Oatmeal is one of America’s favorite breakfast foods, and National Oatmeal Day is celebrated on October 29, each year. It is a themed celebration and, to a moderate extent, under the radar.
Oats are fiber-rich whole grains and an excellent source of proteins, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Oatmeal is made of ground oats. Oats are considered to be gluten-free. They are not only used for cooking purposes but are also found in a lot of personal care products like shampoos, body washes, and lotions.
No matter what mood you wake up with, a nice warm bowl of oatmeal can help start your day off right. Oats is such a versatile ingredient that it goes well with anything – be it spices, brown sugar, fruits, vegetables, nuts, sauces, or nut butter – everything compliments the flavor of oats.
Moreover, oats can enhance the texture and flavor of soups and gravies. It can also be used to make a variety of different baked goods, such as cookies, muffins, crumbles, granola, energy bars, etc.
Health Benefits of Oatmeal
- It is incredibly nutritious, low in fat, and rich in iron and fiber.
- It helps lower cholesterol and improves blood sugar levels.
- It reduces the risk of heart diseases.
- Finely ground oats are beneficial for skincare.
- It may help you lose weight.
- Oat bran is high in fiber and helps relieve constipation.
This National Oatmeal Day, start your day with a delicious and appetizing bowl of oatmeal and don’t forget to post it on social media using #NationalOatmealDay.
Here are a few healthy and hearty recipes that will take your oatmeal breakfast to the next level.
1. The Traditional Way
Traditional oatmeal recipes require steel-cut oats. Steel-cut oats are coarsely cut and have a nutty flavor.
Start with soaking the oats overnight in cold water with a pinch of salt and a tablespoon of maple syrup. The next day, add ground nutmeg, ground cinnamon, and ground ginger, according to your taste to the soaked oatmeal and cook low and slow for 90 minutes. After they are well cooked, serve steaming hot with milk, cream, or butter.
2. The Classics
Rolled oats take a little more time to cook than instant oats, but they have a great flavor profile. A great way to prepare rolled oats is by using all the quality ingredients in your pantry, natural and preservative-free. The basic way to prepare oatmeal is; in a saucepan on medium heat, add a cup of milk, and bring it to a boil. When you see bubbles, lower the heat and add half a cup of rolled oats, continue stirring and cook for about 5 minutes or until the liquid starts to dry. Follow along to get the classic oatmeal flavors.
- Maple and Brown Sugar
After the oatmeal is cooked, add a tablespoon of brown sugar, a teaspoon of maple syrup, and a handful of walnuts or pecans. Serve hot.
- Peanut butter and Banana
After cooking the oatmeal, add a tablespoon of peanut butter, a pinch of ground cinnamon, and half a banana sliced. You can also add walnuts and ground flaxseeds to this recipe. These ingredients will not just make your oatmeal tasty but also very healthy.
- Strawberries and Cream
After the oatmeal is cooked, add a splash of half and a half or coconut cream or any non-dairy creamer of your choice, along with some honey, and a drop or two of vanilla extract. Serve with sliced strawberries. Also, strawberries can be replaced with peaches or blueberries.
- Apples and Cranberries
While the oats are still hot, add a handful of fresh cranberries, 1/4th teaspoon of nutmeg, a tablespoon of brown sugar, a pinch of cinnamon, and salt (to taste). Mix well and garnish with a diced apple and some nuts.
- Cocoa and Sea salt
After cooking the oatmeal, leave it on heat and stir in cocoa powder. Mix until well combined. Add a handful of chocolate chips, a pinch of sea salt, and a teaspoon of peanut butter. Garnish with crunchy peanuts if you like. We warn you this recipe is on the indulgent side.
3. No-Cook Oats
Save a ton of your time and make your morning routine a breeze by preparing overnight no-cook oats. This recipe can be prepared with any kind of oats you have. Start by adding half a cup of oats in a bowl or Mason jar, add 1/3rd cup of plain Greek yogurt or any non-dairy alternative, add 1/3rd cup of milk (according to your preference), one teaspoon of chia seeds, ½ teaspoon vanilla extract, two tablespoons of maple syrup, and any fresh or frozen fruit you like. Cover and keep it in the fridge overnight. Mix and eat in the morning. This recipe is very flexible, and you can add or minus things as you like.
4. Go Quick
When you don’t have a lot of time on your hands and still want healthy breakfast, instant or quick oats are for you.
Empty your instant oatmeal packet in a bowl and add water or milk; it should be in a 1:2 ratio of oats to liquid. Microwave it for about 1.5 to 2 minutes; time may vary depending on the watts of your microwave. Once fully cooked, add a pinch of sugar or salt. What we like about this recipe is that it can be tweaked to your liking; anything you add to this will taste delectable.
We recommend adding fresh or dried fruits, seeds, and nuts that you have at hand.
5. Savory Oats
Let’s say you want some variety and a change in the flavor profile. Cook the oats the same way in a saucepan or microwave as mentioned above, using water or chicken stock and a dash of salt. Once cooked, season it with soy sauce and chili oil and top it with crispy fried shallots and a poached egg; this makes the perfect Chinese comfort food bowl.
Another way is mixing in your favorite cheese while it’s still hot and topping it off with cherry tomatoes, fried egg, and sliced avocado for a filling breakfast.
These healthy recipes will get you started for your day the best way possible. There are endless ways of cooking and topping oatmeal. It is a canvas, and you can add your favorite flavors to it. A great tip to increase the protein content is mixing in your protein powder. We hope you try and like these recipes this National Oatmeal Day.