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6 Sweet Breakfast Ideas That Won’t Spike Your Blood Sugar

May 30, 2024

If your idea of a satisfying breakfast includes pancakes dripping with syrup and freshly baked pastries, we get it. But you probably know that foods like those often aren’t so sweet for your health. Donuts, waffles, and muffins are tasty, but they can also spike your blood sugar, zapping your energy and worsening cravings. Now for the good news: A balanced breakfast can transform your blood sugar and your health. And you don’t have to stifle your sweet tooth to build one. Here are six sweet breakfast ideas for better blood sugar balance.

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You asked: Why is it bad if your blood sugar spikes?

Let’s get one thing clear: Blood sugar in itself isn’t a bad thing. 

When you eat carbohydrates, your body breaks them down into sugars called glucose. These sugars then enter your bloodstream and travel throughout your body. Glucose provides energy to your cells and brain, and your body needs it to thrive. What we want to avoid is having too much.

“Unstable blood sugar isn’t just relevant for people with diabetes, it can affect anyone,” says dietitian Kaytee Hadley. “Keeping your blood sugar stable helps to prevent that 2 p.m. slump, and can improve focus, mood, and even stave off sugar cravings later in the day.”

Food provides energy, and you want that energy to be stable and consistent throughout the day. A big or unbalanced meal – especially at breakfast – delivers a lot of energy all at once, and your body isn’t great at making that last. This creates a spike and fall in blood sugar that’s not ideal for your immediate energy or long-term health.

How to build a more balanced breakfast

“When you start with a balanced breakfast, you’re more likely to go into lunch, snack times, and dinner with stable blood sugar levels,” says dietitian Jamie Nadeau. “As a result, you’re likely to feel better and make more intentional food choices.”

More good news: Skipping carbs at breakfast altogether isn’t the answer. After all, carbohydrates provide your body with important energy and satisfaction. The key is pairing those carbs with other foods to give them more staying power.

You can do that by focusing on these three nutrients:

These nutrients slow the release of sugars into your bloodstream. They help carbs last longer in your body, so you’ll have more sustained energy from breakfast while still enjoying your meal. 

Related: The Best 8 Foods to Lower Blood Sugar Levels

6 sweet breakfast ideas that won’t spike your blood sugar

Here are some delicious morning meals that will tame your sweet tooth and keep your energy stable.

Loaded berry yogurt bowl

A sweet yogurt bowl can be full of excess sugar, but it doesn’t have to be. Try this loaded berry yogurt bowl for all the creamy satisfaction without the blood sugar spike.

  • 1 cup 5% Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • ½ cup berries
  • 1 tablespoon peanut butter
  • 1 teaspoon honey, optional

Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl and eat right away.

Why it’s good for blood sugar: 

  • We used greek yogurt instead of regular for more protein
  • Full-fat greek yogurt helps with blood sugar balance 
  • Chia seeds and berries add fiber

Baked oats

Oats have been getting a lot of attention for their tendency to raise blood sugars. But they’re loaded with heart-healthy fiber. Combined with other foods strategically, oats can be part of a blood sugar–friendly sweet breakfast. 

Try these Viral Blended Baked Oats, and add a scoop of protein powder to the batter. 

Why it’s good for blood sugar:

  • Oats contain fiber, which slows the release of sugars into your bloodstream 
  • The egg contains protein and fat to add balance 
  • Adding protein powder takes this meal from carb-heavy to protein-rich

Make it even more balanced with a scoop of full-fat Greek yogurt on top.

High protein trail mix oats

If you prefer your oats cooked on the stove, here’s how to do it so you can enjoy your bowl without a sugar spike.

  • ⅓ cup rolled oats
  • ⅔ cup milk (dairy or soy)
  • Pinch of fine sea salt
  • Half scoop protein powder
  • 3 tablespoons chopped nuts
  • 1 tablespoon chopped dried or freeze dried fruit
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup, optional

Cook the oats in the milk with the salt as the package label directs. Remove from the heat and stir in the protein powder until well combined. Add the nuts and other toppings and enjoy.

Why it’s good for blood sugar:

  • Oats are a complex carbohydrate, which are better for blood sugar than simple carbs
  • Milk and protein powder add satiating protein
  • Chopped nuts contain fiber and fat for more balance

Cottage cheese toast

Cottage cheese is super-popular these days for its satiating protein — but it’s not necessarily the first food that comes to mind when you’re craving something sweet. Try this banana cinnamon cottage cheese toast for a sweet-and-salty breakfast that tastes surprisingly decadent.

  • 1 slice sourdough bread
  • ½ cup cottage cheese
  • ½ banana, sliced
  • Dash of cinnamon
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons sliced almonds
  • 1 teaspoon honey, optional

Toast the bread. Spread it with the cottage cheese, then top it with the banana, cinnamon, and almonds. Drizzle with the honey, if desired.

Why it’s good for blood sugar:

  • Cottage cheese is loaded with protein for stable blood sugar and energy
  • Banana adds complex carbohydrates, which digest slowly
  • The sliced almonds contain balancing fiber and healthy fats — plus, they lend a satisfying crunch

Make it even more balanced by using high-fiber whole-grain bread.

Protein chia pudding

Chia pudding contains an impressive amount of fiber and fats, which are particularly helpful for balancing blood sugar. Our recipe adds even more protein to this healthy breakfast staple, making it the perfect option to keep you energized and full. Bonus: This recipe is great for meal prep, saving you time on busy mornings.

  • ¼ cup chia seeds
  • 1 ¼ cups dairy or soy milk
  • Half scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1 cup fruit

Combine the chia seeds, milk, and protein powder, and stir well. Refrigerate for a minimum of 4 hours. Top with fruit when you’re ready to eat.

Why it’s good for blood sugar:

  • Chia seeds contain a lot of fiber and fats
  • Dairy and soy milk are high in protein
  • Protein powder turns this easy recipe into a protein-packed breakfast

Drizzle a bit of natural peanut butter on top for a little more protein and fat.

Protein pancakes

Traditional pancakes contain mostly carbs, but these easy protein pancakes offer the same satisfaction with a lot more nutritional balance. 

Whisk the ingredients together until well combined. Cook the pancakes as the package label directs.

Why it’s good for blood sugar:

  • This premade pancake mix contains protein and fiber for blood sugar balance
  • Using milk instead of water adds more protein
  • The egg adds extra protein and fats for more staying power

Make it more balanced by topping with chia seeds and mixed berries, or even a dollop of Greek yogurt.

Read next: 5 Ways to Control Blood Sugar That Don’t Involve Food 

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