Celebrity Chef Ellie Krieger Talks Breakfast

By , SparkPeople Blogger
Editor's note: Is breakfast the most important meal of the day for you? It should be! We had the opportunity to chat with Ellie Krieger about how to fit this crucial meal into your daily routine.
dailySpark: Everyone always says that breakfast is the ''most important meal of the day." In your words, what are the benefits of eating a good breakfast in the morning?

Ellie Krieger:
The reason why breakfast is so important is because it sets you up to eat well and perform well  for the rest of the day. It helps you stay focused; in fact, kids who eat breakfast do better in school and on cognitive tests. Eating breakfast is also one of the key habits of people who have lost weight and kept it off. Lots of people skip breakfast to save calories, but it backfires because you'll end up eating more later on in the day to compensate. Breakfast is also a great opportunity to get in some key nutrients that a lot of people are lacking in: potassium, vitamin D, fiber, and calcium. If you eat a breakfast with milk and a whole grain, you'll be getting these nutrients and more, which is a great way to start your day.

dS: We agree that eating breakfast is important, but some people feel too rushed and busy to do it! What are your top time-saving tips for eating breakfast?


EK: Keep it simple. Cereal with milk is a tried-and-true option, and I also like smoothies. I make one that I like to call my ''Start Right Smoothie";  I just blend together some milk, fruit, honey, wheat germ, and almonds. It has such a great texture and flavor to it! My 9- year-old daughter makes it for me sometimes, too, which is a great opportunity to get her involved in helping out with cooking and interested in healthy foods. It's also a good way for us to have some family time while eating together.
dS: Besides smoothies and drinking milk plain, what are some other ways to incorporate it into breakfast?

EK: I love to make a nice warm latte with milk, which gives you an extra protein boost with your morning coffee (milk has more protein than an egg!). I like to drink my latte with one of my breakfast cookies on the side—I make them with nuts, fruit, and whole grains, so they're tasty as well as good for you. Plus, how could you not love having cookies for breakfast? Sometimes I'll make a batch of them and keep them in the freezer for later use.
dS: Those breakfast cookies sound delicious! Any other ideas for big-batch cooking items you can make on the weekends to last throughout the week?

EK: Sometimes I'll put my smoothie ingredients in a blender and stick it in the fridge the night before. I'll also make pancakes on Sunday and save a little extra batter to make more on Monday morning. But rather than rushing through breakfast, I really recommend  taking 15 minutes to make it family time. You always hear about how important it is to have a sit-down family dinner, but breakfast can be a family meal, too. Everyone's in the same place at the same time, which doesn't happen very often in this crazy life!

Be a role model for your children by sharing nutritious food with them and taking time to be together in the morning. One tip I have (from thebreakfastproject.com) is to set out placemats the night before so that the table is ready to go first thing in the morning. It reminds you to eat breakfast and to take that time out for your family. It doesn't have to be a big, extravagant breakfast; I'm only talking about 10 to 15 minutes. 1 in 5 people skip breakfast in America and it's time to change that!
dS: Since we've only been talking about breakfasts to make on busy weekday mornings, what is your ideal breakfast to make on a lazy Sunday that's easy, but leisurely and healthy as well?

I am all about pancakes—it's one of the first recipes my daughter and I made together. They're a healthy and comforting option. I make them with plenty of fresh fruit, whole wheat flour, and milk, sometimes with a latte on the side. Like I said, refrigerating the batter to use again the next morning is a great time-saver, and can make your Monday morning family breakfast seem a little extra special!
Thanks to Ellie Krieger for sharing her tips on bringing breakfast back! Hopefully you'll be able to use some of these ideas to get the whole family involved in eating breakfast.

Do you eat breakfast in the morning? What's your favorite go-to breakfast?

