Wednesday, August 18, 2010

A Berry Good Breakfast

I used to hate oatmeal when I was little.  Food texture is really important to me and I have a hard time enjoying foods with mushy, goopy textures-like oatmeal.   However, it’s healthy, cheap, fast and super fun to add stuff to, so I decided to battle through my dislike and give it a go. I plugged away for a few mornings until I concocted a few delicious recipes and now I love it! 

This upgraded oatmeal uses fresh summer berries, obviously all in season, and low fat vanilla almond milk.  If you have never tried almond milk before, it is really tasty, gives the oatmeal a nice flavor and is a great solution for those with lactose sensitive bellies.   Sliced almonds and drizzled honey give this breakfast perfect hints of sweetness and texture.  

What makes this bite better?
Oats are a great source of soluble and insoluble fiber.  Soluble fiber is important in slowing down the digestion of starches (which means it prevents spikes in your blood sugar levels) and is linked to lowering cholesterol.  Insoluble fiber is an important asset to your digestive system.  Let's just say, it keeps things moving!  Also, by adding the fruit and sweetening with honey you avoid the tons of processed ingredients and sugar that comes in those packets!

Berry Oatmeal
Makes one breakfast serving
*Note:  Based on the normal package size for these ingredients you should be able to make at least 4 breakfasts

One Half Cup Oats
Three-fourths cup of Low-fat Vanilla almond milk 
Berries- any kind you like! I used blackberries, blueberries and raspberries
Sprinkling of Sliced Almonds, about 2 tbsp.
Drizzling of Honey, about 1 Tbsp.

My trick for getting the oats to stay firm and not turn to mush is to heat them for about half of the recommended time.  Add the almond milk to the oats and heat for one minute in the microwave.  Then stir and heat for another 30 seconds.  Sprinkle the berries and almonds on top and finish with a drizzle of honey.  What a great way to start your day!

Be sure to monitor your oatmeal in the microwave.  If you over heat it, it will overflow out of the bowl and go all over!  This is the last thing you need on a Monday morning!

Other Variations
When berries go out of season (or get too expensive!)  try this with apples, cinnamon and walnuts!