20 Easy Breakfast Recipes For Pennies

20 Easy Breakfast Recipes For Pennies

Easy Breakfast Recipes

Is breakfast difficult at your house? I feel ya!

My kids are happy with cold cereal, but honestly, they’d get more nutrition out of the box! Not to mention that between the eight of them, they’ll eat an entire family-sized (32 oz) bag of cereal, two gallons of milk, and be hungry again an hour later. So we’re talking around $10 for a meal that is neither filling nor nutritious.

And that’s why I have lots of quick, easy, filling and nutritious breakfast ideas up my sleeve. Nine hungry mouths (the hubs and the kids) to feed on a tight budget has forced me to develop a pretty extensive arsenal of meals that are quick, easy and cheap.

I rotate through the 20 easy breakfast recipes below, plus I keep a constant supply of homemade granola in the pantry for emergency days. None of these breakfast recipes is gourmet, but they do the trick! I hope they’ll help out your busy mornings, too!

 

20 Cheap and Easy Breakfast Recipes:

 

French Toast 

French toast is so quick and easy to make (not to mention cheap!) that we frequently eat it for lunch and dinner and snacks and every other occasion, in addition to breakfast.

Cheap Breakfast Recipes

Beat together 6 eggs, 1/2 c. milk, 1 tsp cinnamon and 1/2 tsp. nutmeg. Melt 1 Tbsp. coconut oil in a large skillet.  Dip bread in egg mixture. Fry slices until golden brown, then flip to cook the other side.

Cost Breakdown

1 loaf bread (24 slices)   $1.50
1 dozen eggs              $1.00
1 c. milk                  $0.33
oil & spices           $0.20

Total Cost: (12 servings)  25 cents per serving

 

 

 

Pancakes 

Pancake batter can be made from scratch in about the same amount of time it takes to make toast. The most time-consuming part of making pancake is cooking them, and that only takes a few minutes. You can make them countless ways, too. My dad always scattered chocolate chips over the top of each pancake before flipping them. I’ve been known to grate carrots into the batter and add pumpkin pie spice. Sounds gross? They honestly tasted like carrot cake! Blend a an overripe banana or some applesauce into your batter. Basic pancakes only cost about 30 cents per serving.

Heat a large, oiled skillet over medium heat. In a large bowl, mix together 2 cups flour, 2 tsp. baking powder and 1 tsp. salt. In a separate bowl, beat 2 eggs into 1 1/2 cups milk, then stir in 2 tablespoons oil. Gently stir this mixture into dry ingredients, mixing barely enough to moisten flour. You should have a few lumps. If batter seems too thick, add a little more milk. Pour about 1/2 cup batter (for large pancakes) onto the hot skillet. Let it cook until the side facing up looks dry around the edges. Flip and cook the other side. Serve with butter and warm maple syrup.

Cost Breakdown:
flour      $0.30
oil         $0.20
eggs        $0.30
sugar      $0.30
spices and leavening $0.20
butter and syrup      $2

Total Cost: $3.30 for 18 pancakes, or ~$0.34 per serving

 

 

 

Eggs and Toast 

Don’t forget about this classic cheap and easy breakfast recipe! Eggs are the ultimate convenience food. Just whisk together a dozen eggs with about 1/2 c. milk, season it and scramble the eggs in a hot, oiled skillet. While the eggs are cooking, toast up a couple of slices of bread. Easy, peasy and cheap to boot!

Cheap and Easy Breakfast Recipes

Cost Breakdown:

2 eggs        $0.30
2 slices bread $0.10
milk & spices $0.05

Total Cost: $0.45 per serving

 

 

 

Hashbrowns

You can get 20 pounds of potatoes for a couple of dollars. Okay, so potatoes fried in oil aren’t incredibly nutritious. I would still argue, however, that they are more nutritious than a bowl of cold cereal. Especially if you use a healthy oil. To make your morning easier and quicker, bake your potatoes while you’re cooking dinner the night before. Hashbrowns will fry up in no time if they’re pre-baked.

