The blessed month of Ramadan is upon us again. It is also the best time to detox and eat healthier to help our body rest and recover after a year-long of indulgence.
Eating sahur is very important during Ramadan, as it helps us conserve energy and not make us feel sluggish and tired throughout the day. To achieve this however, meals should not be loaded with sugar or processed food. As a mum, as much as I want our sahur to be healthy, it has to be quick and easy to prepare for my family too.
Here are my top choices for a quick and healthy sahur meal:
1) Chicken cranberry and avocado sandwich
This is our family’s favourite sandwich as it is so versatile and can be loaded with your favourite vegetables if you want to. For the child who doesn’t eat veggies (unfortunately mine doesn’t), they can enjoy the chicken fillets alone with mayonnaise and tomato ketchup. Here are the ingredients that I usually use:
- Wholemeal or sourdough bread
- Shredded chicken (cooked by air-frying or grilling)
- Cherry tomatoes
- Baby spinach
- Dried cranberries
- Lemon juice
- Salt & pepper
- Chilli flakes
- Chop the cherry tomatoes, avocado and capsicum into cubes and put them in a salad bowl
- Add the shredded chicken, baby spinach and dried cranberries
- Squeeze in some lemon juice
- Add mayonnaise and season with salt & pepper
- Add in the chilli flakes if you want some spiciness to go with it and then mix it all together to make a filling
- Toast your bread, add in the filling and enjoy!
Tip: You can actually make the filling the night before and store it in the fridge. During sahur, all you need to do is assemble the sandwich.
2) Overnight Oats
I have recently gained an appreciation for overnight oats because if done right, it is really delicious and wholesome. I prefer to have my oats savoury, but the sweet variation is also yummy. But first, know how to make the right overnight oats base. Here is the recipe that I have tried for overnight oats base. The oats and its toppings can also be prepared early, depending on your choices.
Here are some ideas for the toppings:
- Softboiled or sunny side up eggs
- Avocado slices
- Stir-fried vegetables
- Sambal ikan bilis garing
- More recipes for savoury overnight oats
- Fresh fruits (e.g mango, strawberries, bananas or pomegranate)
- Cacao nibs or dark chocolate chips
- Chopped dates
- Desiccated coconut
- Nuts like pecans, walnut or almond
- More recipes for sweet overnight oats.
3) Wholemeal French toast
My daughter loves French toast and I foresee a lot of requests for it this Ramadan. Here is a simple French toast recipe that is sure to gain popularity in the whole family. To make it packed with more nutrition, enjoy with chopped fresh fruits like berries and bananas, and use wholemeal bread instead of white bread.
4) Peanut butter/nut butter and fruit wraps
Forget the sugar-loaded processed peanut butter and give the natural one a try! All you need is some natural peanut butter or any kind of nut butter such as cashew nut or almond butter. Here are some recommendations:
Spread them on a toasted wholemeal wrap and fill your favourite cut fruits such as mangoes, bananas, strawberries, blueberries or figs.
Smoothies are so easy to make and delicious too. The plus side of it is you can also prepare the ingredients way earlier and keep it frozen in small packs. Here is how to make delicious smoothie packs for sahur. I personally love banana and chocolate smoothie.
6) Prawn porridge
My friend recently shared with me her family’s recipe which is really wholesome, yet easy to make. Her dad likes to add chopped dates to the porridge for the extra flavour, and not to mention nutrition. Sweet and savoury, yum!
- 1/2 cup of rice
- 150g peeled prawns
- 3 stalks of lemongrass, smashed
- 10 bulbs of shallots
- 200ml of coconut milk
- 10 whole peppercorn
- Salt to taste
- Boil rice in water until soft or until your desired consistency
- Place some oil in a frying pan and when it’s hot, add in lemongrass and peppercorn
- Add in shallots and fry till golden, then add in prawns
- Mix in rice. Add salt and stir through.
- Add in coconut milk and stir until the porridge comes to a quick boil, turn off the heat and dish out.
7) Tomato soup
This is a super easy and tasty soup that has been my go-to lately. I usually make large batches and keep to reheat for sahur.
