10 wholesome breakfast ideas for kids before school (easy make-ahead recipes)
When the school routine starts, one of the greatest ways to help your kids THRIVE is to make sure they have a wholesome breakfast! I’m here to help you on those crazy school mornings. Here are 10 really great wholesome breakfast ideas for kids before school!
Kids who have a healthy, nutrient-dense breakfast before school are equipped to start the day ready to focus and learn!
These 10 breakfast ideas are all delicious, filling, and nutritious for the whole family! Each of the breakfast recipes are quick and easy too. An absolute REQUIREMENT for me! Because after a summer of sleeping a bit later, waking up and getting out the door on on time is a bit more rushed!
Therefore, your kids need a quick and easy breakfast before school. But not ONLY quick and easy. Kids ALSO need wholesome breakfast packed with nutrients!
As a parent, you know that anything you can make ahead of time that your kids can just grab out of the freezer or fridge is a HUGE WIN. That’s exactly what you can do with these recipes! Wholesome breakfast options already made makes the school morning easy breezy. Yesssss to that all day!
What NOT to give your kids for breakfast before school:
You don’t want to give your kids a sugar filled pastry type breakfast before school.
You know what sugary pastries do for your kids? Kids all sugared up have a difficult time focusing and even maintaining consistent energy for the day ahead. Not to mention sugar shuts down the immune system.
The donuts, cinnamon rolls, and different pastries only hurt your kids health! I know you don’t want to do that.
Good news is you don’t have to sacrifice healthy foods for quick foods! Sure, a pop tart is easy. But oh my- it’s all sugar and chemical filled. Just read the long paragraph of ingredients (many that you can’t pronounce)!
So a big “no” to sugary breakfast items for kids- especially before school!
You also don’t want to give your kids a carb heavy breakfast before school.
Even if you don’t serve sugar-filled breakfast foods, a carb-heavy breakfast doesn’t serve your kids either. What do I mean by that?
Biscuits, toast, most cereals, or only eating fruit are simply crazy high in carbs and low on protein. Therefore carb heavy meals are not balanced at all. Your body just converts all the empty carbs into sugar and that has same disadvantages we talked about above.
We want to set up our kids for success at school not the opposite effect!
Before school breakfasts should definitely include:
You want to give your kids a nutrient-rich breakfast before school.
Kids need vitamins and minerals, complex carbohydrates, and fiber! Just to name a few… This will help your kids start the day on the best note possible!
You want your kids to eat a breakfast that helps them feel full and energetic.
You don’t want your kid to be distracted by their hunger in school so making sure they eat a filling breakfast helps them stay satisfied until lunch time.
And your kids need energy to be able to listen well and focus at school. What they eat for breakfast can actually fuel their body for maximum energy!
(For more info on the importance of breakfast before school see this article at kidshealth.org)
Here are 10 wholesome breakfast ideas for kids that can be made ahead!
Your kids will love these!!
1. Turkey sausage balls!
I just make these up, cook them, and freeze them in large ziploc bags. My boys just go to the freezer, take a few out and microwave them for 30 seconds to reheat. Voila! Delicious protein packed goodness!
I love and recommend the Jennie-O lean turkey sausage because it has no nitrates- just turkey, salt, spices, sugar, and rosemary extract.
I like this recipe because it doesn’t use bisquick (though it’s not the end of the world if you use the bisquick recipe). This uses all ingredients that you can understand!
Turkey Sausage ball RECIPE:
- 1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon cayenne
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, grated
- 1/2 cup onion finely chopped
- 1 pound Jennie-O lean turkey sausage
- 3 tablespoons butter, melted
- Preheat oven to 375°F
- Line a sheet pan with parchment, silicone baking mat, or foil.
- Whisk together flour, salt, black pepper, cayenne, and baking powder in medium bowl.
- Add the shredded cheese and toss.
- Add the onion, sausage, and butter. Mix thoroughly with your hands.
- Measure out 2 tablespoons of sausage mix and shape into balls.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden or until internal temperature reaches 165°F
2. Best Pancakes Ever! (2 choices to freeze)
Who doesn’t love pancakes? The typical pancake would be too carb-heavy and sugary. But these 2 choices are so good for you! They freeze beautifully and can be reheated in a matter of minutes making a healthy breakfast before school a breeze!
- First up, PURELY ELIZABETH Ancient Grain Pancake Mix!!!
My mouth is watering. These gluten free and vegan pancakes are so filling and hearty and packed with nutrients your kids need!
- Or second choice, Bob’s Red Mill 10 grain pancake and waffle mix!!!
10 grains make these pancakes nutrient-dense delicious perfection! Again they freeze well so this makes it so easy!
If possible, get 100% maple syrup instead of high fructose corn syrups. Instead of soaking and floating pancakes in maple syrup (because that’s too much of a good thing), teach your kids to make a little dip spot.
You just pour a little syrup onto the plate and have your kid dip each pancake bite in the maple syrup! Yummmm!
