Gluten Free Breakfast for the On-The-Go Person
I’ll admit that I’ve never really understood the whole cult of the breakfast thing. It’s my least favorite meal. When I get up in the morning, the last thing my stomach and my brain want to consider it food. My husband, on the other hand, cannot contemplate a day without a decent breakfast.
For many reasons, from weight loss to race training, I have been forcing myself to eat breakfast. On long run days, I eat a combination of steamed rice and a poached egg. So far, that’s the best combination I’ve found — it doesn’t feel heavy in my stomach, I like the flavors, and, most importantly, gives me a good mix of protein and carbs.
On weekdays, I eat a hard-boiled egg before hitting freeway at the last possible moment before leaving the house so my stomach can get used to the idea of morning food). I then have a small amount of cottage cheese once I arrive at my desk. These smaller meals, coupled with others throughout the day, help keep me satisfied without hunger spikes.
But lately, I have been thinking more about breakfasts for people who are gluten free, busy, and craving something first thing in the morning. Beyond my not-for-everyone poached egg and rice option (which baffles my husband, who is also a breakfast food purist), here are some ideas, including some that can be made ahead of time, always a bonus:
- Greek Yogurt with Seeds and Fruit. This is a simple, delicious, healthy, and, oh yes, customizable option. Fresh or dried fruit. Any kind of nut. Maybe seeds instead. Some toasted millet or quinoa. In less than five minutes, you have breakfast.
- Quick Frittatas. Yes, you can put together a frittata very fast, or, ahem, you can have leftover frittata as your starting point. In fact, I cannot recommend make-ahead frittatas enough. Throw one together on Sunday night, and you are ready to go for the week.
- Collard Green Wraps. When I buy collard greens, I’m either braising them into a great dish, or using them for wraps. The latter is a great, easy way to create gluten free breakfast burritos or wraps. Collard greens are sturdy, and with a little prep, perfect for make-ahead breakfasts. A basic egg scramble with some veggies and meat make for a perfect collard green wrap.
- Toasts. If you have good gluten-free bread and access to a safe toaster, then nothing beats a bit of mashed or sliced avocado, jalapeno slices, and maybe some prosciutto. If you don’t get with prosciutto, lightly salt the avocado to enhance it’s flavor. Or go full-on guacamole by mixing the avocado with lime juice, salt, pepper, and some ground cumin. Top with an egg for extra protein.
- Scrambled Eggs. If you have ten minutes, you have time for a good scramble. I like to toss baby spinach, leftover meats, roasted peppers, and even cheese into a pan to scramble with eggs. I then top the mixture with avocado and my favorite habanero sauce — weird how a stomach that doesn’t want breakfast has no hesitation when it comes to the spiciest of foods!
- Fast Hashes. This is getting into fifteen to twenty minute territory, but some people, um, actually get out of bed in a timely manner. Make hashes quickly by using leftover sweet potatoes or potatoes or quinoa, already cooked meats or fish (salmon is great here!), some sliced onion, greens or Brussels sprouts or something healthy, and season how you wish. Top with a poached or fried egg.
- Baked Oatmmeal: I haven’t personally tried to make this, but it’s on my list for a weekend morning. Since the whole process will take about 30 – 45 minutes, depending on your prep, it’s a great dish to make ahead and reheat when you’re ready for breakfast.
Tip of the Week
Make-ahead eggs are a perfect grab-and-go item. I make a batch of soy sauce eggs ever Sunday for both me and my husband. I’ve also done slow-poached and pre-poached eggs, though both of those options are only good for a day or two after cooking.
Gluten-Free Meal of the Week
How about brunch instead? The quick hashes I mentioned above include one that was inspired by a local restaurant. I’ve made my own version many times because it is so good, so easy, so unexpected.
Quinoa, diced sweet potatoes, smoked or baked salmon, and caramelized onions are topped with a creamy, lemony sauce and some capers. Oh, and a perfectly poached egg tops it all off!
After the onions have cooked to a golden brown, I add cooked and slightly cooled quinoa to pan-fried sweet potatoes (let them get a little crispy on the outside). The salmon is flaked and incorporated into the hash. The sauce is basically yogurt with lemon zest, lemon juice, and a bit of ground pepper.
- Sweet Potato, Quinoa, and Salmon Hash
- Fresh Fruit