When it comes to nutrition, I don’t believe in a one-size-fits-all approach. But, those who know me well know there is one nutrition principle I believe wholeheartedly. I think that vegetables should be eaten at every meal.
You may be thinking: Vegetables for breakfast? This girl is bat shit crazy.
Here me out. I didn’t always eat greens for breakfast. In fact, there was a time in my life when I considered a package of hot fudge sundae Poptarts a balanced meal because they were fortified with B vitamins. Needless to say, I have come a long way on my real food journey. I also understand that you may be just starting yours. I don’t expect you to wake up and have beets and kale with your coffee tomorrow. But, I do want to share a recipe which helped me ease into including more vegetables before noon.
Why should you include vegetables at breakfast?
Many people associate high carbohydrate foods with breakfast options. This, to me, doesn’t seem like the logical choice. By spiking your blood sugar early in the morning, you are setting your body up for some serious blood sugar swings throughout the day. This is why it is important to build your morning meal from protein, healthy fat, and vegetables. Vegetables and healthy fat provide a slow burning energy that aids in a more gradual rise in blood glucose. By incorporating adequate protein in the morning you are aiding in satiety and allowing your body to spare lean body mass if you are eating at a calorie deficit. From my own experience, a breakfast higher in fat and lower in carbohydrate gives me more energy. I also have clearer skin because regulated blood glucose and adequate dietary fat can assist in hormonal balance. Adding vegetables to your morning meal not only aids in blood glucose control, but increases the nutrient density greatly. Experiment with your breakfast go-to’s and see how the macronutrient composition effects your daily energy level.
Now to the fun part!
This Paleo Carrot Cake Chia Seed Breakfast Pudding is a quick and dirty recipe that can be whipped up on even the busiest morning. I make it in a jar because it makes the process incredibly simple, and perfectly portable to take on the go.
Carrot Cake Chia Seed Breakfast Pudding
- 1 1/2 c. unsweetened almond milk
- 1/4 c. chia seeds
- 1/2 c. grated carrots - about 5-6 baby carrots
- 1/8 c. raisins
- 1/4 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- dash of nutmeg
- 4-5 drops of maple flavoring
- stevia or maple syrup to taste
- 1/8 c. crushed walnuts
- 2 tbsp unsweetened coconut chips
The game plan:
Combine the chia seeds, almond milk, carrots, raisins, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, stevia and maple flavoring in a jar with a lid.
Shake and agitate the jar until the chia seeds are fully suspended in the almond milk, about 2-3 minutes.
Refrigerate for 10 minutes, or until ready to eat.
Top with coconut and walnuts, and enjoy!
If you do not have a jar with a lid, you can definitely just whisk the ingredients in a bowl. A jar is just more fun, and efficient.