Oatmeal Pancakes

 

Oatmeal Pancakes on Whisk Together-2854

Exercise:  I keep forgetting to add an exercise update!  Here is Abs on Fire – a routine that does rounds of abs and rounds of cardio for 30 minutes.  Like everything on there, it is totally free and they don’t sell you anything.  Just preach real food and good exercise routines 🙂

Food:

Kid #1 used to eat oatmeal with me EVERY morning.  It was part of our daily routine for the most part.  I forget when it happened, but now he hates oatmeal.  He doesn’t like the taste, texture or anything.  So… being sneaky I made these pancakes made almost entirely out of the same old fashioned oats you get at the store.  Costco carries them 10 pounds for $7.99!  That’s 7 cents per serving!

Now, if you need *gluten free* oats, do not get Quaker Oats because they are not certified gluten free – or have not yet.  Trader Joe’s does carry certified gluten free old-fashioned oats.

Oatmeal Pancakes on Whisk Together-2855

Everyone loved these and didn’t even realize they were made with oats!

Recipe: To make your own oat flour, you can place about 2 and 1/2 cups of old fashioned oats into a blender or food processor.  Blend until it turns into flour.  This should yield about 2 cups of oat flour.

Oatmeal Pancakes
Author: Mary Ellen P. Riley / Whisk Together
Ingredients
  • 2 cups oat flour
  • 3/4 cup white whole wheat, whole wheat or oat flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon (optional)
  • 2 cups buttermilk*
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 3 Tb. melted butter or applesauce
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract (optional)
Instructions
  1. In a great big bowl, mix the dry stuff: flour(s), baking powder, baking soda, salt and optional cinnamon.
  2. In a not so great big bowl, mix the wet stuff: buttermilk, eggs, butter and vanilla.
  3. Add the wet stuff to the dry stuff. Stir until JUST combined. Leave the lumps.
  4. Allow to sit and absorb while the skillet or griddle heat up.
  5. Heat griddle to 350 degrees or skillet to medium heat. Add a little butter to the pan if it is not non-stick. Pour a 1/4-1/2 cup batter. Cook until bubbles form (1-2 minutes). Flip. Cook another 1-2 minutes or until golden brown.
  6. Serve immediately.
  7. Uneaten pancakes can cool on wire racks and then be frozen in freezer bags. To eat in the morning, microwave for 1 minute, flipping halfway.
Notes
*To make 2 cups of buttermilk, place 2 Tb. of lemon juice in a measuring cup. Then, fill with milk until you reach the 2 cup line. You do not need to “let it sit” as some recipes suggest. The resulting product shows no difference.

 

Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Granola Bars

Choco Peanut Butter Granola Bars on Whisk Together

 

Book:   I have found another Alton Brown book!  How does he have the time?  Well, anyway it is “I’m Just Here for More Food: Version 2.0 Baking”.   This is probably the BEST baking book out there for understanding baking.  I love love love King Arthur Flour and all of their recipe books.  But, if you want to understand WHY things work in baking this is the book for you!  I love the humor and the detail in the book.  Probably the best of the 3 in the series in my opinion.  If you get it from the library, make sure it is the later edition.  The first run through had some bad edits.

Choco Chip Peanut Butter Granola Bars_1 on Whisk Together

Recipe:  So, back when Maddox was around 3 years old his favorite thing for breakfast was:  Quaker Oats Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Granola Bars.  He would eat 1 for breakfast and a glass of milk (which was consumed on our 90 second drive to preschool that started 15 minutes after he woke up!).  What can I say?  I hate waking sleeping children.  Anyway, this recipe is no -bake just like the other Trail Mix Bars I have made in the past.  One pan makes a lot of chocolatey, peanut buttery goodness.

As with many no bake recipes, you can substitute peanut butter for almond butter and the chocolate chips for another dry ingredient.

Choco Chip Peanut Butter Granola Bars on Whisk Together

Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Granola Bars

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup light corn syrup
  • heaping 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder (natural or Dutch processed)
  • 1 and 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 cups quick oats or old-fashioned oats cut down in the food processor
  • 2 cups rice cereal (Rice Krispies)
  • 1 cup mini chocolate chips (semi-sweet or dark)

Instructions

  1. Take out your 8x8 or 9x9 pan. Create a sling in the pan with wax paper or foil. (Tip: Non stick aluminum foil is super easy in sticky recipes!) Make sure the foil hangs off the sides 1-2".
  2. In a great big glass or ceramic bowl, mix the corn syrup, peanut butter, and brown sugar. Cook for 1 minute in the microwave. Stir it up a bit. Cook another minute in the microwave.
  3. Add cocoa, vanilla and salt. Stir some more!
  4. Fold in the oats. Fold in 1 cup of rice cereal. The mixture is now going to get really thick. I added the second cup of rice cereal, but if it gets too hard to stir then stop adding rice cereal.
  5. Stir in 1/2 of the chocolate chips. Press the mixture into the pan. Use the back of a spatula or greased hands to press down on the mixture.
  6. Sprinkle the rest of the chocolate chips on top and press them in lightly.
  7. Cool in the fridge for 2-3 hours or freezer for 1 hour. Use the sling to lift the batch of granola bars out of the pan and slice with a big knife. You can individually wrap them and store in the fridge, or freeze some for lunches later, or leave them in the pan covered and eat as you go!
  8. Recipe from Averie Cooks
http://www.whisktogether.com/2015/02/18/chocolate-chip-peanut-butter-granola-bars/

Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Granola Bars
makes 12-16 bars

