One of the foodie new year’s resolutions I suggested for 2012 was that we all make more pancakes. Pancakes was really just a stand-in for any slightly involved, completely delicious breakfast treat. And I didn’t suggest it so we’d all enter 2013 all chubby from eating coffee cake instead of yogurt every morning (I have a wedding dress to wear in late 2012–remember?). On weekends, I like to make pancakes for Alex or cake and baked eggs for friends I’ve invited for brunch. It’s fun to spend longer in the kitchen than the time it takes to pour milk over cereal, and a little effort goes a long way in terms of sustenance and time spent together. Or at least I think so. I must get the inclination to make awesome homemade breakfasts from my mom.
**The Best Breakfast Sweet Treats**
1. Banana-Coconut Crumb Cake
This pioneering effort to create a dairy-free coffee finds flavor in fruit: rich coconut and homey banana. Perfect for lazy Saturday mornings or as part of Sunday brunch bread baskets.
2. Hot Raisin Bread
This one’s straight from mom’s kitchen: a scone-like quickbread studded with raisins whose best quality is the cinnamon sugar crust that encases the bread in a sweet buttery crunch.
3. Pumpkin Pancakes
These delightful pancakes make the most of the go-to pumpkin flavors, nutmeg and cinnamon. Those spices get a second moment in the sun, since they also get mixed into a sweet-salty honey butter, which is fantastic atop a stack of pumpkin pancakes
4. Apple Crumb Coffee Cake
This cake is inspired by one of the best bakers around, Rose Levy Beranbaum. It has crumbs both on top and inside, which means that warm wedges of it need nothing other than steaming cups of coffee for accompanimnt.
5. Zesty Lemon Crepes with Butter and Sugar
Nix the nutella filling, skip over the strawberries and chocolate, and no need for banana. The best crepes are filled with just butter and sugar–and a squeeze of lemon. Make these on a matin when you’re dreaming of Paris.
6. Cornmeal-Crusted Buttermilk French Toast
Brought about by a gift of sorghum syrup from Kate, Cara’s sister, this French toast has Southern flair in the form of a buttermilk soak and a buttery cornmeal crust.
7. Oatmeal with Blueberries and Dried Cherries
A healthful alternative to some of the more indulgent breakfast sweets here, the secret to this oatmeal is the brand of grains: Old Wessex All Natural 5 Grain Cereal Though it’s full of fruit, you don’t actually need any fresh ingredients to make it. Score!
8. Orange Marmelade Muffins
These muffins are a baker’s dream. More precisely, they are a non-baker’s dream. There is no creaming of butter, no fancy stunts, not even any zesting of oranges–which you’d think you’d need to get the deep, delicious orange flavor.
9. Wake-Up Cocoa Quickbread
This loaf cake/bread is firmer and less rich than the muffin-like loaf cakes that are often served at breakfast and brunch, inspired by the flavorful French pain d’epice rather than a dense banana or applesauce bread. As a result, you can eat more of it and spread it more thickly with cream cheese or butter.
10. Bacon and Egg Sandwich with Pepper Jack
Now this list is all about sweets, because sometimes breakfast just needs some sugar. But just in case you’re the type who can’t abide by French toast, coffee cake, and pancakes, here’s an indulgence that’s all about the savory richness of eggs and bacon.