have for breakfast depends on so many things, such as how I am feeling that morning, what I am doing that day, how hungry I am. At the weekends I often have oatmeal patties on one day and porridge made with millet and quinoa on the other day. During the week I usually have egg based breakfasts such as boiled eggs with humous and a gluten free slice I make, or shakshouka with whatever veg I have to hand.

    Breakfast is a solo meal in this house, everyone gets up at different times and wants to eat a different times too.

  12. Hmm… your experience with not eating breakfast and not having that mid-morning crash has me intrigued! I have hypoglycemia so I usually wake up hungry and then have to eat about 2-3 hours after breakfast or else I get low blood sugar. There have been times when I’ve waited to eat anything until around 11 and I’ve been fine. I may need to give this a try!

    I do not love breakfast. These days, I’m eating eggs with toast and it’s fine but if I didn’t have to eat anything for breakfast, I’d be A-OK with that. I don’t love going out for breakfast because it feels like a waste, lol. If I could get away with never eating breakfast, I totally would.

    1. I have such a hard time making decisions about what food to choose at a restaurant but since I love just about every breakfast food, I find breakfast to be such a safe option. That said, I rarely eat breakfast out!
      The delayed breakfast/early lunch has helped me deal with multiple health issues. It’s not a perfect cure, but I’d say I’ve noticed a 50% improvement in a few things since adopting this habit years ago. Eating breakfast occasionally is fine, but when I get back into the habit of eating it daily (this is usually if we’re visiting someone and they serve breakfast for the group) it really starts to impact me energy levels and digestion after a few days. I wish it didn’t because I LOVE breakfast so much, but c’est la vie. (And I find lots of ways to incorporate breakfast foods into daily life.)

  13. I have the weirdest eating “schedule” ever, but it works for me. I caffeinate (tea + coffee) and eat two small snacks in the morning as I’m not usually super-hungry before noon, but then I eat two small breakfasts about an hour apart (one mostly protein, one fruit/yogurt/cottage cheese), then a BIG lunch about 2 hours after that. And then a light late-ish dinner, and a small snack before bed. What can I say, it works for me? So I’m eating the most between, say, noon, and 7:20 pm or so. I try to eat that many small snacks (oh, there’s another small one between lunch and dinner) because I need to get the calories in so, well, that’s the deal. So my “breakfast” is at most peoples’ lunch times! I can shift things around if needed – e.g., on vacation or visiting someone. I don’t like to because I’m not super-hungry in the morning, but I make it work. *shrug*
    I say, do you! If your pattern works for you – yay!
    Also, all the breakfast foods, yes, but not syrup. Sorry – I know you love it, but no. Too sweet, and it makes the pancake/waffle/whatever so… soggy. Bleah. 🙂 (I am Opinionated with a capital “O” re: syrup, apparently… ;>)

    1. I DO love syrup, but in small quantities. I know people that have their pancakes/waffles swimming in syrup and – ick (to me). I put on very little syrup, but can’t imagine pancakes/waffles without that little bit!

      Definitely agreed about finding something that works and running with that – even if it doesn’t fit a traditional eating pattern!

  14. Such a great topic! I love all breakfast foods, but have transitioned to IF and now eat my first meal around 10ish, but still include one (or few) breakfast items! Working from home has been a huge blessing, and I now LOVE my mornings. I usually do a morning workout at YMCA, or go for a walk after i drop my boys at school *8.30 am) – which is something that i was able to do only on the conference trips pre-pandemic. I like getting out of the house early, and see how nature wakes up, listen to the birds, catch some sun if I am lucky (we are in midwest, so winters still can be pretty grey where we are), get a nice exercise and break into a sweat, or go to the pool and then take a shower there, in other words make my body working and feel alive ;)) I am usually done with exercise by 10 am, and then have a huge bowl of salad, eggs, and my favorite toast with butter & jam, or a muffin or waffle. This is by far the best part of my day! I can enjoy my own house (which i hardly used to see when i was working in the office every day), have some quiet time, drink my tea slooowly, do one set of laundry, and maybe fit in some meditation. So by the time i start working on my research at 10 am, i am usually charged and happy! I love your idea of having waffles for dinner – and will be giving it a try sometime soon!

    1. It sounds like such a nice transition – having more flexibility in the morning (and not necessarily any impact to productivity – just a lot less time spent commuting) has been one positive change stemming from the upheaval of COVID.
      One of my favourite aspects of IF is how delicious that first meal tastes; I have eggs almost every noontime and they are just…delicious. I never, never seem to get tired of eggs.
      Having breakfast foods at supper is just a great way for me to enjoy favourite foods that I simply don’t eat very often at “breakfast time” – at least i in the traditional early-in-the-morning sense.

  15. I love breakfast. It’s easily my favorite meal of the day and I hardly ever skip it (although I have done intermittent fasting before and didn’t eat breakfast until lunch time)… my parents were adamant of eating breakfast at the table and I really enjoy and celebrate it, which is why it makes me very sad that Jon typically doesn’t eat breakfast with me and I eat alone (most days). There’s nothing better than a fully loaded breakfast table IMHO.

    1. Three cheers for breakfast.
      Yes, we ALWAYS ate together as a family (for basically every meal). I tend to skip breakfast, but sit while the kids eat and read to them, which is a happy compromise to me!

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