On The Table

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Nourishing & Cozy Winter Breakfast Ideas

Cold temps call for warm breakfasts. Rather than turning to comfort foods rich in refined sugar and fat, cozy up with these warm and nourishing hot breakfast ideas for winter.

Nourishing & Cozy Winter Breakfast Ideas

Warm, comforting foods are craved even more so when the weather dips down to frigid temperatures in the winter.

However, this does not automatically mean snow day breakfasts have to be high in fat and sugar and low in nutrients. It is possible to have hot breakfast ideas for winter that can combine comfort, nourishment, and health with delicious flavors!

Read on to discover the top winter breakfast ideas to provide warmth and comfort but also a healthy start to cold mornings.

Hot Breakfast Ideas for Winter When the Temp Drops

Everyone will want these winter breakfast ideas on repeat throughout the cold winter months and even beyond. Bonus is many of these can be made quickly or ahead of time for a comforting breakfast made quickly.

1. Easy Winter Themed Oatmeal

Oatmeal is a warm, filling breakfast that can be perfect for cold winter mornings. Oatmeal can even be made in a slow cooker the night before, so it is ready to go in the morning with minimal effort. Make oatmeal festive and fun during the winter months with festive warming spices like cinnamon, ginger, allspice, cloves, and cardamom as used in this spiced recipe

Another way to enjoy warming oatmeal for winter is to get on the golden milk trend with golden milk oatmeal. Golden milk simply combines turmeric, ginger, cinnamon, and black pepper to provide a "golden" color when combined with desired milk choice. 

Besides traditional holiday spices, make winter oatmeal special by adding in-season fruits on top. Festive and nourishing ideas include cut-up apples, plums, pomegranate seeds, or blood orange segments. For additional flavor and texture, sprinkle on various nuts and seeds such as pistachios, hazelnuts, or walnuts. 

For all oatmeal varieties, add a protein source like protein powder. Ensuring a high-protein and fiber breakfast will help keep you fuller for longer, blood sugars balanced, and energy steady throughout the morning. 

2. Egg Dishes Worthy of a Winter Brunch 

While eggs are healthy go-to breakfast food any time of year, these egg dishes will be an extra special winter brunch addition. A breakfast frittata can be a comforting and nourishing brunch addition, and a bonus is it is surprisingly easy to make. This makes it not only a winning winter brunch idea but really could be made any day of the week.

Another crowd-pleasing winter brunch egg dish is lamb or beef shakshuka. Shakshuka is a Middle Eastern breakfast dish that is based on eggs and tomatoes. Adding lamb or beef elevates the dish to the main dish worth celebrating with friends or family. This dish can even be made ahead of time and enjoyed throughout the week.

Winter vegetables can be highlighted in a baked egg brunch dish. Simply saute favorite winter vegetables such as leeks, Brussel sprouts, kale, garlic, etc. in a cast iron skillet with olive oil or butter. Crack eggs into the pan along with optional shredded cheese and bake until heated through.

3. Hot Porridge (That Is Not Oatmeal!)

Looking for a warm, comforting breakfast but tired of oatmeal? Consider making a breakfast porridge with quinoa, quinoa flakes, farro, or other whole grains. All these alternatives to oatmeal can still provide a warm, comforting, and delicious start to a cold winter day.

Quinoa flakes are made simply from quinoa seeds, just pressed into a flat form similar to oats. They are gluten-free and a good source of protein and fiber. Quinoa porridge can be made into delicious flavors like pumpkin pie or any other flavor profile similar to oatmeal.

Also consider cooked ancient grains - like barley, quinoa, and farro - to be used for either a sweet or savory breakfast bowl as a unique way to use up leftovers. Simply combine warm, cooked grains with desired toppings like fruit, nuts, yogurt, dried fruit, or coconut shreds. 

Savory bowls for breakfast, like this quinoa pesto bowl or farro breakfast bowl, can also provide a different flavor profile and a comforting way to start the day. 

As mentioned above for oatmeal, complete your nourishing bowl of porridge with a protein source. For instance, sprinkle in a fun-flavored protein powder for sweeter varieties or top with an egg for the savory-based bowls.

4. Healthy Breakfast Burritos

Breakfast burritos are an easy breakfast winter idea that can be tailored to personal flavor preferences. They can be made ahead of time, stored in the freezer, and pulled out when you want a quick, warm, and nourishing breakfast on a cold morning. 

To make breakfast burritos, start by sauteing desired vegetables in a skillet with olive oil. This could include any desired vegetables including onions, peppers, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, zucchini, or mushrooms. Scramble eggs and cook optional meats such as chicken sausage, turkey bacon, or another favorite. Shredded cheese or beans can also make delicious and filling burrito ingredients!

For an easy and healthy breakfast for rushed mornings, simply combine filling ingredients into a tortilla, be careful not to overfill, and fold the tortilla tight. Option to further cook the outside by searing on a hot, oiled pan. Place filled and wrapped tortillas in tin foil or other desired covering and store in the freezer. 

When ready to enjoy, heat in the oven or microwave (without tinfoil) to easily heat up. Top with other desired toppings such as a dollop of Greek yogurt, salsa, or avocado.

5. Winter Muffin Breakfast Ideas

Fresh out of the oven, baked goods can seem enticing on cold mornings but tend to be high in refined sugar and void of nutritional value. However, healthy muffins can easily be made while cutting back on sugar and boosting protein, fiber, and micronutrients.

Homemade muffins can serve as a hot breakfast idea for winter while also being a healthy option in the morning (or anytime!). They can be made ahead of time and quickly heated up and topped with butter, peanut butter, or jam. 

Healthy winter muffins that provide warming flavors, all while being low in sugar, include the following ideas turmeric blueberry muffins, chai spiced butternut squash muffins, and honey cinnamon walnut banana muffins. Also, feel free to experiment with other favorite ingredients and unique flavor pairings! 

Boost protein content even more by pairing with lean breakfast meat. For a quicker breakfast option, pair the muffin with a serving of low-sugar Greek yogurt or protein shake. 

6. Stuffed French Toast

Rather than ordering from the diner, whip up a healthier stuffed French toast at home! This recipe is not like others, as it packs flavor even without the need for maple syrup.

Imagine a cream cheese and ricotta filling steeped with the warm flavors of vanilla, cinnamon, and honey. And to top it off, a naturally sweetened berry compote to round out the dish!

Recommended to be served with turkey sausage but feel free to side with another protein option like turkey bacon and eggs.

7. Toast (Yes, Toast!)

Breakfast sandwiches, English muffins, biscuits and gravy, cinnamon rolls, and most of the above recipes are not new to the breakfast table. And, well, neither is toast but it often does not excite the taste buds like other breakfast items. 

Until now!

Rather than eating straight from the toaster, prepare high-protein toast with toppings sure to satisfy. Delicious combos include peanut butter with banana and cinnamon, scrambled eggs with veggies, and melted cheese with tomatoes and basil. Oh, and let's not forget about avocado toast!

Winter Breakfast Ideas Recap

Winter is the perfect time of year to enjoy a nourishing, warm meal to start the day. However, this does not mean winter breakfast recipes need to be high in calories and low in nutrition. 

Healthy winter breakfast ideas can include both comfort and nourishment with festive-flavored oatmeal or porridge from another whole grain. Special egg dishes for winter brunches (or any day of the week), healthy breakfast burritos, or muffins can also easily be made ahead of time!