February 20th, 2020

From Our Table: Full stomachs important for school days

By Joanne Smith on September 10, 2019.

Submitted Photo
Egg bites are easy to eat on the go for those morning when the alarm doesn't go off or you just sleep through it.

Days are shorter, leaves are beginning to change from green to bright yellow, orange and red and evening air is cooling down. Summer is slowly ebbing away. And a sure sign of summer starting to sign off?

It’s the first full week of back to school.

It’s time for back to routine, alarm clocks, bag lunches, rushing kids out the door to catch buses and hopefully sending their tummies off with a healthy breakfast that will give their bodies and minds the fuel they need to function well. Studies have proven that kids (and adults too) have better brain function, focus and attention spans when they eat breakfast.

There are foods like frozen waffles, packaged muffins or sugary cereals that get the job done fast but have few nutrients. These non-nutrient-dense foods don’t give kids what they need to feel full, do well in physical activities, pay attention in class and very importantly, nourish their fast-growing bodies.

School day mornings are undoubtedly busy. I’ve definitely been there done that and I’m here to help! A little planning and organization goes a long way to get a kid friendly breakfast together that is easy, fast and full of nutrients. Better yet, get your kids involved in making it and they are much more likely to eat it.

Here are a few suggestions to help you out.

Joanne Smith is a registered dietitian.

Fruit and Nut Butter Rolls

Take a 12-inch whole wheat soft tortilla and spread it with nut butter of choice. That may include peanut butter or almond butter for example.

Place fruit of choice on one half. A whole banana works great or you could use sliced peaches or strawberries.

Roll the tortilla up as tight as possible. Can be eaten as is or could be sliced into “sushi-type” rolls.

Power Smoothie

2-3 slices frozen banana

1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt

1-2 Tbsp nut butter

1-2 Tbsp seeds such as hemp or sunflower seeds

1/2 cup berries

a small handful of spinach

about 3 Tbsp of instant oats and milk to get the smoothie to the desired consistency.

Some like it thicker to eat with a spoon, others like it thinner and use a straw.

Tip: When bananas are getting overripe, peel and slice them into little wheels then put them in a Ziploc bag and freeze flat so they don’t stick together. Then it’s easy to just grab one or two out of the freezer and into a smoothie!

Egg Bites

10 eggs

3 Tbsp milk

1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese

1/4 cup finely chopped and drained tomato

2 Tbsp finely chopped green onion

1/4 cup finely chopped cooked ham

1/2 cup finely chopped bell pepper (red, yellow or orange)

1/4 cup finely chopped spinach

These are so easy to eat on the go just in case anyone happens to sleep through that unfamiliar back to school alarm!

Preheat oven to 350 F

Spray a 12 cup muffin tin or 24 mini muffin tin with cooking spray.

Place the ingredients in a medium bowl and whisk together well.

Ladle egg mixture evenly into sprayed muffin tins and bake for about 20 minutes or until eggs are set.

You can eat these fresh or put them in a container and refrigerate to enjoy over the next 2-3 days.

You could have all the ingredients chopped and ready to go the night before so you can just quickly whip this up fresh in the morning.

Note: You can make these your own by using your veggies of choice, egg whites or substituting ham for bacon or chicken or go meatless.

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