Veggies for Breakfast? Yes!

By Mary Mullen, MS, RD
Jo Ellen Shield, MED RD LD
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March is National Nutrition Month, when the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics reminds everyone to return to the basics of healthy eating. It is also the time of year when the Academy celebrates expertise of registered dietitian nutritionists as the food and nutrition experts.

Fruit fits easily into breakfast, but vegetables can be a challenge. Here are some tips to help you wake up your kid's fruit and vegetable appetite:
  • Stir things up. For a quick breakfast, add raisins or chopped dates to instant oatmeal, or stir blueberries, strawberries or sliced banana into whole-grain cereal with fat-free milk.
  • Get scrambling! Add fresh or frozen chopped spinach, mushrooms, and diced tomatoes to scrambled eggs or omelets. Really, any veggies will work!
  • Make a breakfast sandwich. Top a whole-wheat English muffin with either reduced-fat peanut butter and banana slices, or a poached egg, a slice of Canadian bacon and a pineapple ring.
  • Batter up. Add grated carrots or zucchini to pancake, quick bread or muffin batter.
  • Drink your produce. Whir carrots and fresh orange juice in a blender for a refreshing breakfast beverage.
  • Say "Olé!" Make a breakfast burrito by wrapping low-fat cheddar cheese, scrambled eggs and diced bell peppers in a whole-wheat tortilla. You can also make a vegetable-and-cheese quesadilla in a nonstick pan with a scant amount of canola oil.
  • Pick a fruit pizza. Spread reduced-fat dinner rolls in a pizza pan and bake. Top the pizza with orange sections or slices of kiwi, apples or strawberries, and drizzle fat-free vanilla yogurt over the top.
  • Make a quick white or sweet potato hash. Grate the potatoes—they cook faster that way. Place the potatoes in a glass bowl and microwave about three minutes or until hot; drain any juice. Heat a skillet or frying pan on the stove and then stir-fry the potatoes with a teaspoon of olive oil until crispy.

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