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Mesothelioma Diet:
Breakfast Recipes

Apple Oatmeal

When it’s difficult or painful to eat, many cancer patients turn to comfort foods in the hopes that they will be more appetizing and better tolerated. Oatmeal is a classic comfort food, and very nutritious. Plus, the warmth and soft texture of oatmeal make it more palatable to patients with upset stomachs or sore mouths. Adding apples to this recipe not only makes for a delicious twist, but it also adds lots of vitamin C and fiber. For even more fiber, try adding nuts, bran, or dried fruits.


  • 1 cup quick-cooking oats
  • 1 cup apple juice
  • ½ cup applesauce (we like chunky)
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon

Bring oats and juice to a boil over medium heat. Remove from heat. Cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Stir in applesauce and cinnamon.

Breakfast Quesadillas

Many patients in cancer treatment find that their appetites are suppressed, making it difficult to get proper nutrition necessary to fighting mesothelioma and other diseases. This is a fun and easy recipe that may help perk up a patient’s taste buds—at breakfast time or any time of the day. For patients who are sensitive to spices, peppers can be omitted.


  • 2 8-inch tortillas
  • 1 or two eggs (depending on appetite)
  • Dash black pepper
  • Dash cayenne pepper
  • 2 slices of tomato
  • 2 slices of American cheese or cheese of choice
  • 1 sliced onion

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Scramble eggs in a skillet. Lay 1 tortilla on a foil-lined baking sheet. Spoon on the cooked egg. Add pepper, tomato, cheese, and onion. Top with the second tortilla. Bake 5 minutes, flip, and bake for a few more minutes.

Protein Pancakes

This recipe may be used to add a bit of texture to a “soft” diet. This mix keeps very well in the refrigerator for a few days, or you can make pancakes ahead of time and freeze them for a quick and filling breakfast anytime.


  • ½ cup whole milk
  • 2 tbsp. evaporated milk
  • 1-2 eggs (for desired thickness)
  • 2 tsp. vegetable oil
  • ½ to ¾ cup store-bought pancake mix

Measure all ingredients but pancake mix into a blender or bowl and beat until well blended. Add pancake mix, stirring or blending on low speed until only a few lumps remain. Cook on hot, buttered griddle or pan until firm, then turn to brown the other side.

Classic Oatmeal

For many people, creamy oatmeal is a true comfort food. The warmth and texture of this dish may help pique a cancer patient’s appetite, and the added wheat germ and bran make it even healthier than plain oatmeal. Some people like to add a bit of milk to this dish when it is finished. To change things up, try adding a little cinnamon, some sliced banana, or raisins.


  • 1/3 cup old-fashioned (not instant) oats
  • ¾ cup water
  • 1 teaspoon wheat germ
  • 1 teaspoon bran

Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for about minutes. This recipe makes a single serving.

Make-Ahead French Toast

This dish is delicious and filling and can be prepared the night before for a quick and easy breakfast. Of course, most people enjoy this dish with maple syrup, but it’s also good with crushed strawberries and whipped cream.


  • 2 slices bakery bread (we like sourdough)
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons plain yogurt

Line the bottom of your baking dish with the bread. Combine the rest of the ingredients, beating well, and pour over bread. To thoroughly coat the bread, turn it once. Then let sit in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes and as long as overnight. Bake for 30 minutes in 350-degree oven.

Kitchen Sink Breakfast Cookies

These cookies have just about everything in them. They are filling and packed with good vitamins, but taste so delicious, you’ll never believe they are healthy.


  • 1 ½ c. rolled oats
  • 1 c. plain vanilla yogurt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 c. smooth applesauce
  • ¼ c. light brown sugar, packed
  • ¼ c. honey
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. nutmeg
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 ½ c. wheat flour
  • ½ c. wheat bran
  • ½ c. white flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • 1 c. drained crushed pineapple
  • 2 carrots, grated
  • ½ c. raisins

Mix oats and yogurt and set aside. Beat eggs, sugar, honey, and applesauce in a large bowl until blended. Add flours, wheat bran, and baking powder and soda, combine. Add oats and yogurt mixture, beat gently. Fold in carrots, raisins, pineapple. Scoop ¼ cup of dough onto cookie sheet lined with parchment. Bake 25-30 minutes at 400 degrees, or until lightly browned.

Sweet Potato Waffles

These hearty waffles are absolutely delicious and filled with nutritious ingredients to help a patient keep his or her energy up during mesothelioma treatment. For a quick breakfast or delicious snack at any time, make this batter ahead and keep it in the fridge and it also makes great pancakes.


  • ¾ cup whole wheat flour
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup rolled oats
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 4 ounces soft/silken tofu
  • 1 egg
  • 6 ounces cooked and mashed sweet potatoes or yams
  • 16 ounces yogurt
  • 1/3 cup canola oil

Preheat waffle iron. Mix dry ingredients and set aside. Combine remaining ingredients in a blender, blend till thoroughly mixed. Mix dry and liquid ingredients together. Cook according to the guidelines for your waffle maker.

Fruited Breakfast Barley

Rolled barley (or barley flakes) makes a delicious porridge that is low in glycemic index and packed with soluble fiber to help mesothelioma patients keep a healthy weight and battle irregularity that sometimes comes with cancer treatment. Soak the barley the night before for faster prep time in the morning.


  • 1/3 cup rolled barley
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • ¾ cup water
  • 1 tbsp wheat bran
  • ½ medium apple, cored and chopped
  • 1 ½ tsp ground flaxseeds

The night before, combine barley, salt, and water in a microwave-safe bowl, cover, and refrigerate overnight. In the morning, add bran and apple to barley. Cover bowl and microwave on high 2 minutes. Cook on medium 4 minutes. Stir in flaxseeds.

Buckwheat and Pumpkin Muffins

When a patient undergoing mesothelioma treatments like radiation and chemotherapy has a hard time eating, sometimes lovingly prepared comfort food is about the only thing that’s appetizing. The pumpkin and cinnamon flavors of these delicious muffins may appeal to a patient, and the buckwheat and ground flax add essential fiber and omega-3 fatty acids.


  • 1 cup buckwheat flour
  • ¾ cup brown rice flour
  • 3 tbsp ground flaxseed
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • 1 ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • ½ cup milk
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • ¾ tsp orange peel, shredded
  • ½ cup orange juice

Preheat oven to 400 degrees and either spray muffin cups with cooking spray or line with paper baking cups. Combine dry ingredients in a medium bowl, forming a well in the center.

In another bowl, combine eggs, pumpkin, milk, oil, orange peel, and juice. Add this to the flour mixture until moistened—the batter will be a bit lumpy. Distribute batter evenly between 12 muffin cups. Bake 15 to 20 minutes.

Banana Muffins with Oatmeal

These moist, hearty muffins smell absolutely delicious while baking, which may help spark the appetite of a person who finds eating difficult because of mesothelioma treatment side effects. These whole-grain muffins contain lots of fiber, which can also help soothe some of the digestive issues patients in treatment with chemotherapy and radiation often experience.


  • 1 cup oats (old-fashioned, not quick-cooking)
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 ½ cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup applesauce
  • 1 cup mashed ripe banana
  • ½ cup packed light brown sugar
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Combine oats and buttermilk in a large bowl and set aside for 1 hour. Preheat the oven to 4oo degrees and prepare a muffin tin with foil or paper liners. Whisk flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl. Break egg into bowl with oats and mix it in. Add applesauce, banana, sugar, whisking until blended.Add dry ingredients, whisking until just combined. Spoon into muffin cups, sprinkle with walnuts. Bake 20 minutes.

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