In case you haven’t heard, whether you’re an exercise fiend or a couch potato (or anywhere in between), breakfast is your most important meal of the day. And with a title that literally means to break your fast, it’s no wonder.
Google a phrase like “important breakfast,” and you will discover no end of articles trying to convince you that a Pop-Tart and a cuppa joe aren’t going to do you any favors in the mental, physical, or spiritual department (even if you’re in a pop-tart cult, which…if you are…I don’t want to know). That, and you might get some pictures of some foreign dignitaries with hollandaise sauce on their $200 ties.
Anyhoo, my point is that, while a more substantial breakfast may not be any more spiritually uplifting than a crumbly frosted pastry filled with strawberryish goo, the fuel it provides can help you think more clearly and exercise more effectively, not to mention staving off the 3 p.m. Nacho Dorito munchies.
Well, breakfast is your body’s signal to start being itself again. In fact, experts say that eating something worthwhile within a 2-3 hour span of waking is one of the best ways to give your metabolism a jolt, since that “something” snaps your body out of the energy/food conservation mode it enters every night as a part of your natural sleep cycle. Also, breafkast-eaters tend to consume fewer calories overall throughout their day than breakfast-forgoers.
There are certainly other benefits, but for now, since I’ve told you a few of the “why’s” of breakfast, I’m going to suggest a “what:”
Bacon, egg, and cheese muffins.
Whooooooaaaa! Hold up! Come on back here. Before you dive for your keys and head to the nearest McDonald’s drive-thru (the blog lady made me do it!), here’s an important word that perhaps I should have included in my above description: homemade.
Homemade TURKEY bacon, egg, and low-cal cheese muffins are a wonderful, filling, reasonably healthy option for breakfast that, at only 250ish calories for one, will leave you plenty of room for a modest snack when/if you feel a little peckish before lunch.
And, what’s better, if you make them in batches like I do, they will save you mucho on both time and money.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Eggs (duh!): I bought mine in the crates because I plan to use them for a craft project later on (so save yours if you buy them this way too, and we can craft together! Wheeee! Okay, I’m back) – 70 cals/egg
- English muffins (I bought these from our local bakery outlet for $0.50/package. They cost almost $3 at Walmart, y’all. Whoop!) – 100 cals/muffin
- Some type of low-calorie butter/spread: this was on major sale, or I wouldn’t have usually gone with the vegetable oil spread, but it doesn’t have any hydrogenated oils, and it’s only 60 cals per tbsp (compared to 100 for real butter) and spreads super-easy…so yeah…I bought it. – 60 cals/tbsp
- Tocino de pavo (otherwise known as turkey bacon): considerably lower in fat/calories than its oinking counterpart. (Bonus points if you get the lower sodium version, which still tastes great). 35 cals/slice
- Low-cal American cheese: this is pretty much the worst-for-you part of the entire thing, so feel free to substitute thinly sliced 2% milk cheddar…or any other kind of cheese for that matter. 50 cals/slice
*Optional: Milk (if you make your eggs the way I do)
**Note: One dozen scrambled eggs usually yields about 14 muffins.
1. Crack one dozen eggs into a bowl, add 1/4 cup of milk, and generously sprinkle with salt/ pepper (I basically just shake until I have a good coating of both on the surface of the eggs, but be careful with the salt as you can easily go overboard and can always add more later if need be).
2. Enlist an adorable helper (who thinks that wearing shirts is always optional) if you’ve got one handy.
3. Scramble your eggs over medium heat in a large pan with 1/2 tbsp of olive oil.
3. Place as many pieces of bacon on a paper towel as will fit, and microwave on high somewhere between 2 1/2 – 3 1/2 minutes (depends on how your microwave nukes things).
4. Lightly (I use a TEA—not table—spoon, tops) butter both sides of each muffin, and slide them onto the top rack of the oven on broil (high) for a couple of minutes. Note: these crisp up super-fast, so keep an eye on them.
5. Set out your prepared ingredients, and stack your muffins up, assembly-line style (I usually do: muffin bottom, 2-3 tbsp of eggs, 1 slice of bacon (halved so it will fit), 1 slice of cheese, muffin top, but you can get as wild and crazy with your order as you like…although, I wouldn’t recommend bacon, eggs, muffin, muffin, cheese, or anything like that).
6. Once they’ve cooled, either individually wrap each sandwich in cling wrap and then place it in a gallon freezer bag (I can usually fit around 7) or just carefully stack/wedge them in the freezer bags and deal with the odd egg bit or two (or twenty when you grab the bag carelessly out of the freezer and fling it on the counter…oops) that escapes.
7. Grab a sandwich from your freezer first thing in the morning, nuke on high (be sure to remove it from the cellophane first if you wrapped it up…mmmm….chemicals) for about 30 seconds, and chow down!
McDonald’s Bacon, Egg, and Cheese Biscuit – approx. $3
Homemade Bacon, Egg, and Cheese Muffin – $0.50
Ours: 250 (using the versions of the ingredients I listed above)
Kind of a big difference, I’d say. Not to mention that these yummy sammies will save you from waiting in the drive-through with all the other late-for-work commuters.
This is just my little trick for easy protein + filling tastiness to get my day started off, but I’d love to hear what kind of breakfast gets you moving in the morning!
Oh, and come on back tomorrow for Try-it Tuesday!