3. Quality Protein smoothies!
One of our absolute favorite wholesome breakfast ideas for kids before school is a protein smoothie! This is maybe the only one you can’t make too far ahead. But it only takes 2 minutes to blend the ingredients together so what can be easier than that?
The PROS of a quality protein smoothie:
- You kid will feel AMAZING eating the protein and vitamin packed meal in the morning.
- The protein helps them to FEEL FULL and keeps glycemic levels balanced (not true if you just blend up some fruits and yogurt- they will be sugar-rushing and then starving soon after!)
- Protein smoothies are definitely an ENERGY BOOSTING meal. You giving your kids lean protein, fruits, and veggies and a big dose of vitamins and minerals.
Now you may be wondering what is meant by a quality protein smoothie?
All protein smoothies are not created equal for sure! You need a good quality protein. It is highly recommended that we consume PLANT protein.
Whey protein has plenty of concerns as it is basically leftovers from the meat industry. It can cause more problems than benefits for sure. Plant protein is easily absorbed and easy on the digestive system. But plant protein doesn’t always taste too yum though!
(For more info on whey protein vs. plant protein, read this article from eatthis.com)
However when you purchase a protein powder that has a blend of a few different plant proteins, such as Arbonne’s Protein powder, you hit the TASTE GREAT jackpot!!
(Note: On the checkout page for the protein powder, check out how to get 20% off your order!)
Not only does it taste so delicious, but a blend of 3 plant proteins (cranberry, rice, and pea) in Arbonne’s protein powder gives a complete amino acid profile and is super easily digested.
You want a protein powder that is clean with no artificial colors, flavors, or sweeteners. Those powders are harder to find but worth the effort- artificial colors, sweeteners, and flavors have too many health concerns to even write here! One that has 20 vitamins and minerals like Arbonne’s protein makes it that much more healthy for your body!
- 1 serving of quality Protein powder
- 16oz of dairy free milk
- 2 TBSP of nut butter or half avocado
- frozen fruits of choice
Add it all to a great blender and enjoy!
4. Homemade protein bars!
Have you checked the ingredients in most protein bars? Geeeez. No thank you to giving your kids chemicals, artificial ingredients, whey protein and who knows what!
These homemade protein bars are full of nutritious ingredients you can feel great about! They are easy to make and so delicious!!
- 2 cups of almond or peanut butter
- 1 and 1/4 cup of honey
- 2 cups of ARBONNE PROTEIN POWDER (chocolate or vanilla or both!)
- 3 cups of old fashioned rolled oats
- Optional***Add dried fruits, nuts and/or seeds
- In microwave safe bowl, add nut butter and honey, and heat for 70-90 seconds until it stirs easily.
- Add Protein Powder and oatmeal (add optional items at this time as well). Mixture will be thick.
- Press into 9×16 pan and refrigerate for 1 hour or until solid enough to cut into 24 bars.
5. Dreamy granola!
You can’t go wrong with this wholesome breakfast idea for kids before school! I didn’t realize how much better homemade granola tastes AND how easy it is to make! You can make this and store it in glass jar for weeks!
Here is a truly perfect recipe that allows for all the add ins you may want! I make this base and have fresh fruit and almond milk on hand to add to the granola for a super healthy breakfast for the kids before school.
- 6 cups of old fashioned rolled oats
- 1/2 cup of sunflower seeds or nuts
- 1/2 cup of shredded coconut
- 1/2 cup of wheat germ
- 1/2 cup of powdered milk
- 2/3 cup honey
- 2/3 cup of coconut oil
- 1 tsp of vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
- Line a large cookie sheet with parchment paper. Spread the rolled oats onto the pan and bake for 10 minutes, stirring after 5 minutes.
- In a large bowl, add the oats and stir in the sunflower seeds or nuts, shredded coconut, wheat germ, and powdered milk.
- Add the honey, oil, and vanilla and stir well.
- Spread mixture on the parchment lined cookie sheet and bake for 12 minutes, stirring every 4 minutes. (I just set a timer for 4 minutes) 3 times.
- Cool in the pan and then add it to a glass jar to store!
6. Best tasting healthy bran muffins!
These muffins are rich in fiber and whole grains! I like to use white whole wheat flour for a lighter taste than regular whole wheat flour, but either is great. You will be amazed at how totally delicious these are!
Raisins (+/- 1 cup) are fabulous in these as well! If your kid has two of these warm muffins before school, they will be full and well nourished for sure! One batch makes 24 muffins. (I always make a double batch to have lots in the freezer as they are a favorite!)
- 1 cup water
- 2 cups of All-Bran cereal
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/2 cup applesauce, unsweetened
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 cups of buttermilk
- 2 1/2 teaspoons of baking soda
- 1 1/2 cups of whole wheat flour
- 1 cup of all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 (additional) cup of All-Bran cereal
Preheat oven to 400.
Boil 1 cup of water
Mix boiling water and 2 cups All Bran cereal together in a bowl. Set aside.
Mix together butter, sugar, applesauce and eggs.