Cheap and Easy Breakfast Recipes

Of course you can make these from frozen hashbrowns, but I like to make them from scratch. It’s quicker, cheaper and more nutritious! You have to think ahead, though. As you’re cooking dinner, throw several scrubbed potatoes in your oven or your Instant Pot and bake them thoroughly. When they’re done baking, just leave them on your counter to cool until morning. In the morning, heat a large, well-oiled skillet while you shred the potatoes in your food processor. Spread the potatoes in your hot skillet and season them while they fry. When the pan side looks crispy, flip them and fry the side with the seasoning. Season the fried side and let them cook a few minutes longer untilboth sides are crispy. Resist the urge to “stir” them once you’ve put the shredded potatoes into the skillet. Just treat them like a pancake and both sides will be crispy while the center is tender. I always make a huge, skillet-sized, potato-cake and then I cut it into wedges to serve it. Sometimes we fry them up in our waffle baker.

Cost Breakdown:

1 potato        $0.05
oil  & spices   $0.10

Total Cost: $0.15 per serving

 

 

 

Omelette

I consider omelettes to be the ultimate way to upcycle ingredients. They’re kind of like the garbage can of the breakfast world, if garbage cans were a place where really yummy leftovers went to be recreated. Cheap and Easy Breakfast Recipes

Chop any leftover meats or veggies in your fridge and sautee them in a hot, oiled skillet for a few minutes to thoroughly heat them. While they heat, whish 3 eggs and spice in a bowl. Remove the meat and veggies from the pan and pour in the eggs. When the eggs are completely cooked on one side (like a pancake) flip them to cook the other side. Place the cheddar cheese on top of the hot, cooked side of the eggs in the pan, so it will melt, and place the meat and veggies on top of the cheese. Fold half of the egg onto itself, folding the meat, veggies and cheese inside. Serve with fresh fruit.

Cost Breakdown:

3 eggs        $0.45
oil  & spices   $0.10
cheddar cheese $0.10
leftover chopped meat and vegetables FREE

Total Cost: $0.55 per serving

 

 

 

Breakfast Skillet 

This is kind of like a scrambled frittata. I make it entirely on the stovetop, instead of moving it to the oven to bake. It’s a wonderfully easy (and cheap!) breakfast recipe.

Easy Breakfast Recipes

First, heat some oil in a skillet while chopping six potatoes. (I like to use already baked potatoes to decrease the cooking time.) Fry the potatoes in the hot oil. Feel free to add any leftover meat or vegetables that need to be used up. Season them with garlic powder, salt and pepper while frying. Once they’re hot and crispy, crack six eggs into the pan. Scramble the eggs with the friend potatoes. Once the eggs are set, top the skillet with a cup of Colby Jack cheese.

Cost Breakdown:
potatoes           $0.30
eggs $0.60
shredded Colby-Jack cheese $0.50
Total Cost:(6 servings) $0.24 per serving

 

 

 

Cinnamon Rolls

Some people are intimidated by yeast breads, but once you’ve made these a couple of times you’ll be a pro. The secret is to make them the night before and brush them with sugar water when they come out of the oven so they’ll stay soft as a cloud until the next morning.  They take awhile to bake, but you can make a huge batch and freeze them to make busy mornings a breeze!

Click through the title for my super soft cinnamon roll recipe.

Cost Breakdown:

flour      $0.80
sugar     $0.80
confectioners sugar $0.50
eggs     $0.44
butter       $1.50
milk       $0.45
spices    $0.30
Total cost: $4.79 for 24 huge cinnamon rolls or less than 20 cents per cinnamon roll

 

 

 

Easy Hashbrown Breakfast casserole

This simple, nutritious, inexpensive breakfast dish is also gluten free! I like to throw it together in the evening and bake it in the morning. The yummy smell of it baking brings my kiddos running! This is one of my favorite ways to feed a crowd because it’s so easy to prepare and inexpensive.

