Thursday, June 21, 2012

Best Oatmeal Ever

So I could rant and rave about the deliciousness and health benefits and ease of this stuff ALL day.


To me, this is the ultimate super food. It's yummy and packed with healthy stuff.



I don't normally (actually, to date, ever) post ideas that I've seen on other blogs/websites, but in this case I'm going to make an exception. A few months ago, I happened across the base recipe for this on this great food blog and it has literally, changed. my. life.


It's oatmeal, essentially, but it's also so much more. It's pretty well-known how heart and weight healthy a good dose of whole grain oats can be.
It's also made with Greek yogurt, which is an amazing source of protein along with other healthful goodness.
This super-protein, high-fiber, whole-grain breakfast keeps me full and energized for hours after I eat, even with my two little birdies who keep me on my toes.


After you make your base, you can mix just about any add-ins you want in to make an endless variety of flavors.
I've adapted the recipe a little to meet my own diet needs; I've found a great oatmeal blend which uses oats, barley, and flax instead of just oats so an added bonus is that this breakfast is AMAZING for breastfeeding mamas (or anyone). Oatmeal, barley, and flax have all been shown to help increase and/or maintain milk supply and from my own personal testing, I'd have to say I agree.


But one of the best parts of this breakfast is...
You make it almost completely the night before.
I don't know about you, but time is of the essence in the morning around our way. When my girls wake up in the morning, they're hungry, and it doesn't leave me a lot of time to whip up something both tasty and healthy.  Made the night before, with a little two-minute prep in the morning, you have an amazing, wholesome breakfast.


Since I found this recipe a few months ago, I have played around with it a little, tweaked it to my tastes (which is another bullet-point check-mark of this, it is easily adapted so you can personalize it), and have found my favorite way to make it.  It's become a regular on my breakfast menu and the kiddos love it too.


Here's how I make it:

The night before you want to eat it, in a container with a lid (no, it doesn't have to be a mason jar, it can be a good ol' fashion Tupperware, I just have a love for mason jars), mix thoroughly 1/2 cup each whole oats (they have to be old-fashioned style, not the quick-cooking or instant oats), low-fat vanilla bean Greek yogurt (it's less sour than plain), and milk. Seal your container and put it in the refrigerator. The "hard" part is done.


Overnight, the oats will absorb the moisture and fluff up. Yet another great aspect of this recipe, it's no-cook. It took me a little while to get used to the idea of cold oatmeal, but trust me, it's amazing. The oats will thicken, and since I like my oatmeal a little thinner, in the morning I add a little extra milk and stir until it thins out slightly. Then I mash in 1 medium banana (broken into bits), 2 tablespoons blackberry jam, and 1/4-1/2 cup fresh blueberries. If I have them, I add raspberries as well.


Stir well. And enjoy. And soak up that yummy, healthy goodness.

You can also try mix-ins like peanut butter, canned pumpkin, cinnamon & sugar, etc. Like I said, the possibilities are endless, but this banana-berry version is my favorite.

It's not often that I declare a food has "changed my life," but this one has definitely changed the way I do breakfast and it's one I can feel good about eating as well.

A su salud!
To your health!

Emily

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