Category Archives: Breakfast

Bread and Muffins Breakfast

Whole Wheat Apple Honey Muffins

Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, is on the horizon, so I thought it would be a good idea to bake something festive this weekend. It is customary to eat apples and honey together on Rosh Hashanah because it represents a “sweet new year.” I was definitely in the mood for something sweet yesterday morning, so I decided to bake these apple honey muffins in honor of the holiday.

Whole Wheat Apple Honey Muffins Recipe

Sadly, I am unable to celebrate the New Year with my family this year, but I will be thinking of them as I dig into these yummy muffins every day this week.  I will seriously miss my mom’s traditional brisket and matzoh ball soup, as well as my brother’s rave-worthy kugel (Dave freeze me a piece of that, would’ya!?)

Whole Wheat Apple Honey Muffins Recipe

These muffins are made with whole wheat flour and are packed with chunks of sweet apples. I added a light cinnamon streusel topping that gives every bite an addictive crunch. Although it’s not required, I highly recommend this extra step.

Whole Wheat Apple Honey Muffins Recipe

I know I’ll be making these muffins regularly throughout the fall. They’re perfect for a weekend brunch and your guests will be shocked that they are secretly healthy! You can also freeze any leftovers you have. Just make sure to wrap them tightly in tin foil and then place them in an air-tight freezer bag.

Whole Wheat Apple Honey Muffins Recipe

Happy New Year to those of you celebrating, but very importantly, happy EATING to all of you!

 

Whole Wheat Apple Honey Muffins
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 12
Ingredients
Muffins
  • 1 large apple, peeled and diced into ¼ inch cubes
  • ½ teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • ½ Tablespoon +1/4 cup honey (divided)
  • ⅛ teaspoon + ½ teaspoon cinnamon (divided)
  • 1.5 cups white whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 egg whites (or 1 whole egg)
  • 4 Tablespoons vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Streusel Topping
  • 1 Tablespoon white whole wheat or regular whole wheat flour
  • ¼ cup brown sugar, unpacked
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter, cold and chopped into 4 pieces
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a standard 12 cup muffin tray with cooking spray.
  2. In a medium bowl combine the diced apple with the lemon juice, ½ Tablespoon honey and ⅛ teaspoon cinnamon. Set aside.
  3. In another medium bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, nutmeg, salt, and ½ teaspoon cinnamon. Set aside. In a large bowl whisk together the additional ¼ cup honey, egg whites, oil, applesauce and vanilla extract. Slowly mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until combined. Stir in the diced apples. Be careful not to overmix.
  4. In a small bowl combine the streusel ingredients. Use your fingers to pinch the butter pieces and form the crumbly topping.
  5. Divide the batter among the 12 muffin cups. Sprinkle each muffin with the streusel topping. Place the muffin tray on the center rack of the oven and bake for 15-17 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the middle of a muffin comes out clean. Allow the muffins to cool for at least 20 minutes and then remove them from the tray and place on a wire rack to continue to cool. Store the muffins in an air-tight container for up to 5 days.
 

Breakfast

How to Make Steel Cut Overnight Oats

I love steel cut oats because they tend to fill me up better than regular rolled oats. The only problem is that they take at least 20 minutes to cook, which isn’t ideal on a weekday when you’re trying to get out the door in time for work. But did you know that you can actually cook steel cut oats overnight, so that they are ready for you in the morning?? I didn’t until recently!

After trying a couple of methods from blogs and sites around the web, I believe that the method below works the best. This recipe makes one serving of oats, but feel free to double, triple, or even quadruple it because these oats keep well in the fridge for one week.

All you need is 1/4 cup of dried steel cut oats, one cup of filtered water, a pinch of salt, and a small pot with a lid.

Steelcut Overnight Oats Recipe

Place one cup of filtered water into the pot with a pinch of salt and bring the water to a boil.

Steelcut Overnight Oats Recipe

Once boiling, add the 1/4 cup of oats. Give it a quick stir so that the oats are covered by the water. Set a timer for ONE MINUTE.