Cheap and Easy Breakfast Recipes

I usually use frozen hashbrowns in this casserole, but you could also grate baked then cooled potatoes. Butter a 9 x 13 casserole dish. Spread 32 oz. frozen hashbrowns in the bottom of your dish. Don’t press them down, though. Leave them light and fluffy so the eggs will flow around them, into the gaps. Brown, crumble and drain 1 lb. ground sausage. Spread the sausage crumbles over the hashbrowns. Layer 4 c. shredded cheddar over the sausage crumbles. Whisk together 16 eggs, 1 cup milk, 1 tsp. garlic powder, 1 tsp. salt, pepper and dash of cayenne pepper. Pour the egg mixture over the hashbrowns, sausage and eggs, making sure all of the other ingredients are submersed. Bake 40 minutes or until the eggs are completely set in the middle of the dish. If you refrigerate the casserole overnight, add 15 minutes to the baking time.

Cost breakdown

hashbrowns   $0.99
sausage      $2.29
cheese  $2.59
eggs        $1.60
milk           $0.20
Total Cost: Serves 12 for less than $0.66 per serving

 

 

 

Crescent Roll Breakfast Casserole

This casserole is similar to the one above (also a bit like quiche) except it’s made with crescent roll dough in place of the pie crust. I’ve made it with crescent rolls from a can and with homemade crescent roll dough, and both are great! Obviously, though, the homemade is a bit cheaper and probably also more nutritious.

Press the dough from two 8 oz cans of refrigerated crescent rolls into the bottom and up the sides of a 9 x 13 buttered  baking dish or two 10″ pie dishes. Brown, crumble and drain the grease from 1 lb. ground italian sausage. Layer the sausage over the pie crust along with 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese. Feel free to add choppped green onions or chives, broccoli, chopped spinach or other leftover vegetables to the crust at this point, or not. Whisk together 12 eggs, 2 cups whole milk, 1 tsp. garlic powder, 1 tsp. salt and a dash of pepper. Pour the egg mixture into the crust and bake at 375 degrees fharenheit for 40 minutes, or until eggs are set. Keep on eye on the casserole while baking and if the crust is browning too much, cover it with foil. Allow the casserole to rest for 10 minutes before serving.

Cost breakdown

crescent rolls   $2.99
sausage      $2.29
cheese     $1.59
eggs        $1.60
milk           $0.20
Total Cost: Serves 12 for less than $0.74 per serving

 

 

 

Tender, Moist Banana Muffins

Do you have a banana problem like I do? Every week I buy three large bunches of bananas at the grocery store. I buy them pretty green because that’s how the hubs likes them. So he eats a couple a day and my kids eat a few here and there once they reach desired ripeness, but inevitably three or so bananas blacken into oblivion. I’ve tried purchasing fewer bananas, and it still happens, we just run out of decent bananas halfway through the week. It’s a good thing I have this really awesome (and totally easy!) recipe that calls for exactly three overripe bananas!

Cheap and Easy Breakfast Recipes

Throw 3 bananas, 2 eggs, 1 cup milk, 1 cup butter and 3/4 cup sugar in your blender. Once thoroughly blended, take off the lid and add 2 cups all-purpose flour, 2 tsp. baking powder, 1 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. cinnamon and 1 tsp. nutmeg. Use a fork to sort of mix the dry ingredients sitting on top of the wet ingredients, then add 1.5 cups chocolate chips and barely mix the dry and wet ingredients plus chocolate chips together. Your batter should look lumpy. Pour the batter into prepared muffin tins and bake at 350 degrees fahrenheit for 20 minutes or until a toothpick poked in the middle comes out clean.

Cost breakdown:

flour      $0.40
sugar     $0.40
eggs     $0.44
bananas FREE if you were just going to throw them away anyway
oil          $0.25
milk       $0.45
spices and leavening   $0.30
Total cost: $2.35 for 24 muffins or less than 10 cents per muffin

>>> Get More Banana Recipes to Use up Overripe Bananas Here!  <<<

 

 

 

Overnight Oatmeal

Overnight oatmeal is the epitome of easy and convenience. These little jars just take a few minutes to assemble, and you can grab them on the way out the door in the morning.

