Cook this: Baked cacao nib, strawberry & vanilla overnight oats

If you follow my real lifestagram, you may have noticed this guy last weekend…


And if you’ve been reading along on the blog for a while, you may have noticed a few oat-based breakfast recipes. Like this one for coconut blueberry overnight oats, this one for chocolate peanut butter porridge, this one for PB&J overnight oats and this one for home made granola deliciousness, among others. Best breakfast food ever, because oats are so damn versatile. Sweet or savoury, hot or cold, freshly prepared or made in advance, they’re the ultimate in breakfasting.

Until recently, I’ve been destroying a jar of overnight oats for breaky every morning, but with the cold weather finally on it’s way, warmer breakfasts are being craved. I really love oven baked oats, when I have the time for them on weekends, which isn’t very often, so I had an idea to try to speed up the process a little so that I could have “baked” oats for breakfast on a work day, too, be it at home or at my desk.

Basically, you’re just making your regular jar of overnight oats. Then, in the morning, you’re scooping them out of the jar and into a microwave safe oven dish or giant soup mug, and microwaving them for a few minutes until they’re warm and set, kinda like a cake. Because they’ve been resting overnight in the milk, they will have softened enough to compensate for not being slowly cooked in the oven or on the stove, but they still develop into a nicely, solidly baked consistency that makes it basically like eating cake for breakfast. Which is never a bad idea. Mine is also gluten free and FODMAPs friendly, which should also make for a happy stomach post-breakfast for anyone else out there who’s got stomach problems like I seem to!

Ingredients for one perfect breakfast:
– ½ cup rolled oats (use wheat free if severely FODMAPs intolerant)
– ¼ cup diced strawberries
– 1-2 tsp toasted cacao nibs and shredded coconut
– 20g vanilla protein powder (fantastic to add to your breaky oats to help really fill you up at breakfast and stop you snacking as much throughout the morning. I use the Raw Amazonia vanilla protein which is wheat, dairy, egg, soy, GMO and nut free, vegan, low carb, low fat, and also tastes surprisingly amazing! My delicate stomach also loves this stuff and never feels crap after it, so that’s another huge win in my books!).
– ½ cup milk of choice – I use almond milk because it tastes fantastic with the vanilla and strawberries

And then:
1. Before you go to bed, combine the oats, strawberries, cacao nibs and coconut in a jar and shake to combine.

2. In another small jar, combine the protein powder and milk, shake thoroughly to blend and make sure there are no clumps of protein powder stuck at the bottom. If you want extra vanilla, add a little vanilla extract in there, too.

3. Pour the protein milk into the oat jar, shake, and leave it in the fridge overnight.

4. The next morning, spoon the oats out of the jar and into a small baking dish or soup mug. Microwave for 2 – 4 minutes, depending on the strength of your microwave and the desired consistency of your oats; less time will leave it with a bit of a baked “crust” on top, but still a bit soft in the centre, longer microwaving time will cook it through a little more.

5. IMPORTANT: let it rest for a minute or two before digging it – it will be burn-your-mouth hot, trust me.
That’s it. Stupidly easy, filling, delicious, healthy breakfast. So you don’t have to worry tonight, because Monday mornings are hard enough – just throw this all into a jar before you go to bed, and you’ve got one less problem tomorrow morning! And if strawberry/coconut/chocolate isn’t your thing, you can use whatever else you want! Blueberries and almonds, figs and walnuts, golden raisins and sunflower seeds, whatever you’ve got in the pantry/fridge!


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