Posts tagged ‘Oatmeal’

{Healthy} Banana Oatmeal Bread

What do you do when you have multiple bananas that look like this?

How about call a friend with it?

Ring, ring, ring, ring, ring, ring, ring, bananaphone!

Ya, maybe not. It kept dropping my calls…

Okay, next idea… Make banana bread with those “ugly,” brown bananas!

And not just any banana bread. Make my healthified healthy banana bread. Yes, it’s two times the healthy! I healthified (yes, it’s a word…) a recipe for healthy Banana-Oatmeal Bread from Cooking Light.

I took the original recipe, cut the sugar in half (1 cup became 1/2 cup) and replaced the 7 tbsp of oil with a pureed apple. You could also use 7 tbsp apple sauce. The rest of the recipe and instructions stayed the same, except I did bake the bread for not as long as original recipe called for (55mins instead of 70min). It was sort of an experiment and I wasn’t sure what to expect, but the bread came out great!

The result was a slightly sweet, moist bread that was dense but not oily and had a nice bite to it, thanks to the oatmeal. I’m not a fan of super sweet or oily sweet-breads, so this bread is great for me. It doesn’t taste overly healthy either. My family loved it, too!

Need serving suggestions? For breakfast, schmear it with peanut butter and top with banana slices. Stick it in the toaster (oven) for a crispy, gooey treat. Follow my lead, and top it with vanilla ice cream, peanut butter chips and chocolate chips for a simple but special dessert. Microwave it for maybe half a minute to up the amazingness… or just snag a piece straight out of the oven. I won’t tell.

I believe this recipe would make wonderful muffins.

The yellow banana below dreams of the day it’s mature and ripe enough to be made into banana bread.

But for now, that banana is “enjoying” its life as my bright yellow bananaphone…

I know, you’re jealous. 😉

Question: What is your favorite type of bread?

My favorite sweet bread is banana with chocolate chips and peanut butter, either inside or on top. My favorite “regular” breads are grainy breads and wheat baguette with dried fruit and nuts in it.

……….

Sorry this is such last minute notice, but I wanted to let you know that due to summer plans, my posting will be very infrequent and irregular up through August. I am leaving today to work as a camp counselor at an overnight summer camp, where internet and phone service will be very limited. I’ll be sure to take lots of photos (especially of food, since food at camp rocks!) and I’ll try to post when I can. I’ll be back to my regular, weekly posts at the end of August. Thanks for baring (is that the correct spelling for the use? haha) with me, and I hope you’ll continue reading my blog!! I’ll miss stalking reading all of your lovely blogs, too.

May 30, 2011 at 9:00 am 4 comments

No-Bake Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Bars

I am very happy. I “baked” in my dorm. I made something “baked” with my two hands.

Okay, so I didn’t actually bake anything. I “no baked” something, oatmeal bars. The only appliance I used was a freezer (part of the MicroFridge in my dorm). The great thing about no-bake baked goods is that they are ready in no time. They are fast. You can eat the dough straight out of the mixing bowl (no need to wait for it to bake in an oven), or you can shape and refrigerate them for an anytime treat. They also require little clean up. The only tools I used was a (small) bowl, spoon, and sandwich-sized plastic bags.

To make my No-Bake Peanut Butter Bars, I started with a recipe by Averie from Love Veggies and Yoga for Vegan No-Bake Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Protein Bars and adapted it to my resources (my “pantry” foods, utensils, bowls, etc).

Here is what I ended up with:

No-Bake Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Bars

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Ripe Banana
  • 3/4 c. Oats
  • 1/4 c. Shredded Coconut (I used unsweetened)
  • 1/4 c. Raisins
  • 1/4 c. Chocolate chips (I used mini semi-sweet chocolate chips)
  • 1/4 c. Honey
  • 1/4 c. Peanut butter
  • Optional: 1/8 c. Virgin Coconut Oil (Helps solidify the bars and adds healthy fats.)

Instructions:

Step 1: Mash half a banana in a bowl.

Super ripe (brown) bananas are perfect for this recipe because they are very sweet and their mushy texture doesn’t matter since they get mushed up anyway.

Squishy + mushy = Smushie! Banana + smushie = Delish!

Step 2: Add the rest of the ingredients all at once and mix! Or, you can add them in in groups and mix after each set of additions.


I may or may not have snagged a few chocolate chips before adding the rest into the mix. 🙂

It’s already looking delicioso!

That white stuff is coconut oil. It’s rich in essential fatty acids, which are the “good fats” that doctors recommend, and is free of cholesterol and trans fat. Learn more about it here. It’s an optional ingredient but helps solidify the bars because it’s solid at room temp.

Now, you have a decision to make. Give in to temptation, and eat it all as is. (Super yum!) Or, go onto step 3. (Double yum!)

Step 3: Put into a sandwich-sized plastic bag and flatten. (If you double the recipe, you can flatten it into an 8×8 pan.) Then, stick it into the freezer, or fridge, for a few hours.

