Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal
Why I love this recipe:
Mmmmmm I love oats, and these pumpkin oats are one of my favourite fall and winter breakfasts! They taste like the breakfast version of warm pumpkin pie - who wouldn't want to wake up to that!? I use this recipe on my friends who don't like oatmeal, and it usually changes their minds! I've never had someone take a bite and not finish their bowl ;) I challenge those of you who don't like oatmeal to try these - the flavour might just be the game changer you need. For more reasons why I love this dish, see the nutrition highlights at the bottom of this post - packed with fiber and protein, it's a great start to your day. A word of caution: If you're a texture person and can't do oatmeal texture these might not be for you.
- 3/4 cup thick cut rolled oats - I use wheat-free (Bob's or Only Oats brand)
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup egg whites
- 3/4 cup canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
- 1 Tbsp chia seeds
- 2 tsp pumpkin spice blend (see my easy home-made pumpkin spice recipe under "sweet treats"!)
- 1 tsp Vanilla
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup
Toppings: 1 Tbsp unsweetened shredded coconut, extra maple syrup if desired.
Optional toppings: ground flax seed for extra fiber and omega 3's, plain greek yogurt for extra protein and calcium, or extra pumpkin spice blend.
- Put oats, water and milk in a pot and turn element to high. Bring mixture just to a boil (watch it carefully so it doesn't boil over!), and then turn down the heat to medium-low.
- stir in pumpkin puree and egg whites, continuing to stir for about a minute, to ensure egg whites are thoroughly mixed in and won't clump.
- Cook for 6-7 minutes over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally. If the bottom of your oats starts to stick a lot, stir more often or turn the heat down slightly.
- Turn your element to low (I use 2 on my stove) and stir in chia, pumpkin spice, vanilla and maple syrup. Cook an additional 1-2 minutes on low heat. (If you leave it for longer at this point it shouldn't be a big deal).
- Divide into two bowls and top with shredded coconut, additional maple syrup, or other toppings if desired.
A word about Oats, Gluten, and Celiac disease:
Many people wonder if oats are ok to eat on a gluten-free diet. The answer is a little more complicated than a yes or no.. but here are the basics you need to know:
- Oats don't actually contain gluten themselves, but they are often grown very close to wheat or processed in plants that also process wheat, and become contaminated with gluten, making them unsafe for people with celiac disease to eat.
- Some companies make oats that have been specially grown and processed to avoid contamination with wheat.
- In Canada, Oats can be labeled "Gluten-free" if they have been tested to ensure they are below the safe limits of gluten to be considered gluten-free (this is 20ppm in Canada). This is a recent update (May 2015) - prior to this oats could only be labeled "pure" or "wheat free."
- A lot of research has been done to determine if pure (Gluten-free) oats are safe for people with celiac disease to consume. You can read more about this on the Health Canada Site
- Gluten-free oats are safe for most people with celiac disease to consume. Clinical evidence shows that most adults with celiac disease can consume 50-70g (1/2-3/4 cup) dry uncontaminated oats daily.
- Oats contain a protein called avenin, which is similar to the protein gluten in wheat, barley, and rye. For most people with celiac disease oats seem to be safe to eat. Some people with celiac disease (and some without) seem to react to avenin in a similar way to gluten, and can't tolerate oats in their diet, even if they're pure.
If you haven't been eating oats and you are starting to again, you may get some GI symptoms. This is most likely from the fiber in the oats, rather than an intolerance. If you have symptoms that last for a few weeks after you start eating oats, go see a dietitian or your doctor! You may need to have a closer look at your diet to make sure there aren't any sources of contamination.
If you have newly diagnosed celiac disease, a dietitian can provide you with information and help you figure out what you can and can't eat.
Companies with Gluten-free oats:
- Only Oats (Avena Foods) - One of my faves - they're organic and a Canadian company, based in Saskatchewan.
- Bob's Red Mill - Have been around forever, can be found in many stores.
- Cream Hill Estates - Another Canadian company, based in Montreal, and they offer kosher products.
- Nature's Path - Also certified organic and non-GMO and widely available.
THE BOTTOM LINE?
If you can eat oats, do! Oh, and make your own - not the instant kind. A whole grain, full of fiber and other nutrients - they're a nutritional powerhouse, and a much better breakfast than traditional breakfast cereal.
Nutrition info includes 1 Tbsp shredded coconut and 1 tsp additional maple syrup as toppings.
- With 9 grams of fiber and 19 grams of protein, this bowl of oats should fill you up and keep you going well into your morning. It lasts me right until lunch!
- Both oats and pumpkin are great vegetarian sources of iron. Many women find it hard to meet their iron needs. If you know you need a little help in the iron department, try having a vitamin-C rich fruit on the side with this breakfast like an orange, kiwi, or some strawberries.
- The pumpkin in this recipe is super-high in Vitamin A, which is important for eye health, among other things.
- 13g of sugar is higher than I'd usually like to see, but this is less than many traditional breakfast cereals, and I think the other nutrition makes up for it. If you can handle a little less sweet, go easier on the maple syrup :)