Back to School Checklist: Week 4

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Fast and Easy Breakfast for Champions

a on Jul 23, 2007 at 3:54PM

By Marissa Rothkopf Bates
Scientists have shown that eating breakfast improves a child's ability to learn in school. Follow these tips to make breakfast in your home so easy that your kids can prepare it themselves.

1. Shop with intent. Stock your cupboard with ingredients like whole wheat pancake mix, wheat germ, honey, dried fruits and, of course, cereal. Fill your 'fridge with calcium-fortified juices, plain or vanilla yogurt (greek yogurt is especially rich and delicious), frozen fruit and organic frozen sausage.

2. Cook up a batch of pancakes. Add a teaspoon of cinnamon and a teaspoon of vanilla to the batter if you think your crew will be wary of whole wheat. (Some of us have been known to add chocolate chips, as well.) Pancakes will keep well in the refrigerator for two days and can be reheated in the toaster. Or, you can wrap them carefully in aluminum foil and keep them in the freezer for a few weeks.

3. Precooked sausages can be reheated quickly in the microwave. Place the hot sausage on some toast, add a piece of cheese and you've got instant breakfast sandwiches.

4. Frozen fruit is great at breakfast time. Thaw blueberries and raspberries in the microwave for 2 minutes for a quick, nutritious pancake topping. Stir in a few tablespoons of maple syrup if you wish. Yogurt, a handful of your favorite frozen fruit, and a glug of juice makes a delicious smoothie when blended. Add a tablespoon or two of wheat germ for extra protein and B vitamins.

5. Bake whole grain muffins packed with fruit and quickly hide them in the freezer before anyone can find them. They only need an hour to thaw, so take them out when you get up and they should be ready to eat by the time the rest of your crew has made it to the breakfast table. (We especially like this recipe for banana-chocolate-chip muffins.)

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