Saturday, February 28, 2015

Blueberry Banana Oatmeal

Ever since I first discovered the convenience of microwavable oatmeal my freshman year of college, I've been hooked on the stuff.  Luckily, the microwave phase only lasted through my dorm years, because the real stuff is so much better tasting and better for you!  It's kind of like a blank canvas with unlimited topping possibilities!  On a normal day, I'll jazz it up a bit with some cinnamon sugar, raisins and walnuts.  But on the weekend, when my heart says blueberry pancakes but my brain tells me egg whites and a smoothie, I can compromise and make blueberry banana oatmeal!  With sweetness from fresh blueberries, banana, coconut and brown sugar, a little crunch from walnuts, some spice from ground cinnamon and a boost of protein, calcium and omega-3s from chia seeds, I have the perfect breakfast to satisfy my sweet tooth while staying on track.  It's seriously SO GOOD!

I got all of my ingredients ready before I started making the oatmeal because this recipe is FAST!  All the cooking action happens in less than 5 minutes, which is just how I like it at breakfast!  I feel like I'm never hungry right when I wake up on weekends, but once I am, I need food immediately or I could get a little crabby.  The same statement is not applicable to my coffee...that needs to be in hand within 10 minutes of getting out of bed!

I brought 1 cup of water to a boil, added a pinch of salt (if you leave this out your oatmeal will not taste as good), and stirred in 1/2 cup of rolled oats, as well as 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract.  I let the oatmeal get going for about a minute, then added my bananas and blueberries;  don't add them right away because you want these ingredients to soften, but don't want them to completely fall apart if they cook too long.  Be sure to reserve a few banana slices and blueberries for garnish if you want your breakfast to look pretty!  After another minute, I stirred in the brown sugar, cinnamon and coconut (reserve a little coconut too for the end!), and let it cook for about 2 more minutes until it was a nice, tight consistency. 

I transferred the oatmeal to a bowl and garnished it with the remaining blueberries and bananas, coconut, walnuts and chia seeds.  Just for kicks, I added a little drizzle of maple syrup because I was REALLY craving pancakes today.  This has gotta be the next best thing!  Obviously had to get that artsy breakfast spread shot with everything perfectly placed and color coordinated...

But this is an action shot, sitting at my table, eating my delicious food, reading Travel & Leisure, and planning my next adventure...

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