11 Dessert-Inspired High-Protein Breakfast Ideas

Protein Pancakes, Cookie Dough & Brownie Batter Oats, Cottage Cheesecake Bakes, and more.

By: Lexy Parsons

From supporting our cognitive function and energy, to kick-starting our metabolism, and curbing sugar cravings, there are so many reasons to start the day with a nutritious morning meal. While there are many ways to embrace healthy eating, research suggests a high-protein breakfast is particularly important. Associated with improved blood sugar, hormone balance, increased satiety, and reduced calorie intake throughout the day, a protein-rich breakfast made with wholesome foods comes with many benefits. However, who said breakfast couldn’t be indulgent while still being healthy? For all you sweet tooth lovers, you’ll be happy to know you can enjoy a dessert-inspired breakfast that is secretly full of protein, but tastes like a decadent sweet treat. From protein-packed pancakes to birthday cake overnight oats and chocolate shakes, here are the tastiest high-protein breakfast ideas that are guaranteed to satisfy your sweet tooth.

RELATED: Can a Protein-Rich Breakfast Help You Lose Weight?

Healthy Cooking Hacks to Make a Sweet (But Healthy) Breakfast

Before we dive into the recipes, here are some healthy cooking hacks to consider when you’re trying to satisfy your morning sweet tooth without the sugar.

#1 Opt for Natural Sweeteners

The key to making something both sweet and nutritious is to opt for natural sweeteners instead of refined sugars. Natural sweeteners like honey, maple syrup, and fruit not only add sweetness but also provide additional nutrients like vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. 

#2 Ensure Your Meal Is Balanced With Protein, Healthy Fats, and Fiber

Creating a balanced breakfast with the inclusion of lean protein, healthy fats, and fiber is a great way to ensure you’re keeping your dessert-like breakfast healthy. Together, these ingredients help stabilize blood sugar levels, promote satiety, and aid digestion. A win-win!

#3 Make High-Protein Healthy Cooking Swaps

Sneaking protein into your dessert-inspired breakfast dishes is the best way to support your fitness goals while keeping you full and satiated all morning. Rather than using refined grains, dairy, and less nutritious ingredients, opt for high-protein ingredients like Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, nuts, seeds, and even protein powder. 

#4 Stick to Wholesome Ingredients

When preparing sweet breakfast dishes, choose whole ingredients whenever possible. Ingredients like oats, quinoa, and chia seeds are not only rich in protein, but they’re also full of fiber, vitamins, and minerals, and great substitutes for ingredients like flour and refined grains often used in baked goods. 

The 11 Healthiest Protein-Rich Breakfast Ideas That Taste Like Dessert

#1 Chocolate Peanut Butter Greek Yogurt Bowl

Think: Ben & Jerry’s Chunky Monkey ice cream turned into a better-for-you dessert-inspired breakfast bowl. Made with Greek yogurt, peanut butter, banana, and indulgent add-ins, it’s a satisfying breakfast that’s full of protein and flavor. Customize as desired with your favorite toppings!


  • 1 cup unsweetened Greek yogurt
  • ½ banana, sliced
  • 1 tbsp. creamy peanut butter 
  • 1 tbsp. shredded coconut 
  • Sprinkle of dark chocolate chips 


Step #1: Add the Greek yogurt to a serving bowl and top with the sliced banana. 

Step #2: Drizzle with the peanut butter and sprinkle with shredded coconut and dark chocolate chips. 

Step #3: Enjoy! 

#2 High-Protein Sheet Pan French Toast

Though delicious, classic french toast is often loaded with sugar and lacking in protein. The good news is that you can enjoy all the flavors of french toast in a better-for-you (and protein-packed) way! Choose any bread of choice (including gluten-free bread), stir in added Greek yogurt and optional protein powder, and enjoy with your favorite toppings! Made in a sheet pan for easy prep and clean up.


  • 6 slices of gluten-free or whole-grain bread
  • 4 eggs 
  • 2-4 tbsp unsweetened oat milk (or milk of choice)
  • ¼ cup Greek yogurt, optional
  • 2 tbsp vanilla protein powder, optional 
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon 

Optional Toppings

  • Fresh berries of choice 
  • Greek yogurt
  • Nut or seed butter
  • Maple syrup or raw honey 


Step #1: Preheat the oven to 350˚F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 

Step #2: Crack the eggs into a large mixing bowl and whisk. Then add 2 tbsp of oat milk along with the Greek yogurt, vanilla, and cinnamon and whisk again. Option to add the protein powder and mix until combined. If the mixture becomes too thick, add more oat milk to thin.

Step #3: Dip each slice of bread into the egg mixture and coat both sides well.

Step #4: Place each slice of coated bread onto the parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and flip each slice of bread, then cook for an additional 5 minutes. 

Step #5: Serve with toppings of choice and enjoy!

#3 Banana Bread Breakfast Cookies

Breakfast cookies that taste like chocolate chip banana bread, except they’re free from refined sugar and flour, and full of protein-rich ingredients like peanut butter, walnuts, and collagen. 


