(Family Features) As the weather cools down and routines ramp up, parents know it becomes increasingly challenging to keep the whole family on track. While most people know breakfast is the most important meal of the day, many don’t realize that protein in the morning is key to starting the day off right.
A protein-rich breakfast including milk can help energize your morning. Plus, protein at breakfast can help you feel full and satisfied, so you won’t feel hungry by mid-morning, which helps the whole family tackle work, errands, school, extracurricular activities or whatever else the day has in store.
One easy way to increase your family’s protein intake at breakfast is to simply add a glass of milk. Each 8-ounce serving has nine essential nutrients, including 8 grams of high-quality, natural protein. If mornings in your household are chaotic, plan ahead by making protein-rich breakfasts the night before that are easy to pair with milk, ensuring that the whole family can get out the door on time and fed in the morning.
“As a mom and a pediatrician, I’m focused on what I feed my kids each day,” said Dr. Jennifer Shu, pediatrician and author. “Milk is a simple, nutritious way to make sure they get high-quality protein at each meal, plus other nutrients like calcium, vitamin D and more.”
When thinking about the week ahead, consider tasty, protein-rich recipes the whole family will love that can be prepared in advance and eaten on the go – like these PB and J Protein Power Muffins. For more recipe ideas and morning inspiration, visit milklife.com/morningprotein.
PB and J Protein Power Muffins
- Nonstick cooking spray
- 1 3/4 cups milk, divided
- 1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed according to package directions
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup loosely packed brown sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 4 tablespoons creamy reduced-fat peanut butter
- 1/4 cup strawberry preserves
- Heat oven to 350°F and grease 12-muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray.
- In medium saucepan, stir together quinoa and 1 cup milk. Bring to boil over medium heat. Reduce to simmer, cover and cook 10-15 minutes until quinoa is tender and milk is absorbed.
- In large bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, baking powder and salt; whisk to combine. In medium bowl, combine remaining milk, Greek yogurt, eggs, vanilla and peanut butter; mix well. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and mix until combined. Stir in cooked quinoa. Divide batter among muffin cups.
- Drop 1/2 teaspoon of strawberry preserves into center of each muffin tin on top of batter. Bake 20-25 minutes until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
- Allow to cool 5-10 minutes. Serve with 8-ounce glass of milk.
Nutritional information per serving: 540 calories; 8 g fat; 1.5 g saturated fat; 70 mg cholesterol; 25 g protein; 91 g carbohydrates; 4 g fiber; 520 mg sodium; 517 mg calcium (50% of daily value). Nutrition figures based on using fat free milk, and include an 8-ounce glass of milk.
Leidy HJ, Lepping RJ, Savage CR, Harris CT, Neural responses to visual food stimuli after a normal vs. higher protein breakfast in breakfast-skipping teens: a pilot fMRI study. Obesity. 2011;19:2019-2025.
Leidy HJ,Bossingham MJ, Mattes RD, Campbell WW. Increased dietary protein consumed at breakfast leads to an initial and sustained feeling of fullness during energy restriction compared to other meal times. British Journal of Nutrition. 2009;101:798-803.
(Family Features) From the celebrity on TV to your coworker at the watercooler, everyone is talking about turmeric. That’s because scientific evidence has been building around the potential health benefits, including anti-inflammatory properties, of curcumin, a compound in turmeric. These six tempting recipes – from a morning shake to baked chicken – will quickly make turmeric the new star of your spice cabinet. Find more tips for using turmeric at McCormick.com.
(Family Features) Eating a high-protein breakfast can help provide energy and focus to keep your day on track. While many experts now recommend 25-30 grams of protein at each meal, the average breakfast plate only contains 13 grams. One way to help close the gap is to add an 8-ounce glass of milk to your meal. Whether organic, flavored or white, each variety provides nine essential nutrients, including 8 grams of high-quality protein per 8 ounces to help start the day on the right foot.
Get ahead of the game and prep breakfast the night before so you have something delicious and satisfying to look forward to each morning. Now is the perfect time to update your routine with these powerhouse breakfast ideas. These recipes are all made and paired with milk, helping you get protein and nutrients you need to fuel your day.
Once you try these delicious recipes, you’ll never go back to your old, lackluster options again. For additional breakfast inspiration, visit milklife.com.
