If your family is anything like ours, mornings are hectic and a bit rushed. Don't let that keep you and yours from having a good breakfast though. Here are a couple of make ahead ideas you can whip up one morning or afternoon when you have more time that will keep all week long and only take a minute to reheat.
As you can see from the images, both of these recipes use muffin tins. If you want to make both at once or need to make lots of both to feed a larger family, I would highly suggest investing in two of the large one dozen muffin trays. It just makes things a lot faster on the day you make them. Two dozen omelette cups and about a dozen and a half oatmeal muffins works pretty well to keep my family of four fed for a full five or six days.
These are infinitely flexible. You can fill them with anything your heart desires, as long as you keep the overall water content of the filling on the low side. My husband and kids prefer sausage and cheese. I like lots of veggies: peppers, onion, spinach, and diced tomato is my all time favorite.
You could even change up the seasoning if you like. If you can find some that isn't an arm and a leg, dill cuts the "eggy" flavor for those that aren't that fond of eggs to begin with like my eldest. Plus, it can help prevent the reflux they can cause in others, as can paring eggs with a bit of citrus fruit for the morning meal.
Here's what you'll need to make a dozen omelette cups.
1 Dozen Eggs
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder
Salt and Pepper (to taste)
Start out by preparing all of your fillings ahead of time. If you're using sausage or any other kind of meat, cook and drain it first. Actually, if you use sausage, you may want to scoop it into a colander to drain. Then go a step farther and rinse it under warm water. The first time we made sausage and cheese omelette cups, they turned out greasy because draining alone wasn't enough. Also, tossing your fillings in a separate bowl is easier than trying to mix them in the muffin tin, and you don't risk making your cooking spray's coverage spotty.
In a large mixing bowl, beat together your eggs and seasonings until they are well combined. If you try to spoon the egg mixture into the muffin tin wells, and it wants to "pull" out of the spoon, mix it again until all the egg whites are broken up.
Coat all the wells in your tin with cooking spray. Spoon in your egg mixture, reserving the last 1/5 or so. Add your fillings until each well is almost full. Spoon the remaining egg mixture to cover over exposed fillings.
Bake at 325 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until eggs are set.
Allow them to cool completely before wrapping for refrigeration. Keep chilled in the refrigerator until needed. Microwave on high for a minute to a minute and a half to reheat.
These are another highly customizable make ahead breakfast option. Changing out the flavor is a bit more complicated because some spices work better with some fruits than they do others, but it's doable. Just keep in mind, keep it simple with berries, citrus, and tart fruits like cherries. Vanilla and/or a touch of lemon zest work best. Your sweeter, starchier fruits like peaches, apples, pears, and bananas pair well with warming spices such as cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, clove, and ginger. But they also work just as well with just a bit of vanilla, especially if you're going for a fruit and cream kind of flavor.
Chopped nuts of any kind make a good add in for a bit of protein, and using the "old fashioned cooking oats" or "steel cut oats" will mean your muffins turn out with more texture and fiber content, meaning they'll leave you feeling full longer and won't be as prone to sending your blood sugar skyrocketing as more processed oats can.
The recipe below is a "starter" recipe. As you make these, you can cut down on the amount of sugar added with every other or each batch. That way, I bet your family doesn't even notice they're getting a healthier breakfast item unlike cutting the sweetener all at once. Also, this recipe works just as well with any all purpose gluten free flour, provided it contains xanthan gum, as it will with regular flour or whole grain flour.
Here's what you need to make an eighteen muffin batch.
2 1/2 Cups Cooking Oats
1 Cup All Purpose Flour
1 Cup Granulated Sugar
1/2 Cup Milk
1/2 Cup Butter or Coconut Oil (Melted)
2 Large Eggs
2 Tbsp. Baking Powder
15 Oz. Fresh or Canned Fruit of Choice (Optional) or 1 cup dried fruit
1 Cup Chopped Nut of Choice (Optional)
Pinch of Salt
1 Tbsp. Vanilla Extract
In a large mixing bowl, beat together butter/oil, eggs, salt, vanilla, and any other spices or zests. Add in milk and stir until evenly combined. Add flour and baking powder and mix until combined. Add oats, fruit, and nuts. Stir until incorporated. Add more milk or water if necessary.
Spray all the wells in your muffin tin until well coated, and scoop in enough of the batter to fill the wells almost to the top. These don't have a huge amount of rise, so don't worry about it overflowing unless you fill them to the brim, especially if you're using fresh fruit. Fresh fruit cooks down, so your oatmeal muffins will collapse just a bit while cooking. Don't worry though, they'll still turn out delicious.
Bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes or until the edges are browned and the centers are set. Allow to cool thoroughly before packaging them to avoid condensation forming in the container.
These don't have to be refrigerated, just kept in an airtight container. They keep for up to a week. Just pop them in the microwave for thirty seconds or so to reheat them, or eat them as is.
There you have two simple make ahead breakfasts you can customize to fit your and your family's taste. Make them on Saturday, Sunday, or whatever day you have the most free time, and enjoy them as a hot breakfast on the go all week.
If you have any comments are questions, please leave them in the comment section below. I try my best to answer any questions received within twenty-four hours.