Great Grains

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Megan Gordon, author of the new book Whole-Grain Mornings, maintains that a healthy breakfast sets you up for the day in more ways than one. ”Breakfast is the cornerstone of the day,” says the Seattle resident and yoga practitioner. But it's more than just nourishment: ”It's sending the message that, amidst all the craziness in your day-to-day life, feeding yourself well is a priority.”

Low in fat yet packed with complex carbohydrates, fiber, and key vitamins and minerals, whole grains also aid digestion and keep you well-fueled until lunch. And whole grains have been linked to a lower risk of heart disease, diabetes, and certain cancers. Gordon's recipes are designed to whet the appetite, like Cheesy Chive Millet Grits, Breakfast Fried Rice, and Strawberry Oat Breakfast Crisp, and do not skimp on indulgences like butter, cheese, and bacon. For busy weekday mornings, especially in the spring and summer months, her go-to breakfast is granola.

”When you start making granola at home, something happens: you begin to develop your own tweaks, and before you know it, you have your own signature taste,” she says. She encourages home cooks to experiment with spices and fruits and natural sweetners, like honey and maple syrup.

Try this chock-full-of-goodness recipe for Hazelnut Cacao Nib Granola.