January is National Oatmeal Month

How perfect for January to be National Oatmeal Month.  A big bowl of hot oatmeal is best on cold winter days!

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Oatmeal can be easy and fast to prepare. Place 1/2 cup rolled oats and 1 cup water in a large mug and microwave for 1-2 minutes. Then, I usually stir in skim milk and a touch of brown sugar or honey. Now, it is ready to eat.

What is oatmeal?

  • Oatmeal is ground oat groats.

What are the health benefits?

  • Oatmeal has a high soluble fiber content which helps lower cholesterol. Oatmeal is also sodium free.

What is the difference between rolled oats and steel-cut oats?

  • Rolled oats are oats that have been steamed and rolled flat.
  • Steel-cut oats are oats that have been sliced into small pieces. They take much longer to cook and have a nutty robust flavor. They have the same nutritional value as rolled oats; however, they have a lower glycemic index.
  • Instant oatmeal has added sugars and is high in sodium.

Chia Pet The New Super Food ?

Do you remember the Chia Pet?  Who would ever think that chia seeds would become the new super food!  Their big claim to fame range from hunger control, weight loss, reduced blood sugar and triglyceride levels.  However, the research is showing mixed results.  More research is needed to support the chia seeds’ claims.

Chia seeds are tiny black and white seeds grown in Mexico and South America.  They date back to the Mayan and Aztec times.  The Chia seed has a mild, nutty flavor and adds texture to foods.  When combined with a liquid, chia seeds form a gel and are a great substitute for eggs in baked products and pectin in jelly.  Also, it makes a great pudding.

CHIA PUDDING IN A JAR:

In a mason jar, mix together all ingredients.  Place the lid on and refrigerate over night.  It makes a great healthy breakfast to go.

  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 1-1/4 cup coconut milk (or any type of milk)
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

 

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Banana Nana Smoothie

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This banana smoothie is not only healthy and super easy to make, it can also be a complete meal.  It is high in calcium and protein and very satisfying.  Not to mention, it is absolutely delicious!  Enjoy!!

WHAT YOU NEED:

1 small ripe banana

1 cup Almond Breeze almond coconut milk

1-5 oz. container plain nonfat greek yogurt

DIRECTIONS:

Mix all ingredients in a blender until smooth.  Makes 1 serving.

NUTRITION INFO:

230 Calories; 3 gm Fat; 36 gm Carbohydrate; 4 gm Fiber; 17 gm Protein; 176 mg Sodium; 610 mg Calcium

Healthy Blueberry Muffins

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WHAT YOU NEED:

  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup blueberries ( I used fresh)
  • 6 oz container light vanilla yogurt
  • 1/2 cup fat-free milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp vanilla

DIRECTIONS:

In a larger mixing bowl, add the first 3 ingredients and stir.  Stir in blueberries.  Mix in the remaining ingredients until blended.  Pour into lined muffin pans.  Bake @ 350 degrees F. for 25 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out dry.  Makes 18 muffins.

NUTRITION INFO:

  • 82 Calories
  • 1 gm fat
  • 12 mg cholesterol
  • 14 mg sodium
  • 17 gm carbohydrate
  • 2 gm fiber
  • 3 gm protein

Crustless Spinach Quiche

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WHAT YOU NEED:

  • 5-6 oz fresh spinach
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 cup low-fat mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 8 extra large eggs

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 375F.   Spray a deep pie dish with nonstick spray.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan and sautee the garlic.   Add the spinach and stir just until the spinach is wilted, about 2 minutes.  Transfer spinach to the pie dish, spread it to cover the bottom of the dish.  Layer the grated cheese on top of the spinach.

Beat the eggs with salt and fresh ground pepper to taste.  Pour the egg mixture over the spinach/cheese combination, and then use a fork to gently “stir” so the eggs, spinach, and cheese are evenly combined.

Bake about 35 minutes or until the mixture is completely set and starting to lightly brown.  Let cool about 5 minutes before cutting.

Makes 8 servings.

NUTRITION INFO: per serving

127 Calories; 9 gm fat; 220 mg cholesterol; 173 mg sodium; 2 gm carbohydrate; 10 gm protein

Quinoa Banana Muffins

These muffins are filled with healthy ingredients and very satisfying.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/4 cup quinoa, dry
  • 1-1/2 cup oats, dry
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 cup egg beater
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 2 medium bananas, smashed
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips

DIRECTIONS:

Cook quinoa (boil with 1/2 cup water for 15 minutes).  Mix all ingredients, except the chocolate chips, well and let sit.  Meanwhile, line muffin tin or spray with Pam.  Stir the chips into batter.  Fill muffin cups.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.  Yields 12 muffins.

NUTRITION INFO: per muffin

120 Calories; 2.5 g fat; 3.5 g protein; 21 g cho; 4 g fiber; 27 mg sodium 

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Oatmeal Banana Muffins

Here’s another recipe I found on Pinterest from greenlitebites.com.  I made some minor adjustments; and, not only are these muffins extremely healthy, they’re  delicious.  They make for a great breakfast on the go or as a snack.  Enjoy!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 large bananas, mashed
  • 1 cup vanilla almond milk
  • 1/2 cup egg substitute
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat white flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/4 cup mini chocolate chips

DIRECTIONS:

Mix all ingredients except the chocolate chips with a large spoon until well blended.  Stir in the chocolate chips.  Spray muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray.  Spoon batter into muffin cups, just about filled.  Bake at 375 degrees for 25-30 minutes or firm to the touch.  Makes 15 muffins.

NUTRITION INFO:

82 calories, 1 gm fat, 15 gm carbohydrate, 2 gm fiber, 3 gm protein, 122 mg sodium

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