While after a long day you might be tempted to light some candles, throw on your comfiest PJs and curl up in bed, it can be worth taking just a few minutes to prepare for the next day. With a little night prep, you can help make your mornings much more smooth, and way less chaotic.
One great way to prepare for the coming day is by putting together a make-ahead breakfast. There are so many easy and nutritious morning meals that you can prepare the night before so you can just grab and go on your way out the door. By putting your breakfast together ahead of time, you ensure you eat the most important meal of the day and don't stop at the donut shop for a fast fix on your way to work. Not only that, but eating breakfast helps your metabolism keep chugging all day long and helps prevent your from splurging on sugary sweets when the 3 P.M. slump hits.
Ain't nobody got time to whip up an omelet before work, so try putting together these fun and healthy make-ahead breakfasts the night before.
Overnight oats are truly magical because they "cook" as you get your beauty sleep, making them the most low-effort breakfast of all time. All you have to do is put some rolled oats in a container – a mason jar gets you extra cute points – add milk or water and let it sit overnight. The oats absorb the liquid, so in the morning they're completely fluffy and ready to be eaten cold. There are so many different variations you can do, so you'll never get old of this breakfast. Add sliced or dried fruit, nuts, coconut flakes and chia seeds in your oatmeal, and add a little honey, maple syrup or brown sugar for a little sweetness. You can use regular milk with your oats or swap it out for almond or other nut milks. Try this yummy recipe for peanut butter oats from Minimalist Baker for 15 grams of protein to start off your day. Pro tip: add the fruit and toppings to the jar in the morning, not the night before, to keep them from getting soggy.
Frozen breakfast sandwiches
Fast-food breakfast sandwiches can be totally delicious – even TV star Mindy Kaling is a fan. But they're not so good for your waistline.
Instead, make your own breakfast sandwiches and freeze them. You control the ingredients and can just grab a sandwich out of the freezer and zap it in the microwave in the morning. The Kitchn describes the sandwich-making process here. It's simple – you just bake a big batch of eggs, gently toast the muffins and add some cooked bacon and cheese. Assemble it all together into sandwiches, then wrap each sandwich in aluminum foil and stick in the freezer. In the morning, just heat the sandwich for 1-1 1/2 minutes in the microwave and enjoy! Throwing on some tunes on a lazy Sunday evening and turning your kitchen into a breakfast-sandwich assembly line is way easier than desperately trying to fry an egg at 7 a.m. while you're still half-asleep. It's easy to get creative with freezer breakfast sandwiches, too. You can substitute ham or sausage for the bacon, experiment with different types of cheese or mix veggies into the eggs.
When you think about muffins, you probably imagine sugar-dusted confections bigger than the size of your head piled high on bakery shelves. However, muffins don't always have to spell bad news for your diet. Breakfast muffins that incorporate whole-grains, nutrient-packed fruit or vegetables and hearty protein can be a great way to start your day. There are so many delicious breakfast muffin varieties that can please both sweet and savory palettes, like these egg and quinoa breakfast muffins from the blog Sweet Peas & Saffron. The beauty of breakfast muffins, though, is that it's so simple to bake a big batch on the weekend. Then in the morning, all you have to do is grab a muffin or two and be on your way, ready to tackle the day.