Training day breakfasts are all about slow-releasing, high-fibre carbs that will enable you to fuel the slaying of the day!
All the recipes here contain quality protein and healthy fats, and I have carefully chosen the suggestions for the porridge add-ins to be high in vitamins and minerals – and to taste great together, of course.
One of the most versatile of meals, porridge is made for mixing up. I tend to use jumbo oats, but you could also swap in some rye, barley, quinoa or spelt flakes, which have a nutty taste and add a different texture. What makes it versatile is that you can add different toppings; fresh fruit, nuts, seeds, powders such as cacao and cinnamon, making it impossible to get fet up with. Below is first the base and then my favourite toppings versions and their benefits.
For the base
50g jumbo rolled oats (or 25g jumbo rolled oats plus 25g rye, barley, quinoa or spelt flakes)
a pinch of salt (optional)
a splash of almond or oat milk (optional)
Raspberries and sunflower seeds are a great combination, providing manganese, folate, magnesium, plus vitamins B, C, E, and K, which variously help with enzyme and red blood cell production, plus maintaining healthy bones, skin, eyes and blood vessels, among other things, making this option a real micro-nutrient bomb!
1 tsp sunflower seeds
a handful of raspberries
Strawberries provide even more vitamin C than oranges, and pumpkin seeds are high in zinc, which improves immunity, is needed for healthy cell division, has a great impact on hormonal balance and aids in healthy digestion.
1 tsp pumpkin seeds
7 strawberries, halved
Cinnamon is rich in fibre; helps to maintain good bowel health and calcium, which studies suggest protects the heart from blockages, plus the blueberries are shown to help widen arteries.
1 tbsp cinnamon
a large handful of blueberries
Full of antioxidants, this is the option to get you geared up and ready to go in your longboat.
1 tsp cacao powder
10 almonds, finely chopped, to sprinkle on top
As consumption of red meat has decreased, iron deficiency has become more common. But worry not: iron is found in many foods, and adding these ingredients to your porridge will ensure it is full of it!
1 tbsp raw unsweetened coconut flakes or chips
1 tsp goji berries
3 tsbp coconut milk
An alternative to oats, small black chia seeds swell when soaked, becoming porridge-like in texture. They’re high in fibre – 50g should provide about two-thirds of your recommended daily allowance – so they should help to keep you feeling fuller for longer. As you leave this in the fridge overnight, it requires minimal prep first thing, making it great for busy training days and mornings on the go. Mix and match the toppings as with the other porridge recipes.
50g chia seeds
250ml almond milk (or rice or oat milk, or water)
1 tsp ground cinnamon
Mushrooms are full of protein and fibre, and varieties like shiitake are especially high in selenium, which helps prevent damage to your body’s cells as well as supporting your immune system. This savoury porridge – a bit like a quick breakfast risotto – is a different way of incorporating them into your diet. This is the perfect breakfast for people with more of a savoury tooth. If you’re pushed for time in the morning, you could soak the mushrooms (steps 1 and 2) the night before.
If you’re training particularly hard, you could top with a halved soft-boiled egg for extra protein.
a small handful of dried mushrooms, such as shiitake or porcini
230ml boiling water
50g jumbo rolled oats
salt and pepper
a small handful of fresh dill, chopped
Frozen berries are just as good for you as fresh, making them a great thing to keep stocked in the freezer. Liquorice root is often used in plant-based medicine for its anti-inflammatory properties, and adds a lovely tangy sweet aniseed flavour here. This fresh jam, thickened by the protein-rich chia seeds, will keep for a week in the fridge. Stir a spoonful through your porridge, or spread on a slice of toasted Tyr´s Post-war Treat (see page XXX), dark rye or pumpernickel toast. Berry good!
450g frozen mixed berries
3 tbsp chia seeds
1 tsp liquorice root powder
Our Viking ancestors had to forage for berries, nuts and seeds. Baking a batch of this granola in advance should make your weekday hunt for breakfast an easier affair! Serve with almond milk or goat’s milk yoghurt. If you’re pushed for time, pack it into a glass jar or Tupperware for a portable breakfast – just remember, don’t eat on the go.
Raw honey contains sugar, of course, but it is not heated when processed, which means that it retains its enzymes and nutrients.
Makes 1 jar (approx. 400g/10–12 portions)
1½ tbsp coconut oil
1½ tbsp organic raw honey
100g jumbo rolled oats
100g rye flakes
20g sunflower seeds
20g pumpkin seeds
20g hazelnuts, roughly chopped
25g coconut flakes
seeds from 6 cardamom pods, crushed
½ tsp caraway seeds, crushed
a pinch of sea salt
50g dried cranberries or cherries, chopped
50g rye flour
50g buckwheat flour
a pinch of sea salt
500ml almond milk
1 tbsp coconut oil
organic raw honey (optional)