Gluten-free and vegan baked oatmeal that’s reminiscent of a giant Girl Scout cookie.
There are only three things I know about Girl Scouts/Girl Guides:
- They sell cookies
- They have a left-handed handshake
- If I had joined, I wouldn’t have lasted five seconds
Oh yes, I may love (seriously love!) cookies and my handshakes are always awkward because I instinctively stick out my left hand*, but I could never be a Girl Scout. For one very good reason: camping.
*Number 18 on my list of ‘Things that are more awkward for lefties’, right after spending 20 minutes trying to twist open a can the wrong way.
I have tried camping – or, to be exact, I was forced to during high school. And while I sure it’s plenty of fun for some people, it ain’t for me.
Lying awake in a tiny tent, being convinced that every rustle of the wind was a wild pig, an escaped cow or an axe murderer was the highlight of my camping experience.
Between the insomnia and falling into a creek due to the weight of my giant backpack (darn gravity!), it’s fair to say that I was not a happy camper.
So if you’ve mastered this whole camping thing, then I’m officially impressed.
Enough about the horrors of camping: let’s talk cookies.
If you’re idea of a good breakfast is eating a giant cookie – indoors, and with a giant mug of coffee – then we’re on the same wavelength.
Grab a spoon. It’s always breakfast time somewhere.
This baked oatmeal is my recreation of Samoas (Girl Scout cookies) in a more ‘you won’t look weird eating this for breakfast’ form.
On the bottom, there’s plenty of chocolate. This oatmeal has more chocolate than you’d find on actual Samoas, because more chocolate is always a good idea.
Next, there’s the coconut-caramel layer. This has plenty of shredded coconut, some medjool dates for that caramel flavor, and applesauce for volume and moistness. Chewy coconut caramel cookie goodness.
Finally, there’s melted chocolate. Enough said.
If camping ever evolves to include staying in a hotel or cabin – or just something with indoor plumbing and a solid roof – then I could totally get into it. Alternatively, if I miraculously stop being such a wuss, I might enjoy exploring the outside world.
But until then, you’ll find me eating baked oatmeal while wearing pyjamas and fuzzy slippers.
- For the coconut layer
- ⅔ cup applesauce
- 2 medjool dates
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅔ cup rolled oats
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- Pinch of salt
- ⅓ cup almond or coconut milk
- 3 - 4 tablespoons shredded coconut
For the chocolate layer
- ⅓ cup pumpkin puree
- 2 teaspoon cocoa powder
- 1 - 2 teaspoons maple syrup
- ⅓ cup rolled oats
- ⅛ teaspoon baking powder
- Tiny pinch of salt
- 2 tablespoons almond milk
For the chocolate drizzle
- Splash of almond milk
- Chocolate chips (dark or semi-sweet)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Grease two ramekins.
- Make the coconut layer: In a mini food processor (or the smallest bowl of a regular-sized processor), combine the applesauce, dates and vanilla extract. Process the mixture until relatively smooth, scraping down the sides of the processor as necessary. Transfer the mixture to a medium-sized (or large) bowl.
- Mix in the rolled oats, baking powder and salt. Add the almond milk and shredded coconut, and mix until well combined.
- Make the chocolate layer: In a small bowl, combine the pumpkin puree, cocoa powder and maple syrup. Mix in the rolled oats, baking powder and salt. Add the almond milk, and mix until well combined.
- Divide the chocolate layer between the prepared ramekins. Divide the coconut layer between the ramekins, placing it on top of the chocolate mixture.
- Bake for 20 - 25 minutes, or until the tops are dry and a little bit firm. If removing the baked oatmeals from the ramekins, allow them to cool for 5 minutes first.
- Make the chocolate drizzle: Add a splash of almond milk to a small dish. Microwave for 10 seconds, add a handful of chocolate chips, and stir vigorously. Adjust the amounts of chocolate and milk as necessary until you’re left with a thick, but pourable, chocolate sauce. If the chocolate chips won’t melt, microwave the mixture on a low wattage for 10 seconds.
- Drizzle the chocolate sauce over the baked oatmeals. Enjoy!
I recommend you prepare the chocolate drizzle while the oatmeals are baking (about 5 minutes before they're done).
If you'd prefer, skip the chocolate drizzle and just add a few chocolate chips to the tops of the baked oatmeals (before baking).
My applesauce was unsweetened. To make your own applesauce, puree some canned apple slices (or other cooked apples).
If you don't feel like using a food processor for the coconut layer, you could either (a) use a blender; or (b) chop the dates really finely, and mix the coconut layer ingredients together in a bowl.