6 Non-Boring Breakfasts You Can Make in Under 30 Minutes

Jasmin Sun

Athletic superstars may endorse the benefits of breakfast (thanks to the cereal industrial complex), but most of us non-Olympians would rather hit snooze than plan beyond a black coffee and questionably brown banana. The good news is, you don’t need two hours and Serena’s skills to make a breakfast fit for champions. Try one of these under-30 minute breakfast options next time you need to quiet your symphony of stomach growls (yes, we can hear it on the 9am Zoom).

Caramelized Plantain Parfait

Wishing you were on a warm beach halfway across the world, instead of robotically replying, “Yes, I can see your screen?” Try this for a 5-minute vacation: Find some plantains (check out your bodega or specialty grocery store), or a couple bananas will do. Slice your plantains lengthwise or diagonally, so you end up with pointed ovals. Melt a pat of butter in your pan, toss in the plantains, and cook until everything starts looking golden and syrupy.

If you’re using bananas, be sure to coat them lightly with brown sugar before you cook. Now drop them on top of a bowl of your favorite yogurt, then bless the whole situation with some crunch. We like a handful of toasted nuts or coconut, but do you. (Full recipe here.)

Fancy-ish Mini Frittatas

This one goes out to all the hard-working souls who deal with kids, a dog, or a side gig on top of their commute every morning. (Bonus if too much of your paycheck is going to your daily egg-bite-cult habit.) The night before, grab a muffin tin and coat the cups generously with cooking spray (asking your kids to smear olive oil on with their fingers totally counts) before filling about 1/2 to 3/4 of the way with your usual scrambled egg mixture.

Top with bacon and shredded cheddar, or play Ina cooking for Jeffrey with some prosciutto and chopped broccoli rabe. Bake until the egg sets and begins to fill each cup, about 20 minutes. Once they’re done to your liking, take them out and let cool for 5 minutes at room temp before you stick them in the fridge. Pop a couple of these one-bite wonders in the middle of drop-off line drama or while being pulled down the street by your Great Dane mix. Not stealing another pack of your kid’s Pop-Tarts sounds like a win to us.

This could be you, chef. Photo by Daniel Farò

Chinese Fried Soy-Sauce Eggs (With Congee)

Your boss unexpectedly canceled the first meeting of the day, *air fist pump*. Or, you’re in a procrastination spiral for an assignment that’s due by noon. Either way, treat yourself (deadlines are hard!) with some morning umami via this no-brainer fried-egg upgrade.

Heat a glug or two of oil in a pan and crack in your eggs. Don’t skip heating your pan first; it’s the trick to getting those nice, crispy edges. Once the yolks are about set, pour on a few drops of low-sodium soy sauce so the flavor gets a chance to soak into said crispy edges. Eat plain, or serve over congee. Feeling your Emily Mariko-influenced self? Sprinkle on some chopped scallions and chili crisp, or drizzle on sesame oil to taste.

Microwaved Party Pancakes

Waking up at 8:50am for a 9am conference call is one of those moments that helps us appreciate WFH life, even despite the brief emotional crisis upon waking. Once you’ve found your laptop and located the meeting link to click at the ready, pop open a box of pancake mix and make the batter according to the directions on the package.

Drop the batter in small pancake-sized dollops onto a microwave-safe plate and nuke for 45 seconds to start. Check them; maybe add some chocolate chips or rainbow sprinkles because you deserve it. Continue to microwave for 15-second increments until your tester fork comes out clean. Now turn that camera off, and leave the walk for a $7 croissant to tomorrow.

Pesto Egg on Toast

If it’s only Wednesday but you’ve already woken up twice thinking it’s Friday, go ahead and pretend you’re brunching on a Saturday. This sophisticated, 2.0 toast is a fresh option when avocado toast has started to feel a little plebeian (the horror). This gem, discovered while spelunking through #FoodTok, is a smart way to make use of any particularly oily, ready-made pesto, not to mention a great time-saver.

Simply plop some pesto (slightly less than a dollop, but more than you think) in place of oil when cooking your eggs. You’ll end up with an incredibly herby, eggy topping for your favorite crusty bread. Top it off with red pepper flakes to give things a kick. And if you’re offended by the idea of avocado being played out, go ahead and add it!

Turn some eggs into a savory luxury. Photo by Allie Lehman

Bell Pepper Sandwich

Now that your #fitfam coworker has finally convinced you to try keto, give this healthy (masochistic?) take on an everything bagel with cream cheese a shot. It tastes kind of like a Philadelphia sushi roll without the rice, and with way more pepper crunch.

Slice open a bell pepper lengthwise, clean out the insides, and spread on your cream cheese. The vegan kind works fine, if you want to talk about it incessantly later. (Just kidding, we’re actually deeply invested in the tofu vs. other subs debate.) Top with everything bagel seasoning and your cured meat of choice, like soppressata. As with a lot of things, the spicier, the better.

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