One of the most wonderful feelings in life is when you get to sleep a little longer on the weekend, wake to a wonderful sunny glow with absolutely nothing to worry about for the whole day, and have a kitchen stocked with enough food to make hash. Breakfast hash is by far my favorite combination of breakfast foods.
The best thing about this hash is that it has all the elements of a healthy breakfast and… well… it tastes like heaven.
Recipe: Breakfast Hash for 2 or 3
2 Sweet Potatoes
1/4 Onion (Sliced)
1/2 Bunch Kale
4 Cloves Garlic
Italian Seasoning and Salt to Taste
- Medium dice sweet potatoes and toss in olive oil, Italian seasoning, and salt. Bake until golden brown at 425 degrees.
- Caramelize onions over medium heat. Add garlic and kale and saute until kale has softened.
- Prepare egg to your preference – sunny side up or fried are my favorites!
- Layer potatoes, kale mixture, and egg in a bowl and top with sliced avocado and cilantro.
As a dietitian, I find it aggravating that breakfast is considered the “most important meal of the day”, #everymealisimportant. Why do I find it aggravating? Mainly due to the fact that in America breakfast is another excuse to eat dessert – pancakes, waffles, cinnamon rolls, frosted flakes, French toast, and pastries/doughnuts! Breakfast could be one of the most important meals of the day if it actually contains ingredients that are nutritious. A grrrrreat, and important breakfast, would include these 5 ingredients!
- Lean Protein – Proteins are the main building blocks of the body! Protein helps build muscles, hormones, neurotransmitters, skin, etc. – without protein, life would not be possible. Proteins must be broken down into amino acids to be digested though. This process requires more energy and time than digestion of carbs and fats, which results in a feeling of fullness for a longer period of time. So, not only do you burn more calories eating it, but you also eat less over time! It gets even better though (*gasp). Since protein slows down digestion, it has the ability to prevent sugar highs and low – and as Trinh Le, MPH, RD points out, a lot of bad diet decisions can be made on a sugar low. Choose lean proteins, like those listed below, to limit intake of saturated fat.
- Whole Egg
- Turkey Sausage
- Yogurt/Low-fat milk
- Healthy Fats- Healthy Fats provide a great source of Omega-3 Fatty acids which have numerous health benefits for your body including reduced inflammation, decreased depression/anxiety, improved risk factors associated with heart disease and many more! Fat also helps with satiety, helping you to feel more satisfied. And let’s face it, fat makes everything taste better. If food doesn’t taste good then we aren’t eating it! Healthy fats can come from foods included in the list below.
- Nuts/ Nut Butters
- Olive Oil
- Whole Egg
- Flax/Chia Seeds
- Fiber – Fiber feeds the good bacteria in the gut. When the good bacteria are fed and functioning at optimal levels this leads to reduced inflammation, improved status of GI disorders like IBS and Crohn’s, and an increased production of nutrients in the body. Foods that have fiber in them tend to be lower on the glycemic index, which helps those nasty hunger “highs and lows”. So, take care of your gut and it will take care of you! Sources of dietary fiber are listed below.
- Whole Grains
- B Vitamins – The eight B vitamins — B1 (thiamin), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), B5 (pantothenic acid), B6, B7 (biotin), B9 (folic acid), and B12 — aid the processes in which the body makes and uses energy. So, basically they help convert all those healthy proteins, fats, and carbs eaten during breakfast into energy. It’s simple, without B Vitamins, it is more difficult to be energized, regardless of how much coffee you drink with breakfast!
- Fortified Grains
- Antioxidants – Our bodies naturally produce toxins throughout the day. These toxins can damage cells and lead to heart disease, cancer, hearing loss, and even aging but antioxidants can help prevent these side effects. Antioxidants neutralize free radicals (aka toxins) by donating an electron and making them stable. The foods below are rich in antioxidants, such as Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Flavonoids, etc.
- Citrus Fruits
If there is one night that my whole family gets excited about, it is taco night. Tacos are one of my favorite foods to make and they are so beautiful sometimes I have a hard time taking the first bite (haha, no I don’t).
These tacos were a real hit at the dinner table and fit the season perfectly. The warm earthy lentils with the seasonal roasted veggies paired perfectly with the sautéed spicy red cabbage and the creamy avocado dressing. The insides were so delicious, I ate a bowl the next day without a taco shell.
Makes 12 to 15 small tacos.
1 Cup Lentils (1/2 red and 1/2 green)
4 Cups Water
2 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
1 teaspoon Cumin
1/2 teaspoon Chili Powder
Salt to Taste
1 Red Pepper (small dice)
1/4 Head of Broccoli (chopped)
1 Sweet Potato (small dice)
1/2 Red Onion (small dice)
1/4 Cauliflower (chopped)
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/4 teaspoon Pepper
1/4 Head Red Cabbage (thinly sliced)
1 Jalapeno (finely chopped)
1/4 Cup Sour Cream
2 Cloves Garlic
1/4 Cup Cilantro
1/2 Ounce Lime Juice
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Toss sweet potatoes with olive oil, salt and pepper and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 15 minutes.
- While the potatoes are cooking, combine ingredients for Lentil “Meat” into a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Cover the pan with a tilted lid to allow steam to be released. Cook until most of the liquid has been absorbed and lentils are soft.
- Combine the remaining veggies with olive oil, salt and pepper. Place on baking sheet with sweet potatoes and bake for an additional 30 to 35 minutes.
- In a sauté pan, warm a small amount of olive oil. Once heated, place cabbage and jalapenos in sauté pan and sauté until cabbage begins to soften. Remove from heat.
- In a food processor puree garlic and cilantro. Add remaining ingredients for Avocado Dressing.
- Warm corn tortillas in the oven or microwave. Top with Lentil “Meat”, Roasted Veggies, Cabbage Slaw, and Avocado Dressing. Sprinkle with Queso Fresco and diced Cilantro.