Steelcut Overnight Oats

After one minute, TURN OFF the heat and place a lid over the pot. YOU’RE DONE! Leave the pot on the stove and let it work it’s magic!

Steelcut Overnight Oats Recipe

When you wake up in the morning, your oats will be fully cooked as shown below.

Steelcut Overnight Oats Recipe

Reheat the oatmeal by placing the pot on low heat on the stove for a few minutes (stirring every 30 seconds). Alternatively, you can pour the cooked oats into a microwave-safe bowl and microwaving on high for 2 minutes.

Serve the oatmeal with your toppings of choice. I love adding peanut butter, banana, and cinnamon. Sometimes I also add 1/2 scoop of protein powder if I want a little extra something to hold me over.

Steelcut Overnight Oats Recipe

Voila! How easy was that?

Have you ever cooked steel cut oats overnight? What is your favorite way to eat oatmeal?

 

 

Bread and Muffins Breakfast

Healthy Whole Wheat Zucchini Bread

There is something about the beginning of fall that makes me dream about warm freshly baked breads. Well, to be honest, I’ve been fantasizing about zucchini bread for a few weeks now, but it has been too hot to even think about turning on my oven.

Healthy Whole Wheat Zucchini Bread Recipe

On Monday morning I saw I had three lonely zucchinis in the fridge just begging me to use them, so I finally sucked it up, turned on my oven, and whipped up some damned delicious zucchini bread.

Healthy Whole Wheat Zucchini Bread Recipe

I won’t lie. This zucchini bread had me workin’ up a sweat! After hand-grating the zucchini (which you do not have to do – I was just too lazy to take out clean the food processor) and stirring all of the ingredients, I was TIRED. It didn’t help that the thermometer in my kitchen registered 93 degrees. Oy!

Healthy Whole Wheat Zucchini Bread Recipe

But was it worth it? HECK YES.

Healthy Whole Wheat Zucchini Bread Recipe

My goal was a healthier zucchini bread that wasn’t loaded with sugar and oil, but it still had to taste great. Nothing I could find online fit the bill, so this recipe is completely my own. I subbed some oil for unsweetened applesauce to lower the fat. I reduced the sugar and added a bit of greek yogurt to help the bread stay moist (many whole wheat bread recipes turn out too dry if you don’t add enough wet ingredients).

Healthy Whole Wheat Zucchini Bread Recipe

I am always tempted to dig right into freshly baked breads the moment they come out of the oven, but you are supposed to let them cool for awhile. This bread smelled soooooo good and since I have about zero self-control, I had to force myself to leave the house while this was cooling for about an hour. Kinda pathetic, huh?

Healthy Whole Wheat Zucchini Bread Recipe

Well friends, it was worth the wait. In my incredibly biased opinion, this whole wheat zucchini bread is A++. Next time I think I am going to make this recipe into muffins as a quick grab-and-go snack! They would also make a great fall breakfast or lunchbox snack for your kids 🙂

 

Whole Wheat Zucchini Bread
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 10-12
Ingredients
  • 2 medium zucchini, ends trimmed
  • 1.5 cups white whole wheat flour (or whole wheat pastry flour)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • ¾ cup brown sugar, unpacked
  • ⅓ cup unsweetened apple sauce
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • ¼ cup plain yogurt (I used non-fat Greek)
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup golden raisins (optional)
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 8x5 bread pan with vegetable oil spray.
  2. Shred the zucchini on a large box grater. Place the shredded zucchini in a kitchen towel or a few layers of paper towels. Squeeze all of the excess water out of the zucchini. This step is essential or else the bread will be too moist to cook. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Set aside. In a medium bowl combine the eggs, brown sugar, apple sauce, oil, yogurt, lemon juice and vanilla. Stir well. Fold the wet ingredients into the dry along with the shredded zucchini and raisins. Be careful not to over-mix.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared bread pan. Bake for 55-65 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Remove pan from the oven and allow to cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes. Then use a butter knife to remove the bread from the pan and allow it to continue cooling on the wire rack.
 

