The most stressful hour of my day is between 7 and 8am. My workdays are usually action-packed, filled with meetings and important decisions; however, nothing compares the stress of getting two kids up, dressed, fed and ready for school. My two-year-old daughter already has strong opinions on what she wears and my 4-year-old son is often as difficult to wake as a teenager! Once they are finally downstairs, I’m faced with the challenge of feeding them something nourishing that they actually want to eat.
In an effort to reduce morning stress and streamline the am routine, I have been trying to do as much as possible the night before. A few weeks ago, I tried a recipe for baked oatmeal, which was a big hit with both kids! It takes a bit of time to bake in the evening but then can be easily reheated for breakfast. My daughter likes hers cut up (almost mushed) in a bowl with warm milk and my son prefers to eat his like a cake with a little yogurt and maple syrup drizzled over top.
A great thing about this recipe is that it’s very adaptable – the fruit can be swapped for whatever you have in the fridge or freezer and the milk can be replaced with your favourite soy, almond, or coconut milk. The recipe below is an “apple crisp” version since we went apple picking this weekend but I first made it with some local peaches that were past their prime. I am thinking about trying a tropical version next week with coconut milk, bananas and coconut. It’s one of those great recipes where you can get creative and always enjoy!
Baked “Apple Crisp” Oatmeal
Adapted from Epicurious
Serves: 6 (this covers breakfast for 2-3 days in our house)
- 2 cups rolled oats (not instant)
- ¼ cup agave or maple syrup (to taste)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1.5 teaspoons cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- 2 cups of milk (or soy or almond or coconut)
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 3 tablespoons of butter (or vegetable oil or coconut oil)
- 2 teaspoons organic vanilla
- 2 cups of peeled, cored, chopped apples
- Optional: ½ cup of chopped toasted nuts
- Preheat oven to 375 F. Grease the insides of an 8 inch pan.
- Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl and then add in wet ingredients and apples. Stir to combine.
- Pour into the 8 inch pan and bake for 35-45 minutes until it is set and nicely golden on top.
- Let cool slightly, slice and enjoy or cover and reheat individual pieces in the morning. Serve with more fresh fruit, yogurt or maple syrup as desired.