fruit and nut bar

Photo: Sang An

The Best Fruit-and-Nut Bars You'll Ever Eat (Honest!)
There are many excellent packaged granola bars out there. But homemade ones are cheaper, customizable and tend to be much more satisfying, since it's hard to mindlessly scarf them down on your way to work when you're thinking about how brilliant you were to combine, say, dried cherries and coconut. This recipe is a good one to build on; make it once then try subbing in different nuts (which provide a type of omega-3 fatty acids used for energy) and dried fruit.

Get the recipe: Sesame Fruit-and-Nut Bars
ginger smoothie

Photo: Sarah Britton

The Shake with Benefits
Some breakfast smoothies are really just sugary desserts in disguise—but not this vibrant concoction. It incorporates raw spinach and cucumber, which means you get tons of vitamins and fiber; while lemon juice, fresh ginger and pear balance those veggie flavors out (trust us, the smoothie tastes zippy and refreshing, and not like you're drinking a liquid salad). Research suggests that ginger may have cognitive benefits; plus, staying hydrated could also help to keep you energized.

Get the recipe: Green Ginger Smoothie
pear yogurt parfait

Photo: Ashley Pettit

A New Way to Enjoy a Favorite Winter Fruit
We sometimes see pears served alongside creamy cheeses and garnished with spoonfuls of honey as an appetizer. Here's an A.M. spin on the delicious trio, using plain Greek yogurt instead of cheese (it's an excellent source of protein and probiotics, which research suggests may improve energy levels) and pure maple syrup rather than honey. You chop the fruit and cook it quickly, stir in raw pumpkin seeds then spoon the mixture over yogurt for an unexpected warm-and-cool breakfast.

Get the recipe: Spiced Pear-Greek Yogurt Parfait
spinach eggs

Photo: Sang An

Caesar-Inspired Eggs
On mornings when you leap out of bed only to settle down in front of a computer screen, a balanced and nutritious breakfast will keep you from feeling sluggish. This egg on a bed of sautéed chard has classic Caesar-salad ingredients—anchovies, capers and Parmesan—melted on a slice of toast.

Get the recipe: Sunny Side Up Eggs
almond joy oatmeal

Photo: Sarah Ashley Schiear

A No-Guilt Hot-Cereal Delight
This decadent oatmeal is named after the classic coconut- and almond-filled chocolate bar. As with the best oatmeal recipes, there are two keys to getting it right: Start with steel-cut oats (they stay chewy, not mushy); then, choose your mix-ins wisely. This recipe calls for milk, coconut, raw cacao powder (which brims with antioxidants, magnesium and iron), coconut oil and a dash each of sea salt and vanilla extract. Toasted, sliced almonds and dried coconut give the dish a little crunch.

Get the recipe: Vegan "Almond Joy" Oatmeal