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Nutritional Health|31 May 2022

3 High-Protein Indian breakfast ideas for kids

Written by Aahat Sajnani
Ms. Aahat is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist with experience in medical nutrition therapy. She takes consultations for nutrition-related medical conditions, including obesity, polycystic ovary syndrome, diabetes, eating disorders, and gastrointestinal infections. Ms. Aahat earned her master’s degree in Dietetics from the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, in 2018. Soon after, she obtained the Registered Dietitian credential from the Commission on Dietetic Registration, USA. Since then, she has worked with clients to improve their nutrition status, eating habits, lifestyle and general wellbeing.

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, especially for children who need proper nutrition to stay focused and energetic throughout the day. Unfortunately, sometimes children can be fussy eaters or not feel hungry in the morning. You can manage this by giving them meals that they genuinely enjoy. 

Traditional Indian breakfasts are delicious and often healthy. With some simple alterations, they can be made high in protein too. Protein plays a key role in most bodily functions – it helps build new cells for growth and repair, strengthen immunity, boost blood production, and strengthen muscles. 

The primary protein sources contain essential nutrients like zinc, iron, magnesium, and vitamins E and B. Children with a protein deficient diet can suffer from health issues including slow growth, low immunity, poor concentration, and body ache. 

These are 3 of our favourite breakfast recipes for kids that will encourage them to eat a high-protein breakfast to prepare their mind and body for school!

Besan Chilla (Chickpea Pancake):

A high-protein healthy breakfast for kids to strengthen their muscles and immunity. 

Ingredients: 

  • 1 cup besan (chickpea flour)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp turmeric powder
  • 3 tbsp diced onion
  • 3 tbsp diced tomato
  • 1/2 tsp grated ginger
  • 1/3 cup chopped coriander leaves
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tsp oil of choice

Method:

  1. Add the besan, turmeric powder, salt, and water into a mixing bowl. 
  2. Add the ginger, tomatoes, onions, and coriander leaves. The batter should be thick but pourable. If it’s too thin, add more besan. If it’s too thick, add more water. 
  3. Grease a pan with oil and bring it to medium heat. 
  4. Spoon the batter onto the pan. Spread it until it becomes flat and forms a round shape. Continue to cook it until you start seeing some bubbles, then flip it and cook the other side.
  5. Take it off the pan once both sides are cooked. Serve it with some chutney. 
  6. Pour out some milk in a glass, add Bournvita and enjoy the nutrition-rich meal! 

Oats Idli:

A breakfast idea for kids with an oats twist to give them a long-lasting energy boost, with lentils for added protein.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups oats
  • 1 tbsp mustard seeds
  • ½ litre yoghurt
  • 2 tbsp urad dal (black gram)
  • ½ tbsp oil
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped coriander
  • Salt (for taste)
  • ½ tbsp turmeric powder

Method:

  1. Dry roast the oats. Use a mixer and blend until they turn into powder.
  2. Heat the oil in a pan. Add the mustard seeds and urad dal, and stir for two minutes. Then, add the coriander and turmeric powder and fry the mixture for one minute. 
  3. In a bowl, combine the oats and yoghurt. Then, add the mixture from the pan. Toss to make a thick batter. Add salt to taste. 
  4. Transfer the batter to a steamer to make the idlis. 
  5. Steam the idlis for 15 minutes and serve with chutney.
  6. Pour out some milk in a glass, add Bournvita and enjoy the nutrition-rich meal! 

Moong Daal Poha: 

An extra-healthy, high-protein version of this classic Indian breakfast for kids

Ingredients: 

  • 1 cup soaked moong daal
  • 2 tbsp roasted peanuts
  • 1 tbsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp black mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp curry leaves
  • 1 tbsp diced onion
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil

Method:

  1. Soak the moong daal for 3-4 hours or overnight. Then, grind it without water to form a thick paste. Place the paste in the idli maker and steam for 10-15 minutes. Leave aside to cool.
  2. Add oil to a pan and bring it to medium heat. Then, add diced onion, cumin seeds, curry leaves, and black mustard seeds. 
  3. Break the moong daal idli into bite-sized pieces, and combine with the pan mixture. 
  4. Add the turmeric powder, salt, and roasted peanuts.
  5. Mix all the ingredients and then heat the mixture. Once it’s cooked, squeeze lemon juice on top and serve warm.
  6. Pour out some milk in a glass, add Bournvita and enjoy the nutrition-rich meal! 

The views expressed are that of the expert alone.