Start your day off right with a delicious, homemade meal.

Jessica Ball, M.S., R.D.
August 02, 2020
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Welcome to Thrifty. A weekly column where Assistant Nutrition Editor and registered dietitian, Jessica Ball, keeps it real on how to grocery shop on a budget, make healthy meals for one or two, and make earth-friendly choices without overhauling your entire life.

Breakfast is touted as the most important meal by many and can set the tone for your whole day by helping you meet your health and fitness goals, as well as keep you energized for whatever is in store. With the coronavirus keeping us all home more, some of us, myself included, got into a cooking groove and haven't looked back. Whether it's food or drinks, scratch cooking saves you money, boosts the nutrition of your food and can be quicker and easier than you think. Check out some of the breakfasts I have been making instead of buying out these days.

5 Breakfasts You Should Be Making, Not Buying

From sweet to savory and hot to cold, these are the homemade morning meals I can't get enough of.

Bagels & Breads

If you are looking for quick and easy, it doesn't get much better than our Two-Ingredient Dough Bagels. In just 35 minutes, these high-protein fluffy bagels are ready to enjoy. Plus, you can add any flavor you like, the world is your oyster. On the other end, you can take on something more involved, like our Whole Wheat Sourdough Bread if you have the time and are up for the challenge. Making bread from scratch is affordable (there are few things cheaper than flour) and fresh bread just tastes so good!

Pictured Recipe: Two-Ingredient-Dough Bagels 

Oatmeal

During busy weeks, overnight oats are my crutch. Simply set up the night before and breakfast is ready in no time at all the next day. Overnight oats can be enjoyed hot or cold, which is a nice option in the summer months. I'm always sure to add protein and healthy fats, like peanut butter and chia seeds to make it a well-rounded meal that keeps me full until lunch. Check out our overnight oats formula that you can mix and match flavors in.

Smoothies

Living in an apartment with no air conditioning, I often turn to smoothies to bring down my core temperature. Oh, and they are super nutritious, too! Making them at home can save you the money you would spend on pricey cafe frozen drinks. Add vegetables and greens to enjoy more vegetables without even noticing (I like spinach, zucchini and chickpeas). If you are a better planner than me, you could even make them in bulk and freeze the leftovers for later days (like we do in these Make-Ahead Freezer Smoothie Packs). As a final selling point, making your own smoothies allows you to add things like coffee—two birds with one stone.

Pancakes

Bring the diner home with a short (or tall) stack of homemade pancakes. Personally, I love Kodiak Cakes (Buy It: from $12 on Amazon.com) because they are whole grain, high in protein and have very few ingredients. I add cinnamon and chia seeds for a nutrition and flavor boost. And don't forget the Vermont maple syrup (yes, I am biased).

All the Eggs

Eggs on their own are not a breakfast, but they are a gateway to a multitude of filling savory breakfast ideas to spice up your week. For starters, hard-boiled eggs give a protein boost to any of the aforementioned breakfasts, and also make an easy on-the-go snack in a pinch. Making omelet and egg scrambles at home can let you pack in the vegetables and greens to help you kick off the day in a healthy way. I make a big batch of muffin tin omelets to start off the week. They freeze well and are a cute, nutritious start to any day. When you really need something new, try making your favorite egg sandwich at home. You can control how much fat and salt is used, and can add exactly what flavors you want, without the price of the bagel shop.