When I was a kid, our neighbor Mr. King, worked for General Mills and occasionally he would bring my Mom boxes of breakfast cereal. Not sure if they were factory rejects or he just enjoyed seeing small children hyped up on sugar, running around the house, but our pantry was always stocked with brightly colored boxes. Side note — when my Mom just couldn’t take us anymore, she would send us outside to run ten laps around the house. I admire her strength for not duct taping all of us together and shoving us in a closet.
Lucky Charms and Trix were my favorites. What’s a better way to start the day than with a bowlful of marshmallows and sugary milk? Looking back now, I also remember crashing hard a couple of hours later in class and having a hard time staying awake. Oh, the carefree days of not giving a crap about carbs, sugar or anything else we put into our bodies.
Recently, Mom gave me the basic recipe for steel cut oats. It was heartier and better tasting than instant oatmeal, but still a little too blah for me. After a quick Pinterest search, I found this recipe and adapted it slightly. The first time I made this, I didn’t have regular milk, so I used almond milk. I also bumped up the protein with EAS Lean vanilla protein powder. I’ve made this recipe many times without the protein powder and it’s very good. The protein gives it a little more staying power and you won’t be hungry for hours. It also makes it a little sweeter.
Besides the taste, my favorite thing about this recipe is I can make a batch on Sunday afternoon and have it for breakfast all week. This recipe does take a little time, but to me, a week’s worth of breakfast is worth it. I also like that the last serving tastes as good as the first. Zap in the microwave for about 1½ minutes, top with walnuts and a little maple syrup for a decadent, but healthy start to your day.
Pumpkin Pie Steel Cut Oats
Makes 6 Servings
Adapted from Organize Yourself Skinny
1 Tablespoon (14 g) unsalted butter
1 cup (160 g) steel cut oats
3 cups (720 ml) hot tap water
1 cup (244 g) pumpkin puree
1 cup (240 ml) almond milk
½ cup (47 g) EAS Lean 15 Vanilla Protein Powder (optional)
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
pinch of salt
Melt butter over low-medium heat in large sauce pan. Add steel cut oats and stir until fragrant, about 3 minutes.
Stir in 3 cups hot tap water, bring to a boil and then turn heat down to low. Simmer for 23-25 minutes, stirring occasionally.
While the oats cook, mix pumpkin, almond milk, protein powder, pumpkin pie spice, vanilla and salt together in another bowl. Add to oats, stir and then simmer for an additional 25 minutes. Stir frequently, as pumpkin will stick to the bottom of the pan.
After 25 minutes, the oats will be thicker, and will thicken up more as they cool. Place in a large bowl, let cool for about 15 minutes, cover and refrigerate. Once cooled completely, I slice into 6 sections. There you go…a healthy breakfast for your busy week. Enjoy!