North Pole Breakfast – Elf on the Shelf Breakfast Ideas

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 Celebrate the return of the winter holiday season by hosting your own celebratory Elf on the Shelf breakfast! Even if you don’t have an Elf on the Shelf, you can create a memorable North Pole breakfast tradition to ring in the season!. Keep reading for ideas on how to decorate, what to serve and activities to enjoy as a family.

Table set up for North Pole Breakfast

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Elf on the Shelf Breakfast

This is the first year that we have incorporated an Elf on the Shelf into our home. It’s mostly for the 4 year old but my 8 year old son is sure to be excited about it as well! I wanted to create something special for my kids that would introduce the Elf on the Shelf into our home by creating this sweet elf breakfast.

Little boy and girl wearing Christmas pajamas and laughing

The North Pole breakfast would be an ideal way to welcome your family’s elf back each year, hosted on December 1st to kick off the holiday season! Despite not wanting to be in the photos (or inclined to wear matching pajamas!), even my teenagers enjoyed participating in this special holiday brunch. The Elf on the Shelf breakfast is sure to be one of the top family holiday traditions and I plan to incorporate it every year!

bowls of sliced strawberry and bananas
“Candy Cane” fruit salad

Introducing Our Elf on the Shelf

In preparation for our Elf on the Shelf breakfast I prepped my daughter about the arrival of this new “elf” into our house. I explained how the elf would be “reporting” behavior back to Santa each day leading up to Christmas. My daughter is 4 and she was nervously excited. We chose to have the Girl Elf on the Shelf with Dark Eyes join our family this year! (They also have blue eyed boy and girl options).

Elf on the Shelf holding two peppermint sticks

To get into the seasonal spirit, I gifted my kids a pair of winter pajamas. I’m all about matching up my two youngest kiddos but you could go all out and get coordinating jammies for everyone in the family! I gave my kids their matching Children’s Place pjs so that they could be dressed appropriately for the Elf on the Shelf breakfast.

Mom and two kids, wearing Christmas pajamas standing at breakfast table for Christmas

When the kids came to the breakfast table, everything was prepped and ready. The Elf was there too and my daughter quickly named her “Rosy Snowflake”. While my kids snacked, I read The Elf on the Shelf book that explained why the elf visits every year.

Boy and girl wearing Christmas pajamas standing at breakfast table
My daughter spotted the Elf hiding on the table
Christmas table top set for the holidays with Elf on the Shelf
“Rosy Snowflake” hiding among the treats!

North Pole Breakfast Menu

I’m sharing the menu of brunch foods we served during our Elf on the Shelf breakfast. I’ve heard of some families incorporating food ideas that are inspired by Buddy the Elf from the movie Elf. But the thought of spaghetti and marshmallows with maple syrup wasn’t appealing!

Elf on the Shelf book next to brunch foods

I went with heartier options for my Elf on the Shelf breakfast with a good mix of sweet and savory that wasn’t simply a sugar-fest. If you prefer to have more treats, consider a North Pole dessert bar instead. Tiny foods seemed appropriate and it’s easy to be creative with the menu!

Little boy bites a powdered donut while sister watches

What we ate during our Elf on the Shelf Breakfast:

  • Instant pot egg bites
  • Christmas trees cinnamon rolls (tutorial included later in this post)
  • “Candy Cane” fruit salad (alternating banana and strawberry slices)
  • Mini chocolate chip muffins
Chocolate chip mini muffins in a bowl with yogurt raisins
Mini chocolate chip muffins with yogurt raisins
  • Cocoa with marshmallows
  • Yogurt covered raisins
  • “Grinch juice” green smoothies (keep reading for the recipe)
  • Mini white powdered donuts stacked on a plate with a “North Pole” (soft peppermint sticks) through the centers
  • Assorted candies, including Sugar Cookie Hershey’s Kisses, Peppermints and Spice Drops

Little girl wearing Christmas pajamas and holding a peppermint stick

Additional North Pole Breakfast ideas:

  • Mini pancakes, using my recipe for fluffy pancakes
  • Parfaits of layered strawberry and key lime pie yogurt with graham cracker crumbs and whipped cream
  • Christmas snack cakes
  • Yogurt covered pretzels
  • Cranberry Cake Bars (one of our favorite holiday dessert recipes that we often splurge on for breakfast!)
  • Powdered doughnut holes piled up like snowballs
  • Peppermint popcorn (plain popcorn drizzled with melted white chocolate and sprinkled with crushed peppermint candies)

Decorating for a North Pole Breakfast

This is one opportunity where you can pull out all the holiday stops for a showstopping tabletop! No need to go crazy on the costs though. I used items that were already in my seasonal decoration box. Additional items were purchased at the 99 Cents Only Store (I seriously couldn’t believe the fantastic items I found there!) My color theme was a traditional red, green and white. All the decor will be moved to my kid’s shared bedroom for the Christmas holidays.

Girl Elf on the Shelf sitting next to the book

Wrapping paper table runner – Skip the linens and go for paper. Roll out inexpensive wrapping paper for a cheap and colorful table runner that will set the stage for your Elf on the Shelf breakfast treats. This red and white candy cane striped paper was from the 99 Cent Store.