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CECELW 1/4/2020
i think i read this before Report
_CYNDY55_ 12/21/2019
Thanks Report
1CRAZYDOG 11/27/2019
Love breakfast. I make a big batch of steel cut oats and portion it out for daily breakfasts. I change the "add on's". Could be strawberries, blueberries, cherries, blackberries, banana, walnuts, and yes, peanut butter. All delicious. Report
FISHGUT3 8/15/2019
thanks Report
I always eat breakfast Report
I don't go without my breakfast even when going out early Report
thanks. Report
I love Ellie Krieger; she taught me the divided plate long before I discovered SparkPeople, and I still make her tabouli recipe to this day. Breakfast for me is usually just a piece of fruit followed by boiled eggs and oatmeal, both of which I make ahead on weekends; I reheat an individual portion of oatmeal on the stovetop, and peel the eggs - it doesn't bother me to eat the eggs cold. I don't eat smoothies nor pancakes nor cereal nor milk, and I'm not into dairy, but on rare occasions will have cottage cheese and fruit for breakfast. My hurry-breakfast is a piece of fruit followed by peanut butter toast. In winter I love leftover soup for breakfast. Report
I was never one for eating breakfast until my doctor told me that I had to eat 5 to 6 meals a day, so now I eat either a yogurt and banana and a glass of milk or cereal and milk. Report
I have made it a point to eat breakfast every morning (lol ever since childhood). I do like variety in my meals and I have found various foods to make my breakfast a true meal. I have found many products that meet my diabetic needs as well as my nutritional and caloric needs. Report
I have breakfast every morning. My favorite quick meal is a smoothie (coconut milk, hempseeds, protien powder and frozen fruit) w/a hardboiled egg. I boil 5 eggs on Sunday to last me the week. Report
I find when I eat breakfast, my whole day goes better. I don't snack as much either. Thanks for a great blog! Report
I adore Ellie. She's all about making healthy eating as easy and common-sense as possible. Report
LOVE Ellie! I think she is beautiful and exudes health - her skin glows Report
I always eat breakfast . i find it is the fuel that fires up my metabolism for my day. I love Quick oats with water and throw in blueberries, a few walnuts, and dried cranberries. I sometimes add just applesauce and cinnamon to my quick oats. Report
I always eat breakfast! I am pretty much always hungry at breakfast time. My meal is usually the same: a portion of frozen berries, 1/3-1/2 cup porridge oats, 2 tbsp pumpkin seeds cooked with milk til it become porridge then 2tbsp ground flax over the top. It's a real nutrition powerhouse, grains and fruits and fats and fibre.

Every few weeks I have a breakfast of toast, fried eggs and bacon and sometimes on the weekend I'll swap my porridge for a croissant or pain au chocolat with coffee. Variety helps me stay healthy. Report
I've always eaten breakfast, stems from my mother making sure I ate before going to school. Depending on time, I'll have a protein shake or oatmeal. Weekends I'll have eggs, turkey bacon, and whole wheat toast or english muffin. Report
I eat breakfast just about every morning...I'm just starting to eat breakfast on Sunday mornings. :/

I have to be at work at 7:30 a.m., so I take my breakfast with me. I will usually have a frozen breakfast (like Weight Watchers Smart Ones) with some fruit. Sometimes, I will make oatmeal with either blueberries & almonds or banana & walnuts (made with milk in the microwave & honey for a little sweetness).

I really like the idea of a breakfast cookie (will have to go to Ellie's website for that recipe)...and HEIDIBB's muffins sound good, too! Thanks for the new ideas for a quick healthy breakfast! Report
I eat breakfast every morning. I love muesli with milk either hot or cold. Yogurt with granola and fruit. An egg with toast and fruit. Smoked salmon, low fat cottage cheese, sliced tomato on a 1/2 a whole wheat bagel....yum!!! I found if I don't eat breakfast I end up overeating, too many calories and too much fat, than if I had breakfast. Report
I never used to eat breakfast, until I saw a 21-day challenge on a cereal box. I tried it, and I've never gone back! Eventually, my breakfast grew to include fruit and greek yogurt, in addition to cereal and soy milk. I'll never go back to not eating breakfast! Report
My breakfast may seem a little odd by some people's standards, but it works for me. I usually have a cereal bar at home - more a snack even if it does break my fast - if I'm feeling hungry soon after getting up. If not, I'll have one as an early snack mid-morning. Otherwise, I don't eat until I get to work.

