During the hazy days of surviving on minimum calories in order to consume a 23.5” pizza (we’ve all now seen that picture from the last post) breakfast was an easy way to save cals.
As you may know, I (Chaz) am a teacher and I usually lasted until break time on a 54 calorie WeightWatchers yoghurt, somehow managing to stay standing long enough to walk to the staff room for my cereal bar at 11am.
Breakfast always used to be something I quickly consumed to stop being hungry and having probably over eaten the night before came as some kind of morning punishment. Since starting eating healthily, breakfast has been a huge turning point for me and these days I make sure I have something substantial and tasty and I have so much more energy throughout the day as a result.
Sometimes I make a green or almond butter smoothie using my Nutribullet and at the weekend I like to have avocado on rye toast (watch out for a post coming soon on other rye toast topping ideas), but during the week I don’t have time in the morning to make something like that so my favourite weekday breakfast is the Bircher.
Birchers are named after Maximilian Bircher-Benner, a 19th century health freak after our own hearts who first invented muesli for patients in his Swiss nutritional clinic.
Another name for a Bircher is overnight oats and these do exactly what they say on the jar. They can be prepared the night before so I usually make 2 or 3 jars at a time to save me time throughout the week – tear yourself away from that Sunday box set marathon for just ten minutes and I promise you’ll thank yourself for it on those dark weekday mornings.
Here are some ideas to start the Bircher Revolution.
- Oats, natural yoghurt (if you’re avoiding dairy you can replace yoghurt with almond milk, water or Coyo in any of these), cinnamon, cacao nibs and banana
- Almond milk, chia seeds, flaked almonds, oats, goji berries, agave syrup
- Flaxseeds, chia seeds, agave, oats, coconut milk, blueberries
- Coconut water, strawberries. oats, almonds, dessicated coconuts
- Fig, oats, cacao nibs, manuka honey, almond milk
- Mango, dessicated coconut, natural yoghurt, cacao nibs
- Oats, raisins, grated apple, cinnamon, water and honey
I rarely follow a recipe for a bircher and don’t usually weigh things out, put a little extra liquid in if you’re using oats or chia seeds as they will expand overnight, but you can always add extra in the morning to get the consistency you prefer so don’t worry about being precise. Play around to find your favourite combos and use whatever you have handy. We use jam jars, honey pots or small mason jars and as long as it all fits into one of those you won’t be overeating – plus, it’s easily portable to throw into your bag for a healthy, tasty breakfast on the go or at your desk.
I like to buy whatever fruit is in season for toppings and throw a few things in together so don’t feel like you have to be strict with these.
If you’d rather follow a recipe, Honestly Healthy does a really simple, really tasty one using cheap and easy-to-find ingredients to get you started.
Have you joined the Bircher gang yet? Any great combos we should be trying?
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