Sweeten up your breakfast without added sugar using this healthy oatmeal recipe, with 3 topping ideas to make your oatmeal more exciting.
Oatmeal seems to elicit a strong reaction as a breakfast choice. You either love it or hate it.
If you fall under the ‘hate it’ category but find yourself looking to clean up your breakfast habits, you might occasionally tolerate oatmeal. Tolerate meaning it has to be topped with no less than 2 spoonfuls of sugar. And even though it’s loaded up with sugar, you still find yourself wishing it was anything else but oatmeal with every bite.
I’m here today to dispel any previous thoughts you may have had about oatmeal with a basic oatmeal recipe that’s sure to change your mind on this superstar breakfast option. That’s right; oatmeal can be more than a tolerated ‘health food’ breakfast.
The secret ingredient? Banana. Adding a mashed banana to your oats as they cook adds a natural sweetness to the oatmeal, meaning you can totally skip the sugar bowl. I keep frozen bananas on hand for exactly this purpose (and for smoothies). If you have some bananas sitting around that are just about past their prime, peel them and store in the freezer for this recipe.
Note: If you’re using a fresh banana, mash it and add it to the pot along with the oats. If you’re using a frozen banana, add it to the water while it comes to a boil, then proceed with the recipe. Using a whisk at the end is crucial to incorporating the banana into the oats.
My other secret ingredient? Chia seeds. Aside from adding a great boost of fiber, protein and Omega-3’s, chia seeds give your oatmeal a fluffy, full texture. If you don’t have them on hand, they aren’t essential to this recipe, but I encourage you to pick some up and give it a shot!
To save time throughout the week, make a large batch of oatmeal at the beginning of the week then store portions in individual containers in the refrigerator. When you’re ready for the next serving, simply reheat over the stove adding a bit more liquid. Add toppings and your breakfast is ready to go in less than 3 minutes!
And speaking of toppings…
Oatmeal Recipe – Making it Exciting
Now that you’ve got your basic oatmeal recipe down, it’s time to add the good stuff: toppings! There are countless oatmeal toppings, but I’ve compiled three of my favorite ‘recipes’ for inspiration.
Cranberry Almond: 1/4 cup dried cranberries, 2 tbsp chopped almonds, 1/2 tsp cinnamon. Add ingredients to oatmeal while it’s on the stove and cook for additional minute, or just top the basic recipe.
Blueberry Pecan: 1/2 cup blueberries, 2 tbsp pecan pieces, 1/2 tsp vanilla. Add all to oatmeal as it cooks.
Tropical Strawberry Coconut Walnut: 1/2 cup strawberry slices, 2 tbsp unsweetened coconut flakes, 2 tbsp walnut pieces. Use as toppings on basic recipe.
As you can see, oatmeal doesn’t have to be the slimy, boring mush that you’re used to. Are you convinced yet?
What’s your verdict on oatmeal: love it or hate it? What are your favorite toppings?