Our favorite hearty oatmeal is served at a nifty little restaurant chain in Utah called “Kneaders.” It fills you up for hours. We think we’ve done a pretty good job of duplicating their recipe by cooking it in almond milk (see our recipe below.) Kneader’s options include banana walnut, cranberry pecan and plain.
That’s easy to copy!
We punch ours at home up with nutritient-loaded SEEDS, i.e., raw, unsalted pumpkin and chia seeds! They are easy to find at the grocery or health food store. Just make sure they’re not roasted or have a lot of other processing or salt.
I wrote up about the health benefits of pumpkin seeds for a newsletter last October. You can easily google for more info. We have been eating a tablespoon or so since writing that article.
Now for today … who doesn’t remember the Chia pet commercials. What a catchy jingle! Somebody made a fortune on that, but the real fortune is for your health when you eat them!
What are the benefits of chia seeds? They are an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, rich in antioxidants, and they provide fiber, iron, and calcium. Omega-3 fatty acids help raise HDL cholesterol, the “good” cholesterol, that protects against heart attack and stroke! They are good for aging and skin (Hello!) and for heart health too.
They’ve got a cool history as well. In the Mayan language, “chia” means “strength.” Dr. Axe, one of my favorite natural health gurus, has a fascinating write-up on these little rockstars. He says:
Originally grown in Mexico, the seeds were highly valued for their medicinal properties and nutritional value. In fact, they were even used as currency.
The chia seed is nutrient-dense and packs a punch of energy-boosting power. Aztec warriors ate chia seeds to give them high energy and endurance. They said just one spoonful of chia could sustain them for 24 hours. Chia seeds were known as “runners’ food” because runners and warriors would use them as fuel while running long distances or during battle.
Not only that, but recent research has found that the chia seeds benefits are even greater than we realized. They support healthy skin, reduce signs of aging, nurture the heart and digestive system, build stronger bones and muscles. They’ve even been linked to helping reverse diabetes!
His entire article that is much more detailed (but well written and still a quick read) is HERE. https://draxe.com/chia-seeds-benefits-side-effects/
Now, about our oatmeal?!
There’s so much to say about it, starting with the price. A large container with about 30 servings is under $3.00. A box of Cheerios for about the same price has about 12 servings! I still enjoy my Cheerios, but our day almost always starts with old fashioned oatmeal cooked on the stove in almond milk. It takes only a few minutes to prepare.
Please note that the the instant “packets,” loaded with flavoring and sweetening, has practically ZERO nutritional value.
Years ago, before we gave up cows milk, we used that and sweetened it with (gulp) sweetened condensed milk and sweetened coconut. Yes. It was more a dessert than anything and a splurge on weekends. We’ve made lots of changes so that now it is so healthy we fix it nearly every day. It’s still delicious enough to feel like a splurge.
Bob and Carolyn’s Hearty, Delicious Oatmeal
1 1/2 cups almond milk
3/4 cups water
3/4 cups old fashioned oatmeal
1/4 cup “Bob’s Red Mill Museli” (Buy this in the baking section or grains section in the grocery store.)
In a medium saucepan:
Bring all ingredients to a gentle boil on the stove top and simmer for a bit to thicken. Stir often.
Serve with 1 Tablespoon chia seeds, 1 Tablespoon raw pumpkin seeds, walnuts, raisins, unsweetened coconut and whatever else makes your day!
Our favorite healthy sweetener from the health food store is “Sucanat.” You can also order it on Amazon. Unlike refined and processed white cane sugar and brown cane sugar, but similar to panela and muscovado, Sucanat retains its molasses content. That flavor is perfect on oatmeal!