Almond Oat Berry Bake – Breakfast for a Chilly Morning

My mom has been a Good Housekeeping reader for over 40 years.  Even though I am overrun with magazines, she passes her issues on to me . While I don’t usually make time to read it cover to cover,  I at least skim the household hints and the month’s recipes. Quite a few of my test pile recipes are torn from GH, and they are easy to search and find on the GH website.

Breakfast for me for the past 6 months has been a shake or smoothie.  With the weather shifting into chilly mornings, I’m looking for something warm and comforting.  Cooking Light has a great baked oatmeal that I often make on a Sunday and reheat throughout the week.

http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/baked-oatmeal

This one in Good Housekeeping caught my eye:

http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/food-recipes/a16403/almond-oat-berry-bake-recipe-ghk0115/

Ingredients

2¾ c. lowfat milk
¼ c. melted butter
1 tbsp. vanilla extract
1 c. old-fashioned oats
1 c. quinoa
½ c. roasted, salted almonds
½ c. brown sugar
3 tbsp. chia seeds
1 tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
1 c. blueberries
2 c. strawberries
Lowfat vanilla yogurt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Coat 2 quart baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Place on foil-lined cookie sheet. In a medium bowl, whisk together milk, butter, and vanilla extract. In prepared baking dish, combine oats, quinoa, almonds, brown sugar, chia seeds, baking powder, and salt. Pour milk mixture over dry ingredients in baking dish. Top with blueberries and strawberries. Bake 45 minutes or until almost all liquid has been absorbed. Let stand 5 minutes before serving. Serve with vanilla yogurt, if desired.

A breakfast serving of this recipe (GH says it serves 6) packs over 400 calories, which is a little too much for my morning.  You could likely scale back the portion, but I made some easy changes to try to slim it down.  Here’s my version:

Ingredients

2¾ c. almond milk
1 Tbs  melted butter
1 Tbs vanilla extract
1 c old-fashioned oats (I used Irish steel-cut)
1 c quinoa
½ c walnuts (what I already had in the house)
2 Tbs brown sugar
3 tbsp chia seeds
1 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
3 c strawberries (I didn’t have any blueberries; a frozen berry blend would also work here) 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Coat 2 quart baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.  In a medium bowl, whisk together milk, butter, and vanilla extract. In prepared baking dish, combine oats, quinoa, almonds, brown sugar, chia seeds, baking powder, and salt. Pour milk mixture over dry ingredients in baking dish. Top with strawberries. Bake 45 minutes or until almost all liquid has been absorbed. Let stand 5 minutes before serving. Serve with vanilla yogurt, if desired.

2015-10-18 11.13.23

 My results:  The texture was okay.  I decreased the fat by reducing the butter and using the almond milk, which may have affected the oatmeal’s ability to stick together.  It was creamy, but would never slice into neat squares the way the Cooking Light oatmeal does.  I liked the crunch from the quinoa and walnuts, and the berries provide a great pop of flavor.  The flavor is not sweet at all, which is my goal in an oatmeal.  If you want it sweeter, you could add some honey or other sweetener (agave, splenda, applesauce, etc.) or use the original recipe’s 1/4 cup of sugar.

Verdict:  I’d stick with  my Cooking Light recipe, maybe adding in some quinoa with the oatmeal.  This version wasn’t bad, but it didn’t thrill me enough to make again.

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