Everyone talks about the weeks leading up to Christmas as a tough time for healthy eating with the ubiquitousness of sweets and treats (and they are everywhere). For me, though, the trickier time is the quiet period afterward, the days leading up to New Years. That’s when the carbohydrates take over my house. My husband makes pancakes and waffles. There’s leftover coffee cake, homemade bread, coconut cake, and pie residing in my kitchen, despite my great efforts to the contrary.
The best solution to the sluggishness of all that not-so-great eating (other than getting rid of the food to begin with) is to reset my diet, and that of my family’s. And the first stop on that journey is breakfast.
When I was a kid, my mother would make dessert parfaits for dinner parties she and my father hosted in our home. In tall iridescent glasses, she would scoop whipped cream, pudding, fruit, and other delectable bites, layering each flavor upon one another. The dessert was easy to make and always a hit, especially with me. Those parfaits always struck me as decadent and fabulous—something for adults only.
Now, as the adult in my family, I have taken those beloved parfaits and made them into our healthy eating oasis this holiday season. They are now “breakfast parfaits,” and they are still fabulous. The best part is how versatile this breakfast is. It also looks great in fancy glasses, like the vintage champagne glasses in these pictures.
For my daughter—she who would subsist only on cereal and yogurt if allowed—I make a breakfast parfait of her favorite flavors: in a glass (or bowl, if you’d prefer), I add a layer of Grape Nuts, then a layer of plain whole Stonyfield yogurt, then a layer of Grape Nuts, then a layer of yogurt, and, finally, a dribble (or drabble) or organic maple syrup. She loves the mix of crunch and smooth, gobbling it down right way, which is a holiday gift to me, as she is sometimes a picky eater.
To personalize my own parfait, I use Stonyfield’s nonfat Greek yogurt, layering it with blueberries and strawberries. I could have used bananas, sliced almonds, coconut, honey, wheat germ, chia seeds, pineapple, or applesauce. Flavored yogurt would also be a good alternative: a layer of Stonyfield’s blueberry yogurt, then banilla, then strawberry, then back to blueberry. As soon as I finished my berry parfait, I was already planning the next one; the possibilities are limited only by what’s in your pantry and refrigerator!
The best part of this addition to our breakfast routine is how easy the parfait is to make and how special it makes the eater feel. The parfaits are a great way to shake off the bad habits of holiday eating, and embrace the new year feeling healthy.
Happy 2015 to you!
Disclosure: This post was created in partnership with Stonyfield. All opinions are my own.