Here’s a quick test of your paleo knowledge. Which of these options would be an appropriate paleo breakfast option: waffles, steak, or a blueberry muffin?
Trick question— the answer is all of the above.
Whether you prefer to go to town on a stack of fluffy pancakes, start your day with steak, or skip breakfast altogether, anything can be considered an appropriate breakfast with the right ingredients.
What to Eat for Breakfast on Paleo
Paleo has rules, and then it has guidelines. The rules are more strict and specific. The guidelines try to nudge you in the right direction.
For example, as a rule, the following cannot be consumed:
- Vegetable oils
The guidelines also encourage the following:
- Eat plenty of meat, fish, eggs, vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds in their whole form
- Avoid processed foods
- Eat local, grass-fed, free-range, organic, antibiotic-free, or wild-caught animal products and fish where possible
Unlike with the ketogenic diet, there are no hard and fast rules (or even guidelines) on macronutrients. Fats, carbs, protein— eat these in whatever ratio you want.
Paleo might eschew the standard food pyramid, but that doesn’t mean your plate shouldn’t have a good balance of certain foods at every meal.
Basing your breakfast around fat and protein rather than the traditional carb-fest you were likely raised on means you’re set up for a day of balanced blood sugar, regulated hunger, and sustained energy.
Congratulations, you’ve just won the morning.
Your Paleo Breakfast Template
The paleo diet is not necessarily a low-carb diet. But the paleo food list doesn’t leave a lot of room for most high-carb foods, so many paleo diet followers end up eating low-carb anyway.
That’s a good thing -- especially for breakfast.
You can technically eat an entire bowl of mango for breakfast and still wear that paleo badge with pride, you probably don’t want to do that. Because all that’s going to do is start the countdown to an impending blood sugar crash and subsequent pre-lunch hanger.
Want in on this balanced blood sugar bandwagon? Simply follow this template for your breakfast, and you’re set:
- 1-2 servings of protein such as eggs, meat, or fish
- 1-2 servings of fat such as avocado, nuts, or oil
- 1 serving of carbohydrates such as fruit or starchy vegetables (optional)
- As many vegetables as you can fit on your plate and in your stomach (yes, that’s a challenge)
There may be certain situations where you increase your carbohydrates, such as before a workout to fuel your session or afterward, when your body is more sensitive to insulin (more on this later).
This is also a good template to follow for all of your paleo meals.
43+ Paleo Breakfast Recipes to Kickstart Your Morning
Not sold on the idea of reheated curry for breakfast? Still need some guidance on creating a perfect paleo breakfast? That’s cool. Here are some ideas and recipes to get you started.
Pancakes, Waffles & Baked Goods
Going paleo doesn’t mean saying goodbye to pancake Sundays. You can still celebrate the greatest invention of human history — sweet breakfast foods — without derailing your diet.
As always, opt for paleo-friendly sweeteners and go easy on them. Lower-sugar foods like berries and coconut cream are just as satisfying as syrup once you’ve weaned yourself off the sugar dragon.
Still wondering how the heck you even make something as glorious as a pancake without gluten and sugar? Check out these recipes to find out:
- Almond Butter Waffles
- Low Carb Paleo Banana Muffins
- Paleo Sweet Potato “Oatmeal”
- Banana Maple Paleo Granola
- Paleo Chocolate Waffles
- Fluffy Paleo Banana Pancakes Recipe With Almond Flour
- Whole30 Homemade Larabars
- Low-Carb Macadamia Fat Bread
- Pumpkin Spice Latte Keto Overnight “Oats”
- One-Bowl Keto Blueberry Muffins
- Cinnamon Homemade Keto Low Carb Cereal
- Fluffy Keto Waffles (swap sweetener for honey)
- Fluffy Almond Flour Keto Pancakes (swap sweetener for honey)Smoothies
Smoothies are a great quick breakfast option for on-the-go, but they’re often loaded with way too much high-sugar fruit and not nearly enough fat and protein.
The below options are delicious paleo options that can satisfy your fruity smoothie craving without highjacking your blood sugars. You might be surprised how delicious a smoothie can be with just half a banana or a handful of berries.
You can even create fruit-free smoothies by adding zucchini, cauliflower, or sweet potato that’s been steamed then cooled and frozen. These will make your breakfast thick and filling.
Add protein from collagen, hemp, or egg protein powder, or add extra hemp seeds for a nutty-tasting combo of protein and satiating fats. Don’t be afraid to stuff it with spinach, either. You seriously won’t be able to taste it.
Check out some of these amazing paleo smoothies:
Eggs are a staple food of the paleo diet.
Keep it simple with fried, poached, or scrambled eggs with a side of veggies and some avocado, or try something a little fancier with these recipes:
Whether you can’t eat eggs for health reasons or are simply all egged out, there are plenty of egg-free paleo breakfast options.
An easy approach is to simply replace the eggs in any traditional breakfast dish with meat. Scrambled eggs? Scramble up some ground meat and vegetables instead. Fried eggs? Try a couple of breakfast sausages. You get the idea.
Here are some recipes to get you started:
Vegan and Vegetarian
Paleo is big on animal products, but that doesn’t mean plant-based paleo is impossible.
Focus on seeds, nuts, and — if you’re vegetarian — eggs for protein.Think smoothies made with hemp or egg white protein and sprinkling delicious pumpkin, chia, and hemp seeds on absolutely everything.
There are plenty of egg-based breakfasts suggested above, so here are some paleo breakfasts that can be enjoyed by vegans, vegetarians, and omnivores alike:
Breakfast Meats & Bowls
Classic breakfast meats include sausages, bacon, and smoked salmon. Feel free to slot any of these into the reliable meat-plus-vegetables-plus-fat template, or try out one of these recipes:
Submit Your Favorite Paleo Breakfast Recipe Below 👇🏽
If breakfast is your favorite meal of the day and you don’t want to give it up to join the ranks of people intermittent fasting, that’s okay.
We’ve given you dozens of delicious paleo breakfast ideas that will fuel your morning and keep you going until at least lunchtime.
Have a paleo breakfast recipe that you want featured in this roundup? Comment below with the link (or the recipe!) and our team will review!