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Yogurt For Grown-Ups

February 29, 2016
Plain yogurt is a perfect canvas for all sorts of delicious savory creations.

If you’re a yogurt with fruit, granola and maple syrup breakfast eater, it might be time to come down from your sugar high.

Yep, there’s probably more sugar than you bargained for in what’s typically touted as a healthy breakfast. Granola and yogurt can contain a ton of added sugar, but even if you choose unsweetened varieties, the naturally occurring sugars in yogurt and fruit can add up. And that drizzle of maple syrup can really put you over the top and set you up for a mid-morning blood sugar crash.

For a tasty fix, try building a savory yogurt bowl instead. It’s an easy way to keep your morning yogurt routine while sneaking in a serving or two of veggies and keeping sugar to a minimum. Start with your favorite plain, unsweetened yogurt (preferably made with organic, grass-fed dairy). Greek yogurt is our favorite for build-a-bowl projects because of its high protein content and thick, creamy texture.

In place of fruit, top it with colorful raw or roasted vegetables (last night’s leftovers are a great place to find inspiration) and torn or chopped herbs. To mimic the texture of granola, add crunchy nuts, seeds and/or cooked whole grains like wheat berries or farro. Replace that maple syrup with a drizzle of healthy oil or flavorful sauce like herb pesto. Finish with flakey sea salt, spices and flavorings of your choice, from curry powder to a squeeze of lemon.

Here are some crave-able combos that bowled us over:

Guac-a-Morning: Mash half an avocado and stir together with a cup of Greek yogurt. Top with chopped raw or roasted tomatoes, sautéed red onions, cooked quinoa, toasted sunflower and/or pumpkin seeds, chopped cilantro, sea salt and a dash of avocado oil.

Sunrise Harvest: Top a bowl of Greek yogurt with diced, roasted Brussels sprouts and butternut squash, pomegranate seeds, cooked wild rice, walnut pieces, chopped fresh rosemary, cracked black pepper and a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil.

Crack-of-Dawn Crunch: Combine thinly sliced cucumber and radish with chunks of roasted beets and grated carrots. Add to a bowl of yogurt and sprinkle on savory coconut chips, chia seeds and slivered basil. For a little kick, dash on some chili oil and lime juice.

Mediterranean Daybreak: Top some with grilled, sliced eggplant and/or zucchini. Add on pine nuts, chopped fresh mint and parsley and a drizzle of both tahini and olive oil. Sprinkle with sea salt and flavor with either za’atar herbs (a mixture of oregano, sumac, cumin and sesame seeds) or (for spicier palates) harissa.

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