Since we’ve pretty much weaned ourselves off the standard American diet (SAD – yep, that’s fitting) breakfast of dry cereal, one of our staples has become baked oatmeal. It’s easy to throw together, a pan will last us most of the week, and because we soak the oatmeal ahead of time, it makes it more nutritionally useful to our bodies than it would be otherwise. And of course, it offers endless variations – the last two we’ve made have been apple-cinnamon and pumpkin-walnut because there’s a lot of that stuff in our house right now.
Basic Soaked Baked Oatmeal
- 4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
- 4 cups water, plus a splash of apple cider vinegar
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 – 1 cup organic sugar, honey, or maple syrup
- 1 – 2 cups chopped or pureed fruit, nuts, or other add-ins (or skip the sugar and go savory, with sausage, peppers, and mushrooms)
In a large bowl, add the oats and water. The vinegar helps with the soaking process, but isn’t absolutely vital. Let it soak a good 8 – 12 hours. Overnight is good if you’re going to bake it in the morning. I tend to start soaking in the morning, then bake before bed. It should pretty quickly start to soak up most of the water – don’t worry that it’ll be too dry.
After soaking, add all the rest of the ingredients and stir well. Add to a 9 x 13 (or 7 x 11) pan and bake at 325 F for 30-35 minutes. And really, that’s it.
Cut it up and serve with a dollop of yogurt, and you’ve got a perfectly good start to the day!