Then add baking soda, flours, and salt.
Add the All Bran and water mixture.
Lastly, add 1 cup of dry All Bran cereal. Mix until blended.
Grease muffin tins.
Fill each tin 3/4 of the way full of batter.
Bake for 13-15 minutes for regular size muffins or until the muffins bounce back.
7. Yummiest Energy balls!
Well I can hardly say enough great things about these energy balls! They are simply perfect! Rich and filling and oh so delicious!
A perfect wholesome breakfast idea for kids before school! You can customize adding or taking away the add ins based on your kids’ preferences! I make a double batch and store in the fridge up to 4 weeks!
So easy to grab and go!
- 1 cup old-fashioned oats
- 2/3 cup toasted shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
- 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
- 1/2 cup ground flaxseed
- 1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips (or vegan chocolate chips)
- 1/3 cup raisins
- 1/3 cup honey
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds (optional)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Stir all ingredients together in a large mixing bowl until thoroughly combined.
- Roll into 1 inch balls
8. Favorite Pumpkin muffins!
My goodness. On any given day of the year, you can open my freezer and you will find these! One of my sons simply can’t live without them!
I don’t even know how many of these muffins he eats in a day. I just know it’s a lot. If I let these muffins run out, it always results in a constantly hungry boy. We always say these pumpkin muffins take his hunger edge off!
This recipe makes 48+ muffins so it’s perfect for stocking the freezer for those busy school mornings!
- 2 and 1/4 cups of white whole wheat flour (or regular whole wheat flour)
- 1 and 1/4 cup of all purpose flour
- 1 TBSP baking soda
- 1 and 1/2 tsp of salt
- 1 TBSP cinnamon
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 1 15oz can of pumpkin puree
- 2 scant cups of sugar or 1 cup sugar & 1 cup applesauce
- 1 cup of canola or safflower oil
- 2/3 cup of water
- 4 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 cups mini chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Wisk the dry ingredients in a bowl: the flours, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
- In a seperate large bowl, mix the pumpkin, sugar, oil, water, eggs, and vanilla until well blended.
- Slowly stir in the dry ingredients until blended.
- Stir in the chocolate chips. Fill muffin tins and bake for 16-18 minutes.
9. Perfect Overnight Oats!
Overnight oats are just so fun! The add ins are endless! This may be the easiest wholesome breakfast idea for kids before school on this list!
Oatmeal (especially with peanut butter added, too) is a highly nutritious and hearty meal for your kids!
It’s super easy to add the ingredients to a jar before bed and then ahhhh! School mornings are made so simple!
- 1/2 cup dairy-free milk
- 3/4 TBSP chia seeds
- 1/2 cup old fashioned rolled oats
- 1 TBSP maple syrup (or coconut sugar or monk fruit sweetener)
- (Optional but highly recommended)- 2 TBSP peanut or almond butter
Then you have fun with your own toppings based on your kids’ liking!
We’ve loved adding:
- strawberries and blueberries!
- banana and chocolate almond milk!
- peaches and berries and banana!
- In a mason jar or small bowl with lid, add milk, chia seeds, nut butter, and maple syrup (or other sweetener). Stir well! Don’t worry about the nut butter not mixing in well- it actually tastes great to have swirls of nut butter all throughout!
- Put lid on jar or bowl and refrigerate overnight to let it the oats soak and set.
- On the next morning, open the lid and you can heat it for 1 minute in the microwave or keep it cold.
- Add the optional toppings and enjoy!
10. First rate white wheat waffles!
For the final wholesome breakfast idea for kids before school, you can forget eggo waffles! When you make your own wholesome waffles, you can feel good knowing you know every ingredient! It also saves money because if you haven’t noticed, the healthy frozen waffles are pricey!
These taste better than those and are super easy to make ahead and freeze! I usually double the batter so when I make waffles to eat right then, I also have plenty to freeze for later for those busy school mornings!
Again I prefer to use white whole wheat flour as it takes less wheat-y- ha! Kids often don’t even realize they are eating whole wheat waffles when I use white wheat flour.
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups white whole wheat flour OR 1 cup wheat flour and 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 and 3/4 cups milk (dairy free is great too)
- 1/2 cup canola or safflower oil
- 4 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat waffle iron. Whisk eggs in a bowl until fluffy. Gently whisk in flour, milk, oil, sweetner, baking powder, salt and vanilla, just until smooth.
- Pour mix onto hot waffle iron. Cook until golden brown.
- Eat then or freeze for later in bag or air tight container.
Reheat in toaster. Top with fresh berries and/or butter and maple syrup (as a dipping spot), and you have a delicious quick breakfast kids will love before school!
CONCLUDING THOUGHTS ON WHOLESOME BREAKFAST IDEAS FOR KIDS…
We all want our kids to THRIVE at school! Setting your kids up with nutritious and delicious quick breakfast options is a huge way to set them up for success at school.
You can definitely make these wholesome breakfast recipes ahead of time to make school mornings a breeze! Let me know how you like them!