My breakfast this morning: baked oatmeal served alongside fruit. The combination of delicious, healthy and filling fare is what I want in the AM hours, and this hits each mark. If you are already an oatmeal lover, baked oatmeal is a sure bet. If not, give it a try…you may be pleasantly surprised with the firm texture that separates it from the stovetop or microwaved counterpart.
Like most recipes, baked oatmeal can be customized to taste. I try to avoid high sugar foods at main meals, so only used 2 tsp of light brown sugar whereas the original recipe calls for 1/2 c. Big difference! Don’t get me wrong, the 1/2 c of sugar makes it scrumptious, but sweetness from the raisins is enough to satisfy my taste. Plus, a drizzle of honey or sprinkling of sugar can always be added when plating. Chopped walnuts make for a great crunch, though, can certainly be omitted if you have a nut aversion or allergen. Any combination of dried fruits, nuts, etc. can be used as the add-ins in this recipe…similar to how it is easy to swap ingredients in cookie dough. Dare I say that chocolate chunks would make this a terrifically indulgent breakfast OR even a healthy dessert topped with a scoop of ice cream. Now, there’s an idea!
The ease of this recipe makes it a snap in the morning, even when pressed for time. Ingredient prep takes a mere 5 minutes max, it bakes in the oven for 20 minutes, and then can be immediately served. Covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated, baked oatmeal keeps very well for a few days. Portions may be easily reheated in the microwave and enjoyed.
Adapted from Cooking Light: Annual Recipes 2004
Yield 5-8 servings
2 c uncooked quick-cooking oats
2 tsp packed brown sugar (*use up to 1/2 c, to taste)
1/3 c raisins
1 TBSP chopped walnuts
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 1/2 c fat-free milk
1 large egg, beaten
1/4 c cinnamon applesauce (*optional, but adds extra sweetness and moisture)
1. Preheat oven to 375° F.
2. Combine first 6 ingredients in a medium bowl. Combine milk and egg (and applesauce if using). Add milk mixture to oat mixture; stir well. Pour oat mixture into an 8-inch square baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake at 375° F for 20 minutes. Serve warm.