"Eating oatmeal for breakfast is a good choice." – Qui Sun, Assistant Professor of Nutrition at Harvard
Oats. They’re not just your grandma’s sweet, simple breakfast anymore. We’re kicking it up a notch with four savory oat recipes that’ll power you through to your lunch break. Why oats? They’re whole grain, gluten-free, and full of essential fatty acids, fiber, and vitamin E.
Research shows that oats “contain more than 20 unique polyphenols, avenanthramides, which have shown strong antioxidant activity in vitro and in vivo.” Translation: oats have anti-inflammatory properties, as well as the ability to lower postprandial (after lunch/dinner) blood insulin levels. Remember when your doctor ordered one of those soggy oatmeal baths to soothe your chicken pox when you were young? That’s because of those avenanthramides — it makes oats anti-itch. Oats, when in conjunction with vitamin C (which you should be getting plenty of), have been shown to help prevent LDL cholesterol oxidation. LDL oxidation is what happens when free radicals react with bad cholesterol and put you on the fast track to heart disease, heart attacks, and strokes. Lastly, oats just make you full. If you’ve ever had oats for breakfast, you know that they’ll usually last you through to break time. This full sensation is because of β-glucan which creates viscosity, that gooey texture in your mouth from cooked oats. Think “mouth feel” for all you Brooklyn Nine-Nine fans. Scientists believe that viscosity influences the way that foods interact with our mouths, and then our gut. Since oats have a high initial viscosity and subsequent viscosity, they end up satiating us for longer. The proof is in the porridge. We’ve done enough convincing for one day. Enjoy some savory oats with these delicious recipes!
Savory Oat Recipes
Savory Oatmeal with Cheddar and Fried Egg
Instagrammer Lisa Lin, @hellolisalin, has a simple and hearty oatmeal recipe just for you. Remember to follow her!
¼ cup dry quick-cooking steel cut oats
¾ cup water
Salt and pepper
2 tbsp shredded white cheddar cheese
1 tsp coconut oil, divided
¼ cup diced red pepper
2 tbsps finely chopped onions
1 large egg
Chopped walnuts, optional
Sliced green onions, optional
Za’atar (or any other spice blend), optional
Let’s Get to It
Bring water to boil. Add the oatmeal, reduce heat a little and let it cook for about 3 minutes, until all the liquid is absorbed.
Turn off the heat and stir in the cheese, a small pinch of salt, and pepper.
Heat a nonstick pan with ½ teaspoon of coconut oil over medium-high heat.
Add the vegetables and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, until they soften.
Spoon the vegetables over cooked oats. Reduce heat to medium.
Add remaining ½ teaspoon of oil and fry the egg. Cook until the whites are no longer translucent and serve over oatmeal.
Top with chopped walnuts, green onions, and za’atar, if you like.
Savory Oatmeal With Greens and Yogurt
David Tanis is making your morning a whole lot tastier with his colorful take on a savory oatmeal recipe. Remember to follow him!
Toasted Oat and Nut Topping:
¼ cup oats
¼ cup slivered raw almonds
¼ cup pumpkin seeds
¼ cup hemp seeds or sunflower seeds
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
½ cup oats
Salt and pepper
1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 small clove garlic, finely diced
Pinch of crushed red pepper
5 oz spinach leaves, about one large handful washed and drained
Plain full-fat yogurt, preferably Bulgarian yogurt, for garnish
Let’s Get to It
Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Make the toasted oat and nut topping: Mix the oats, almonds, pumpkin seeds and hemp seeds together in a small bowl with salt and olive oil. Transfer to a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes, or just until fragrant and lightly toasted.
Make the oatmeal: In a small saucepan, bring 1 cup water to a boil, then add the oats and a pinch of salt. Reduce to a low simmer, cover, and cook for 20 minutes. Stir occasionally. Turn off the heat, cover the pot, and let steam for an additional 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, prepare the greens: Heat about 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Once the oil begins to shimmer, add the garlic and crushed red pepper. (The garlic should just sizzle but not brown.) Then add the greens, salt to taste, and briefly wilt for around one minute (but no longer than two); turn with tongs to evenly cook.
Place the oatmeal in the bowl, surround with greens and pan juices, and garnish with about 1 tablespoon toasted oat and nut topping. Finish with a dollop of yogurt and freshly ground pepper. Sprinkle with a little salt and a drizzle of olive oil if desired.
Garlic Oats with Fried Egg
Instagrammer Richa Gupta, @my_foodstory, has a savory oat recipe that’ll last you through the colder months. Click here for her amazing recipe. And remember to follow her on Instagram!