by Emma Chow
I hate eating when it’s hot. I could live on smoothies, ice tea, popsicles and ice cream. Anything sweet, creamy and cool that can be made in the brief cool lull between summer heat waves in large amounts, to be easily consumed after I lurch sweatily from bed to the fridge and try to shed the brain fog. Give yourself and the family a cool boost to summer mornings, and pre-make a few of these cool breakfasts to grab and go. These 5 breakfasts involve fresh summer fruit, yogurt and milk in various fun forms. The best part about this is you can easily adapt these to your diet, whether you use nut, soy, coconut, oat milk, soy or coconut yogurt if you are vegan or paleo, or gluten-free, grain-free or nut-free muesli and granola mixes if you are avoiding any of those in your diet.
1. Breakfast Popsicles
Robust popsicles like these often work best in an old fashioned popsicle mold. I use a 10 pop old fashioned shape popsicle mold from Norpro. As each mold holds 90mls, I need a total of 900mls to make 10 popsicles. If you’re not sure how much your mold holds, just pour some water into the top of one, and then pour this into a measuring cup and note the amount. To make filling popsicles, I do layers of chopped fresh fruit, muesli, and yogurt sweetened with honey. Fill the molds in layers and give them a good firm couple of taps on the counter to make sure things settle together. They are really delicious and kids get excited about eating such a treat for breakfast. For my partner’s hot walk to the bus stop, I plan on stocking the freezer with breakfast popsicles and also coffee popsicles made with properly brewed coffee and sweetened condensed milk.
2. Chia Pudding in a Jar
We love chia seeds and MamaBake and this is likely our favourite way to enjoy them. The simple formula for a firm textured chia pudding is 1 1/2 cups of liquid, 1/3 cup of chia seeds and 2 tablespoons of sweetener (less if the liquid you use is already sweet). If you make a chia pudding with milk, it will naturally be looser than one made with half yogurt or all yogurt. I love a chia pudding with strawberries at the bottom, topped with a pudding made with milk, yogurt and vanilla.
3. Summer porridge or Fridge Oatmeal
For this use several 225ml jars or equivalent. Fill each jar 1/3 with oats or your equivalent muesli mix. Add 1 tablespoon of chia or flax seeds. Fill with your preferred milk until the jar is 2/3 full. Add 3 tablespoons of your preferred yogurt, chopped fresh fruit and a teaspoon of honey or other sweetener. Put the lid on and give it a good shake and leave overnight. It’ll be deliciously creamy in the morning. My favourite combination is simple rolled oats, chia, milk, plain yogurt, raspberries and chopped strawberries and some honey. Makes it worth getting up in the morning.
4. Smoothie bag
This needs a few steps of preparation for a totally quick and easy morning smoothie. Using an ice cube tray, freeze sweetened natural or fruit flavoured yogurt. Take enough zip lock bags for each person for the week. In each bag you need the equivalent of 3 cubes of frozen yogurt and the equivalent of 1-1.5 cups of chopped fruit. You could add a handful of green leaves like spinach to make it extra nutritious. Mixtures of summer fruit like melons, peaches, berries and pineapple are really delicious. When blending in the morning, you need to add 1 cup of milk or a 1/2 cup of water and a 1/2 cup of fresh fruit juice or for something really hydrating, use 1 cup of coconut water instead. If you’d like children to be able to toss their blender breakfast together themselves, add this instruction on the bag.
5. Layered parfait
So we’re still riffing on different versions of muesli, yogurt, fruit breakfasts. If you or family members are not a fan of the creamy texture afforded by oats, grains, and chia seeds soaking up yogurt and milk overnight, try doing this layered parfait instead. In a jar or lidded container, layer natural cow’s milk, coconut or soy yogurt with chopped fresh fruit. If you feel it needs extra sweetness, you can use a teaspoon of fruit jam. Leave enough room at the top for a layer of muesli. Keep a little tub of raw or toasted muesli separate to put on top just before consuming.