Magical (Maybe) Healthy (Definitely) Chocolate Chip Oatmeal
Once upon a time, there was a sweet little girl who loved oatmeal. The only decent tasting oatmeal her mother knew how to cook came in a box with individual packets inside. Add water or milk and microwave. Easy cheesy. The little girl LOVED oatmeal. She would happily eat it for breakfast every.single.day.
At first, her mother patted herself on the back, because her daughter loved oatmeal. Oatmeal just sounds so . . . healthy. But, over time, the little girl’s mother began to be concerned about the amount of sugar in the little individual packages. And then there was the fact that the little girl would eat it EVERY.SINGLE.DAY. AND, that as the little girl grew, it was not uncommon for her to want TWO or MORE packages of the oatmeal that seemed to contain LOTS of sugar, a little bit of oats, possibly a tiny bit of chopped up dried fruit, and a good bit of artificial something-or-other.
(It actually wasn’t until MUCH later that the mother discovered that the “Strawberries” in the packets weren’t even strawberries; the “Peaches” weren’t peaches. That there were NO strawberries or peaches at all. Thankfully, by then, the mother had moved on.)
So, the mother started exploring other healthier options.
Like this one:
Sadly, while the mother did feel better about these alternatives, the little girl did NOT like them NEARLY as much as the packets from the box with the man with the hat on them. Come to find out, it can be a little difficult to transition from eating LOTS of sugar and fake flavors to less sugar and natural flavors. Particularly when you are 3 or 4 years-old and rather determined to have things go your way.
Then . . . MIRACLE of MIRACLES, a kind family member invited the little girl for a sleepover with her cousins (second cousins, to be precise). The little girl had a wonderful time, and after her mother (and she) survived the world’s WORST TEMPER TANTRUM EVER over having to leave the magical sleepover, AND the nap that was REQUIRED once they arrived home, the mother went to wake the little girl up. The mother told the little girl how glad she was that she had enjoyed her time there. And the first words out of the little girl’s mouth?
“Oooh, mommy! They had the BEST oatmeal!”
(Seriously? Her first slumber party and this is what stuck in her mind?)
So, OF COURSE, the mommy was contractually obligated to get in touch and get the recipe . . . forever after referred to around their home as “Lizy’s Special Oatmeal” in honor of one of the cousins.
It’s been tweaked and tweaked and re-tweaked over the years, but HERE, ladies and gentlemen is the miracle oatmeal that changed our oatmeal habits around our home forever and allowed us to transition peacefully to a packet-free, oatmeal-filled (I kid you not, we’re eating through a 50 pound bag at the moment at a steady pace) existence. And, you’ll be glad to know (because I’m sure you care) that we eat other flavors besides this one, as well. But this . . . with no further adieu . . is the magical stuff that started it all:
- ⅓ cup rolled oats
- ⅔ cup water
- 1 Tbsp ground flax
- 1Tbsp raw almond butter
- ½ Tbsp coconut oil
- ½ tsp cinnamon (we like it pretty cinnamon-y. You can use ¼ tsp if you do not.)
- ½ tsp chia
- 1 TBSP raw honey
- A few (I usually shoot for about 12) regular sized chocolate chips
- Heat all ingredients (except honey and chocolate chips) on medium-low heat until oats are cooked as you prefer (about 5-7 minutes). Stir well to break up and incorporate almond butter.
- Remove from heat and add:
- Tbsp raw honey (you can add stevia if you prefer it sweeter but don’t want to add more sugars)
- A few chocolate chips (around here, we usually “hide” a few in the bottom of the bowl It motivates my son to do more than just eat them off the top.)
- A sprinkle of ground bee pollen and some cacao nibs, if you’re really the adventurous sort.
I wish I could promise that it would be magical for everyone, but I can DEFINITELY tell you that it was magical for us! Thanks Lizy!
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