April 18, 2011

Easy oatmeal breakfasts

On Saturday I started getting a little stomachache and then realized I hadn't had anything but blueberry coffee cake and coffee for the first seven hours of the day!  Yikes.  After a day like that, I like to make a sensible breakfast on Monday morning to start my week off right.

I think everyone already knows that oatmeal is good for you.  I like to use "real" old fashioned oatmeal, not instant packets, since it still only takes me about three minutes to make and I can control what goes in to my breakfast.  Many instant oatmeals have tons of sugar; don't get me wrong, I love sugar, but I'd much rather eat it in the form of chocolate or dessert than in some type of fake maple syrup flavored oatmeal.

Here's the easy way to make a fast bowl of oatmeal:

1. In a microwave-safe bowl, pour in 1/4 - 1/2 cup of dry oatmeal and twice that amount of water or milk (cow or soy or whatever you prefer).  I usually do 1/4 cup of oatmeal and 1/2 cup of water.

2. Microwave for about 1 - 1 1/2 minutes or until cooked through.  (I like to add frozen blackberries, raspberries, and blueberries, so I usually cook the oatmeal for about 30 seconds, then add the berries and cook for another minute or so until they defrost and warm up.)

3. Add your toppings: I always add a couple tablespoons of flaxseed (great source of fiber and some omega-3s that are hard to find in plant products!)

Here are a few more ideas for toppings:

Flaxseed, sliced almonds, and a bit of brown sugar or maple syrup to sweeten

Dried, sweetened cranberries (these would be good combined with some nuts -- maybe almonds or pecans) 

Raisins and cinnamon (I usually like to add the raisins to the oatmeal for the last 30 seconds to 1 minute of the cooking time so they get plump and warm)

If you absolutely need it, you can add a drizzle of honey or maple syrup or a sprinkling of brown sugar to sweeten your oatmeal, but I find that if I have added some fresh or dried fruit, that is usually sweet enough for me!

Here's to a healthy week!


Kara K said...

Oatmeal is one of my go-to breakfasts. I like putting sliced almonds in my steel-cut oatmeal. No big surprise, Lance always passes on the option to add nuts :)

Nikki said...

Yep...love oatmeal in the morning too! Making your own combo is so much better tasting (and better for you) than pre-packaged!

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