Add Rolled Oats to Upgrade Your Smoothie to a Filling Meal

Love the idea of a smoothie for breakfast, but wish it filled you up a little more? I hear you, and I’m totally with you. My main criteria for any breakfast, including smoothies, is one that isn’t going to leave my stomach grumbling a couple hours later.

My key to a good breakfast smoothie is making sure it has the power to carry me through the morning. One of the easiest ways to do this? Add a scoop of oats!

Source: Oats Are the Key to a Satisfying Smoothie

I’ve thrown oats into my morning protein shake, my staple breakfast for years.  I’ve found that quick-cooking oats blend better and don’t wreak havoc on your stomach as much as whole or steel-cut varieties.

Make Granola from Anything You Have On Hand With This Ratio

Memorize this technique, and you’ll never buy granola again.

Source: Granola Is Better and Easier to Make Without a Recipe

Having trouble finding cost effective rolled oats?  Look for Quaker Rolled Oats in the cereal aisle.

Bonus: If you are making granola and you want big chunks, pack all your ingredients tightly together on a baking sheet (I find it easier on a lipped baking sheet but plain should work fine). Once the granola is baked and cooled, you can break it into chunks.

Make Your Own Plant-Based Meal Replacement Powder to Save Money

I have a love/hate relationship with protein powder. I love that it helps make my daily smoothie more filling and meal-like. I love that it’s a quick and easy way to get a nice dose of the recovery-helping macronutrient after a hard workout.

But I hate the price. And I, more often than not, hate the ingredient list. There are definitely more natural protein powders out there, but the price is just so restrictively high! And the rare times I found a natural protein powder that wasn’t exorbitantly expensive, it was exorbitantly gritty, earthy, and generally not delicious.

Source: Homemade Plant Protein Powder

This is not “protein powder” – it is ground up legumes. It’s got more carbs in it than it does protein. Also eating raw lentils and raw rice is extremely problematical for a lot of people. They can actually interfere with the absorption of other nutrients.  Phytic acids can definitely be a concern for some folks (particularly raw vegan folks).

I would recommend to soak the rice and lentils first for few hours, drain the water and heat it in deep pan without adding anything until rice starts popping. Don’t forget to stir it continuously during heating to have uniform heat distribution. This should solve issue of rawness.

Otherwise, buy whey protein in bulk from vendors like Bulk Supplements or Powder City.  Generic protein powders with no brand name – they don’t cost as much, but they’re of the exact same quality (if not higher). They all come with Certificates of Analysis.

Speaking to those of us on blood thinners, based on previous information I highly recommend cooking the lentils vs raw.  There is vitamin K in lentils, just noticeably less if they’re cooked.  There’s vitamin K in brown rice as well, but a trivial amount.  There’s no vitamin K in steel cut oats.  Provided you cook the lentils and are OK the phytic acid, you should be OK.

I got a coffee/spice grinder years ago, for grinding sunflower, pumpkin, and sesame seeds that I use in breakfast.  I read a lot of reviews were available, and my assessment was that they were cheaper and replaceable.  Almost all reported failure at some point, so I just picked the best I could at a place with a great return policy.  So far, so good.

Avoid these Gluten-Free Baking Mistakes!

Ourman has also been hard at work in our test kitchen, creating entirely gluten-free, BA-approved desserts. After tasting them all (they’re delicious), we spoke with Ourman about how to give up rye, barley, and wheat without sacrificing flavor, texture, or enjoyment: What are the most common gluten-free mistakes? Here’s how to totally screw up gluten-free cooking—or not.

Source: Avoid these Gluten-Free Baking Mistakes!

The last two are lifestyle/health related, not baking per se.

8 (Well, 7) Foods You Should Eat Every Day

It’s all content, no fluff…

Source: 8 Foods You Should Eat Every Day

The nice part is they list alternatives.  Spinach is the first mentioned, and understandably all the alternatives for spinach should be avoided by those on warfarin/coumadin.  The next worst offender on the list for us is blueberries.  All things in moderation, but the rest of the list is OK for us.

Recipe: 3 Ingredient Banana Oat Bars

Quick and easy to make, I added the following to my first batch:

It seemed crumby, but was rather chewy and tasted like banana bread.  Sadly, I only had coarse salt handy – I don’t recommend it if you find yourself in a similar position.  But the banana flavour was nice with vanilla frozen yogurt 😀

Here’s the recipe.

Oatmeal: Overnight

I switched to this approach recently, both for nutrition and so I didn’t have to wait for the kettle to boil.

The recipe suggests a 1.5 to 1 ratio for steel cut oats, but my experience was 1:1 or you’ll have excess water in the bottom (after leaving it for 12 hours).  The ratio might have to do with the container – I use hermetic/airtight ones, so it could be that water isn’t evaporating.

After a couple of weeks, I started adding things (just before eating, to not throw off the water ratio) like:

There’s a link at the bottom of the recipe for 19 variations.