Apple oatmeal with shredded coconut, pecans and chocolate chips. Vegan, gluten-free and exciting!
Sometimes it’s virtually impossible to decide what kind of oatmeal I want in the morning. I can’t tell you how many days I’ve stared at the ripe banana in the fruit bowl, wondering what to do with it. Banana and peanut butter oatmeal? Chocolate banana oatmeal? Banana berry? Tropical? Or do I stick to the classics and opt for basic banana-cinnamon oatmeal?
Decisions, decisions… sometimes it’s all too hard.
After spending a good twenty minutes mulling over the options, my brain (or rumbling stomach) will eventually scream, ‘Darn it, just pick something already!’
Then there are those magical mornings when I wake up knowing exactly what I want. This refreshing lack of indecision occurs when I’ve found myself dreaming about breakfast – which happens a lot.
(You may be surprised to discover that tons of my ideas come to me in my sleep).
Today’s oatmeal was one of recipes from dreamland.
Like most of my dreams, this was a weird one. I walked into a kitchen – it wasn’t mine – to find a giant, robotic bear holding a bowl of oatmeal. And not just any oatmeal! There were apples, coconut and chocolate chips. Lots of chocolate chips.
The bear’s robotic arm lifted a spoon to its mouth, then put it back down again. And repeated that process again and again and again.
Man, that was a weird dream. But at least it gave me an idea.
This dream-inspired oatmeal is flavored with a chopped apple and blackstrap molasses (which add a brown sugar taste).
But the real stars of the show are the toppings: shredded coconut, pecans, and chocolate chips. I like to refer to this trio as the Cowboy Cookie Combo.
I used dark chocolate chips, although milk or semisweet should be fine. And if you’re plum out of chocolate chips, you could just chop up a chocolate bar.
Now I think about it, I wonder what this oatmeal would taste like with peanut butter chips? Or butterscotch chips?
And now I’m back to square one and can’t decide what to add to my oatmeal. I blame the giant robotic bear.
- For the oatmeal
- 1 cup almond milk
- 1 cup water
- ½ cup steel-cut oats
- Pinch of salt
- 1 apple
- ½ teaspoon blackstrap molasses
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the toppings
- Shredded coconut
- Chopped pecans
- Chocolate chips
- In a saucepan, bring the almond milk and water to a boil, and then turn down the heat to medium-low. Add the steel-cut oats and salt, and stir well.
- Chop the apple and add it to the saucepan. Add the blackstrap molasses and vanilla extract.
- Steel-cut oatmeal generally takes 20 - 30 minutes to cook. As it’s cooking, add more almond milk if it looks as though the oatmeal is drying out.
- When the oats are cooked and are creamy, divide the oatmeal between two bowls. Top each oatmeal with a handful of shredded coconut, chopped pecans and chocolate chips. Enjoy!
Blackstrap molasses have a quite strong taste (they’re very different to light molasses). Depending on tastes, you may wish to use more or less molasses in this oatmeal. Alternatively, they can be replaced with brown sugar – but you’d need a lot more brown sugar to get the same flavor.
You could replaced the steel-cut oats with 1 cup of rolled oats. Rolled oats take around 5 minutes to cook.
I used dark chocolate chips, although milk or semisweet should be fine. If vegan, ensure your chocolate chips are dairy-free.