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Brain Foods for Young Minds

By Cami Haught


WIC Kitchen  is a monthly feature provided by Monongalia County Heath Department WIC staff that highlights healthy recipes made with ingredients approved through the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children, a federal assistance program.

As a child, I learned that breakfast was the most important meal of the day. As a registered dietitian and now the manager at Monongalia County Health Department’s Women, Infants, and Children program, I believe all meals are important.

But breakfast is a great way to start your day off right. From my years of working with individuals on their nutrition, breakfast also was the most skipped meal of the day.

Breakfast is an important meal for all age groups but especially children. According to an article by the American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, studies show that breakfast eaters tend to have higher school attendance, less tardiness and fewer hunger-induced stomach aches in the morning.

Also, their overall test scores are higher. They concentrate better, solve problems more easily and have better muscle coordination. Children who eat breakfast also are more likely to maintain a healthy weight and get enough calcium, too.

What makes up a healthy, well-balanced breakfast? I recommend aiming for a protein, carbohydrate, fruit and dairy. This combination will keep you feeling full and satisfied until lunch. This peanut butter overnight oatmeal recipe is a great example of a complete breakfast. A personal favorite of mine is a smoothie made with fruit and low-fat yogurt and a slice of peanut butter whole wheat toast on the side.

 MCHD WIC staff decided to showcase some easy breakfast recipes. Most items used in these recipes are WIC-approved products. Please enjoy the following recipes.

 Learn more about MCHD WIC, a federally-funded nutrition assistance program, at, and follow us on Facebook @MCHDWIC and on TikTok at @monongaliawic for more WIC recipes. WIC is an equal opportunity employer.

MCHD WIC healthy breakfast


12 servings

  • 1 large bag shredded hash browns 
  • 4 cups shredded Colby cheese 
  • 2 cups cooked ham, cubed 
  • 12 eggs 
  • 1 1/4 cup milk 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt 
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place hash browns in greased 9×13 baking pan. Sprinkle with cheese and ham. In a bowl, beat eggs, milk, salt and mustard together. Pour over other ingredients in pan. Cover and bake for one hour. Uncover and bake 15 minutes longer or until edges are golden brown and a knife inserted into center comes out clean.


Four servings 

  • 1 ripe banana 
  • 2 tablespoons cream cheese 
  • 1 cup sliced strawberries.
  • 4 slices whole-wheat bread

In a bowl, mash together the banana, cream cheese and 1/4 cup berries. Toast the bread. Spread the banana mixture over the toast. Arrange the remaining berries on top of the spread.


Three servings

  • 3/4 cup low-fat yoghurt 
  • 3/4 cup old fashioned oats 
  • 2/3 cup low-fat milk 
  • 1 tablespoon peanut butter 
  • 3/4 cup sliced banana 
  • 1/2 cup strawberries, sliced

In a bowl, combine all ingredients except for the banana and strawberries. Gently mix in the banana. Cover and chill overnight. To serve, stir well and divide into three small bowls. Top each serving with sliced strawberries.

Cami Haught is a Registered and Licensed Dietitian for the MCHD WIC program. She enjoys the outdoors, gardening, spending time with her family and trying new recipes.