  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup mashed bananas (about 3 very ripe bananas)
  • ½ cup dippy peanut butter (or nut or seed butter of choice such as sunflower seed, almond or cashew butter)
  • 2 scoops collagen powder, optional (for added protein)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup dairy-free chocolate chips 
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • Pinch of sea salt


Step #1: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Step #2: Mash the bananas in a large mixing bowl until smooth, then add the oats, peanut butter (or drippy nut butter of choice), sea salt, and vanilla extract. Stir in the optional collagen powder, then mix until well combined. Fold in the chocolate chips and walnuts, stirring until evenly spread throughout the batter. 

Step #3: Using a tablespoon measure or cookie scoop, form the batter into balls and place them evenly on the baking sheet. Using the back of a spoon, lightly flatten each cookie dough ball using gentle pressure. Option to sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt before placing into the oven.

Step #4: Bake for 10-13 minutes, or until the edges are golden and slightly crisp. Remove from the oven and let cool completely to set. Serve and enjoy! Store in a sealable container in the fridge.

#4 Cookie Dough Blended Baked Oats

Speaking of cookies, this viral dessert-like breakfast idea tastes like a freshly baked chocolate chip cookie that’s not only full of protein and fiber, but also free from refined grains and sugar. Customize it by using any nut butter or non-dairy milk of choice, and enjoy it straight from the oven!


  • ½ cup of gluten-free rolled oats
  • 1 egg
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder, optional 
  • ½ ripe banana
  • ½ cup of cashew milk or oat milk (or non-dairy milk of choice)
  • 1 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp of baking powder
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp dairy-free chocolate chips


Step #1: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and grease a small ramekin with oil.

Step #2: Meanwhile, add the oats, banana, non-dairy milk, maple syrup, egg, protein powder, baking powder, and cinnamon to a high-speed blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Once blended, fold in the chocolate chips and stir until well combined. 

Step #3: Pour the mixture into the greased dish and sprinkle with a few more chocolate chips. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until cooked through. Serve warm, with any additional toppings of choice!

#5 Easy-Prep Birthday Cake Mug Muffin

We took our 5-Minute Rainbow Birthday Mug Cake and gave it a high-protein twist by swapping gluten-free flour for protein powder. Not only is this recipe free from gluten, but it’s also made without refined sugar or processed ingredients — this birthday cake protein breakfast calls for a celebration!


  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1 tbsp coconut flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 4 tbsp oat milk
  • 1-2 tsp honey or maple syrup
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp organic naturally-sweetened sprinkles


Step #1: In a mixing bowl, combine the egg, oat milk, vanilla extract, and sweetener. Mix until well combined, then add in the protein powder, coconut flour, baking powder, and sprinkles. 

Step #2: Add the mixture to a greased ramekin or microwave-safe mug and microwave for 60-90 seconds. Set aside to cool for 2-3 minutes, then top with a dollop of Greek yogurt and nut butter, or any toppings of choice. 

#6 Blueberry Cottage Cheesecake Breakfast Bake

This cottage cheesecake tastes like dessert, without the sugar. Perfect for busy mornings when you’re craving something sweet and nutritious! Top it with warmed wild blueberries (or your favorite raw berries of choice) for an added antioxidant boost.


  • ¾ cup cottage cheese
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1-2 tsp maple syrup, or as desired
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup frozen wild blueberries


Step #1: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a ramekin and set aside. 

Step #2: Meanwhile, add the cottage cheese, protein powder, maple syrup, vanilla, and egg to a food processor and blend until smooth. Pour the batter into the greased ramekin, stirring in ¼ cup wild blueberries to the mixture. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until fully cooked.

Step #3: While the cheesecake is baking, add the remaining blueberries to a skillet and warm over medium heat. Set aside to cool. 

Step #4: Once cooked, remove the cheesecake from the oven. Serve with the warmed wild blueberries and any additional toppings of choice. Enjoy!

#7 Brownie Batter Overnight Oats

What if you could enjoy brownie batter for breakfast, without the guilt? Thanks to this easy-prep recipe, you can! Made with fiber-rich oats, antioxidant-rich cocoa, and added protein, chocolate for breakfast has never been healthier.


  • 1 cup unsweetened oat or almond milk
  • ½ cup rolled oats
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 2 tbsp chocolate protein powder (option to sub for additional cocoa powder)
  • 1 tsp maple syrup
  • 1-2 tbsp dairy-free chocolate chips


Step #1: In a sealable jar, combine the oats, chia seeds, cocoa powder, vanilla, and almond milk. Stir to combine, then mix in the chocolate protein powder. If the mixture is too thick, add a splash more dairy-free milk until it is a stirrable consistency. Add 1 tablespoon of chocolate chips.

Step #2: Place in the fridge to soak overnight, or for at least 8 hours. Once ready to enjoy, serve with the remaining tablespoon of chocolate chips and any additional toppings of choice, such as fresh fruit or nut butter.

