Saturday, December 11, 2010

Oats and Granola

I have been trying ways to incorporate more oats into my diet. I have a hard time handling the texture of rolled oatmeal as a hot breakfast food. I tried one version of steel cut oats (much different texture than the rolled) with peanut butter and a little cocoa powder but I wasn't impressed. Thankfully, this morning I was able to come up with a winning recipe (not noted in the ingredients, but make as many ingredients organic! Especially the vanilla as it often contains HFCS. I want to try making my own vanilla using this recipe from Heavenly Homemakers, one of new fave sites!)!

Cranberry Almond Oatmeal (makes 2 servings)
1/2 c steel cut oatmeal
1 c water
1 tsp vanilla
2 T sliced almonds
1 T honey
1 T dried cranberries

Cook oatmeal according to directions. Mine said to boil water, add oatmeal, boil for 5 minutes then simmer for 30. This was for making a whole cup of oatmeal, but it didn't take nearly that long with only 1/2 cup. Add in the other ingredients and enjoy!

The next recipe I've made my own recently is the Chewy Granola Bar recipe from Heavenly Homemakers. I've tried 2 variations, the first with all steel cut oats which was alright, but the one below is GREAT! I realized that I needed to start making my own after becoming addicted to the Nature's Promise choco chip chewy granola bars. I knew that even though they were "natural" there were still ingredients in them that I didn't want in my body.

Choco Chewy Granola Bars
1 cup peanut butter
2/3 cup honey
1/2 cup coconut oil
2 1/2 cup oats (1/2 rolled, 1/2 steel cut) if the batter is too gooey you can add more
2/3 c each slivered almonds, unsweetened dried coconut, pumpkin seeds
1/4 organic semi-sweet chocolate chips
Melt PB, honey and oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Remove from heat and add oats, combine and then add seeds/chips. Add more oats if too sticky. Pour into 9x13" greased pan and place in refrigerator. Cut into bars when cool and hard. They pack well but should be kept cool or they will turn mushy. Delish!

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