Porridge is considered a traditional breakfast in many countries. Why? It’s cheap, warm and comforting. However do you know that oatmeal is actually very healthy? It’s health quality can actually increase or decrease depending on how you prepare it. Using nonfat milk, soymilk or almond milk can keep the calorie count lower than the restaurant or fast-food kind. Soymilk and almond milk also possess qualities that support heart health. Adding nuts or a small amount of peanut butter can boost its protein content plus provide omega-3s which also help support cardiovascular health. This will also help lower your bad cholesterol (LDL) and even increase your protective cholesterol (HDL). If you are a diabetic please use a alternative sweetener like Stevia.
Benefits of Oatmeal: (from WEBMD)
Oats in all forms can help your heart by lowering LDL, the bad cholesterol. A warm bowl of oatmeal fills you up for hours, fights snack attacks, and helps keep blood sugar levels stable over time — making it useful for people with diabetes, too. Healthy Living Tip: Swap oats for one-third of the flour in pancakes, muffins, and baked goods. Use oats instead of bread crumbs in cooking.
In my recipe I use ROLLED OATS because they are UNPROCESSED and therefore cheaper. You can find them in most supermarkets. They work wonderfully in baked goods and other recipes. (Plus they are prettier in my opinion!! …. food – especially healthy food- needs to be esthetically pleasing so you are more inclined to eat well….after all most of us “eat with our eyes” don’t we?)
2 cups rolled oats (not instant or quick cooking)
2 cups lowfat milk or unsweetened soymilk or almond milk
1/8 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp cinnamon
2 tbsp organic maple syrup
chopped nuts – pecans, walnuts or almonds
fresh fruit – banana, berries or any other!
chia seeds or any other seed
PB or any other nut butter instead of the nuts
Combine all the ingredients in a bowl, mix, cover and refrigerate overnight. The next morning, scoop oatmeal into bowls and top with whatever you desired or eat “plain”! Nuts and yogurt add a protein boost while fresh fruits can provide vitamins, antioxidants and other nutrients.
Eat cold or microwave for 1 min and enjoy “freshly made” quality oats.
COOKING NOTE: After prepping your oats you will see a lot of liquid and even some bubbles; don’t be alarmed. Most of it will be absorbed during the night. To get a more uniform consistency after that, heat the oats before eating.
Servings: 3 to 4
My favorite toppings: 1/2 banana, 3 strawberries, a handful of pecans and chia seeds.
…have you tried overnight oats before? I find it super handy!!! You avoid the use of the stove, dirtying a pot and the morning hassle!