Weekly, I refresh my groceries at work. I keep a carton of juice (pineapple orange or pineapple orange banana) and a package of string cheese. I pour myself 12 ounces of juice in a mug and take one string cheese. Voila, quick protein, fat, and carbs. Sometimes for a change I have a breakfast sandwich or an egg, cheese, meat bowl. (Not often though, as those are usually sodium killers when bought processed.)

On the weekend, I tend to get up later and breakfast is either cereal with milk or scrambled eggs with either green pepper or grated cheese or both. (Cereals are Frosted Mini Wheats, Honey Bunches of Oats, or a new granola I'm loving - dark chocolate hazelnut.) Report
I make oatmeal (not the instant kind - yuk!) but the Old Fashioned plain variety almost every morning. To add some extra protein, I cook it in the microwave with milk instead of water - takes less than 5 minutes. I add agave nectar to sweeten, and sometimes I add unsweetened shredded coconut (1 TBSP for 30 calories), or 1 TBSP peanut butter (95 calories), or 2 TBSP ground flax meal. Report
A breakfast cookie...hummm...yummm... Report
I love oatmeal for breakfast and I have been surprised to find that I can eat it plain with cinnamon, splenda and a banana. Report
I love breakfast. I think the idea of a cookie and a latte is a nice change to my usual. off to search for a great recipe.... Report
I didn't used to eat breakfast - or lunch either - I just can't do that any more as it plays havoc with my energy levels. I usually have a bowl of porridge with honey and almond milk for breakfast and once a week after weigh in I like to have a more exciting breakfast, usually with eggs, spinach and tomato on a wholemeal English muffin. Having said that I'm interested in lifting my game and making breakfasts more interesting more often, though I think the oats are a good staple. My Granmother had them every morning and swore they helped her live to a fit and active 95. I think there might be more than that involved though [vbg] Report
I always eat breakfast, one of my favorites is my hot and fruity oatmeal, and I make a big enough batch to last 2-3 days. (Basic oatmeal with apples, pears, peaches - what ever, and just a little dried fruit like cranberries, raisins or apricots to add a small kick of sweetness, then add spices like cinnamon, dried ginger, cardamon nutmeg - every time is a little different. Regular cereals are a great stand by, so are scrambled eggs (I like EK"s suggestion of one whole egg, with one egg white per serving) Or make a quick fritatta by reheating left over vegies' and poring the egg mix over them... Report
I eat breakfast every day. I keep at least 5 different healthy cereals on hand, bananas are a must and 100% orange juice. Other times I will cook up scrapple, sausage or some breakfast meat and make scrambles eggs, waffles or pancakes and make extra to have during the week with fruit and orange juice. I also drink decaf herbal tea
Breakfast has always been a must in my home with my family. Then we always have full meals every meal not fast food.

Smile Joyce

I eat breakfast every day. I keep at least 5 different healthy cereals on hand, bananas are a must and 100% orange juice. Other times I will cook up scrapple, sausage or some breakfast meat and make scrambles eggs, waffles or pancakes and make extra to have during the week with fruit and orange juice. I also drink decaf herbal tea
Breakfast has always been a must in my home with my family. Then we always have full meals every meal not fast food.

Smile Joyce

Breakfast cookies and smoothies are awesome. we also do egg white omelettes and whole grain mini bagles allot. They are quick and easy for a family of 7 first thing in the morning :) Report
if you click on her name above, it'll take you to her food network page. just search her recipes for breakfast cookie! Report
great blog! I am one that ends up skipping breakfast (except for coffee of course) lots of times and eating a little something around 10. I think it's so important. I LOVE the breakfast cookie idea. I've been making a batch of healthy banana or applesauce muffins with whole wheat flour and grabbing one of those on my way out the door. Sometimes will "frost" it with a little peanut butter too :) Report
Could you share the recipe for your breakfast cookies? Report
I have never cared about eating breakfast in the morning, even though I have always been a person who gets up early. Report