Compared to the more common Swiss and Balkan styles of yogurt, Mediterranean yogurt offers a richer, thicker and creamier texture that also packs a more intense flavor, more protein and more calcium. These characteristics also make Mediterranean yogurt, commonly known as Greek yogurt, a seriously hearty contender when it comes to breakfast dishes. Greek yogurt serves as a convenient and healthy cold dish, but its relatively high fat content also makes it well-suited to cooking into baked breakfast goodies.
You can do a lot worse than eating plain or flavored Greek yogurt right out of the carton for breakfast, but mixing it with complementary flavors brightens up the flavor and adds additional nutritional value. Fresh fruits such as strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, kiwis and peaches work particularly well as mixers, as do wheat berries, barley, granola and brown rice grains. Bolder options include dried apricots, figs, honey or pistachio nuts. For a subtle flavor that packs tons of antioxidants and omega-3s, try a Mediterranean yogurt bowl with pomegranate arils, walnuts and a scoop of vanilla protein powder. Layer yogurt, grains and fruits into a Greek yogurt parfait and chill overnight for a tasty grab-and-go breakfast.
Smoothies to Go
Paired with milk, ice and a combination of frozen or fresh fruit, Greek yogurt brings diverse flavors together in morning smoothies. Vanilla Mediterranean yogurt blended with frozen strawberries, peaches and a half a banana makes for a classic fruit smoothie, or turn to your choice of frozen berries, a dash of flaxseed oil and a splash of acai or pomegranate juice for a wilder option. For a distinctly savory smoothie, combine Greek yogurt, ice, a few basil leaves and a squeeze of lemon in your blender. A scoop of plain or vanilla protein powder or oats helps these smoothies carry you through the morning hours. Try these convenient, quick breakfast drinks on warm summer mornings.
Mediterranean-style yogurt serves as a slightly more flavorful alternative to milk for many baked breakfast dishes, lending the entrees a smooth texture. Try yogurt-based whole wheat pancakes topped with honey or agave syrup, or fluffy puffed pancakes for a sweeter alternative. Greek yogurt also stands in for milk in breakfast cake and pastry recipes, such as spice cakes, airy popovers, dense fruited scones, honey biscuits and hearty wheat or fruit muffins.
Top Off Your Breakfast
Plain or vanilla-flavored Greek yogurt's subtle, creamy flavor works well as a topping for numerous breakfast dishes, adding protein, calcium and a pleasing tang and texture to classics. For instance, a scoop of tangy yogurt contrasts nicely with the sweetness of waffles, waffle sandwiches or French toast, particularly those with fruit elements, such as pumpkin French toast or strawberry-walnut waffle sandwiches. Mediterranean yogurt tops off virtually any type of breakfast fruit salad, as well. You can also mix a few spoonfuls of Greek yogurt into your oatmeal or top your oats with a mound of yogurt and a sprinkling of fresh fruit for additional punch.
- Ozgur Coskun/iStock/Getty Images