Breakfast

Challah French Toast

Sometimes there is nothing better than comfort foods, especially comfort foods that evoke wonderful memories.

Challah French Toast Recipe

Growing up, my mom always bought challah (a traditional Jewish egg bread) from a store in Brookline, MA called Cheryl Anns’. Their challah is THE BEST in the world. I swear to it! We love it because it is particularly eggy, soft, and sweet. I have such fond memories sitting with my mom around the the island in our kitchen, slicing piece after piece of Cheryl Ann’s challah and filling our happy bellies. (Mom – I blame your side of the family for my crazy carb obsession!).

Challah French Toast - Little Chef Big Appetite

Good challah will always have a warm place in my heart. Since living in Los Angeles, I have yet to find any challah that even comes close to my beloved Cheryl Anns’. However, when Travis and I were at the Whole Foods in Venice recently (a great place to spot celebrities, by the way!) he eyed a loaf of Whole Wheat challah bread. Now, I’ve had whole wheat challah before (and I’ve even made my own), but it just never comes close to the real thing. However, when I picked up this particular loaf of challah, it felt so soft and I had a pretty good feeling that it was going to be delicious.

Challah French Toast - Little Chef Big AppetiteSo we grabbed a mini loaf and decided to make challah french toast the next morning. I suddenly realized that the last time I’d made challah french toast was during college for a brunch I hosted for girls in my sorority in my off-campus apartment. For that brunch I purchased around 10 huge loaves of challah and cooked over 100 pieces of french toast on four different skillets in my tiny college kitchen. It was a hit, though, because not a single piece of french toast went uneaten!

Challah French Toast - Little Chef Big Appetite

Every time I make challah french toast I change the recipe ever-so-slightly. I think this time I really nailed it (if I do say so myself!). One of my key tips is to use day-old or slightly stale challah for this recipe. It may sound surprising, but the bread actually soaks up more of the egg mixture this way.

We ate our french toast with powdered sugar, caramelized bananas, and real maple syrup, which was an absolutely delicious combination! Feel free to experiment with different fruits and toppings, though. I think this french toast would be delicious with fresh jam!

Challah French Toast - Little Chef Big Appetite

Challah French Toast
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 loaf challah, sliced into 2 inch thick slices (day old challah will work best here)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup milk (any kind)
  • 2 teaspoons light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • Cooking Spray or Butter
  • Maple Syrup
  • Bananas, Berries, Chocolate Chips (optional toppings)
Instructions
  1. In a large shallow dish, whisk together the eggs, milk, brown sugar, cinnamon, vanilla, and salt. Soak the challah pieces in the egg mixture for 60 seconds on each side (depending on the size of your dish, you will likely have to do this in batches).
  2. Preheat a large skillet to medium heat and grease the skillet. Add a few pieces of challah to the pan in a single layer and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side, until golden brown. After cooking the first batch, transfer the french toast to a warm oven (about 200 degrees F) until all of the pieces are cooked.
 

Bread and Muffins Breakfast

Homemade Whole Wheat Bagels

There are some foods I believe are worth buying rather than making yourself. If you asked me two years ago, I would have said bagels were one of them.

Homemade Whole Wheat Bagels Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

However, over the past year, I’ve been trying to master the art of whole-grain bread baking. Baking yeast breads (not quick-cooking) is very time consuming, so I don’t do it all that often, but when I make the time for it, the results are always marvelous.

Homemade Whole Wheat Bagels Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

These bagels did not take nearly as long as some breads I’ve made in the past. They really only require one hour of “hands-on” time. You can handle that, can’t you?

Homemade Whole Wheat Bagels Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I first attempted making bagels one time about a year ago, but this recipe turned out much, much better. I think having completed the process once before (errr…learning from my mistakes) really helped. Additionally, this time around I used White Whole Wheat flour, which makes for a lighter and less dense bagel than regular Whole Wheat flour.

