To know me, is to know my love of mornings. I’m very much a morning person. I’m not worth much after 8pm, and I actually go to bed, looking forward to getting up. Weird, I know.
I recently have teamed up with the California Milk Advisory Board to help moms streamline the morning routine. As a mom myself, I know I don’t like to be rushed in the mornings, I’d much rather get up at 5 am to leave the house for a 8am meeting, than to be rushing around because I slept in later. I’m a planner, so I plan for the unexpected, it’s just my nature. But for some, no matter how early they wake up, getting out the door on time can be a challenge in the morning. Laundry, phone calls, scrambling to make breakfast or lost objects are common time sucks.
I actually had this VERY conversation with our 16 year old just the other day. She gets up each morning before school 25 minutes before she has to leave the house. If ONE thing does not go as planned, then her morning turns in to total chaos.
How to streamline your morning routine
For many of us, morning routines include showering, getting dressed, brushing teeth, eating breakfast, drinking coffee/tea, and possibly helping a small human go through similar steps. Your routine might vary a little bit, but for the majority of days you do the same things over and over and over again.
- Lay everything out the night before. Collect and lay out all your clothes and any other items you’ll need the night before, so you don’t have to make those decisions in a sleepy state. If you have little ones, do this for them as well, and as they get older, they can learn to make this a habit as well.
- Gather what leaves with you. Get in a nightly habit of gathering everything that needs to go out the door with you in the morning, and place it directly in front of the door where you will be leaving in the morning. Homework, signed permission forms, backpacks, musical instruments, lunch boxes, bank deposit, keys, ipad/laptop etc.
- Make lunch the night before. Put yogurt or cheese sticks in freezer the night before, so the stay cold and will be thawed in time for lunch.
- Plan make ahead breakfast ideas. Make pancakes for dinner one night, and make extras to keep in the freezer for breakfast (just heat frozen pancakes in the microwave). Over the weekend, make Southwest Baked Egg Cups with California cottage cheese, store them in the refrigerator, quickly heat in the microwave .
I love eggs baked in muffin pans! With an uber-busy life right now I’m always looking for ways to maximize my family’s breakfast schedule while keeping it nutritious and delicious but fast and portable.
Kids that eat a nutritious breakfast do better in school. They wont get hungry before lunch, and the protein dairy provides, will keep them from getting sleepy, cranky or even headaches.
The best part about baked egg cups?….. you can customize them with whatever ingredients you have on hand. My family is a big fan of Southwest eggs. I started with refrigerated hash browns, then threw in some black beans, California cheeses, mixed some eggs with California cottage cheese and a few spices and topped with a little more cheese. (full recipe below)
To ease the morning scramble, make these the night before or over the weekend, wrap in a paper towel and store in an air tight container in the refrigerator. In the morning just grab and reheat for a minute in the microwave for a fast delicious protein packed hot breakfast at home or on the go.
The more streamlined your morning routine, the more likely you are to have a smooth, stress-free morning.
- 2 cups refrigerated hash browns, uncooked
- 8 whole eggs, large
- 1/2 cup California cottage cheese
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 cup diced bell pepper
- 2 tablespoons salsa, chunky
- 2 ounces green chiles, diced
- salt and pepper to season
- 1/2 cup black beans
- 1/2 cup California Mexican cheese blend
- 1 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
- 2 tablespoons fresh Cilantro, chopped
- 1/2 cup California Queso Blanco cheese, shredded
- Preheat oven to 375. Coat a 12 cup muffin tin with cooking spray
- Fill each muffin tin with approximately 1/8 cup of potatoes, season with salt and pepper.
- Bake 15-20 minutes or until they start to turn golden brown on top.
- While potatoes are baking, whisk eggs in a medium bowl and combine with cottage cheese, baking powder, bell peppers, salsa, green chiles and salt and pepper to taste.
- Remove potatoes from oven, fill each cup with about 1 tablespoon of black beans and California Mexican cheese blend, then evenly divide egg mixture into each cup.
- Top each egg cup with a sprinkle of cilantro and paprika and a pinch of shredded white queso blanco cheese.
- Return to the oven and bake an additional 25 minutes or until they puff up nicely and are just barely set on top (do not over cook or they will be spongy)
- Enjoy warm, or let cups cool completely to room temperature and store leftovers in the fridge in an airtight container. To reheat, wrap the egg cup in a paper towel and reheat in microwave for about 30-45 seconds. Be careful not to microwave too long or they will get tough.
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How about you? Are you a morning person? Do you have a favorite tip for streamlining your morning routine?
Disclaimer: I’m excited to have a working partnership with the California Milk Advisory Board to talk about the importance of eating a nutritious breakfast complete with dairy and how to ease morning routines for moms. All opinions and views are all my own.