Eat of the Moment

Baked Oatmeal

Baked Oatmeal is the ultimate winter breakfast. It’s warm and toasty and it reminds me of grandmothers with white hair in buns who live in little log cabins out in the woods. And it’s nutritious, full of fiber and fruit goodness, so it won’t screw with your I’m-finally-going-to-eat-healthy-in-2012! eating plan. Fill your belly with this and feel fully fueled! How’s that for alliteration? I was able to make that awesome sentence due to the BRAIN-BOOSTING healthy breakfast I just ate, y’all. Okay, here’s how to make it:

Baked Oatmeal

serves 2-4

total time: 50-60 minutes

total hands on time: less than 10 minutes

What you’ll need:

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 cup plain oats

hefty dash of cinnamon

pinch of salt

1 egg

1/2 cup of apple sauce

3/4 cup milk

1 banana, sliced

optional: 1 or 2 tsps white or brown sugar

What you’ll do:

1. Preheat oven to 375.

2.Grease a small baking dish with butter or cooking spray.

3. Mix together the dry ingredients in a bowl. If you’re opting to use sugar, add it now.

4. Mix together the wet ingredients in another bowl.

5. Pour wet ingredients over dry ingredients and mix well.

6. Slice the banana and arrange in a single layer on the bottom of the dish.

7. Pour wet oat mixture on top of the bananas in the dish.

8. Slice up the apple and arrange slices on top of the mixture. Isn’t the pattern I made pretty? It’s like an apple flower. Totally something that grandmother out in the woods would do, right? Optional: sprinkle a bit more cinnamon or sugar on top of the apple slices.

9. Bake for about 45 minutes. When it’s done, it will be just slightly brown around the edges. Let it sit for a few minutes before cutting. The texture you want is similar to a granola bar, but softer.

I wanted the sweetness in this recipe to come from the fruit and the applesauce, but you can use a bit of sugar or honey if you like a sweeter breakfast. I like to eat this with a dollop of apricot or strawberry preserves on top.

There are so many awesome ways to customize this.  You could dice an additional apple and mix it in throughout, or try this with different fruit altogether. How good would this be in summer with fresh blueberries or peaches? Or BOTH?!?!?! You can also add nuts, a scoop of protein powder, raisins, pumpkin, chocolate chips, maple syrup flax seeds, chia seeds…

You could also double or triple the recipe and freeze or refrigerate portions so you’ll always have a healthy breakfast on hand. Try topping this with a little bit of whipped cream for a slightly-less-guilty dessert.

This is gluten-free if you use certified GF oats. Baked oatmeal can be easily modified to become vegan if you replace the regular milk with almond or soy milk, and replace the egg with a bit more liquid: additional nut milk, applesauce or maybe even juice.

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