My son loves oatmeal! He even went through a mini phase of asking me for oatmeal every morning for breakfast...no matter if I was offering him pancakes or cinnamon rolls (really)! Only problem that I was not comfortable with, was the type of oatmeal he was fascinated with and really the only kind he was ever given--instant!
So I have really been trying to step away from harboring a pantry full of food with preservatives. It hasn't been easy! Unfortunately, pretty much everything convenient in the store has preservatives and unless you shop in a health food store and happen to have the money to spend on the goods, you are kind of SOL! Well, that is our dilemma anyway... we live on a military base and we are conveniently only like 1 minute away from our base's commissary and the prices are decent, so naturally we are compelled to do our shopping there.
I am aware there are plenty of healthy stuff in a regular store too but unlike a health food store, you really can't just grab items off the shelf and trust that what ingredients are in the box are good for your family. With my new "preservative free" life changes, my shopping list takes several hours compared to what it use to be. I know that once we figure out the good stuff vs. the bad, it won't take as long (I for one hope not!); until then, I will continue to scope out the minimal good stuff and find homemade replacements (and much tastier) for the products we need to part with.
Enter....Blueberry Chia Oatmeal! On first glance of reading the original recipe for this, I may have recoiled slightly. After a quick Google search on a little about the ingredients that I have never heard of (like chia seeds, which if you haven't already guessed it, are the same chia seeds that you grow a Chia Pet with), and a few changes to suit my preference, I was very eager to make this oatmeal! Let me tell you, I WILL be making this one again...and again! Bonus if you have kids? It turns purple (yay!)
Pumpkin-Blueberry Chia Oatmeal
1 C frozen blueberries
2 tbsp hot water
1 C uncooked old fashioned rolled oats
1-1/2 C water
1/8 tsp salt
2 tbsp pumpkin puree
4 tsp chia seeds
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp ground flax seeds
3 tbsp chopped walnuts
1 tsp brown sugar
1/2 C almond milk or soy (I used plain but I bet vanilla will be good too)
In a small bowl, add the blueberries with the 2 tbsp hot water, set aside while the berries thaw a little and plump up.
In a saucepan, boil 1 C water with the salt. Stir in the oats, cook over medium heat for 5 min until most the water in the pan is absorbed. Stir in pumpkin.
Meanwhile, in another small bowl, mix together chia seeds, cinnamon, flax seeds, walnuts, & brown sugar. Stir mixture into the oatmeal, add the blueberries (including any liquid from them), & the almond milk. Mix until well combined. Distribute into bowls, prepare to be amazed at how awesome you will feel after this energy boosting breakfast!
(Source: adapted from kblog.lunchboxbunch.com )