Homemade Whole Wheat Bagels Recipe

If you make the dough the night before, like I did, all you have to do it pull it out of the fridge the next morning and allow it to come to room temperature (about 30 minutes). Before you know it, you will have freshly baked bagels within the hour!

Homemade Whole Wheat Bagels Recipe

You can top your bagels with whatever you like. I opted for sesame seeds and rolled oats. Next time I am going to take a stab at Cinnamon Raisin bagels – my childhood favorite.

Homemade Whole Wheat Bagels Recipe

After baking, these bagels are crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside. They are the perfect size for my liking (slightly smaller than the typical bakery bagel). We ate these as soon as I pulled them out of the oven alongside scrambled eggs. It was the perfect protein and whole-grain packed breakfast to keep us going until lunch.

Homemade Whole Wheat Bagels Recipe

If you are a beginner bread-maker, I urge you to try this recipe. It is simple, involves very little kneading, and doesn’t require the patience of a saint.

Go, get to it! The carbs are screaming your name!

Homemade Whole Wheat Bagels Recipe

 

Homemade Whole Wheat Bagels Recipe
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 8
Ingredients
Bagels
  • 1 package active dry yeast (about 1 TBSP)
  • 1⅓ cups (11 oz) warm water (not hot), divided
  • 3 Tablespoons sugar, divided
  • 3.5 cups White Whole Wheat Flour (16 oz)
  • 2 teaspoons salt
Toppings (Optional)
  • 1 whole egg + 1 teaspoon water, beaten
  • Sesame Seeds
  • Rolled Oats
  • Poppy Seeds
  • Minced Garlic
  • Asiago Cheese
  • Sunflower Seeds
Instructions
  1. In a small bowl combine the yeast with ¼ cup of the warm water and 1 teaspoon of the sugar. Stir to combine. Allow to sit for 10 minutes until the yeast mixture becomes foamy (if it does not foam then something is wrong with your yeast).
  2. In a large bowl combine the white whole wheat flour, yeast mixture, remaining water, remaining sugar, and salt. Knead for 10 minutes by hand or 5 minutes in a stand mixer. If the dough seems too dry, add an additional Tablespoon of water. Place the dough in a large clean and lightly greased mixing bowl. Cover with a kitchen towel and allow to rise in a warm place for 2 hours*. The dough should approximately double in size.
  3. Place the dough on a clean counter space or large cutting board. Divide the dough into 8 equal sized pieced. Roll each piece gently into a ball. Using your index finger, poke a hole in the middle of each ball. Gently pick up the dough and swirl it around your index finger a few times to make the hole a bit larger. Repeat with all of the balls of dough. Allow to rest for 15 minutes.
  4. Preheat your oven to 450 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Grease the parchment paper (to prevent any possible sticking). While the dough is resting, bring a large pot of water to a low boil. Add 1 Tablespoon of sugar to the water. Drop half of the bagels into the pot. If they sink, allow them to float to the top (you may need to use a spoon to push them to the top). Once floating, boil the bagels for 1 minute and then flip and boil for an additional minute on the other side. Use a slotted spoon to remove the bagels. Place them on the baking sheet. Repeat until all bagels have been boiled.
  5. If you are using toppings for your bagels, liberally coat the tops of each bagel with the egg wash. Sprinkle the toppings onto the bagels. Bake for 15 minutes, then rotate the pan 180 degrees and bake for an additional 10 minutes. The bagels should be golden brown on top. Allow to bake a few additional minutes longer for crispier bagels.
Notes
*Alternatively, you can put the dough in the fridge overnight for up to 12 hours and allow it to rise in the fridge. If you choose this option, make sure to allow the dough to come to room temperature before baking in the morning. Be cautious because the longer it sits, it will become sour (think sourdough).
 

Breakfast Smoothies Vegan

Mango Coconut Smoothie

Travis and I have a trip planned to Hawaii in about a month, so I have everything tropical on my mind. Mangoes were on sale at Whole Foods this weekend for 4/$5, so I immediately grabbed a few because usually they are at least $2.50 a pop.

