Beef: it's what's for dinner - AND breakfast. Add a satisfying serving of lean protein to your a.m. meal for a strong start to the day. Here, three tasty, convenient ways to beef up your morning.
Here’s what: nutrition news can get, in a word, confusing. A single food can be singled out as a nutritional no-no just as quickly as it was lauded as the best thing since…I don’t know, kale? You get the point.
Red meat falls in and out of favor on a seemingly yearly basis. As part of an overall balanced meal pattern and active lifestyle, beef delivers a host of nutrients – more than just protein – and most importantly, flavor and satiety. More good news: the latest beef research shows that individuals who consumed beef 4-5 times a week as part of a weight loss program lost just as many pounds – and exhibit the same improvements in lipid profiles – as those who refrained from read meat consumption.
Here’s where us American folk could use a little help: we tend to backload on protein, consuming the least during our morning meals and the most at dinner. Given the bevy of carbohydrate-rich, prepackaged treats catering to our busy lives, it’s no surprise that protein takes a backseat – especially when we’re literally eating in our cars. Research suggests that a better strategy for maintenance of lean muscle mass is to spread protein intake throughout the day, and to aim for 25-30g at each meal. Frontloading the day with a high quality protein – and veggies! – is a winning strategy.
Words can’t express the joy I feel when I open the fridge in the morning to be greeted by leftover strip steak. Imagine fist-pumping, and possibly some jumping up and down – all before I’ve had my coffee. Strip steak is a lean cut that lends itself incredibly well to the eponymous steak and eggs, a quick taco, or as a topping for pita and savory-spiced Greek yogurt (think gyro vibes). Round out any of the above with a piece of fruit and a serving of vegetables, and you’ll feel full and fueled up until lunchtime.
A burger for breakfast? When the burger in question is made from 93/7 lean ground beef, that answer is a resounding YES! Try a thin patty on an English muffin, and top it off with probiotic-rich kimchi, an egg, and a small dollop of peanut butter. Trust me.
Leftover ground beef crumbles work well with most any carb source you have in the fridge. Last night’s rice or a tortilla + ground beef + salsa = heaven. These easy beef and egg breakfast mugs are another delicious grab-and-go option.
Full disclosure: I LOVE bacon. Love, love, love. And while it can definitely fit into a balanced diet, it’s nice to have a breakfast time understudy waiting in the wings. This is where beef jerky steps in and shines. Pleasantly chewy and savory, jerky delivers a serious punch of protein – 10g! – for a mere 80 calories. Naturally, jerky pairs well with eggs, but how about with a waffle, preferably of the high-protein variety? Sweeten up the dish with fresh or frozen berries, and you might just relegate bacon to special occasions. Thank me later.
The bottom line: beef up - any time of day.
Enjoy your food. Enjoy your life!