As the days become shorter and the wintery cold days become more frequent I love a good hearty stick to your ribs kind of breakfast to keep me full and warm until lunch. Oatmeal is perfect for that.
Baked oatmeal is great for one of those grab & go type of mornings. You can make a large batch for the week and slice the oatmeal into squares that are ready to grab on your way out the door. If you have more time, I love re-heating the slice in the oven and either pouring a little almond milk over the oatmeal or topping it off with a scoop of plain yogurt and granola. For a healthy dessert coconut milk ice cream is another perfect option to scoop onto the slice once it has become heated and crispy in the oven. It reminds me a little bit of an apple crisp!
This baked oatmeal is filled with fall inspired spices that pair well with apples; cinnamon and nutmeg. Cloves would be a great addition to the dish, but I unfortunately didn't realize I didn't have any on hand! I decided to add Barney's bare smooth almond butter in the baked oatmeal. It is made with blanched almonds and nothing else! It provides such a creamy texture to the mix without having an overpowering almond butter taste. Plus, it adds some healthy fats and makes the baked oatmeal more filling. Instead of adding a sweet element to the mix such as honey and maple syrup, I used one of my new favorite almond milks from The New Barn. It is already sweetened with maple syrup so I didn't think an extra addition would be necessary.
One tip I have for the dish, if you plan to layer the apples on top of the oatmeal like I did, is to sautée the apples over the stove top in a little coconut oil and cinnamon. This will ensure that the apples are cooked through. I chose to use Fuji apples because they are sweet but using a granny smith apple with provide a nice tart contrast to the sweet tasting oatmeal.
The recipe is gluten free, dairy free and can be made vegan if you omit the eggs. The eggs aren't necessary. It simply adds a more cake-like texture to oatmeal and will keep it moist throughout the week- that is if there is any leftovers!
Prep: 15 mins Cook time: 45 mins
Total: 1 hour
1 medium Fuji apple
4 cups gluten free rolled oats
3 tablespoons chia seeds
2 tsp. sea salt
2-3 tablespoons cinnamon
1-2 tsp. nutmeg
2 tsp. baking powder
3 1/4 cups of The New Barn almond milk
2 organic eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 cup of bare smooth Barney's almond butter
Chopped toasted walnuts
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9x13 inch baking dish with coconut oil and set aside.
In a large bowl mix together the gluten free oats, chia seeds, cinnamon, baking powder, sea salt, and nutmeg. Set aside.
In a separate bowl mix together the eggs, almond milk, coconut oil, vanilla.
Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients. Add the almond butter to the mix. I heated mine for a few seconds so it was easier to mix into the batter.
At this point you can either dice the apples (skin on) and mix together or cut them into thin slices and add them to the top of oatmeal once poured into the baking dish. If you place the apple slices on top you can drizzle the slices with a little extra coconut oil and sprinkle cinnamon or coconut sugar on top!
Bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until the top is golden brown / crispy and the apples have soften. For an extra crunchy topping, I like to broil the baked oatmeal for just the last few minutes. Serve warm.