Bring new holiday traditions to life with a warm, wholesome morning meal
(Family Features) As the busy holiday season approaches, take time to relax and make family memories with a delicious breakfast at home. Bringing loved ones together doesn’t always need to involve an elaborate gathering. Sometimes, a warm, cozy morning meal is all you need.
With wholesome nutrition top of mind for many moms, incorporating milk into your family’s routine can be a simple way to get important nutrients like protein, calcium and vitamin D. When you use real, farm fresh, dairy milk in your favorite holiday recipes, you can feel good knowing that it provides a natural nutrient package that is hard to match in any other single food or beverage.
During this holiday season, bring the family together to enjoy savory comfort foods, like this homemade twist on classic hash browns. Made with ingredients you can feel good about, like nutritious milk, crisp vegetables and fresh herbs, this potato hash is sure to become a new favorite. It’s served with an 8-ounce glass of milk for an extra nutrient boost that helps everyone power through the busy holiday season.
For more recipes to bring the family together during the holiday season, visit milklife.com.
Garlic Herb Potato Hash
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 8 small red potatoes, skin-on and diced (about 3 cups)
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 3 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, finely chopped, plus additional for topping
- 1 teaspoon fresh oregano, finely chopped, plus additional for topping
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2/3 cup milk
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 2 slices low-sodium turkey bacon, cooked near crispy
- 1/4 cup finely grated reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese
- In large skillet over medium heat, melt butter then add potatoes, bell peppers, garlic, thyme and oregano, stirring occasionally until potatoes are fork-tender.
- Sprinkle flour over potato mixture and stir to coat. Gradually stir in milk until sauce forms. Season with salt and pepper and stir in slices of turkey bacon. Sprinkle with cheddar cheese and cover, allowing to melt 1-2 minutes. Uncover and top with additional herbs, if desired, before serving.
- Pair each serving with 8-ounce glass of milk.
Nutritional information per serving: 320 calories; 11 g fat; 6 g saturated fat; 45 mg cholesterol; 17 g protein; 38 g carbohydrates; 3 g fiber; 440 mg sodium; 434 mg calcium (45% of daily value). Nutrition figures based on using fat free milk, and include an 8-ounce glass of milk.
(Family Features) Most parents know the first few weeks of school season and new daily routines can be hectic. From stocking up on school supplies to finishing up homework, there's few unused minutes in the day.
One thing that's particularly easy to forget in the mad dash to catch the bus or make it to morning drop-off is a well-balanced, protein-packed breakfast. According to a No Kid Hungry study, when students have a balanced breakfast in the morning, they are more likely to attend school and perform better on standardized tests.
Start the school year off right by giving your kids a breakfast they'll love that also provides the protein they need to kick-start their day. Recipes like Simple Ham and Waffle Breakfast Sandwiches or Baked Eggs in Avocado can be ready in minutes and provide fuel long past the first morning school bell.
As a simple time-saver, Smithfield offers pre-diced, cubed and sliced ham that can make breakfast a breeze any day of the week. Incorporate it into a simple breakfast sandwich for a protein boost you can enjoy on-the-go. Served crispy or chewy depending on your preference, Thick Cut Bacon also puts a savory spin on nearly any breakfast plate, whether paired with eggs and avocado or a simple side of toast.
For more information and breakfast ideas, visit smithfield.com.
Simple Ham and Waffle Breakfast Sandwiches
Cook time: 30 minutes
- 8 frozen prepared waffles, toasted
- 8 ounces Smithfield Anytime Favorites Quarter Boneless Sliced Ham, any flavor
- 4 large eggs
- 4 slices cheddar or American cheese
- maple syrup (optional)
- Prepare waffles according to package directions; keep warm.
- In nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, cook ham slices until lightly browned, about 30 seconds per side; keep warm. In same skillet over medium heat, fry eggs until desired doneness.
- Lay out four waffles and top each with sliced cheese, ham and fried egg, topping with remaining waffles to finish. Serve warm with maple syrup, if desired.
Tip: Try spreading fruit jam on your sandwich for a change of pace.
Baked Eggs in Avocado
Cook time: 10 minutes
- Nonstick cooking spray
- 3 large avocados
- 6 eggs
- 4 strips Smithfield Thick Cut Bacon, diced and cooked until crispy
- 1 cup blue cheese
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro
- Heat oven to 450 F. Spray baking sheet or glass baking pan with cooking spray. Cut avocados in half. Scoop out 1-2 tablespoons of avocado to create well for eggs. Place avocados flesh-side up on prepared baking sheet or glass pan.
