A warm, breakfast version of banana cake batter topped with an easy cream cheese frosting. Easily vegan too.
Murphy’s Law has infiltrated my bananas. When I’m after an extremely ripe, brown-spotted bananas – usually for oatmeal or muffins – all my bananas are beautifully yellow and unblemished. Whenever I’d like a just-ripe yellow banana, they’re all soft, brown and literally jumping out of their skins.
Luckily, this oatmeal isn’t fussy when it comes to bananas. Yellow bananas, spotted bananas, black bananas – almost any type of banana will be A-OK. Just avoid green (underripe) bananas.
Oh, and if you’re bananas are purple, blue or covered in psychedelic rainbow swirls, then I wouldn’t touch those either.
For these two bowls of oatmeal, I mashed one banana to add sweetness and extra creaminess, and stirred through a sliced banana to add some texture. In an ideal world, you’d mash a super-ripe banana and slice a just-ripe one. But the world isn’t going to come to an end if you use two brown-spotted bananas, or if both your bananas are an unblemished yellow.
If your bananas are quite firm and can’t be mashed, then simply slice both of them. Or chop them into little cubes. Then stir in a little bit of maple syrup or brown sugar if the oatmeal isn’t sweet enough.
Frozen bananas are also fine. To mash a frozen banana, first chop it into small pieces and then mash away with a fork (this will require some effort). Alternatively, thaw the frozen banana in the microwave first.
Now, about the topping. To add a little excitement to this oatmeal, there’s a cream cheese frosting. It’s simply made from cream cheese and maple syrup.
If you’re dairy-free and/or vegan, then you’re in luck. This breakfast can easily be dairy-free by using dairy-free cream cheese – there are quite a few brands out there now. Or just leave off the frosting (although that would be kind of sad).
Lastly, there’s one ingredient in this oatmeal you may find a little unusual: baking soda. The baking soda adds a slight cake batter flavor, but feel free to leave it out if adding baking soda to your oatmeal seems like a step too far.
Fun Fact: Apparently bananas, apples and watermelons float in water.
- 1 cup almond milk
- 1 cup water
- ½ cup steel-cut oats
- Pinch of salt
- 2 bananas
- ½ teaspoon lemon juice
- ¼ teaspoon blackstrap molasses
- ⅛ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Cream cheese frosting
- 2 tablespoons spreadable cream cheese
- 1 - 2 teaspoons maple syrup
- Confectioner’s (icing) sugar, if necessary
- 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.
- Mash one of the bananas, and add it to the saucepan. Stir in the lemon juice, blackstrap molasses and baking soda.
- Gently simmer the oatmeal for 20 – 30 minutes, stirring frequently, or until the oats have softened and become creamy. As the oats are cooking, add more almond milk if the oatmeal becomes too dry.
- Meanwhile, make the cream cheese frosting. In a small bowl, use a fork to whisk together the spreadable cream cheese and maple syrup until smooth. If the frosting is too thick, whisk in more maple syrup. If the frosting is too thin or not sweet enough, whisk in a teaspoon of confectioner’s sugar (and increase as needed). Store in the fridge until needed.
- Slice the remaining banana and gently stir it into the oatmeal along with the vanilla extract.
- Divide the oatmeal between two bowls. Top each bowl with a drizzle (or spoonful) of cream cheese frosting.
Blackstrap molasses give the oatmeal a slight brown sugar-y taste. If you don’t have any blackstrap molasses, add a few teaspoons of brown sugar, or just omit them.
Dairy-Free and Vegan
If you use a dairy-free alternative to cream cheese, this can oatmeal easily be vegan. Alternatively, just leave off the frosting.