I’ve given a lot of breakfast advice over the past couple of years with a focus on getting 30 grams of protein within 30 minutes of waking (read this Q&A post for some thoughts on the matter). This seems to be a real sticking point for people who aren’t used to eating breakfast, or, if they are, they eat something fast, cold and simple (bagel, cereal, muffin, etc). The idea of cooking breakfast sounds way too hard, and the idea of having eggs every morning sounds way too unhealthy. You have it backward in terms of the health point. As for it being hard, yeah, you’ve got me there. The good news is, I have a solution.
How is it that I eat a multi-ingredient omelet every morning around 5am without making so much noise that I wake up my whole household? How do I do it without having to cook on top of trying to workout, do some work, shower, get dressed and get out the door to get to my office? The answer is really simple – I cook the omelet at night, and employ my economics undergrad degree a bit by leveraging economies of scale. In non-dork terms, I make more than one omelet at a time. Sometimes, I don’t even make an omelet, but do more of a fritada so I can just stick it in the oven for 20 minutes and not even have to think about it (or clean the dish for a few days).
OK, here’s the deal. You need an egg for each day you’re cooking for, some egg whites, powdered greens (optional, but highly recommended since they’re SO good for you), spinach, onions or scallions, chia seeds, mushrooms, cayenne, salsa, sea salt, a kitchen sink and anything else you want in your omelet. Be sure to skip cheese, milk and anything you don’t want in your omelet. I tend to make enough for five or six breakfasts, so I use that many whole eggs, and then probably another cup to two cups of egg white added in.
Start with cracking the eggs into a bowl. Add a scoop of greens for each day’s worth of breakfast (e.g. five scoops for five breakfasts). I find stirring the greens in after each scoop is best for avoiding clumps. A mini whisk is ideal, but I fork will work ok. If you get some lumps, don’t worry too much, but generally try to minimize how many lumps you get. Also add any seasoning (salt, cayenne) at this point. After you have all the greens in, add in your egg whites, and stir it all together some more to help mix it and break down any remaining lumps.
In a sauce pan, sauté the veggies a bit as they won’t cook sufficiently for most people’s taste once in the egg mixture. Add the spinach (or kale, if you like) half way through. Sprinkle chia seeds on top, and then pour the eggs in. If you’re doing this in a quiche dish as a frittata, pour the veggies into the dish, spread them, and then sprinkle on the chia seeds. Chia seeds are a great source of fiber and energy. They’re good to work into your diet, and this is an easy way to do so. A nice optional ingredient is salsa or pico de gallo. Just drain the liquid off, or let it burn off during the cooking process. Tomatillo sauce is also a nice addition. Really, just play around to suit your preferences and taste, and to help differ things from week to week.
Next, pour in the egg mixture. If it isn’t enough to cover the veggies, add some more egg white. I felt like a little more spinach was in order, so I pressed some down into the mixture, but that’s basically it. You can cover it and let it cook on medium or medium-low heat for 5-10 minutes (until the middle isn’t liquidy), or stick the quiche dish in the oven at 375 for 15-20 minutes (checking that it looks cooked throughout). The time will depend on the depth/thickness, so adjust for your situation. I find lower heat for longer time works better than trying to cook it hot and fast.
When it’s done, let it cool, and then just cut it into wedges that look like a good portion for you to eat at breakfast. Depending on the size of the pan or quiche dish and the thickness of the frittata or omelet, I find I get five or six portions out of it. My breakfast routine consists of a wedge of that warmed in the toaster oven (15 minutes at 275 or so) or microwave (1:30 on high is usually good) plus a protein shake and a couple of newbodi.es 4hb slow carb bars. Sometimes I’ll also make lentils to along with it, and only eat one slow carb bar.A tasty, good for you, protein-packed way to enlighten.your.body first thing in the morning.