Easy Breakfast Recipes

Just fill a small mason jar half full with oats (use old-fashioned for better nutrition) add half a diced apple, an 8 oz container of Vanilla Greek Yogurt, several spoonfuls of applesauce and a dash of cinnamon. Put the lid on and shake it thoroughly, then leave it overnight in your fridge.

It’s easy to come up with different combinations, too; blueberries and blueberry yogurt, pumpkin and pumpkin spice, peaches and cream or whatever strikes your fancy. I make a bunch of these at a time, enough to last my family a couple of days. They’ll stay good for 5 days in the fridge.
Cost Breakdown

4 c. assorted grains         $0.60
Greek Yogurt                $4.00
Spices                       $0.20
fruit                       $0.40

Total cost: (8 servings) under 60 cents per serving
 

 

 

Soaked Granola with Natural Sweeteners

Grains should be soaked before eating in order to improve their digestibility and make all of their nutrients available. This granola recipe uses soaked grains and natural sweeteners so you can feel good about starting your day with it! he best part? You can assemble a big batch of this granola and it will last for up to 4 months in your pantry.

Click through the title for the recipe. Without the added nuts and fruit, this homemade granola costs less than 20 cents per serving. If you add milk, it’s still under 30 cents per serving.

Cost Breakdown

8 c. assorted grains         $1.20 (less than 40 cents a pound if you buy grains in bulk)
Honey and molasses      $3.00
Oil                                      $1.15
Spices                               $0.20

Total cost: (20+ servings) under 20 cents per serving

 

 

 

Porridge

My kids don’t appreciate porridge like I do. A bowl of hot, steel-cut oats is perfect on a wintry morning. Oats cost about 5 cents per cup, cooked and milk is about 13 cents per cup, so this filling breakfast is less than 15 cents total. Add a tablespoon of honey and some cinnamon and your entire breakfast is still well under 20 cents per serving!

Cost Breakdown

1 cup steel cut oats     $0.05
1 cup milk                     $0.13

Total cost: under 18 cents per serving

 

 

 

Rice and Milk

We often use leftover rice as ‘cold cereal’ for breakfast the next morning. I keep a sugar/cinnamon shaker in the cupboard, so the kids just fill their bowl with rice, pour milk over it, and sprinkle on cinnamon sugar. This frugal breakfast costs around 13 cents for a cup of milk and 5 cents for a half cup of rice, so under 15 cents total.

Cost Breakdown

1 cup cooked rice            $0.05
1 cup milk                       $0.13

Total cost: under 18 cents per serving

 

 

 

Huevos Rancheros: 38 cents per serving

I realize that Huevos Rancheros typically use fried eggs, but I’m cooking for kids, so I make it the way they like it best, which is with scrambled eggs. Ha, ha! When I have leftover ham or roast beef, I add that to the scrambled eggs. I also frequently sautee peppers and onions with our scrambled eggs for flavor. These are great for busy mornings as they are quick and very transportable. They also freeze and microwave well, if you like to prepare things ahead of time.

cheap meals

 

Cost Breakdown

1 pkg tortillas                   $1.50
1 dozen eggs                    $1.00
1 lb ground sausage       $2.33
2 cubed potatoes             $0.20
oil & spices                       $0.20

Total cost: (12 servings)    38 cents per serving

 

 

 

German Pancakes: Only 31 cents per serving

I’ve also seen these called Puff pancakes, Oven pancakes and Dutch Babies. Bake them in muffin pans and they will be popovers. Whatever you call them, they are super yummy, nutritious and cheap! For special occasions, sometimes we top them with apple pie filling. Your kids will eat these up like candy, and you can feel good about serving them. I usually serve these for breakfast, but who doesn’t like to eat breakfast for dinner every once in awhile?

 

cheap meals

Click through the title for the recipe.