- 2 tablespoon butter
- 1 large onion
- 1 canned tomatoes
- 1 fresh tomato deseeded
- 1 buillion cube of your choice
- 2 cups of water
- Fry onions in butter until fragrant
- Add tomatoes, water and cube and let simmer for 25 to 30 minutes
- Blend to the desired consistency
- Serve with bread and butter!
8) One Pot Pasta
One pot meals are easy, quick and versatile- criterias we need for an early morning sahur fix! Add in your favourite protein to this fresh pasta dish if you’re looking for something a bit heavier to get you through the day.
Recipe serves 2
- 170g spaghetti
- 3 cloves garlic thinly sliced
- 3/4 big red onion thinly sliced
- 3 sprigs fresh basil
- 170g cherry tomatoes sliced in half
- Pinch of dried chilli or 1 slice red chili
- Pinch of dried oregano
- 2 1/2 cups veggie or chicken stock
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Grated Parmesan cheese to serve
- Place everything in a shallow pot
- Bring to a boil and cook while covered for 5 minutes
- Simmer and cook covered until pasta is al dente. The pasta water and tomatoes would have reduced into a silky sauce, but add some more water and stir if you prefer.
- Season with more salt, if required, and serve with grated cheese.
9) Vegetarian Oyakodon by Ili Sulaiman
A family-friendly, hearty meal for a balanced start to the day! Fulfil your protein, carbs and veggies quota early in the morning, for an energetic start to the day.
- 2/3 cup of water
- 1 1/2 tablespoons of Hamadaya soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar/normal vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon of salt
- 1/2 teaspoon of honey or brown sugar
- 1/4 white onion, sliced
- 1 large portobello mushroom, sliced
- 2 broccoli florets, cut up
- 1 block of soft Japanese tofu
- 3 eggs, slightly beaten
- Parboiled cooked rice
- Spring onions for garnish
- Chili flakes for garnish
- Add in 2/3 cup of water in a pan. When the water starts to simmer, add in the gluten free soy sauce, apple cider vinegar, salt and brown sugar/honey.
- Mix well and add in the white onion, portobello mushrooms along with the broccoli florets.
- Mix, then add in 1 block of soft Japanese tofu, cut into cubes. Cook for 1 minute.
- Add in the 3 eggs that have been beaten slightly and cook for another 2 minute. Once cooked, remove from heat.
- In a bowl, add in some rice and pour over the cooked vegetables and eggs.
- Garnish with some spring onions and Shichimi Togarashi (Japanese Chili Flakes).
[Tip: This dish can also be used with any type of protein.]
10) Baked Egg in Tomato Cup by Panasonic Malaysia
You can’t go wrong with eggs for breakfast! Simple to make, nutritious and suitable for everyone in the family. Sprinkle a generous amount of cheese before baking for an oozy, yummy breakfast treat!
- 3 tomatoes, halved and seeded
- Dash of McCormick garlic powder
- Dash of McCormick black peppercorn grinder
- Dash of salt
- 6 eggs
- 2 tbsp olive oil, drizzle
- 1 cup button mushroom, sliced
- Preheat Panasonic Cubie Oven to 160°C on convection mode.
- Place tomato halves on a rimmed baking sheet, cut side up. You might need to slice a tiny bit off the bottom of each tomato to keep them level on the pan.
- Crack eggs and gently place one each in the cavity of each tomato.
- Season with garlic powder, freshly cracked black peppercorn, salt and drizzle some olive oil over.
- Bake for 6-7 minutes if you like your eggs runny; or 8-10 minutes for soft set.
- Meanwhile, heat up some oil in a frying pan and sauté mushrooms until fragrant. Season with salt and pepper
- Remove tomatoes from the oven and serve with sautéed mushrooms at the side.
So there you have it, my top choices for a quick and healthy sahur meal.
To all our Muslim readers, may this Ramadan be a blessed one for you and your family. Happy fasting!
[First published: 4th May 2019. Updated: 3rd April 2022 by Elaine Yeoh]