Serving displays in varying heights – Create an eye-popping winter wonderland by highlighting snacks at different levels. I used my vintage glass hobnail cake platter alongside a red metal plate stand and paper boxes (both from 99 Cents Only). 

Table set up for Elf on the Shelf breakfast

Mail box for Santa letters – I also found this small metal mail box at the 99 Cent Store. My kids wrote their Santa letters and dropped them into the mailbox for our Elf, “Rosy Snowflake” to deliver back to Santa!

Christmas Trees – Faux greenery can be used year after year. I chose realistic looking Christmas trees along with whimsical miniature flocked trees to use on my North Pole breakfast table.

Little girl wearing pajamas eating a peppermint stick

North Pole-worthy special effects – I added frosty touches to the tabletop to remind us of the winter theme. This included our classic Hallmark snowman plush, glittering snowflakes and a fluffy green pom-pom garland, both from the 99 Cent Store. For additional inspiration to remind you of snow, consider sprinkling coconut or a powdered sugar dusting on plates.

Little boy wearing Christmas pajamas sipping hot cocoa from a penguin mug

Small plates with a peppermint pattern and inexpensive decorative paper boxes were used for serving treats. Snowman and penguins made an appearance in the form of mugs to hold hot cocoa with marshmallows!

Penguin and Snowman Christmas mugs filled with cocoa and marshmallows
Picked these up at 99 Cents Only!

Brunch Recipes Kids Will Love

Christmas Tree Cinnamon Rolls – Use a butter knife to carefully cut and unwind refrigerated Pillsbury cinnamon rolls. Carefully manipulate the dough into a Christmas tree shape. Stir a few drops of green food coloring into the included frosting tub. Decorate with spice drops or sprinkles.

Cinnamon rolls shaped into trees with green frosting, sitting on a baking sheet

“Grinch Juice” – These deceptively healthy green smoothies are a welcome beverage to your North Pole breakfast. Load this recipe into your blender for a delicious Grinchy green drink. Recipe for four smoothies: 3 cups pineapple juice, 2 scoops vanilla protein powder, 2 frozen bananas, 2 handfuls of spinach greens, 1/2 cup crushed ice. Blend until ice and greens are fully blended.

White hobnail platter with glasses of green smoothies and egg bites

My son, who had seen me making our Grinch Juice, blurted out that it had spinach leaves inside. My daughter sipping away at her drink said, “No it doesn’t! This doesn’t taste like salad!” I think that these sneakily healthy Grinch smoothies will be appearing for breakfast more often!

Little girl sips green smoothie through a straw

More North Pole Breakfast Recipes

Instant Pot Egg Bites –  These egg bites can be made ahead then reheated for 30 seconds in the microwave. I made these quick and easy inside the Instant Pot using this egg bite silicone mold. Recipe for egg bites: 6 eggs, 1/2 cup milk, 1/2 cup cooked broccoli, salt and pepper, 1/2 cup shredded cheddar. Add the cheese to the inside of each cup mold. Whip eggs, milk, and seasonings together until well blended. Mash broccoli crowns until crumbled then add to egg mixture. Carefully pour mix into each cup, not too close to the edge. Cook in Instant Pot for 8 minutes. Allow to slow release for 5 minutes, then manually release. Cool 5 additional minutes before removing from cups.

Green smoothies and egg bites on a white plate

“Candy Cane” Fruit Salad – Slice strawberries and bananas, then alternate into small custard dishes into candy cane stripes. Another option would be to thread the chunks of fruit onto wooden skewers.

Small bowls of sliced strawberries and bananas

“North Pole” In the Snow – Use soft peppermint sticks to gently nestle in the hole of mini powdered donuts. Rest them on a plate to resemble the North Pole in the snow!

Peppermint sticks stuck inside powdered doughnuts

North Pole Breakfast Activities

Once you’ve indulged in the Elf on the Shelf breakfast, try incorporating a few of these kid-friendly winter activities. These family games can become a family holiday tradition and the perfect jump start to the holiday season!

Mom reading Elf on the Shelf book to two young kids

  • Read favorite Christmas books together. 
  • Christmas music and sing-a-long. Start playing holiday classics and teach your kids the words, starting an impromptu pajama dance party.
  • Play a holiday themed game like Christmas Bingo.
  • Write letters to Santa with a Christmas wish list of toys they’d like to find under the tree this year. Have kids post them into the tabletop mail box so that the Elf can deliver the letters to Santa!

Little girl holding up a miniature mail box with a polar bear on the side

  • Have an living room “snowball” fight with these fluffy Indoor Snowballs.
  • Decorate a gingerbread house with leftover candies from the North Pole Breakfast. If you’d prefer to have something non-edible, check out this adorable wooden Lasercut Gingerbread House from Pew Pew Lasercrafts on Etsy. I just bought mine and will be hand painting it for seasonal display in our house!
Photo credit: Pew Pew Lasercrafts on Etsy
  • Watch a favorite Christmas or winter-themed family movie, including The Polar Express, Home Alone or Frozen.
  • Gift the kids an Advent calendar. The countdown to Christmas Day becomes more visual when children can open a window each day on the calendar.

Share your favorite Elf on the Shelf breakfast tips in the comments!


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