Print and Go Back ESPN.com: Nutrition [Print without images]

Saturday, June 11, 2011
Updated: June 10, 9:43 AM ET
Cook up the perfect recovery breakfast

By Paige Greenfield

Everyone has 10 daily minutes to spare. Here's how to use yours wisely.

Today's goal: Make morning easy and nutritious

Cook once and eat all week. That's how sports nutritionist Roberta Anding, R.D., dietitian for the Houston Texans and spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association, suggests making the most of 10 minutes. "On Sunday nights, make a big batch of oatmeal and store it in the refrigerator," she said. "After a morning workout during the week, scoop out a cup of oatmeal and heat it in the microwave. While you wait, pound down a glass of nonfat milk."

This morning meal is almost as easy as eating an energy bar, but far better for you and for muscle recovery, Anding said. "Energy bars are fine for nutritional rescue, but oatmeal is a whole grain that provides fiber and low-glycemic-index carbohydrates that help repair muscles while keeping you full for hours on end." What's more, the milk delivers whey and casein proteins, which help build muscle after exercise.

Anding also recommends tossing in half a pint of blueberries right before the oatmeal finishes cooking. "The berries burst and create Smurf-like oatmeal. They add fiber, disease-fighting polyphenolic compounds and sweetness so you don't need any sugar."

Here is Anding's 10-minute recipe for five days worth of Smurf Oatmeal: In a saucepan, bring 5 cups of water to a boil. Add 2 1/2 cups of oatmeal (not the one-minute kind). Stir and reduce heat to a simmer. About two minutes before the oatmeal is done, add half a pint of blueberries. Once they burst and coat the oatmeal, remove from heat. When cooled, store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. A batch stays fresh for five days.