Simple Breakfast Ideas for College Students

Just a few weeks ago, I got on a health-kick. I thought to myself, “Enough with the sugary cereal for breakfast, Gretchen!” When you have three hours of classes straight, cereal isn’t gonna cut it. Yes, I’m slightly disappointed to say that because cereal is my favorite food.

Of course there’s many breakfast foods out there I’d love to eat, such as omelets and protein banana pancakes. But the truth is, I’m a college student with limited time and limited money. Peanut-butter-chocolate-cake protein powder is not in my budget!

It took me some time to find recipes I’d enjoy, but thanks to HealthNut, I’ve found some! Nikole shared her Chia Pudding Fruit Parfait on her website and I desperately wanted to try it. Not only did it look tasty, it had simple ingredients, quick prep time, and great health benefits. Check out her website if you want to see her recipe. As for my version, keep reading!

  1. Chia Seed Pudding.
  • Chia seeds
  • Coconut (or your choice) milk
  • Peanut butter
  • Jelly or jam

I basically dump a layer of chia seeds into a small Tupperware, add coconut milk, and thoroughly whisk. I don’t measure but I do about 1 part chia seeds to 2 parts milk. Seal and leave in the fridge for 30+ minutes or overnight. When you’re ready to eat, if it’s too thick, you can add more milk. I add a spoonful of peanut butter and slightly-less-than-a-spoonful of jelly. This gives the bland seeds a child-like flavor I adore. Add nuts, raisins, or fresh fruit to give texture and flavor.

2. Quinoa and Oatmeal.

  • Red quinoa
  • Steel cut oats
  • Water
  • Peanut butter
  • Jelly
  • Dried fruit or mixed nuts

This breakfast is a similar flavor to the Chia Pudding–because of the peanut butter and jelly. I cook 1 part quinoa and 1 part oats in 2 parts boiling water and cook for 25 minutes or until most of the water is gone. This meal is filling! The quinoa doesn’t have much flavor, so adding the peanut butter and jelly keeps me reaching for another bite. I like to add dried fruit in this one so it’s not so mushy. This mixture takes a bit more time than the chia pudding, but like the pudding, it keeps in the fridge for up to a week!

3. Scrambled Eggs.

  • 2-3 eggs
  • Butter
  • Spinach
  • Salsa

Scrambled eggs is only slightly trickier than the first two because it isn’t prepped. This one will take an extra 5 minutes (if that!) of your morning. Many people whisk their eggs in a bowl with milk and spices for that fluffed texture and seasoned taste, but I just crack them straight into the pan. I use my spatula to break them up and swirl them around. I also use a small scrape of butter to coat the pan, even though it’s non-stick. This gives the eggs a slight flavor (I don’t add any seasoning) and keeps them from getting crusty. For a more filling version, I break up a handful or two of spinach and let it soften in the butter before adding the eggs. I then top it off with chunky salsa, if I have it on hand.

4. Overnight Oats.

  • Old Fashioned oats
  • Almond milk
  • Plain yogurt
  • Honey
  • Fresh or frozen fruit

Similar to the Chia Seed Pudding, I take about 1 part oats to 1 part milk. Most recipes say to add yogurt, but I only do if I have it in my fridge. Yogurt will make the consistency creamier and less runny. I mix that up and let it sit in a mason jar in the fridge for the night. As a college student, it can be difficult to buy fresh fruit when a. my mini fridge isn’t big enough, and b. it goes bad before I can eat it all. This is when I turn to frozen fruit. In the morning, I pull out my oats and mix a few pieces of frozen fruit (peaches, blueberries, strawberries) in. Top it off with honey to add sweetness.

5. Cereal.

  • Cinnamon Life or granola
  • Almond milk
  • Chia seeds
  • Banana

I know…I’m just being realistic! This is one of my go-to meals. I try to stay on the “healthier” side of cereals and limit myself to one bowl/ mug for breakfast. I listed granola as an option because I eat it with milk more often than with yogurt. I usually add in chia seeds to keep me full longer because of their insane fiber content. I also eat a banana (usually with peanut butter) before eating my cereal–I like to start with the light weight foods first.

The list could go on with more meals like smoothies or yogurt parfaits, or even special ~super food~ toppings like walnuts, goji berries, or avocado, but I added what I eat on the weekly. I hope you can take inspiration from this and learn that breakfast truly is your most important meal of the day! Start you metabolism, fuel your mind and body, and feel your best throughout the day. As always, start your morning with a big glass of water (I add apple cider vinegar) to replace those hours of waterless sleep, and try new foods for a better you. 🙂

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