Until you get your gluten-free eating wits about you, it’s easy to toss a salad together for lunch or take the bun off of your hamburger for dinner and have a meal that you know is “safe.” Breakfast? Now that can be a more confusing endeavor, especially if you’re a gluten-free newbie who was used to relying on some toast or waffles to start your day.
At Canyon Ranch, we not only craft custom menus for our guests maintaining gluten-free diets so they can eat well during their stay, but we advise them on ways they can enjoy creative gluten-free meals at home.
Dig into these suggestions for gluten-free breakfasts from our experts, and add more variety and confidence to your first meal of the day.
Turn to Corn
Polenta has a creamy texture that’s similar to satisfying, hot wheat cereals. Opt for a quick-cooking brand (use equal parts water and low-fat milk when preparing) to save precious morning minutes and add your favorite toppings. We like a dollop of Greek yogurt, some honey, and fresh fruit.
Go Around the World
Figuratively, that is. Though many Americans tend to reserve savory foods for later in the day, they are mainstays in the a.m. menus of many cultures. Shaking up your definition of “breakfast” can open up your mind to more options that only add interest to your diet.
Think vegetables, leftover shredded chicken and so on. For example, a corn tortilla topped with our Charro Beans and a poached egg can be a surprising, satisfying (and protein-packed) way to start the day.
Sunday mornings can still be filled with stacks of flapjacks if you’re eating a gluten-free diet, and our quick-and-easy recipe makes that possible. Bonus: It saves you from having to clean up the inevitable flour mess that a traditional preparation leaves on your countertops.
Mix 1 cup of rolled oats*, 1 cup of cottage cheese and 1 cup of egg whites to create a batter that is not only gluten-free but is higher in protein and quality carbs than the real thing. (It performs on the griddle just like you’re used to.)
*Though oats do not contain gluten, many are produced alongside gluten-containing products. Look for options marked “gluten-free” to ease fears about cross-contamination.
Recruit Some Rice
Rice is a staple in many gluten-free diets, but we find that people rarely turn to it as a breakfast choice. Think of it like any other safe grain.
Use it as a base for your favorite stir-fry (who says you can’t have a traditionally for dinner food for breakfast?), or try our Traditional Thai Porridge, which uses brown rice, coconut milk, and raisins. You can cook it the night before and store leftovers in the fridge for several days.
Smooth Things Out
You may have been used to grabbing a bagel and heading out the door when you were still eating gluten. When you’re short on time, consider making a smoothie.
Toss a scoop of whey or pea protein powder, a tablespoon of your favorite nut butter, flax or chia seeds—and your other favorite ingredients—into a blender with low-fat Greek yogurt to create a to-go drink that will fuel your energy and keep you full until lunch. If you’re also milk-free, try our Raspberry Lime Smoothie, which uses coconut milk to add staying power.
While all of these ideas are great, you may be relieved to hear that if you’re a French toast or granola fan, you don’t have to divorce these favorites for good just because you’re going gluten-free. The gluten-free product market is booming, and the choices for breads, cereals and the like are not only more abundant but more appetizing than ever.
Prepare your regular go-to’s with these items, and know that it may take some shopping around to find the products that appeal to you most in terms of taste and texture. Choose multigrain/whole grain breads with at least 2 grams of fiber and cereals with less than 8 grams of added sugar.