I'm going to get a little personal here, and talk about gas. At some point in the last two years by body has decided that it will no longer tolerate oatmeal. I used to eat oatmeal for breakfast multiple times a week and used it in many recipes in place of flour. Now, I can't even eat more than a few bites before I spend the rest of the day hiding my flatulence and feeling bloated! So, I might have an intolerance, I'm open to suggestions but avoidance is working well. Anyway, I needed an alternative and when I heard of someone dressing quinoa up like oatmeal for breakfast, I was hooked! I have since added hemp seeds and chia to my breakfast quinoa for extra nutrients and protein. I have listed the basic recipe below as well as a few of my favorite ways to dress it up! Note: at first bite, the quinoa is not the same as oatmeal, but keep eating it and you will be hooked too!
1/2 C dried quinoa (rinse if it's not pre-rinsed)
1 C water (maybe a little more)
3 Tbsp chia seeds
3 Tbsp hemp seeds
Another amazing thing I learned about quinoa is that you can cook it in the microwave! Totally life changing! Put quinoa in a glass microwaveable bowl with a lid or cover placed lightly on top, not locked on so steam can escape. Microwave for 10 minutes, then let it sit in the microwave for a few minutes. Check it to make sure the quinoa doesn't have the little white dots in the middle, if they do or look too dry, add water and microwave for a few more minutes. You will know it is done when it is fluffy. If you want to use the old fashion way on the stove, that works too. When the quinoa is done, mix in the chia and the hemp. I add a little coconut milk or yogurt to make it a little creamy.
Three of my favorite ways to "dress" it up:
Pumpkin spice: Add a 1/4 C pumpkin puree, 1-2 Tbsp maple syrup, sprinkle pumpkin pie spice
Cherry Walnut: handful of dried cherries, 1-2 Tbsp maple syrup, 1/4 C vanilla yogurt, chopped walnuts.
Apple Pie: Saute sliced peeled apples in a little butter or coconut oil in a skillet and sprinkle with cinnamon, ground cloves, and nutmeg. Mostly cinnamon. Cook till soft. Add 1-2 Tbsp of maple syrup, and 1/4 vanilla yogurt to quinoa and top with apples. This is my favorite!
What's for lunch today? I opened my fridge and threw this together...
That's Bolthouse Classic Ranch yogurt dressing in the bowl and a piece of sliced turkey with mustard. This meal includes fats from the cheese and dressing, which is important for keeping you feeling full and aiding in cell growth. It's best to limit the amount of saturated fats you consume (from cheese and salami), but including these from time to time is fine. The protein from the meats and cheese also helps fill you up and helps repair your muscles. We all know how important it is to eat your veggies! I love the rainbow carrots and baby bell peppers! Feel free to share your ideas and pictures!
These are my favorite snack to have on hand for something quick and healthy to grab when I get hungry between meals, or if I just need something a little sweet. I have found so many ways to change up these bars and they are all delicious! I would love to hear your suggestions for additional mix-ins!
Super Snack Bars
1/2 C Honey
1 C Peanut Butter
1/2 Bag, or about three cups of puffed millet
2 scoops protein powder
Mix honey and peanut butter in a saucepan over low heat until well combined, then stir in protein powder. Slowly stir in puffed millet, and mix until well combined. Place a piece of parchment or wax paper lining a 9x9 baking pan, you want a little overhang. Pour mixture over the paper and press down firmly throughout with the back of a spoon or spatula making sure all the edges are pressed tight. Refrigerate for 3-4 hours, best over night. Once hardened, cut into squares with a large sharp knife. Enjoy!
Here are some ways to change it up:
Use 3 cups of oatmeal or a full box of organic chocolate rice cereal instead of puffed millet
Add-ins: Chia seeds, hemp, nuts, or dried raisins.
I love Chia seeds! I love the texture, and how they are so versatile when cooking! I use Chia in smoothies, muffins, and my morning porridge recipe, just to name a few. This recipe is super easy and can be "dressed up" in so many ways! I was inspired by a breakfast I recently had at the Hotel ZaZa in Houston where they topped it with dried blueberries and granola. Enjoy!
2 Cups Coconut milk, or any other milk substitute
1/4 C + 2 Tbsp Chia (super cheap at Costco)
1 tsp vanilla
2 Tbsp honey or maple syrup
Mix wet ingredients in a bowl, then slowly add chia seeds as you continue to stir, as they might clump. I would stir for another minute or so before placing covered in the fridge over night. When you are ready to eat, add fresh or dried berries and/or nuts. So simple, so easy, so healthy!
I am a fitness trainer and a busy mom of two. My husband and I enjoy a wide variety of foods and we love to cook! I am often asked for healthy recipes that we enjoy and I love to share! I hope to inspire you to try something new, and create lasting changes in the foods you eat and share with your loved ones!