Healthy and easy-to-manage breakfast ideas for picky toddlers
Simplifying day-to-day tasks and implementing routines creates the most precious resource you can offer your little ones - more of your time. More time to play, more time for adventures and outings, and more time for you to enjoy watching your babies grow up. Simplicity and routine also help you muster needed energy for the more 'challenging' days.
As weekday mornings are the most hectic time of the day for most families, simplifying your breakfast routine is critical. We like breakfasts that can be assembled in minutes so you can get everyone out the door on time!
Here are some ideas for easy-to-manage breakfasts, toddlers like eating that give them the nutrients they need to fuel their adventure-filled days.
We hope your family enjoys them as much as ours.
Choose a few weekday breakfasts for toddlers and keep them in rotation.
Apart from an indulgent weekend meal, we have only four breakfasts in our family's rotation. This is real life, not Pinterest, so your strawberries do not have to be cut into star shapes, and your wonky muffins are just fine.
In fact, toddlers thrive on routine and familiarity, so if you serve something once or twice a week, they are usually more inclined to eat it. In short, most kids are perfectly content with everyday, straightforward breakfasts.
Here are some tips
Plan minor variations to keep your weekday breakfasts exciting and healthy (i.e. swapping out fruit based on what’s in season)
If your family has a more indulgent weekend brunch, make extra and then freeze and reheat on weekday mornings.
Repurposed dinner leftovers for breakfast. Roasted yams or squash can be mashed and served on toast the next day. Left-over chicken or beans can be mixed into scrambled eggs.
Simple toppings add variety and extra nutrients to everyday breakfasts. We like to have some things on hand to sprinkle or spread on breakfast waffles, toast, pancakes, or french toast.
Frozen fruit is a fantastic freezer staple and high in nutrient quality.
Here is a list of our favorite breakfast pantry and freezer staples to get you started!
Chopped frozen or fresh fruit
Chopped nuts (chop finely, so they are not a choking hazard)
Chopped pumpkin or sunflower seeds
Roasted mashed butternut squash
Cooked and mashed sweet potatoes or yams
Any kind of nut or seed butter
Easy breakfasts for toddlers and kids have oats, oats, and more oats!
Oatmeal, whether served warm or made overnight is a fantastic breakfast staple. It's cost-effective, quick to make, contains whole grains and fiber, and keeps tummies full for hours. Plus, the flavor and topping variations are pretty much endless!
We always mix nut butter into our oatmeal to add even more protein, healthy fats, and flavor. Plus, adding a bit of peanut butter or chopped peanuts to oatmeal is a great way to regularly expose your little ones to this common allergen.
We also love to mix in frozen blueberries which makes the oatmeal purple, a fun bonus for easily amused toddlers.
Toddlers and kids love toaster waffles for breakfast!
The second most common thing on our family's breakfast rotation is waffles. Luckily you can find healthy frozen toaster waffles in most grocery stores. Choose whole grain varieties and look for ones with the least amount of added sugar or salt.
We lather up our waffles with (you guessed it) peanut butter! Almond or cashew butter is also fantastic. Add a side of fresh fruit, and you have a well-rounded, wholesome breakfast.
Be sure to cut the waffles into small squares for young toddlers, so they don't pose a choking hazard. Older toddlers can handle quartered waffles.
French toast sticks are another easy breakfast toddlers love.
French toast is another easy and wholesome weekday breakfast little ones love. Just soak whole wheat bread in scrambled eggs, and then sear on both sides in a nonstick pan until the egg is cooked. Cut the bread into strips for older toddlers or bite-sized pieces for younger ones.
Or make extra french toast on the weekends, freeze them, and pop them into the toaster on busy weekday mornings as a waffle substitute
Eggs, eggs, and more eggs make simple and wholesome toddler breakfasts.
Of course, there are endless ways to cook eggs for breakfast, but we find the quickest and most straightforward way is scrambled. Kids of all ages like and can eat scrambled eggs.
Here's a real-life mom pro tip. Crack those eggs right into the frying pan with a bit of butter and scramble them up quickly with a spatula. One less bowl to clean!
Since eggs are another top allergen, adding them to your breakfast rotation is an excellent way to continually expose your little ones and reduce their risk of developing an egg allergy.
We serve eggs with wholewheat toast, a toasted English muffin topped with butter or nut butter, and fresh fruit.
Breakfast quesadillas or burritos are delicious options for a quick weekday breakfast.
Simply add some cheese, diced leftover dinner veggies, and scrambled eggs to a tortilla and warm in the microwave or quickly grill it in a nonstick pan. Add some beans or diced chicken for extra protein. Serve with mashed avocados or a mild salsa blended with whole milk plain yogurt.
Burritos can be made in bulk in advance, frozen individually, and warmed up in the microwave for a super quick and wholesome grab-and-go breakfast.
We love to change things up at the weekend by making blueberry pancakes or going to our favorite local coffee shop for croissants and then eating them outside in the park!
We hope our suggestions help to simplify your morning breakfast routine and give you a few more ideas for simple, wholesome options to try out with your little ones.
Joana is a pediatrician, Mom of 2 (soon to be 3!) boys and founder of Littlemore, a company that creates the snacks you always wished existed for your kids. She grew up both in the USA and the UK, completing her medical degree in Scotland before moving back to the US after marrying her husband Ken. A former Harvard affiliated pediatrician, her background as both a clinician and a Mom inspired the creation of Littlemore, when she realized that the baby food aisle was lacking in nutritious, developmentally appropriate and 'gimmick-free' foods for little ones. Her goal is to create simple, delicious foods that families love so that they have more time to enjoy the daily adventures with each other. She lives outside of Boston with her husband, children and daft spaniel and loves to be outside in nature with her family, quiet moments reading (when they rarely occur!) and dark chocolate.
Visit https://littlemoreorganics.com/ and use the code KULA30 for 30% off your order.