Integrative Nutrition Blog

Healthy Ways to Cook Eggs

August 19, 2016

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Eggs are a breakfast staple for so many. They can be a great addition to any healthy diet, and actually hold a great amount of nutritional value. They contain powerful brain nutrients and antioxidants and are also high in vitamins B12, B2, B5, Vitamin A, and selenium. Contrary to popular belief, the egg yolk is what holds nearly all of the nutritional value, while the egg white only contains the protein!  To obtain the most nutritional value from an egg, and to prevent any hormone or antibiotic exposure it is best to purchase free-range organic eggs.

Although eggs may seem like a simple and plain meal there are actually dozens of different ways to cook eggs, and some are healthier than others. If you want to cook an egg the healthy way it’s important to use healthy fats during cooking (or no additional fats at all!), and be strict about what additions you add to your eggs. Follow these top ten healthy ways to cook eggs for a fool proof healthy and delicious breakfast!

The Top 10 Healthiest Ways to Cook Eggs:

  1. Boiled eggs: Making hard-boiled eggs is one of the easiest and healthiest ways to prepare an egg since nothing else is added to the egg. All you need is boiling water and the egg itself. There is no additional fat needed for cooking which make this method the lowest in fat, and also gives you the option to prepare a whole batch of eggs on the weekend to then refrigerate and use all week in salads, lunch wraps, or just as a quick grab-and-go snack!
  2. Scrambled eggs: Scrambled eggs are an all-time favorite recipe for so many people. They are a classic American breakfast and very easy to make. To make sure you are making healthy scrambled eggs you are going to want to start by choosing a healthy oil. Coconut oil is a great oil to use for high heat cooking as it will not oxidize in the pan, and it is also excellent for your overall health. Not into the coconut flavor? Try using ghee or clarified butter instead. This lactose free version of butter is a delicious way to keep the buttery flavor without some of the consequences. Many scrambled egg recipes often call for milk to make the eggs extra fluffy but if you’re watching your calorie count or want to make your eggs lactose-free, try substituting the milk with a little bit of water. Boost the overall health benefits of your scrambled eggs by adding in chopped onions, mushrooms, fresh tomatoes, and a handful of organic spinach.
  3. Poached eggs: Poached eggs are the perfect option if you’re looking to wow your friends at brunch or spice up your morning egg. Like hard-boiled eggs, poached eggs are a healthy option because they don’t require any additional ingredients during the cooking process other than boiling water and a little white vinegar. To make a healthy poached egg, bring water and a splash of vinegar to a boil, gently add the raw egg directly to the water and boil for 4 minutes. Remove the egg and enjoy! To keep your poached eggs extra healthy, be sure to skip the hollandaise sauce and ham typically found in your traditional eggs benedict, instead, place your egg on top of a piece of whole grain or gluten-free toast with mashed avocado!
  4. Healthy fried eggs: While “fried” and “healthy” don’t typically go in the same sentence - there is a way to cook a healthy fried egg. Traditional fried eggs are often cooked in margarine, however, just like the scrambled eggs, you can replace this highly-processed fat with a small amount of coconut oil, or ghee for a healthy alternative way to cook fried eggs. Fried eggs are the perfect addition to a breakfast salad.
  5. Egg omelet: Another healthy way to cook up your morning eggs is by making a delicious egg omelet. Up the nutritional value of your omelet by swapping out the cheese for fresh veggies like peppers, onions, mushrooms, spinach, tomatoes, and avocados. And of course, swap out the butter with coconut oil or ghee for cooking.
  6. Egg salad: Who said egg salad can only be made with mayonnaise? You can easily make a healthy egg salad by mixing chopped hard-boiled pasture raised eggs, with some full fat Greek yogurt, and mashed avocado to create the same creamy consistency but with an added healthy kick!
  7. Baked eggs: If you are looking for a healthy on the go breakfast, then making a baked egg muffin may be the recipe for you. To make baked eggs simply whisk together the eggs, salt, pepper, and any veggies you are using and pour the mixture into a muffin tin. Bake for about 20 minutes, and enjoy as an easy, and healthy on the go breakfast! Baked eggs freeze really well and are the perfect make-ahead breakfast that can easily be reheated all week long!
  8. Quiche: Making a quiche can be a great way to make a healthy egg recipe. To upgrade your healthy quiche recipe try swapping out the dairy milk for an unsweetened nut-milk milk of your choice. Whisk 1 cup of the milk with 6 eggs, salt, pepper, and a teaspoon of a flavorful herb such as dill, or rosemary. Bake at 375 degrees for about 40 minutes in a pie pan.
  9. Frittata: Have no fear, these may look hard to make, but they are actually quite simple! Frittata’s make a great healthy and hearty way to cook your everyday egg. To make a simple frittata whisk together 4 eggs with ¼ cup of vegetable, or chicken broth cooked organic ground turkey, and vegetables of choice. Cook in a large skillet with a small amount of coconut oil over medium heat until the egg sets. (about 10-12 minutes)
  10. Deviled Eggs: Deviled eggs are a favorite party food, and there actually is a way to make them into a super healthy breakfast, or snack item. A classic deviled egg recipe is often loaded with unhealthy fat, and unnecessary calories. To make a healthy deviled egg, use Greek yogurt, Dijon mustard, salt, pepper, and paprika instead of the traditional mayo. This makes for a healthy alternative that everyone will enjoy without the guilt!

If made the right way, eggs can be a super healthy addition to your overall diet! Changing up the way you typically make your eggs for healthy alternatives such as cooking with coconut oil, or swapping out milk with water when appropriate can further increase the health benefits of your eggs.

Next time you decide to eat eggs for breakfast, try one of the healthy ways of cooking them above to enjoy a nutrient rich breakfast to get your day started and fuel your body right. You can even share these new healthy cooking tips with friends and family at a dinner party by bringing the healthier version of deviled eggs as a delicious appetizer...We bet no one will even know they are healthy!

What’s your favorite way to cook eggs? Share with us in the comments below!

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