Cost breakdown:

1 dozen eggs $1.49
2 c. milk  $0.80
2 c. flour $0.20
1 cube butter $0.99
spices $0.20
Total Cost: serves 12 for only 31 cents per serving

 

 

 

Easy Sausage, Mushroom & Zucchini Frittata: less than 80 cents per serving

We have this meal for dinner as often as we have it for breakfast. You can make it with any combination of vegetables, or with any meat/vegetable combination. I frequently use leftover ham, cubed, with broccoli and swiss cheese. This quick, easy, delicious and filling meal is under $0.80 per serving. You can’t afford NOT to add it to your meal rotation!

cheap meals

Click through the titles for these easy breakfast recipes.

Cost breakdown

sausage      $3.49
mushrooms  $1.79
1 zucchini         $0.60
cheese  $2.59
eggs        $3.60
milk           $0.20
Total Cost: Serves 12 for less than $0.80 per serving

 

 

 

Waffles with Fruit Compote: about 50 cents per serving

Waffles topped with fruit is one of our favorite meals, and we eat it for dinner as often as we eat it for breakfast. Choose your favorite fruit for variety, and dress it up for special occasions with fresh whipped cream or ice cream atop the fruit.

cheap meals

Check out these easy breakfast recipes by clicking through the title.

Cost Breakdown:
sugar      $0.30
oil         $0.20
eggs        $0.30
flour      $0.30
spices and leavening $0.20
jar of fruit   $2

Total Cost: $3.30 for 12 waffles with fruit, or ~$0.34 per waffle (extra for whipped cream or ice cream toppings)

 

 

 

Homemade Muffins

These quick and easy muffins honestly only take about five minutes to whip together, and 20 minutes to bake. What a small investment of both time and money (under 20 cents per serving!) for something that will make your family feel so loved. These muffins freeze well, so you can make an extra large batch and freeze half for a rain day.

Cheap and Easy Breakfast Recipes

Click through the titles for these easy breakfast recipes.

Cost breakdown:

flour      $0.40
sugar     $0.40
eggs     $0.44
oil          $0.25
milk       $0.45
spices and leavening   $0.30
Total cost: $2.35 for 24 muffins or less than 10 cents per muffin

 

 

 

Double Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

These muffins are sneaky all the way around: they involve hidden veggies, they’re deceptively simple and deceptively delicious, and they’re also wonderfully inexpensive. It will be our little secret, though, because nobody else will ever know! Click through the title for the recipe.

Cheap Breakfast Recipes

Click through the titles for these easy breakfast recipes.

Cost Breakdown:

1 zucchini  $0.60 (or FREE during zucchini harvest)
sugar         $0.30
oil              $0.20
eggs       $0.30
flour        $0.30
cocoa powder $0.45
spices     $0.20
chocolate chips $2

Total Cost: $3.35 for 24 muffins, or ~$0.17 each

 

 

 

Did you notice something that all of these recipes had in common?

They’re all homemade from scratch.

That’s right. They’re all simple and non time consuming and easy breakfast recipes, but they all do require just a little preparation, a little grocery shopping and standing over the stove. When you purchase packaged, prepared foods from the grocery store, you’ll pay at least four times what you’ll pay for just the ingredients. And when you purchase take-out or restaurant meals, you’ll easily pay ten times what you’d pay to cook the meal at home from scratch.

The money you’ll save by cooking from scratch is totally worth it!

In addition to saving money by cooking from scratch, you’ll be able to make sure to use the most nourishing and freshest ingredients possible, so these easy breakfast recipes will be much more nutritious than anything you buy in a box. These protein-packed breakfasts will keep you full and your blood sugar balanced all morning.

Remember, too, that nearly all of these easy breakfast recipes can be prepared ahead of time, in bulk, and frozen to make busy mornings easier. I like to bake a double batch of muffins once a week, reserve enough for the next morning and freeze the rest for another busy morning. When I make granola, I make enough to fill a 5 gallon bucket, which we keep on the bottom shelf in the pantry. It hardly takes longer than making a single batch.

 

 

 

 

Pin these easy breakfast recipes for later!

 

 

 

 

 

What are your favorite, easy breakfast recipes? Please share in the comments below!

 

 

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