Mango Coconut Smoothie Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.comMangoes always remind me of summer. My mom used to buy a giant box of them at Costco and we would go through them like candy, just the two of us.

Mango Coconut Smoothie Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

This Mango Coconut Smoothie is a variation of my Basic Protein Shake recipe. It was incredibly refreshing after my very sweaty workout this weekend. If you’re able to plan ahead, frozen mango gives this smoothie the best texture, but otherwise fresh mango will still be delicious.

Mango Coconut Smoothie Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Now if only I was lounging on a beach chair and someone magically transformed this drink into a Mango Sunrise….now that would be perfect!

 

Mango Coconut Smoothie
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Serves: 1
Ingredients
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • ¾ cup frozen or fresh mango
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder*
  • ½ Tablespoon shredded coconut (or more to taste)
  • 3 large ice cubes
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil (optional for a serious coconut taste)
Instructions
  1. Blend all ingredients until smooth. Serve with additional shredded coconut.
Notes
*You can substitute ½ cup Greek Yogurt for the protein powder if you wish. You may need to add a bit of honey or vanilla extract for additional sweetness.
 

Breakfast Smoothies

Basic Protein Shake + Variations

On weekday mornings I am always in a rush because I work out in the morning before work. I’ve been doing the same routine for about a year now, so from the moment my alarm goes off at 5:00AM, I have my morning schedule locked down to the minute. I have to squeeze in my workout, shower, getting dressed, and breakfast all before I rush out the door to hit the road (read: traffic).

Given this mad dash to get out the door in the morning, I try to minimize my time making breakfast to as few minutes as possible.

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I’ve already shared with you two of my favorite protein-packed breakfasts: Overnight Oats and Protein Pancakes. Another one of my go-to breakfasts, especially when I am crunched for time, is a protein shake.

It took me awhile before I found a protein powder and shake consistency/texture that I really enjoyed. I try to avoid dairy in my diet, so whey protein powders were never an option. My favorite protein powder is Jay Robb’s Egg White Protein Powder (which I use in my Chia Protein Bars). I love the Vanilla and Chocolate flavors. Both taste delicious (just like a milkshake), and they mix very well so there are no gritty bits or strange aftertastes like you can get with other powders.

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I like my shakes thick, so I add lots of ice and half a frozen banana to get this consistency. The shake comes together in under 3 minutes, so it is perfect for a fast weekday breakfast or to enjoy after a workout to refuel.

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If you guys have any other non-dairy protein powder recommendations, I would love to hear them! I am always looking for great-tasting protein powders with as short of an ingredient list as possible.

 

Basic Protein Shake

Ingredients

1 cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk

3-4 Ice Cubes

1/2 Frozen Banana

1 scoop Vanilla Protein Powder

Instructions

Blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth, about 30 seconds.

 

Variations

Peanut Butter Banana Protein Shake: Add 1 Tablespoon of all-natural peanut butter to the mixture.

Strawberry Banana Protein Shake: Add 4-5 frozen or fresh strawberries to the mixture.

Mocha Protein Shake: Substitute chocolate protein powder for the vanilla. Add 2 teaspoons of instant coffee to the mixture.

 

 

Breakfast Tips and Tricks

Cardamom Granola with Almonds, Pistachios, and Raisins

Holy Moly, I just made the best darn granola.

Cardamom Granola with Almonds, Pistachios, and Raisins Recipe

Basically every day at work I snack on Greek Yogurt. Usually I just add some berries with a pinch of stevia and cinnamon to sweeten, but recently I’ve been craving some crunch.

Cardamom Granola with Almonds, Pistachios, and Raisins Recipe

After scouring the web for new granola recipes, I wasn’t finding anything that suited my needs. I wanted to keep this version low-sugar, but not lose a lot of sweetness and flavor.

