Friday, April 6, 2012

Foodie Friday: Easy Overnight Oats

Easy Overnight Oats
I first saw the idea for overnight oats at Kath Eats Real Food at least a year or so ago.  I never tried it out until recently though because I had a hard time wrapping my brain around the idea of oats soaked overnight in liquid actually tasting good the next day.  I figured the texture would be like mush, and I do NOT like super mushy oats.  Well, I finally came around after seeing more inspiration and decided I've got to try this. So many people seemed to like it, so it must not be that bad, right?  I searched for recipes that sounded like something I'd like to try and stumbled upon this one from Whole Foods.  Guess what? It's not mushy!  I think it is not mushy as long as you use whole rolled oats rather than the instant or quick-cooking kind, which are a little more processed.  While overnight oats do not actually require any cooking before eating, I prefer to heat mine up for just a minute in the microwave. I just prefer warm oats.  This recipe is SO easy and really makes eating whole rolled oats in the morning much simpler.  I wasn't sure if my kids would like this dish since it's prepared in a different way than usual, but my son especially LOVES it.  Thank goodness this recipe makes more than enough, so not only do I have enough for my kids, but I also have enough leftover for the next day, too.  This is my base recipe, and you can add in other things to your taste.  I like my oats with blueberries (frozen pictured) and some sort of nuts, usually walnuts or pecans.  This is definitely something that you can make your own and experiment with in a variety of ways.  I hope you aren't like me and decide to try it sooner rather than later. It's SO easy!  Enjoy!

Easy Overnight Oats
Adapted from:  Whole Foods Market

{Print this}
2 cups whole rolled oats (not instant or quick-cooking)
2 cups unsweetened almond milk or other milk (I use unsweetened almond milk.)
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract (Make your own like this. It's SO worth it!)

For topping:
1/4 cup chopped walnuts, pecans, or almonds
Fresh fruit (I most often use frozen berries. Other fruits, like bananas or peaches, work well, too.)
Cinnamon (I usually use about 1 teaspoon. I never really measure the exact amount.)
2 Tbsp pure maple syrup or honey for drizzling (optional)

1.  Combine oats, milk, and vanilla in a bowl.  Cover and refrigerate overnight.  Remove from the fridge the next morning, combine with the cinnamon, and top with nuts, fruits, and drizzle of maple syrup or honey, if you like.  This can be eaten cold or heated in the microwave for just 1-1 1/2 minutes.  (I heat the oats in the microwave for just a 1-1 1/2 minutes before adding the toppings.)

Serves: 4
Nutritional Information per serving:
Calories:  357   Carbohydrate:  61 g   Protein:  11 g   Fat:  8 g   Cholesterol:  0 mg   Fiber:  4.5 g   Sugar:  12 g  (6 g added sugar from maple syrup or honey)   Sodium:  6 mg
Excellent source of:  omega-3 fatty acid, thiamin, riboflavin
Good source of:  niacin, vitamin C, iron, zinc


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