Today I share with you my go-to oatmeal. It’s quick and flavorful! On its own, oatmeal is nothing to get excited about. It needs help with warm spices, sweet and/or tart fruits and some crunchy nuts & seeds. Add a drizzle of pure maple syrup and splash of almond milk for the perfect finishing touch. I love oatmeal all year long, but during the fall and winter I especially eat this on a regular basis. It warms me up, fills that morning hunger, supplies me with good carbohydrates and keeps me going for a good part of the day.
My everyday oatmeal always consists of cinnamon, cardamom, maple syrup and almond milk…these are the essential flavor boosters. The rest of the ingredients will be mixed and matched depending on what I have on hand.
Pure maple syrup is my sweetener of choice and contains a good dose of manganese and zinc.For the milk, I use unsweetened almond milk but you can use your favorite non-dairy milk. Most non-dairy milks are low in calories, fat and are fortified with important vitamins and minerals (even more so than dairy milk) like calcium, vitamin D, B-12 and E, manganese, potassium, copper and selenium.
The oats can be whatever you prefer. Lately I’ve been using quick oats, it’s what I’ve been baking with and have tons on hand. You can use rolled or steel cut oats too, just cook according to the package directions.
I usually always add in some sort of fruit, whether dry or not. Usually its dried fruit since I always have some on hand in the pantry or refrigerator. I prefer unsweetened dried fruit like raisins, currants, barberries, blueberries and cranberries. Chopped dates, apricots and cherries are also great. I’m loving the addition of the barberries I picked up awhile back, they add a tartness contrasting the sweetness of the other dried fruits. I’ve come to learn that barberries are higher in anti-oxidants than dried blueberries, cranberries, goji berries and even pomegranates! These little tart fruits can be found in Middle Eastern grocery stores (you can also order them online) and hold up well in the pantry or refrigerator. When using fresh fruits, I may use blueberries, sliced bananas or apples.
The addition of nuts & seeds will add protein and a nice crunch. Many nuts & seeds contain essential omegas that are heart healthy making them another good reason to add a small handful. You can use any combo of walnuts, pepitas (pumpkin seeds), almonds, hemp hearts, chia seeds and pecans.It’s the perfect everyday oatmeal to get me going, or end my day! Sometimes I have oatmeal for dinner. ♥
- 3/4 cup quick oats
- 1 1/4 cup water
- 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk, divided
- 1 – 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 1/4 heaping teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon cardamom
- small handful mixed nuts (I used walnuts and pepitas)
- small handful dried or fresh fruit ( I used currants and barberries)
Bring water to a boil in a small saucepan. Stir in 3/4 cup oats, reduce heat to medium and cook for 1 1/2 minutes. Add 1/4 cup milk and cook another 30 seconds. Remove from heat, cover and let stand for 2 to 3 minutes.
Place oatmeal in your serving bowl, top with cinnamon, cardamom, nuts, seeds and berries. Drizzle maple syrup over top and some of the remaining milk. Give a good stir and enjoy!
It tastes great with a morning cup of coffee, green tea or lemon water.
Give or take on both the oatmeal and water when cooking, using more or less as needed.
Use rolled or steel cut oats if you prefer, cook according to package instructions.
If you don’t like the flavor of maple, use coconut nectar or pure cane brown sugar.
Dried fruits you might like to use…cranberries, blueberries, goji berries, raisins, currants, barberries, chopped dates, apricots and cherries. Fresh fruits can be blueberries, apples and bananas.
Nuts and seeds you might like to use are almonds, walnuts, pecans, pepitas, hemp hearts and chia seeds.