It’s not surprising that breakfast plays an important role in any heritage diet, and the Mediterranean region is no exception. Throughout history, the entire Mediterranean—from Turkey to Morocco, from Portugal to Greece—has featured whole grains and proteins in simple and complex breakfast dishes, providing richness of ﬂavor and valuable nutrients.
Breakfast in any part of the world often varies depending on the day of the week. But whether you’re grabbing a light and quick breakfast during the work week or lounging over brunch during the weekend, the principles of a Mediterranean breakfast remain the same: Eat a variety of diﬀerent fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, whole grains, legumes, and other healthy foods.
Ready to makeover your breakfasts? To get you started, we created a Breakfast 1-2-3 Plan, inspired by Mediterranean breakfasts, classifying breakfast foods into three main categories:
- Whole grains (Confused about which breads at the store contain whole grains? Look for the Whole Grain Stamp.).
- Fruits and vegetables.
- A source of protein (example: eggs, yogurt, or nuts).
If you work on building your breakfasts based on these key building blocks, you’ve already taken one giant leap forward to Mediterranean breakfasts. And our suggested Mediterranean breakfast swaps will help you get there even faster:
|Bagel with jam and cream cheese||Whole wheat bagel with ricotta cheese and ﬁgs|
|Cereal with milk||Oatmeal with dried fruits and milk|
|Butter on toast||Baked beans on toast|
|Fried eggs with bacon||Shakshuka with smoked ﬁsh (check out our recipe!)|
|Muﬃn||Greek yogurt parfait with granola, berries, and a drizzle of honey|
Remember: Eating something healthy in the morning (even a small portion if you’re not feeling like a big meal) will energize you and ﬁll you up until lunch time.
Hungry for more? Here are some delicious Mediterranean breakfast recipes to inspire you.
Paola Garza, Nutritionist