The best of both worlds

January 25, 2012

Dirty little secret time.

I used to think “skipping breakfast? – no biggie”, gulp down a cup (or 4…) of coffee and last until lunch.  Breakfast was never a big part of my day.  Even when I was younger, I can probably count the number of times I remember having breakfast before heading to school.  Its pretty clear now-a-days that breakfast is pretty darn important – and once you start eating breakfast, it is HARD to stop.  And nor should you.  Ever since moving to B’more, I’ve tried especially hard to incorporate breakfast as part of my healthy lifestyle.  The trick, is getting it to be a healthy and for me, TIMELY breakfast.  I haven’t worked it to the point where I can sit down and enjoy breakfast during the week yet – especially not with working out in the AM.  I don’t feel rushed and I make sure if I can, to eat it before I walk out the door.  While cereal can be healthy, it doesn’t fill me up enough to keep me from being hungry during the day.  And that’s the thing, if I’m going to eat breakfast and get that metabolism going, I want it to keep me satisfied for a few hours at least.  Cheerios won’t cut it.  Besides, I’m an eater.  Gimme food!  Oatmeal, I find is a healthy way to keep full and start your day right! (Man, I sound like a commercial…).  However.  Oatmeal can take precious morning minutes to make – so what’s a gal to do!?!?!?  <insert dramatic pause here>

Ok, just kidding.  But seriously, I don’t have time to make a bowl of oatmeal every morning and figure out what goes in it, etc etc.  My solution?   Baked oatmeal.  Its easy to make the weekend before and keeps really well for the week.    The great thing about baked oatmeal for me, is that its kind of like stir fry – it’s a great way to experiment with flavors etc., and see what combos you like.  Not only does this help you figure out flavor combos, it’s a fun way to add variety in your diet, I think.  Although, I’m pretty guilty of keeping a few staples in the baked oatmeal, this week, I’m really happy with my oatmeal of the week concoction!

My inspiration for this week was smoothies.  I love love love the idea of smoothies in the morning, particularly GREEN smoothies.  I’ve been sitting on this recipe from for an eternity now.  I always worry about getting enough greens in my diet and am equally intrigued by the idea of having them at breakfast.  For awhile I had been thinking about using a smoothie base for my baked oatmeal, and when I saw ANOTHER recipe from that made me go “um. Duh?”.  Sometimes you just need that little nudge.  Sigh.  So with those two inspirations, I came up with a banana-kale baked oatmeal.

Drowning in Almond Milk...

And before you get all freaked out about kale in a breakfast food, hear me out.   1.  I didn’t use that much kale.  2.  The frozen banana is pretty awesomely sweet.  3.  This baked oatmeal is pretty awesomely awesome.

Banana-Kale Baked Oatmeal (adapted from Amish Heritage Cookbook recipe)

1 frozen banana

1 cup  “Kale Milk”.  (To make this, I used loveeatrun’s idea of blending the milk and kale in my food processor. I used 1% milk (saved the Almond milk for on top of the oatmeal) and a small handful of blanched frozen kale.   Fun fact, whizzing together the milk at high speeds resulted in a nice thick frothy whipped consistency. I like to think this made my oatmeal taste 10X better…

Scant 1/4 cup cooking oil (Goal is to cut this down pretty significantly by the end with applesauce)

1 tsp baking powder

Scant ½ cup brown sugar (another not necessary ingredient, with the frozen banana, but the flavor is delish!)

1 .5 cups rolled oats

Cinnamon (to taste)

1 egg

Flax seed (to…taste?  I just sprinkle a bit into the mix)


This is really easy to make.  Just blend together the Kale Milk and next the frozen banana (do you know the trick of putting bananas in the freezer?).  Add this to mix of dry ingredients and the egg.  Stir it up and bake at 275 until done.   This particular recipe fills up a 9×9 pyrex and I have plenty to eat for the week!

We don’t have a microwave, so I eat mine cold with a little bit lot of milk

(and a cup of coffee…) but it’d be delicious warmed up!

I’ve made this particular recipe a number of times and feel pretty comfortable in being able to cut back some of the oil and sugar and messing around with other ingredients instead.   To make it more nutritious for next time, I’m going to use more kale and combo it with spinach, so I can really amp up the greens.  I’m thinking I may add some nut butter or greek yogurt to the mix also for some added protein and keep the flax seed.  Sub out some oil with applesauce and reduce the sugar by using a frozen banana and I’ll be super happy.  Some day I’d love to try Chia seeds.  Anyone out there ever try the seeds?  Like ‘em?  Love ‘em?  Can’t stand ‘em?

Any other ideas for how to put together a “make it ahead of time” healthy breakfast?


One Response to “The best of both worlds”

  1. andy1076 Says:

    That works 🙂 🙂

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