Monday, January 23, 2012

Ode to Oats

The other day, my friend told me that she could never get her kids to eat oats?  WHAT?  We eat some type of oatmeal at least 2 times a week sometimes more!  I've never heard my kiddos complain and they often choose it over a cold cereal.  I think of oatmeal as a neutral flavor - how can you not like it?  Then I remember when I was a kid.  I was served oatmeal with milk and brown sugar.  That was the only way we ever had it.  My sister HATED it!  I loaded up the brown sugar, of course, and tolerated it.  There was really nothing to love or hate.  Fast forward to my sister's baby shower about 5 years ago.  There was a catered breakfast and part of it was an oatmeal bar.  "Weird," I thought, "who would choose oatmeal over pancakes, doughnuts, eggs . . . "  Then I looked at what they had to offer, tried it, and oatmeal became a different experience.  It wasn't something to be tolerated - you could enjoy it.  There were so many toppings and I had never even thought of having different toppings - peanut butter, coconut, granola, all fruits, nuts, etc. etc.  YUMMY!

I have my 3 favorite ways to eat oatmeal, but there are oh so many more.  The beauty of oats is that they are so versatile and you can change it to fit what you and your family love.


Baked Oatmeal - G. usually claps when I make this.  It is like a warm oatmeal raisin cookie.  I usually use Our Best Bites recipe - but use way less butter and sugar.  Skinny taste just posted a recipe for Baked Oatmeal with blueberries and bananas that I can't wait to try.


Overnight Oats - yum yum yum!  I use equal parts yogurt, milk, and oats (usually 1/3 cup each per person).  Mix them up at night and put them in the refrigerator.  In the pictures below, I used plain yogurt and chocolate mint soy milk.  My favorite is with vanilla almond milk.  Soaking it overnight makes the oats creamy like a pudding!  In the morning, I stir it up and top it with fruit



We usually don't eat this much in the winter - but it is perfect for the summer!


Create your own Oatmeal Bar - every Sunday, my kids ask for oatmeal and they all have their ways that they like it.  Just boil up a pot of oats (please don't insult your family by using flavored instant oats) and top it with their favorite toppings.  I. likes it with peanut butter, coconut, and brown sugar.  G. likes it with raisins and peanut butter and banana.  M. likes it with almond butter, craisins, brown sugar, and coconut.  My favorite way is apple sauce, peanut butter, and chia seeds.


Oats really "stick to my ribs."  They fill me up and help me go hours without going hungry.  I try to always add a protein and a fruit to mine.  You can google health benefits of oats and learn all about how awesome they are for you!


We like them creamy, cold, crunchy, hot, topped with our favorite fruits, or mixed with yogurt, etc. etc.  I think if you don't like them, or your kids don't like them, you aren't really giving them a chance.  Tom's parents called them (and still do) "mush" and I'm not sure I could ever like something called mush and I for sure couldn't convince my kids to eat mush!  That might be a reason to call off oats, but I'm not really sure even that would count - try them, eat them, get them in your diet!!

What is your favorite way to eat oats?


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11 comments:

onlymehere said...

I just can't tolerate the slimy texture of oats. I also am not a fan of fruit or yogurt so this rules it out entirely. Lucky you that your kids will eat them.

Simply LKJ said...

Ha! Must have been what moms did when we were kids. I remember it with sugar and milk too (not a fan). I love it now, as does my daughter...we vary our toppings too. Love craisins and almonds with a touch of vanilla!!

Kim @ NewlyWoodwards said...

Thanks for sharing these recipes. Ryan is a huge oatmeal fan, but I've never loved it. I think trying it these ways could make me love it, too.

Emily said...

Yum! I love oatmeal, but it hasn't been filling me up for the morning this pregnancy -until I started adding almond butter to my oatmeal. That little bit of protein works wonders for me!

Leigh said...

I'm not a huge oatmeal fan. I find it too mushy. I do like oatmeal in cookies though...not really a breakfast food though.

emily said...

I love oatmeal and all of these ideas look tasty! I was skeptical of the overnight oats at first, but am a huge fan now. And I also love just simple oats cooked with a little milk and a sprinkle of brown sugar. Yum.

Emmy said...

My middle likes oatmeal but my oldest won't touch it- maybe I should try to fancy it up.

Jo said...

I am the only one in house who likes oats. They others will not even try a single bite. Drives me insane cause I know how good it is. I might give the baked oats a try and see what they think.

Julie Snow said...

A GREAT post! We have been doing a lot more with oats - my kids like them a lot and I am just figuring out all of their versatility not to mention budget-friendly especially for a big family. I am going to try all of the recipes you mentioned!

Renee Living Laughing Loving said...

I'm not really an oatmeal fan, but that baked oatmeal really does look good! I need to give that a try, thanks!

purpleheather said...

Thanks for posting about this :) I'll definately be giving these a go!

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