Welcome to Kitchn's series My Healthy Morning, where we show you how one person greets the day in a way that makes them feel their best. Each post will chronicle how that person defines healthy for themselves, and the habits and recipes that make their morning a little bit better.
Joy Wilson created her wildly popular food blog, Joy the Baker, almost 10 years ago now. In the past decade we've made dozens of cookies and cakes thanks to her recipes, we've gobbled up her cookbooks, and have been inspired by her Instagram feed (yes, that also includes Drake on Cake.). In short: Where this New Orleans-based food writer leads, we will follow.
And while you could call Joy the queen of butter and cream, you also wouldn't be surprised that her morning routine and her ideas on what constitutes as "healthy"are all about balance. She drinks hot water with a squeeze of lemon and apple cider vinegar, and then tests recipes for delicious pumpkin scones.
Here's a peek into how Joy Wilson spends the first couple hours of her day.
What Does Healthy Mean to You?
Healthy for me means staying balanced — giving my body what it needs in terms of movement and stillness, ease and work organization, vegetables and sweet treats. I'm always trying to find my center; some mornings this comes more easily than others, but I find that a bit of routine in the opening hours of the day really helps me stay happy and on track.
Joy's Healthy Morning Routine
I usually wake up between 7 a.m and 7:30 a.m. I definitely set an alarm on my phone as, these days, I'm more of a night owl than an early bird. The sound of the alarm rouses me but is really a call to my cat, Tron, to come pester me for breakfast. I keep a bottle of water on my side table and I do my best to drink as much water as I can before I get up to feed the cat. I start a kettle of boiling water after the cat is fed and quieted. I usually dig through my stash of teas looking for an herbal tea to start the day, or I'll add a good squeeze of lemon or a dash of apple cider vinegar and honey to add to a mug along with the hot water.
I walk around my house while my tea cools, opening window blinds to let the morning light in, and I usually step outside to check on the plants in the front and backyard.
I'll sit down around 8 a.m. to enjoy my tea while I listen to The Daily Podcast on my phone while I catch up on emails and social media and make a to-do list for the day.
Before I really get going I'll do a 12-minute yoga flow in my living room, or if my brain is feeling extra cagey, I'll go for a quick walk down along the Mississippi River. I've become more of an evening work-out person lately. If I don't talk myself out of it, I'll go to a full yoga class.
My morning meal these days is a smoothie made from kefir, any sort of frozen fruit I have in the freezer, a tablespoon of chia or flax seeds, and a scoop of collagen powder.
Around 9 a.m. I'll have a cup of black coffee made in my trusty Clever coffee maker and start to test a recipe or two, taking pictures for both my blog and my Instagram along the way. This morning I'm remaking an older recipe from my blog — pumpkin pecan scones with brown butter glaze — because it's fall and I'm craving pumpkin. I'll eat a scone fresh from the oven, take a picture to share on Instagram, and share the rest with a friend coming over later in the afternoon.
Take the tour: Joy's Beautiful New Orleans Bakehouse on Apartment Therapy
Thank you for sharing your healthy morning with us, Joy!