Tag Archives: oats

Baked Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal

I wanted something decadent yesterday in the worst way! Something sweet and delicious, but all we had was crunchy peanut butter, so I ate some.  With a spoon. Straight out of the jar. Ever done that?  (you should!)

After that, I was still on a sugar hunt, so I decided to make some no bake, mason jar oatmeal for this morning.  And then I decided that I wanted something different and I’d find something to bake, but I didn’t want it to be hard.  Mornings have their own set of challenges, so who wants to make it more complicated, right?  Here’s what I came up with and I think it turned out perfectly.

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First, you’re going to start this the night before with these ingredients:  (this process takes all of 5 minutes and I cook for six people, so this should work for almost anyone’s busy morning!)

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Fill your mason jars about 1/2 to 3/4 of the way full with old fashioned oats and place three or four heaping tablespoons of pumpkin pie puree on top. Then, press it down with a spoon.  I used a canned version of pumpkin that had nothing else added. The ingredients literally say: 100% pumpkin puree and nothing else. Try to find that because we’re going to add all the good stuff and you don’t want extra things you can’t really pronounce, right?

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Then, pour 1 or 2 tablespoon of maple syrup, 1 heaping teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice and 1 or 2 drops of vanilla extract on top.  Then, slowly pour some dairy-free milk into your jars while sliding a knife around the edge to get the milk all the way to the bottom and incorporated into the oatmeal very well.

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If you look in the top left corner of that picture, you see a blue thing lying in the floor. That’s our Pug’s chewy toy.  He sits in the kitchen while I cook because he thinks he’s human and all food is really made just for him. His name is Loki. Here’s a picture for you because I’d like to introduce you to my fur baby:

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How cute is he?!   …I digress…

When you’re finished, the entire jar of oatmeal and spices should be nicely covered in your milk, but not floating in it.  Place caps on your jars and stick this in the fridge overnight. Too easy!!

In the morning, you’ll find that the milk has soaked into your oatmeal and it’s ready to go! Preheat your oven to 350 and then pour your oatmeal into an oven safe pan. I use a cast iron skillet.

It’s ugly, but it gets so much better:

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Smooth your oatmeal out and top with pecans.  Drizzle some more organic maple syrup and a tiny bit of organic brown sugar over the top and place your pan into a 350 degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes.  Serve in individual bowls and top with cinnamon and more milk to taste. (I love cinnamon, so I used it pretty liberally and only used a splash of “cream”.)

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When I woke up this morning, my sweet tooth and craving for something over the top had passed.  It turns out that this was perfect!  It wasn’t too sweet, but sweet enough that I was pleased with the results.  You can add or take away depending on your own tastes to make it as sweet as you’d like.  The warm oatmeal keeps this feeling like a really wonderful breakfast and the pumpkin flavor makes it feel like a special occasion.  Always a good thing.

Kristi  🙂

No Bake Chewy Chocolate Cranberry Bars

Hello.  My name is Kristi and I’m a chocoholic.  I’m also vegan and learning to love myself and take care of myself.  So, to combine those two things, I made chewy chocolate cranberry bars.  It could be love.

First, grab these ingredients:

Old fashioned oats, raw organic almonds, organic cocao powder, sea salt, medjool dates, maple syrup, organic coconut oil, chia or flaxseeds, dairy-free chocolate chips (I used mini, but whatever you like will do) and organic dried cranberries.  All of this is easily found at most grocery stores, but Whole Foods and The Fresh Market have all of them for sure.

Next, toss 1 cup of the oats and 1/2 cup of the almonds into your processor. I’ve found that these two items are a must in my vegan pantry, by the way!

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Mix them until they are well processed, almost like a flour, then toss 1/2 cup of cocao and a pinch of salt in and blend.

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Then add 1/2 cup of chia or flaxseed and pulse for a few seconds.  Add around eleven to thirteen dates.  The moisture content will determine how many you want.  I used eleven in this batch, but have had to use as many as thirteen. If your dates aren’t moist enough, soak them for 30 minutes and they’ll be fine.  After blending these ingredients, add 1 tablespoon of coconut oil and 2 tablespoons of maple syrup.  I used the coconut oil because it’s good and because of it’s well known use in keeping blood sugars level.  I added the maple syrup one tablespoon at a time and pulsed between the additions.

Place this mixture in a glass bowl and add 1/2 cup of dairy-free chocolate chips and 1/2 cup of the cranberries.

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Mix these ingredients together by hand until they are well incorporated and then place them in a small glass casserole dish.  I used an 8 x 8 one that worked great.  Press the mixture down with your fingers and try to make it as uniform as you can.  I always have a few chips left over in the bowl, so I dump them on top and press them into the mixture because who wastes chocolate, right?

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Place the casserole dish in the fridge for 30 minutes so the mixture can set and it cuts much easier, as well.  (Or you can spoon it out now.  No judgement from me, folks.)

Then, cut it into bars and eat up.

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These are chewy fabulousness and so easy to take with you if you’re on the run.  As a bonus, they are sweet and healthy!

Enjoy!

Kristi  🙂

Raw Vegan Chocolate Oatmeal Energy Bites

These little bites of energy are so good they make me want to do a happy dance.  I’ve made no secret that sugar is my vice and my biggest food weakness.  I love sugar and I once thought that the only kind of sugar that could satisfy was the kind that eats away at our cell walls and the kind that helps make Krispy Kreme so successful. (You know, the kind that makes us obese and creates a low-level addiction?  Yeah…that kind.)  I was wrong.  (again)  These babies have chocolate in them, too! (it’s dairy and soy free!) In my world, that’s a win-win.

Get yourself some old-fashioned oats and pour two cups of them into a bowl:

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Then, add 3/4 cup of dairy-free chocolate.  I use this kind:

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They also make mini-chips if you don’t want the large chunks.  I prefer the chunks in these, but the minis will work just fine and may suit some people’s taste better. 

Next, add 3/4 cup peanut butter. (I used organic, all natural peanut butter, so I had more peanut oil in mine. If you use the PB with more additives in it, you may need more or less depending on your personal preference)  Add 1/2 cup of local, raw, unprocessed honey or organic maple syrup.  I know some vegans don’t eat honey, but I do and because of its superfood status will continue to do so. The maple syrup may call for less than 1/2 cup. I’ve never used it, but it could be substituted here.  Finally, add 3/4 cup of chia seeds or flax seed, whichever you prefer and  3 or 4 drops of vanilla extract and mix everything together very well with a large spoon or fork.

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Once everything is mixed, take a spoonful and roll them into balls with your hand.  Also, keep a small bowl of water handy to dip your fingers into.  These are sticky and the water keeps it from sticking to your hand and helps it to form and hold its shape better.  (You could always just eat it by the spoonful, too.  Wanna guess how that thought came to mind?)

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These are packed with fiber, antioxidants and goodness.  They are sweet enough that one or two is plenty to stop your sweet tooth in its tracks, too.  (always a bonus for me)  I’ve found that having this kind of food on hand helps me to focus on eating more raw and healthy foods because I’m not obsessing over a Snickers.  You may, or may not, struggle with a sweet tooth (I’m giving you the stink eye if you don’t), but I do and I’ve made an effort to find things that satisfy and create health at the same time.  These are easily portable, too, and that’s another bonus for me.  Slap a few of these in a ziplock and your afternoon craving or slump just took a fast hike!

Enjoy!

Kristi  🙂