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Making a healthy breakfast doesn’t have to be hard! In this post, I’ll show you how to make the most creamy, satisfying and healthy oatmeal bowl for breakfast that will energize your day. Plus you’ll find a few of my favorite yummy tips for customizing your oatmeal so you can make a healthy breakfast you’ll actually look forward to eating!
What are the Benefits of Oatmeal?
Chocolate Raspberry topped Oatmeal Bowl
Oatmeal contain slow carbohydrates, protein, essential fatty acids and antioxidants:
1. Soluble Fiber
It can reduce cholesterol level, blood sugar and constipation.
2. Complex Carbs Increase fullness
It take more time for stomach to empty so you are less likely to be starving mid-morning and grab every snack in the vending machine at work.
3. Great source of prebiotic
This means oatmeal feeds good bacteria and promotes a healthy gut
Read more here.
What Oats to use for Overnight Oatmeal?
There are a few kinds of oatmeal options out there, you can read more about them here. But the main difference is due to how much the oat groats has been processed, which result in different texture and cooking time.
1. Steel Cut
Processed the least, takes longest to cook to soften
2. Rolled Oats (Old-Fashioned)
Steamed to softened, pressed to flatten
3. Instant Oats
Take the shortest time to cook, which is what you may know as the microwave version oatmeal packs
My personal favorite is rolled oats, aka old-fashioned oats for soaking overnight. I get the gluten-free version on amazon. It soaks up the milk ands spices you add in them overnight just perfectly. Unlike rolled oats, steel cut oatmeal will still need to be cooked on the stove or in the microwave after soaking all night. On the other hand, instant oats will just get soggy and turn into baby food.
Difference between Overnight and Regular Oats?
1. It “cooks” overnight and is ready for you in the morning
When I was working my 9-5 corporate job, the last thing I wanted to think about was to cook breakfast in the morning. When you have to go the gym, shower, put makeup on figure out outfits, blah blah the list goes on. Having your breakfast ready in the fridge ready to grab-n-go is the most perfect, healthy and delicious solution.
2. Soaking Oats help us digest better
Having your oatmeal soaked overnight can make it easier for our bodies to digest. Oats contain a high amount of phytic acid which can act as an inhibitor for important digestive enzymes. Therefore, high phytic acid can reduce the nutrition value in a meal. Overnight, the oats swell up and phytic acid is reduced.
What to soak the oatmeal in?
Traditionally, oatmeal is cooked in hot water or milk on the stove. But nowadays with so many alternative products available for any dietary restrictions you may have, the sky is unlimited.
“Old-Fashioned”: Full fat or reduced fat Milk
Make it dairy-free: Use nut milk such as almond, cashew and coconut
Make it nut-free: Use flax or oat milk
How to sweeten and spice up oatmeal?
This is all depending on personal preference when it comes to sweeteners and spices. But I do have a feel tips and tricks to share with you when it comes to how I choose and shop my sweeteners and spices.
Maple Syrup: Find the ones that only has a SINGLE ingredient..
Honey: Buy Local if you can. And again, choose the ones that only has “Honey” on its ingredient list. (I mean what else can bees put in honey other than honey, right?)
Ripe or caramelized bananas: This may be my favorite way to sweeten up a lot of my recipes, especially as oatmeal toppings.
Frozen or fresh berries: First, choose the ones in season, when you can. BUT, you don’t have to feel you must buy fresh ones if they don’t fit in your budget. The frozen berries are just as nutritious (read more here).
Nut Butter: Nut butters like cashew, peanut and almond naturally have a little bit of sweetness to them. They are also my staples for a healthy and satisfying breakfast.
So now, what about spice? I have a few of my go-to spices that I add to almost everything.
Cinnamon: It provides a hint of sweetness and lots of health benefits.
Cacao Powder: Does it count as a spice? Yes, chocolate is everything (check out this chocolate overnight oats recipe)
Turmeric: It is one of my favorite warming spices in a winter day. It provides great anti-inflammatory benefit.
When it comes to overnight oats, it is like a blank canvas. The sky is unlimited for you to choose any of your preferred spices, superfood powder, protein powder and toppings. So you can easily change up your breakfast.
Why Nut Butter and Oats are great together?
I love peanut butter. Anyone else? Although I don’t eat as much as I used to. Because I have discovered my love for almond and cashew butter which are great substitutions for Peanut Butter.
Nut butter contain great source of protein and healthy fats. It is a great addition to elevate your breakfast oatmeal game to another level. However, one quick note is that nut butter is fairly high in calorie, so if you are watching your intake, you should be more conscious about the amount added.
To choose the right nut butter in a grocery store is once again, to check the ingredient list. You want to look for the ones that ONLY has one ingredient, preferably. Although, those aren’t widely available. The next great option is the ones without added sugar or palm oil. In fact, one of my rule of thumbs when it comes to judging ingredient list is ” Nothing I can’t pronounce”
Here are a couple allergy friendly substitutions to choose as toppings for your breakfast oatmeal:
Nuts allergy alternative: Try sunflower seeds butter. Trader joes has a really yummy one, as well as Sunbutter.
Nuts and Seeds Free: However, if you can’t consumer any of these, try some full fat yogurt (I love fage and siggis) or coconut yogurt for vegan option.
I hope these are helpful when it comes to building a healthy breakfast overnight oats bowl. Now scroll down to check out the full recipe for this yummy oatmeal. Don’t forget to pin it and share it with your friends and family.
Disclosure: some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This does not result in any extra cost for you, but it does mean that I make a commission if you click through and make a purchase.
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