Cardamom Granola with Almonds, Pistachios, and Raisins Recipe

In one recipe, I spotted cardamom on the ingredient list and thought that was very unique. Most granola recipes stick to the usuals: maple syrup, honey, brown sugar, and cinnamon. I love cardamom, but I find it stays in my spice cabinet more often than it should, so I decided to pull it out for this batch of granola.

Cardamom Granola with Almonds, Pistachios, and Raisins Recipe

I like my granola chunky, and I recently learned a great tip from America’s Test Kitchen to help keep it that way.

Cardamom Granola with Almonds, Pistachios, and Raisins Recipe

Don’t stir the granola! Every granola recipe I see says to stir the mixture once or twice throughout the baking time. ATK says for chunkier granola clusters, don’t stir the mixture and just wait to break it up once it is completely done baking.

Cardamom Granola with Almonds, Pistachios, and Raisins Recipe

ATK, you’re a genius…again! My granola turned out chunky – just the way I like it. Now I get spoonfuls of delicious granola clusters with every bite, which is a great contrast against the smooth Greek Yogurt.

Cardamom Granola with Almonds, Pistachios, and Raisins Recipe

It is also packed with spice from the cardamom and cinnamon, so I don’t find myself missing the added sugars that you see in typical packaged granola.

I hope you try this granola. It could quite possibly be the best I’ve ever tasted.

 

Cardamom Granola with Almonds, Pistachios, and Raisins
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Ingredients
  • 1.5 cups rolled oats
  • ½ cup raw, unsalted almonds, chopped
  • ¼ cup raw, unsalted pistachios
  • ⅛ cup sesame seeds
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon cardamom
  • ½ teaspoon salt*
  • ¼ cup real honey
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup raisins (or any other dried fruit)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix the oats, almonds, pistachios, sesame seeds, cinnamon, cardamom, and salt. In a small microwavable bowl add the honey and heat it in the microwave for 15 seconds. Add the olive oil and vanilla to the honey and stir to combine. Pour the honey mixture over the oat and nut mixture. Stir so that honey coats the oat mixture.
  3. Spread the mixture on the baking sheet and bake for 35-40 minutes until the edges brown. Allow to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes and then add the raisins. Carefully stir the granola a few times to break it into desired sized chunks. Allow to cool completely and store in an air-tight container.
Notes
*If you only can find salted nuts, omit the salt from the recipe.
 

Breakfast

How to Make Overnight Oats

I’ve been getting lots of questions on my Instagram about how I make my Overnight Oats. If you google “Overnight Oats” you will find hundreds of different ways to make them, but the basic idea is that you soak oats in some form of liquid in the fridge overnight, so that in the morning all you have to do is eat!

I love making overnight oats to have on busy weekday mornings when I get home from the gym before I rush off to work. I make them so often now that I don’t use an measuring cups or spoons, but I measured everything out this time, so I could show you guys how I make them.

How to Make Overnight Oats

The basic ingredients you will need are: plain greek yogurt, almond milk (I used unsweetened vanilla), rolled / old-fashioned oats, chia seeds, and a fruit of choice (optional).

How to Make Overnight Oats

Start with a large jar or tupperware of choice. The most DELICIOUS way to make overnight oats is to put all of the ingredients in an almost empty nut butter jar, like you may have seen on my Instagram. This way the oats soak up the peanut buttery taste overnight and every bite is extra yummy.

photo 2 photo 5 photo 1

I think these pictures prove that I finish way too many jars of Peanut Butter and Almond Butter….

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Okay, here it goes! We’re makin’ oats, guys:

First, put 1/3 cup oats in your jar.

How to Make Overnight Oats

Then add 1/3 cup each of almond milk and greek yogurt. I use plain greek yogurt because I like to sweeten my oats with fresh or frozen fruit. Feel free to use a flavored greek yogurt if you wish, though.

How to Make Overnight Oats

Next, add 1 teaspoon of chia seeds and mix everything up! Note: chia seeds are NOT optional for overnight oats. They play the essential role of thickening the oats overnight.

