Sunday, October 28, 2012

Breaking the Breakfast Rut - Baked Oatmeal Cups

I tend to get in breakfast ruts.  Months have gone by in which I have eaten the same thing every day in the morning.  Lately it has been strawberry yogurt with corn chex in it.  I guess I should say corn chex style cereal, since I've been getting it from Aldi's.  Sometimes if we have strawberries or blueberries, those will get tossed in, which is a big treat.  But needless to say, it's been pretty boring.

So I needed some breakfast inspiration and found one on Pinterest - this amazing baked oatmeal.  Of course I had to make it gluten free, but Bob's Red Mill has gluten free rolled oats at Marc's for a decent price, so that part was easy.

I love the fact that you can make different varieties of these in the same batch.  I've done some with chocolate chips, walnuts, pecans, blueberries, and combinations of all of those things together.  I've even left some plain and they are still very tasty because of the applesauce and banana in the base recipe.  Addy loves them, and they are a great alternative for toddlers since they can be cut up into pieces and eaten easily without the mess of traditional oatmeal.

Notes about the recipe... I made my version with honey instead of stevia, and it makes waaaay more than a dozen.  I have been getting at least two dozen and usually about 30 or so out of one batch.  They freeze and reheat great, so I haven't minded the large batches at all.  I just pop them in the fridge the night before and then the toaster oven in the morning.

We've had fun using the mini muffin tin too (as seen in the picture above), but it makes them even more snackable which is dangerous (particularly the chocolate chip ones).  I also have found that I like to bake them for longer, usually 40/45 minutes, to get them nice and firm. If you like traditional oatmeal or are planning to put milk over them, the time called for on the recipe is probably right.  I like mine more in the muffin category than in the oatmeal category consistency wise.

So this has all the bases covered - not too complicated, whole foods without much sugar, easy to make, makes a lot and freezes well... definitely something that I will be making for a long time.

And this is my kitchen after getting the first batch in the oven with my 16 month old "helping."
It didn't take too long to throw together, so not too bad of a war zone at all!

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