- Gently crack one egg in each avocado well, making sure to keep yolk intact. Bake 10 minutes, or until eggs reach desired temperature. Remove.
- Top with bacon pieces, blue cheese and cilantro.
(Family Features) Parents may be wondering how to ensure their children are staying hydrated, maintaining healthy diets and getting the nutrients they need during the summer months. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the reality is one out of two kids ages 9 and up are missing out on key nutrients like calcium, vitamin D and potassium – putting them at risk for serious health issues.
Pediatrician and best-selling author Dr. Tanya Altmann suggests moms can help fill that gap by making sure kids fuel their bodies with proper nutrition. Milk is the top food source for calcium, vitamin D and potassium, and Altmann encourages moms to serve milk at most meals and water in between to ensure kids get the recommended servings of milk, depending on age group, throughout the day.
“Milk is a simple way to help give kids of all ages nutrients they need to grow strong, and they already love it,” Altmann said. “Pour a glass of milk alongside your kid’s favorite snack or use milk in a smoothie or oatmeal for breakfast.”
This summer, try a twist on a classic, kid-approved lunch – for breakfast. These Peanut Butter and Jelly Pancake Dippers combine two favorite flavors, a peanut butter pancake with a jelly dip, for a simple recipe the whole family is sure to enjoy eating. Pair with an 8-ounce glass of milk for nine essential nutrients to fuel summer mornings.
For more nutritious, kid-approved recipes to pair with a glass of milk, visit pourmoremilk.com.
Peanut Butter and Jelly Pancake Dippers
Recipe courtesy of MilkPEP
Servings: 5 (2 pancake dippers per serving)
- 1/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
- 1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons brown sugar, packed
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 large egg
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 4 tablespoons reduced-fat creamy peanut butter
- 1 cup fat-free milk
- nonstick cooking spray
- 1/3 cup sugar-free raspberry preserves, for dipping
- 1 glass (8 ounces) fat-free milk
- In blender, combine oats and flours and pulse 3-4 times. Add salt, brown sugar, baking powder, egg, vegetable oil, peanut butter and 1 cup milk. Pulse several times until combined and no lumps in batter.
- Heat nonstick skillet to medium-low heat and lightly grease with cooking spray. Pour 1/4 cup batter onto skillet, cook 1-2 minutes until bubbles appear around edges then flip and cook another 1-2 minutes until golden. Immediately roll up pancake and secure with toothpick. Repeat process with remaining batter.
- Serve with raspberry preserves for dipping and pair with remaining 8-ounce glass of milk.
Nutritional information per serving: 310 calories; 9 g fat; 1.5 g saturated fat; 45 mg cholesterol; 17 g protein; 43 g carbohydrates; 3 g fiber; 430 mg sodium; 431 mg calcium (45% of daily value). Nutrition figures based on using fat-free milk, and include an 8-ounce glass of fat-free milk.
(Family Features) With summer comes the opening of farmers markets bursting with fresh produce ripe for the taking. Pair your fresh-picked bounty with wholesome pecans for power-packed seasonal recipes from salads and snacks to side dishes and main courses.
American Pecans are The Original Supernut; a naturally sweet superfood that’s nutritious, versatile and local as it’s the only major tree nut native to America. Pecans are also among the highest in “good” monounsaturated fats and contain plant protein, fiber, flavonoids and essential minerals, including copper, manganese and zinc, so you can feel good when adding them to your next meal or snack.
After a morning at the farmers market, cook up a nourishing spread for breakfast or lunch. For a quick, mess-free brunch, try Sheet Pan Eggs with Pecan Breakfast “Sausage.” Substitute flavored ground pecans for your sausage and add fresh greens for a quick, good-for-you option with plant-based protein.
For a simple yet sweet take on dessert, try Mini Pecan Lemon Berry Tarts with a three-ingredient, pecan-based crumb as the base, topped with a light filling and fresh berries.
To find additional seasonal recipes, nutrition information and cooking tips, and to learn more about America’s native nut, visit AmericanPecan.com.