How to Make Overnight Oats

I then like to top everything off with about 1/4 cup of frozen fruit. As I have mentioned before, I love buying frozen fruit because I never have to worry about it going bad if I don’t eat it fast enough. In this recipe the frozen fruit will defrost in the fridge overnight, so the berries will be juicy and ready to eat in the morning.

How to Make Overnight Oats

And, that’s it! Put the lid on your jar or tupperware and place it in the fridge overnight. Wake up, stumble into the kitchen, pull your jar from the fridge, grab a spoon, and dig in. Your oats will be ready to eat and you don’t even have to lift a finger in the A.M.

I know, you’re welcome 😉

How to Make Overnight Oats
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Ingredients
  • ⅓ cup rolled oats
  • ⅓ cup plain greek yogurt (I use non-fat)
  • ⅓ cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon chia seeds
  • Stevia, to sweeten (optional)
  • Frozen or fresh fruit of choice
Instructions
  1. Combine the first five ingredients in a jar or tupperware. Stir well to combine. Top with fruit and put the lid on the jar. Place in the fridge overnight to soak. In the morning, take off the lid and enjoy!
 

Bread and Muffins Breakfast

Whole Wheat Blueberry Lemon Muffins

I buy a ton of frozen berries and veggies.

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I use the berries in breakfast smoothies and on top of greek yogurt as a yummy snack. The veggies go into soups and stews or are just served as a quick and easy side to a weeknight dinner. As of lately, I am obsessed with baby peas – did you know they are packed with protein?

The great thing about frozen fruit and vegetables that many people don’t know, is that they can actually be healthier than their fresh counterparts. Why? Because they are frozen at peak ripeness, so they are jam-packed with nutrients. Fruits and veggies found in the fresh-produce aisles in grocery stores are often picked before they are ripe, so they don’t often develop all of their vitamins and minerals.

Don’t me wrong – I love fresh produce, but lot’s of people knock the frozen kinds, when in reality they’re great!

I also love to bake with my frozen berries. In fact, I would argue that they give my baked goods even more flavor than fresh berries.

Whole Wheat Blueberry and Lemon Muffins Recipe

I spent way too many hours this weekend researching the perfect healthy blueberry muffin.

Whole Wheat Blueberry and Lemon Muffins Recipe

I love when lemon is paired with blueberry, so I knew some lemon zest would have to be added into the mix.

Whole Wheat Blueberry and Lemon Muffins Recipe

I also wanted a muffin that wasn’t overloaded with sugar, butter or oils.

Whole Wheat Blueberry and Lemon Muffins Recipe

I was determined to use all whole wheat flour (as opposed to a blend of white and wheat), knowing quite well that 100% whole wheat muffins can turn out pretty dense and unpleasant sometimes.

Whole Wheat Blueberry and Lemon Muffins Recipe

Well, my friends, I believe these muffins turned out pretty darn amazing. I had a slight mishap during the baking process – my oven decided to turn off on me in the middle. I was nervous they were ruined and I would have to toss the batch, but to my surprise they were still great!

Whole Wheat Blueberry and Lemon Muffins Recipe

Next time around I am going to add a cinnamon-sugary topping!

 

Whole Wheat Blueberry Lemon Muffins
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 10-12
Ingredients
  • 2 cups whole wheat pastry flour (you can sub whole wheat flour here, but expect a denser muffin)
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 Tablespoon grated lemon zest (from about 2 lemons)
  • 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 Tablespoons milk (I used skim)
  • 1.5 cups frozen blueberries
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease a standard 12 cup muffin tray or line with baking liners and grease the liners.
  2. In a large bowl combine the flour, brown sugar, baking soda and salt. In a medium bowl, whisk together the applesauce, lemon zest, butter, egg, vanilla and milk. Gently fold in the blueberries. Try not to over mix the batter.
  3. Scoop the batter evenly into the muffin cups. Place the muffin tray on the middle rack of the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove the muffins from the tray and allow them to cool on a wire rack.