One thing that I love about weekends is the ability to whip up a more complex breakfast than I do during the weekdays. Let’s be honest – I like to sleep in. I am not an early riser. I don’t leave myself a lot of time in the mornings before work to make a great breakfast, and a lot of times I end up running out the door with a granola bar and some yogurt, or a Carnation Instant Breakfast and applesauce. Borrrrring.
This weekend I decided to try a couple of recipes from one of my favorite guilt-free gurus, Hungry Girl! My first delicious breakfast meal was Hungry Girl’s Fancy Schmancy Oatmeal with cheesy scrambled eggs. So what makes oatmeal “fancy schmancy”? A little bit of pure canned pumpkin, maple syrup, cinnamon, and Splenda.
Ready for the guilt free stats on this breakfast that so did not taste guilt free? This whole meal came in at about 320 calories, 6 grams of fiber, only 5 grams of fat and about 20 grams of protein. The pure pumpkin adds some extra flavor and fiber, and the guilt free syrup, cinnamon and Splenda add flavor to boring ole oatmeal.
A lot of Hungry Girl recipes call for everything to be guilt free, meaning a lot of fat free items or sugar free substitutes. For the oatmeal recipe, I followed it exactly. As for the eggs, I went semi guilt free and chose to use a liquid egg substitute but threw on real, full fat, delicious cheese – for me, fat free cheese just isn’t worth it, I’ll take the extra fat and calories to get the flavor that I crave. The key was that I only sprinkled the top and let it melt as opposed to covering my eggs in cheese. It was perfect! And I still added fat free creamer to my coffee, too – delish!
You can find the recipe for this Fancy Schmancy Oatmeal here. This recipe is featured in Hungry Girl’s original cookbook – Recipes & Survival Strategies.
On Sunday I was craving pancakes and looked through my Hungry Girl cookbooks for some pancake recipes. I found a lot that I really want to try, but most of them I didn’t have the ingredients for – looks like I need to do some menu planning and grocery shopping! When I dug through my Hungry Girl 300 under 300 cookbook, I found a recipe for Sausage, Egg & Cheese Chickgriddle… and started to whip up the recipe!
I’ll be honest… I love McDonald’s breakfast. I treat myself to a small caramel frappe with fruit & maple oatmeal some mornings before work. But my ultimate breakfast guilty pleasure from McDonald’s is the McGriddle sandwich. My ex-boyfriend used to always order them, and I thought they sounded like the most disgusting thing ever – who wants to eat a sandwich made of syrup-infused pancakes with egg, bacon or sausage, and cheese in the middle?
So I broke down and tried one, and it was so delicious – a big breakfast in a bite! But the nutrition stats are just horrendous for this sandwich, which is why it’s a guilty pleasure.
My guilt free version definitely wasn’t quite as good as the real thing, but mostly because I overcooked my eggs and my pancakes. The flavor was very similar to the real sandwich, but the sandwich was definitely smaller in size. I decided to make mine sans cheese because it just didn’t sound good this morning.
The entire meal that you see in the picture – the Chickgriddle and yogurt – comes in at 250 calories, 7 grams of fat, and 12 grams of protein. That’s about HALF the calories and a fraction of the fat of a McDonald’s McGriddle ALONE! Check out the Hungry Girl newsletter that featured this swap to get a recipe for the Chickgriddle and have your jaw drop over the facts. Remember – I didn’t follow the recipe exactly – I didn’t use cheese, and I also didn’t use whole wheat flour.
That was my weekend of nutritious and delicious breakfasts! Did anybody else out there treat themselves to a more elaborate breakfast this weekend?