Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Baked Oatmeal

What's your breakfast routine like? What about for your kiddos? Do you mix it up? How do your kiddos respond to breakfast? And you for that matter? Do you eat breakfast????

I know it's one of those things said over and over "breakfast is the most important meal of the day." We get used to hearing it and it becomes very cliche. But really it is a foundational meal to set up our day. The term literally means to break the fast. Your body has been essentially fasting since the evening before and breakfast is the time to add fuel to your body and set up a foundation for a healthy, energy filled day. When we skip breakfast or eat a lot of sugary sweets for breakfast it puts our blood sugar on a roller coaster for the day. The idea is to eat something satisfying enough and filling enough to make it to lunch, or at least for adults. Now this may or may not apply to kiddos. Every kiddo is different and some may or may not need that mid-morning snack. Listen and observe your kiddo to begin to learn what they need. Does breakfast satisfy them? What are they having for breakfast? Are they hungry relatively soon after breakfast? How does a mid-morning snack affect them or their lunch? How is their behavior an hour or two after breakfast?

There's a great experiment you can do. Try doing something different for breakfast each morning for a week or maybe at least for 5 days. You could start with yourself and then also do the experiment with the kiddos. Plan out your breakfasts for the experiment so you can grocery shop and prepare. This way you know what you'll do each day. Then write down what your breakfast was that day. Also make note of how you feel right after your meal and then again 2 hours later. Do you notice differences in energy levels? What about your moods? Notice any physical symptoms that you might have that may correlate to what you've eaten. This is a great way to tune into your body and to listen to what works for you. Everyone is different. Different foods affect us differently. What works best for you? What breakfast helps you feel your best and kick start your day? After you get an idea for yourself, experiment with the kiddos. You might be surprised what you learn.

Baked Oatmeal is one of my girl's favorite breakfasts, especially on a cooler or rainy morning. And I have heard we have a few cooler mornings heading our way!

This recipe is a blend of some of our favorite things and a combining of baked oatmeal recipes I've seen over time. I like to take a recipe and add my own touches, or modify it to what I have on hand. So feel free to experiment a bit and add your own touches to make it something personalized for you and your family.

Baked Oatmeal

1/2 cup oil

1/2 cup honey, pure maple syrup, or agave (other options for sweetners are applesauce or mashed banana)

3 cups oats (I prefer organic rolled oats) (gluten free oats are available at health food stores if your are working with gluten intolerances)

2 tsp. baking powder

1 cup milk (I prefer rice or almond milk but you can use any milk that your family normally uses)

1 cup of additional goodness....raisins, chopped walnuts, chopped pecans, blueberries, peaches, bananas, chopped apples.....whatever you and your kiddos love!

Preheat oven 350

Grease 8 x 8 pan

Combine oil and sweetener in one bowl. In separate bowl combine the rest of the ingredients. Add oil and sweetener combination to oat mixture.

Bake for approximately 30 minutes.

For this particular time I lined the bottom of my pan with some frozen peaches. I then spread the mixture in the pan. I stirred in chopped walnuts, frozen blueberries, raisins, and then added some sliced bananas on top. Yummy! But again customize it to your family or to what you have available.

It does take a while to bake so if time is an issue in the morning bake it the evening before and then just heat it up in the morning. So so good!

1 comment:

  1. We eat something very similar to this...but I usually make it for lunch or dinner. I love breakfast for dinner!