Real Simple Toasts

I don’t know about you, but even a strong cup of coffee isn’t enough to overpower these dreary, post-holiday January mornings.  Thanks to the January 2021 issue of Real Simple and its feature, “Brighten Up Breakfast,” we have lots of delicious options to add some zing to your morning.

Recipes include those for smoothies, including Coffee-Tahini and Pink Dragon; and scrambles, like Grains and Greens and Bacon, Avocado and Tomato. Then there’s the ideas for toasts, one of my favorite breakfasts!

Last winter, I was hooked on the avocado toast trend. I would spread mashed avocado on a slice of toasted whole-grain bread, top it with a sunny-side-up egg, and add salt and crushed red pepper flakes. But I’m ready to leave 2020 behind and try something new… which brought me to Real Simple’s Ricotta-Orange Toast.

This delicious combo features whole-grain bread, toasted and topped with ricotta cheese, orange slices, a drizzle of olive oil and flaky sea salt, with the optional crushed red pepper flakes. While Real Simple calls for a navel orange, I chose to use blood red orange slices on my toast. I am hooked! With the whole grain bread, protein-filled ricotta and vitamin C of the orange, yes, it’s a healthy breakfast. But it’s also absolutely delicious as an afternoon snack with a cup of tea!


  • 1 navel orange (or orange of your choice — I used a blood orange)
  • 2 tablespoons ricotta cheese
  • 2 slices whole-grain bread, toasted
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • Flaky sea salt, for serving
  • Crushed red pepper, for serving (optional)


Cut off top and bottom of orange. Standing orange on flat end, cut down and around to remove rind and white pith. Cut orange into 1/2-inch wheels. (Leave as wheels or further slice into smaller pieces.)Spread 1 tablespoon cheese on each piece of toast. Top with orange pieces. Drizzle with oil. Sprinkle with flaky sea salt and, if desired, crushed red pepper.

I borrowed my copy of Real Simple from Flipster using my library card. You may also request the January 2021 copy for curbside pickup by calling Whitehall Public Library at 412-882-6622.

Real Simple Toasts
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