Step 4: Take out of the freezer and remove the plastic bag.

Step 5: Cut into equal-sized bars. I cut 8 rectangles. I suggest you use a sharp knife, if you have access to one. I used a dinner knife, which didn’t cut very cleanly.

Sorry for the bad lighting in the photo (and other photos). I took them on my desk where the lighting isn’t very good.

Step 6: Wrap them up individually in plastic wrap or plastic bags. Or, put a few in a bag together. Store in the fridge/freezer.

These bars came out way better than I’d hope. They are moist and chewy. Peanut butter is the strongest flavor and is wonderfully complimented by the other additions. They make a great snack, pre-workout energy boost, or post-meal sweet treat. They are great alternatives to store-bought oatmeal bars because they are made of wholesome, natural ingredients and they are not filled with preservatives.

These bars are also extremely customizable. Instead of making bars, you can also shape them into cookie or ball shapes. You can also add different ingredients to them or switch out ingredients for others to suit you likes. Some suggestions: add 1-2 scoops protein powder; add 1 tbsp flax or chia seeds; switch raisins for another dried fruit; switch chocolate chips for butterscotch, white chocolate, or carob chips; switch PB for another nut butter; add chopped nuts.

Just be creative with it! You really can’t go wrong.

Question: What’s your favorite no-bake recipe? What’s your favorite add-in combos?

February 13, 2011 at 2:25 pm Leave a comment

Dining Hall Eats: Oatmeal Introduction

This morning’s breakfast consisted of a hearty bowl of oatmeal from the dining hall. Although oatmeal can be quite delicious on it’s own, eating it plain can get boring after a while. Here, I will show you how I took this plain bowl of oatmeal from the dining hall…

…and turned it into a fun, tasty breakfast with full staying power.

First, I want to mention that I’m not currently at my own college (BU). I’m visiting my friend, Katie, at her college, so these photos are from my breakfast at Katie’s. (BU has very similar options.) This bowl of oatmeal was super hearty, grainy and full of flavor. Way better then BU’s oatmeal actually! Plus, I love this bowl. But, I digress…

The toppings I’m about to talk about are offered at most dining halls. They are not anything fancy, but when you put them all together or in combinations, the yumminess may surprise you.

Peanut Butter and Cottage Cheese:

PB is so amazing in oatmeal. It’s healthy and has amazing staying power. Seriously, it’s amazing how much longer I stay full when I add a tablespoon of peanut butter.

Also shown in the above photo is an awkward view of cottage cheese. Both cottage cheese and yogurt make fun mix-ins in oatmeal. For one, they are a great way to add protein, calcium and other health benefits to your oatmeal. I like how they make a bowl of oatmeal creamy and fluffy. I prefer the low-fat or non-fat varieties, which are luckily offered at BU. Even adding just a splash of milk can help give oatmeal a creamy taste.

Muffins:

I was inspired to add muffin crumbles to my oatmeal from reading Kath’s blog, Kath Eats Real Food. Usually, I just take the muffin top and crumble that on top of oatmeal. However, at Katie’s, they have mini muffins. Just look how cute this vegan carrot muffin looks in my hand…

I ended up crumbling the entire mini-muffin and putting it on my oatmeal.

Bananas:

When I make oatmeal at home or in my dorm, I usually mix banana slices into the oatmeal before cooking. (I’ll do a post on this soon!) When eating pre-made oatmeal in a dining hall or at a restaurant, I will often add banana slices or some other fruit on top. I love the combination of the banana and peanut butter in oatmeal. Delish! Apple slices, blueberries, strawberries and many other fruits also make great add-ins.

Cereal:

Although I didn’t add any this morning, a sprinkle of cereal is also tasty in oatmeal. It gives a normally creamy, soft bowl of oatmeal some crunch. I prefer granola or some other whole grain cereal.

***********

I was so, so excited about my food that I forgot to take a photo of the end product. Fail…  Just to give you an idea of what it looked like, I ended with this combo:

~ 3/4 cup pre-made oatmeal + 1/4 banana in slices + 1 mini vegan carrot muffin in crumbles+ 2 tsp PB

Delicious! Just looking at all the photos of the ingredients makes me drool. The muffin was definitely the star of this breakfast due to it’s addition of flavor and texture.

In the future, I will post more photos of my dining hall oatmeal creations as well as my in-dorm ones. Also, these tips are also useful for eating a a restaurants as you can often ask your waiter for many of these options on the side. You really can’t go wrong when it comes to oatmeal toppings. I hope I’ve inspired you to get creative with your oatmeal and maybe even start eating it in your dining hall (or at a restaurant for breakfast). For more inspiration, check out Kath’s Tribute to Oatmeal, which is loaded with drool-on-your-keyboard-worthy photos.

Question: What’s your favorite oatmeal add-in or combinations of add-ins?

January 29, 2011 at 10:53 am 4 comments


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