15 High-Protein Breakfast Ideas That Will Help You Lose Weight
A protein-packed breakfast can satisfy your appetite and help you eat healthier all day long. Here’s how to make your favorite morning meals more nutritious and more filling.
Your morning meal may not contain enough protein
According to interesting research published in the International Journal of Obesity, participants who ate a high-protein breakfast ate 26 percent fewer calories at lunch than those who ate a calorically identical meal with less protein. The nutrient helps your gut release peptide YY, a hormone that nudges your brain to realize, “Hey, I’m full.” The Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of protein for women over age 19 is 46 grams; for men, it’s 56 grams. This is what happens when you don’t get enough protein.
Basic breakfast: Milk and cereal
High-protein idea: Some cereals are loaded with protein, and some have very little. Some good options: Kashi GoLean Original, which has 13 grams of protein and 10 grams of constipation-curing fiber per serving; Bear Naked Fit Almond Crisp, which has 7 grams of protein and 7 grams of fiber; and Barbara’s Bakery High Fiber Original, which has 5 grams of protein and 10 grams of fiber per serving. See a list on fitsugar.com of healthy options that contain at least 5 grams of protein and 5 grams of fiber per serving. For even more of a boost, sprinkle an ounce of dry-roasted sunflower seeds for 5 more grams of protein as well as the anti-aging vitamin E.
Basic breakfast: Egg and cheese on a roll
High-protein idea: Choose a breakfast burrito with beans, or try this easy recipe from huffingtonpost.com for 25 grams of protein in your morning meal from the eggs and beans. Fill a corn tortilla with two scrambled eggs, 1/4 cup diced sautéed onions, and 1/4 cup of black beans. Then top with a tablespoon of pico de gallo (or more to taste).
Basic breakfast: Butter or jelly on toast
High-protein idea: Swap butter for 2 tablespoons of peanut butter or almond butter, which adds about 8 grams of protein to your meal. Since processed nut butters can be sneaky sources of sugar and other unhealthy ingredients, look for a super-short ingredient list (like the nut, and maybe some salt, according to SELF.com). Here are the best plant-based protein sources.
Basic breakfast: Yogurt
High-protein idea: Trade a 6-ounce nonfat yogurt for a Greek yogurt version to get in about 6 more grams of protein per serving (for a total of 14 grams). Make your breakfast even healthier by adding fiber-rich berries to naturally sweeten your meal, and sprinkle on seeds, nuts, or high-protein, high-fiber cereal to increase the amount of protein even more.
Basic breakfast: Oatmeal made with water
High-protein idea: Swap water for skim milk (8 grams of protein per cup) and sprinkle on some chopped nuts to help you feel full until lunch. Try this apple walnut oatmeal from USNews.com: Cook 3/4 cups of dry oatmeal with 1 1/4 cup of skim milk. Add 1 chopped apple and 1/4 cup of chopped walnuts. Sprinkle with cinnamon and drizzle with honey. Total: 24 grams of protein. These are the secrets nutritionists won’t tell you for free.
Basic breakfast: Smoothie with milk or yogurt
High-protein idea: Swap the milk and yogurt in your smoothie for kefir, a cultured probiotic beverage (like drinkable yogurt). One cup of plain nonfat kefir contains 11 grams of protein, more than the 9 grams in one cup of nonfat plain yogurt and the 8 grams in one cup of nonfat milk. Add it to these breakfast smoothies for an even healthier, fruity drink.
Basic breakfast: Homemade muffin
High-protein idea: Try baking these High-Protein Banana Oat Muffins from MensFitness.com, which contain 8 grams of protein per muffin. (Did we mention they are also less than 100 calories and have only one gram of fat?) It’s a much healthier alternative to bakery muffins, which can have anywhere from 300 to 500 calories per serving and are usually high in fat, sugar, and sodium. To further amp up the protein of your homemade goods, spread a split muffin with a tablespoon of peanut butter (for 4 more grams of protein) and enjoy it with a cup of fat-free milk (for 8 additional grams).
Basic breakfast: Banana on the run
High-protein idea: Nothing beats a banana for grab-and-go portability, but add a protein-rich dairy source, like a single-serving cup of cottage cheese, and you’ll add a whopping 28 grams of protein to your morning meal. Cottage cheese is also a good way to sneak in some calcium and vitamin A. These are the silent signs you could be eating too much protein.
Basic breakfast: Scrambled eggs
High-protein idea: Simplify your morning eggs by swapping out your usual scrambled fare for baked mini egg muffins. Women’s Health recommends mixing whole eggs, egg whites, and sautéed vegetables together before putting them in mini muffin tins. Depending on how many eggs you use, these muffins could pack a serious protein punch. This recipe from ambitiouskitchen.com has almost 10 grams of protein per muffin.
Basic breakfast: Toasted bagel
High-protein idea: Turn your morning bagel into a high-protein breakfast by adding smoked salmon. Trade your bagel for whole wheat bread, and you’ll be fuller even longer thanks to the added fiber. The salmon not only adds 5 grams of protein per ounce, but it also has omega-3 fats that can benefit everything from your brain to your skin, according to healthline.com.
Basic breakfast: Pancakes
High-protein idea: Pancakes might not seem like an opportunity for a high-protein breakfast, but a few key ingredient swaps make all the difference. Try making this Self.com recipe that combines Greek yogurt, eggs, whole wheat flour, and blueberries for a total of 23 grams of protein per serving. Here are the other foods you need to eat to build muscle.
Basic breakfast: French toast
High-protein idea: Egg whites and peanut butter are the key ingredients in this Self.com high-protein breakfast recipe. Fresh raspberries, unsweetened cocoa powder, and vanilla keep the toast sweet without compromising on protein—one serving has 21 grams of protein.
Basic breakfast: Waffles
High-protein idea: Just like french toast, a few ingredient swaps are the key to making high-protein breakfast waffles. This recipe from damndelicius.net only requires eggs, cottage cheese, oats, vanilla, and salt. One serving has 20 grams of protein and only one gram of sugar.
Basic breakfast: Pudding
High-protein idea: Chia seeds are one of the best foods to eat in the morning thanks to their high-fiber and antioxidant count, healthline.com reports. Plus, one serving of chia seeds is about 4 grams of protein. This recipe from chocolatecoveredkatie.com only requires three ingredients: milk, chia seeds, and vanilla extract. One serving has just over 5 grams of protein.
Basic breakfast: Granola bar
High-protein idea: Skip the pre-packaged granola bars that are sometimes sneaky sources of sugar and try making these no-bake high-protein blueberry bars from inspirededibles.com instead. Oats, almonds, flaxseed, and almond butter are just a few of the ingredients that contribute to the 8 grams of protein found in each bar. Next, check out the quick and healthy meals doctors make every day.