August 26, 2014

Make Ahead Mornings

Is school back in session in your neck of the woods? If it’s not, I bet it’s on its way. I guess I’m lucky in that I enjoy both the summers AND the school year. But, even I can admit to being ready for a little more schedule and structure once the end of summer rolls around.

However…

Mornings are hard. They’re a delicate balancing act of finding time with finding sleep and it’s kind of doubly difficult considering that neither Baby Bee nor I are morning people. Baby Bee and I both move slowly. We take a long time to wake up and it seems like our limbs are stuck in syrup.

This means that breakfast, most usually, is something that can be made quickly. Typically, instant oatmeal or cold cereal with milk. They’re fine breakfast choices, but I wanted to do something a little differently this year. Additionally, since the Princess is in charge of getting herself off I wanted some quicker, more filling options for her as well. I’ve done freezer cooking before and I’ve frozen leftovers pancakes and waffles, but I think this is the first time I’ve tried to put together a freezer full of breakfast foods.

My entire shopping bill for the following came up to just about $70 and I estimate that I have at least 65 breakfasts available. Of course, we’ll be supplementing with fruit, milk and eggs as desired, but for most of these recipes, the cooking time is literally 30 seconds to 1 minute in my new microwave from SmallMicrowave.co.uk.  The food in the freezer should see us through the school mornings of September.

Here’s the recipes we’ve stocked up on with any notes on my changes…

 

1. Baked French Toast Stick

I stuck to the original recipe, but used a full loaf of Texas toast.  I estimate we’ll get 10 breakfasts from a full loaf of bread.  Be sure NOT to allow your sticks to soak in the egg mixture for too long or they’ll be sure to fall apart and/or require more baking time.  I like to put my French Toast sticks in the toaster, just be sure you use full length sticks so they don’t fall down beyond where you can safely retrieve them.

2. Buttermilk chocolate chip pancake squares

The kids gave these rave reviews!  We doubled the recipe for 24 generously sized squares.  Paired with fruit or eggs, this is a winner.  My one change was to omit the “pancake syrup” from the recipe and just increase the sugar to 3 tbsp instead of 2 tbsp.  I saw no compelling reason to put the syrup in it.   The kids even ate it without syrup, but you could add some without issue.  These baked up nice and cake-y.  To serve, they require just 30 seconds in the microwave to warm.

3. Sausage breakfast bowls

We used the recipe to kind of create our own thing.  Oddly enough, this recipe calls for .95 cups of sausage?  Which makes no sense.  I made 2 lbs, added a full bag of frozen hash browns and 18 eggs to come up with 12 generous 1 cup servings. At 1.32/serving it’s still FAR less than the name brand version at the grocery store.  The sausage and eggs pack a good protein punch to help keep kiddos satisfied until lunch AND it only takes 1 to 2 minutes in the microwave to re-heat.


4. Pumpkin Waffles
A double batch of batter makes about 16 waffles (half a cup of batter per waffle). I like to cook mine on the highest setting on my waffle iron. These are lightly sweetened with a hint of pumpkin and spice. Like an Eggo, I toast mine in the toaster after removing them from the freezer

5. Egg McMoms

I’ve been making these breakfast sandwiches for a long time. They are a great alternative to a fast food breakfast and they cost lost and take less time one you’ve got them in the freezer. They cost me just about a dollar a piece and need about 2 minutes in the microwave straight from the freezer. You won’t even get from the order box to the window in two minutes AND they taste better than drive thru. If you’re health conscious, it’s easy to swap in organic or light options and you know exactly what’s in them.


To get eggs that are ready to fit an English muffin, I use two circle cookie cutters as egg molds. I spray them before each use with cooking spray. However, be sure to be patient while your egg is cooking. Pulling the molds off too early will result in your eggs running across the pan as eggs will do.

I did my cooking in two sessions that totaled about three hours, but yielded a full month of delicious breakfasts in the freezer.

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Jamie

COMMENTS

2 thoughts on “Make Ahead Mornings

    Author’s gravatar

    Back to school in full gear! You have some great kid friendly recipes in this round up – thanks for sharing our buttermilk pancake squares!

      Author’s gravatar

      The kids LOVE them. They were super easy to make and get two big thumbs up for taste!

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