#8 High-Protein Snickers Smoothie

Tasting like an indulgent treat, this creamy Snickers-inspired smoothie is free from refined sugar, made from wholesome ingredients, and perfect for breakfast and dessert alike. Enjoy after an early workout, or when you want to satisfy your morning sweet tooth.


  • 1 cup almond milk or dairy-free milk of choice, unsweetened
  • ½ frozen banana
  • ½ cup frozen cauliflower florets
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp cocoa or cacao powder
  • 1 pitted Medjool date
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2-3 tbsp vanilla or chocolate protein powder


Step #1: Add all the ingredients to a high-speed blender and blend until smooth and creamy.

Step #2: Pour into a serving glass, and top with optional toppings such as chopped peanuts and dairy-free chocolate chips

#9 Greek Yogurt Protein Pancakes

Pancakes are one of those no-fail breakfast recipes that hit the spot when you’re craving something sweet. While traditionally made with refined flour and sugar, these Greek yogurt protein-packed pancakes are a high-protein breakfast option that tastes like dessert. Give this FitOn recipe a try, and customize it as desired with your favorite toppings or mix-ins!


  • 1 banana, mashed
  • 3 egg whites
  • 3 tbsp oat milk
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1 scoop protein powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tbsp ground flaxseed
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • Greek yogurt, to serve
  • Strawberries, sliced, to serve
  • Pure maple syrup, to drizzle


Step #1: Combine all the ingredients aside from the coconut oil and toppings into a mixing bowl and whisk well.

Step #2: Next, heat a skillet over medium heat with the coconut oil and pour about one tablespoon of the pancake batter onto the pan at a time. Cook on one side until little bubbles appear and then flip and cook until golden brown.

Step #3: Serve with a dollop of Greek yogurt, fresh berries, and a drizzle of maple syrup. Enjoy!

#10 Custard Yogurt Toast

Reminiscent of creamy and indulgent bread pudding, it’s no wonder custard yogurt toast emerged as a viral recipe sensation. This protein-packed version is made with egg and Greek yogurt, not to mention, is naturally sweetened and full of nutrient-rich ingredients like berries and cinnamon.


  • 1 egg
  • 2 slices of bread of choice (thick-sliced is ideal)
  • ½ cup unsweetened Greek yogurt, vanilla or plain
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1-2 tsp maple syrup or raw honey
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • Fresh berries of choice, sliced


Step #1: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F or set your air fryer to 350 degrees F.

Step #2: Meanwhile, whisk together the egg, Greek yogurt, maple syrup, vanilla, and cinnamon in a mixing bowl until smooth and resembling custard.

Step #3: Using the back of a fork, create a depression in the bread by pressing into the center with medium-firm pressure.

Step #4: Add the sliced bread to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, then pour the yogurt filling into the hollow center of the bread and top with fresh berries.

Step #5: Place in the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes or until the edges of the bread are golden brown and the custard is baked. If using an air fryer, bake in the air fryer for 10 minutes or until golden.

Step #6: Remove from the oven and let the toast cool for 10 minutes, allowing the custard to set. Serve with additional toppings of choice, such as nut butter, chocolate chips, and extra berries. Enjoy!

#11 Raspberry Chocolate Chip Protein Chia Pudding

If you love fruity and creamy desserts, this protein-packed vanilla chia pudding recipe will be your new go-to for a quick and easy breakfast. Rich in protein from Greek yogurt and chia seeds, full of healthy fats, and loaded with fiber! It’s easy to prep in advance, and makes for an easy-to-customize morning meal. For added protein, top with layers of Greek yogurt, nut butter, and any other toppings of choice!


  • ½ cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 tbsp cashew butter or almond butter
  • ¾ cup raspberries
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • ½ cup unsweetened non-dairy milk (cashew, almond, or oat milk)
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 1-2 tsp maple syrup
  • 1-2 tbsp dairy-free chocolate chips


Step #1: Using a fork, mash ½ cup of the raspberries in the bottom of a bowl or container. Then, stir in the Greek yogurt, non-dairy milk, cashew butter, vanilla, and maple syrup. Stir well to combine, then stir in the chia seeds and mix well. Add in the dairy-free chocolate chips and any other add-ins of choice.

Step #2: Refrigerate overnight or for at least 6 hours before serving. When ready to enjoy, top with remaining raspberries, additional chocolate chips, and a drizzle of cashew or almond butter.

Dessert For Breakfast, The Protein-Packed Way

Who says sweet breakfast dishes can’t be both delicious and nutritious? With these dessert-inspired high-protein breakfast ideas, you can satisfy your sweet cravings while staying on track with your health goals. Whether you prefer the fruity flavors of blueberry cottage cheesecake and custard yogurt toast, or prefer something more decadent like snicker’s smoothies or brownie batter overnight oats, there’s a healthy breakfast option to suit every craving. Customize these recipes based on your taste preferences, and enjoy without guilt!