Mini Pecan Lemon Berry Tarts
Mini Pecan Crusts:
- 2 cups pecan pieces or halves
- 1/4 cup butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 24 Mini Pecan Crusts
- 1/2 cup lemon curd
- 1/2 cup blueberries or raspberries
- powdered sugar, for dusting (optional)
- To make Mini Pecan Crusts: Heat oven to 350° F. Line mini muffin tin with paper liners.
- In food processor, blend pecans, butter and sugar until mixture forms coarse dough.
- Scoop about 2 teaspoons pecan mixture into each muffin tin. Use back of wooden spoon or fingers to press mixture evenly along bottom and up sides of each muffin cup.
- Bake 12 minutes, or until crusts are golden brown. Allow crusts to cool completely before removing from pan.
- Spoon 1 teaspoon lemon curd into each Mini Pecan Crust. Top each with one raspberry or three small blueberries. Dust with powdered sugar, if desired.
Sheet Pan Eggs with Pecan Breakfast “Sausage”
Pecan Breakfast Sausage:
- 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/2 medium onion, diced (about 1/2 cup)
- 1 tablespoon coconut aminos
- 1 teaspoon sage
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 cup raw pecan halves
Sheet Pan Eggs:
- 12 eggs, beaten
- 3/4 cup fat-free or low-fat milk
- 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1 cup fresh spinach, chopped
- nonstick cooking spray
- Heat oven to 325° F.
- To make Pecan Breakfast “Sausage”: In pan over medium heat, add olive oil, onion, coconut aminos, sage, thyme, nutmeg, garlic powder, black pepper and cayenne pepper. Cook about 4 minutes until onion is translucent.
- In food processor, pulse onion mixture and pecans until consistency of ground beef is reached, about 8-10 pulses.
- To make Sheet Pan Eggs: In large bowl, whisk eggs, milk, salt and pepper until combined.
- Add pecan “sausage” and spinach to eggs and stir. Lightly spray nonstick 12-by-17-inch sheet pan with cooking spray. Pour egg mixture onto prepared pan. Bake 18-20 minutes, or until eggs are fully cooked.
Source: American Pecan Council
(Family Features) While many food trends come and go, some desired food traits seemingly never go out of style. For example, dishes that provide nutritional benefits will pretty much always be popular, along with types of foods that can be customized to match personalized preferences and tastes.
Toast is a versatile option for nearly anyone seeking a bite for breakfast, especially those eaters looking for both nutrition and flavor. Because you can add a variety of toppings to your toast, it can be a simple way to add a healthy element to your morning routine.
These recipes, for example, include Sabra Hummus as a base spread, which adds protein and fiber perfect for breakfast, brunch or a mid-morning snack. Hummus Toast with Sun-dried Tomatoes and Parmesan brings with it the extra nutritional value of veggies, while Hummus Toast with Soft-Boiled Egg and Spinach packs ample protein for an ideal way to start the day.
Plus, because these quick-to-make recipes involve short amounts of time spent on preparation, you’re able to enjoy a nutritious treat even on the busiest of days.
Find more ways to take trendy toast to the next level at Sabra.com.
Hummus Toast with Sun-dried Tomatoes and Parmesan
- 1 slice whole-grain bread
- 1/4 cup fresh arugula
- 2-3 sun-dried tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons Sabra Classic Hummus
- olive oil
- 2 tablespoons pine nuts
- fresh Parmesan curls
- salt, to taste
- pepper, to taste
- Toast bread; set aside. Wash and pat dry arugula; set aside.
- Remove sun-dried tomatoes from jar and lightly pat with paper towel to remove excess oil.
- Spread toast with hummus.
- Lightly toss arugula with drizzle of olive oil; layer on top of hummus. Top with sun-dried tomatoes. Sprinkle with pine nuts and add Parmesan curls. Add salt and pepper, to taste.
Hummus Toast with Soft-Boiled Egg and Spinach
- 1 slice artisan country white bread
- 1/4 cup fresh spinach, wilted
- 1 soft-boiled egg
- 1 garlic clove, chopped
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 2 tablespoons Sabra Classic Hummus
- red pepper flakes, for garnish
- salt, to taste
- pepper, to taste
- Toast bread; set aside. Wash spinach; set aside.
- Fill small saucepan with enough water to barely cover egg; bring to boil, cover and reduce heat. Cook egg 6 minutes, remove from heat and plunge into ice bath to stop cooking. Peel egg; set aside.
- In medium skillet, saute chopped garlic in olive oil approximately 3 minutes; add spinach and stir 2 minutes, or until spinach begins to wilt. Remove from heat.
- Spread toast with hummus. Add wilted garlic-spinach. Cut egg in half and place on top of spinach. Sprinkle with red pepper flakes, salt and pepper.
(Family Features) More daylight in the evening, birds chirping in the morning and plants sprouting up from the ground are signs that Spring has sprung. With the return of outdoor activities and sunshine, it's the perfect time to build on your family's healthy habits with farm fresh foods you can trust for quality nutrition.
Start by looking for fresh and wholesome foods at the grocery store. Milk is one of the original farm-to-table foods that contains nine essential nutrients, including high-quality protein, potassium and calcium. Milk is also remarkably simple, with just three ingredients: milk and vitamins A and D. Compare that to plant based alternatives, which often have more than 10 ingredients, including added salt, sugar, stabilizers and emulsifiers like locust bean gum, sunflower lecithin and gellan gum.
Many people don't realize that the real dairy milk at the local grocery store often originates from dairy farms about 300 miles away and arrives on shelves in just 48 hours, on average, after leaving the farm.
Try a twist on farm-fresh ingredients with an egg-infused breakfast twist on a classic Italian salad. When paired with an 8-ounce glass of milk, this delicious omelet fulfills 80 percent of your daily calcium value for a calcium-rich breakfast.
For more information and kid-friendly seasonal recipe ideas, visit milklife.com.
Recipe courtesy of MilkPEP
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 large egg
- 2 large egg whites
- 3 tablespoons fat free milk
- 1/2 beefsteak tomato, sliced
- 1/4 cup lowfat shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped
- 1 8-ounce glass of milk
- Heat olive oil in a large nonstick pan over medium heat. Beat eggs and 3 tablespoons milk together in a small bowl until well mixed.
- Pour egg mixture into heated pan, swirling the pan until eggs cover the bottom. Allow the eggs to set and no visible liquid remains, about 2 -3 minutes.
- After the eggs have set, arrange the tomatoes, cheese and basil on one side of the eggs. Using a spatula, carefully fold omelet in half, bringing the egg portion over the filling. Remove omelet from pan and serve with remaining 8-ounce glass of milk and enjoy.
Nutritional information per serving: 360 calories; 18 g fat; 5 g saturated fat; 210 mg cholesterol; 32 g protein; 19 g carbohydrates; 1 g fiber; 510 mg sodium; 800 mg calcium (80% of daily value). Nutrition figures based on using fat free milk, and include an 8-ounce glass of milk.
(Family Features) As leaves fall and temperatures cool, put a comforting twist on breakfast classics like oats and pancakes by incorporating autumn flavors from delicious fall harvest. Whether you're craving something sweet or savory, enjoying a breakfast full of wholesome ingredients and essential nutrients can help kick-start a great day.
Incorporating milk as an ingredient in your breakfast dish, or serving an 8-ounce glass on the side, is a nutritious way to start the day with essential nutrients like high-quality protein, calcium and vitamin D. Embrace the crisp temperatures and bring the whole family together for a delicious morning meal with these six fall breakfast essentials made with milk.
For more seasonal recipes made with milk to help you stay energized all year round, visit MilkLife.com.
Enjoy old-fashioned oats with a fall flair. Once sweetened with apples and maple syrup and spiced with cinnamon and salt, mix in 1 cup milk and simmer until creamy. Sprinkle extra cinnamon and garnish with golden raisins.
Jumpstart your morning with this protein breakfast bowl made with quinoa, milk, brown sugar, vanilla and spices galore.
Toss roasted pecans drizzled in maple syrup with pears and spices then mix into amaranth with milk for a creative twist on a classic breakfast favorite.
Two ingredients: milk and maple syrup. Warm up, pour into a mug and sip on this simple, delicious treat.
Combine two breakfast favorites – pancakes and muffins – for the ultimate grab-and-go meal made with apples, cinnamon and wholesome milk for your delight.
Try this tasty twist to add vegetables to your breakfast bowl by mixing shredded zucchini and oatmeal to make zoats. Flavored with cinnamon, brown sugar and pecans, this recipe is an ingenious way to bring the fall harvest to your morning meal.