2/3 cup light corn syrup
heaping 1/2 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup cocoa powder (natural or Dutch processed)
1 and 1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. salt
2 cups quick oats or old-fashioned oats cut down in the food processor
2 cups rice cereal (Rice Krispies)
1 cup mini chocolate chips (semi-sweet or dark)

Take out your 8×8 or 9×9 or 7×11 pan.  Create a sling in the pan with wax paper or foil.  (Tip:  Non stick aluminum foil is super easy in sticky recipes!)  Make sure the foil hangs off the sides 1-2″.
In a great big glass or ceramic bowl, mix the corn syrup, peanut butter, and brown sugar.  Cook for 1 minute in the microwave.  Stir it up a bit.  Cook another minute in the microwave.
Add cocoa, vanilla and salt.  Stir some more!
Fold in the oats.  Fold in 1 cup of rice cereal.  The mixture is now going to get really thick.  I added the second cup of rice cereal, but if it gets too hard to stir then stop adding rice cereal.
Stir in 1/2 of the chocolate chips.  Press the mixture into the pan.  Use the back of a spatula or greased hands to press down on the mixture.
Sprinkle the rest of the chocolate chips on top and press them in lightly.
Cool in the fridge for 2-3 hours or freezer for 1 hour.  Use the sling to lift the batch of granola bars out of the pan and slice with a big knife.  You can individually wrap them and store in the fridge, or freeze some for lunches later, or leave them in the pan covered and eat as you go!

Recipe from Averie Cooks

Healthier No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies on Whisk Together

Book Update:  I’ve learned some new and interesting things from “Salt, Sugar, Fat” by Michael Moss… Like Oscar Meyer had a bologna problem back in the 80’s and 90’s.  Red meat was being purchased less and less as a result of the “fat is bad” boom from the 1980’s.  Nothing new.  However, Lunchables were created to solve this problem.  They needed to sell bologna and now with Kraft their sister company (all under Philip Morris… holy cow that company owns a TON of stuff), they can get the cheese at cost.  At first, they were going to put bread in the lunchable, but that idea had to be removed because the Lunchables had to be able to last 2 months in storage.  Bread can’t do that… but crackers can.  And that is why there are crackers in Lunchables.  They were designed to solve mom’s problem of rushing around in the morning trying to fix lunches, get breakfast on the table and have everyone out the door on time.  (Might I add that freezer lunches would solve this?  ;-))

No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies_1 on Whisk Together

Recipe Update:  I’m not the biggest chocolate fan ever, but these cookies were AWESOME.  They lasted two days in our house.  I think it is the oats.  I love oatmeal, oatmeal cookies, etc.  Why are these healthier?  They use a reduced about of butter (fat) and sugar (sucrose), and the recipe uses old fashioned oats instead of quick oats.  Quick oats are yummy and they would work as well.  But, I like the chew of the rolled oats personally.  You choose what your family likes.  These cookies set very nicely and came together quickly.  I used Trader Joe’s baking cocoa because I think it tastes better than most others including Aldi’s (the nutrition facts are drastically different, so it isn’t the same thing).  Next time, I may try to reduce the sugar even more.

Since we are snowed in and receiving 8-12″ of snow today, I thought everyone should have this recipe today.   The ingredients are probably in your pantry.

**Update** 1/6/14:  I made these and reduced the sugar to 1 cup.  They  worked!  They are not as sweet, but I don’t think you could tell unless you made a side by side comparison.  They are not as solid, but they are solid.  This could also be solved by storing them in the fridge like we do.

Healthier No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies
40 cookies

1 cup sugar
1/2 cup cocoa (the normal natural baking cocoa like Hershey’s, I like Trader Joe’s)
1/2 cup milk
1/8 heaping teaspoon salt
1/2 cup peanut butter
5 tablespoons butter, cut up
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups rolled oats

1.  Add the sugar, cocoa, milk and salt to a large pot.  Mine is stainless 3 liter size.
2.  Mix all of this up and boil for 1 minute.
3.  Remove the pot from the heat.  Add the peanut butter, butter and vanilla.  Stir until melted.
4.  Add in the oats.  Stir gently to coat.
5.  Dollop cookies onto a piece of wax paper, parchment or silicone.  I used a 1 Tablespoon cookie scoop.  This yielded about 40 cookies.  Allow the cookies to cool on the counter to set up.  I waited an hour.  Then store at room temperature in an airtight container or for long time storage (or just because they taste good cold), put them in the fridge.

Recipe from Food.com

Cranberry Sweet Potato Casserole

Sweet Potato Casserole_3 on WT

This may be one of the dumbest or greatest things I’ve bought for my kitchen.  I will have to let you know once I receive it and start using it.  We love breakfast sandwiches, but the assembly and everything can take time.  I don’t always have them frozen on hand, so I thought this might save us a lot of time and energy:  the breakfast sandwich maker actually MAKES the sandwich with the egg in it for you.  How cool is that?  Well, definitely something different and fun.

Recipe:  This was an interesting twist on using up sweet potatoes.  I would recommend always serving it warm.  My other favorite sweet potato casserole seems to be good hot or cold.  Very similar, but with a tang of cream cheese – everyone liked it.

Cranberry Sweet Potato Casserole
serves 8-10

8 oz. cream cheese, soft
40 oz. sweet potatoes, (drain the can, or cooked from raw)
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Topping:
1 apple (like Granny Smith or Jonathon, but most will work), chopped
2/3 cup chopped cranberries
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup oats (quick or old fashioned)
1/4 cup butter, cold and cut up
1/4 cup chopped pecans (optional)

1.  Spray a 1 and 1/2 qt. or 8×8 or 9×9 pan with cooking spray.
2.  Heat up the oven to 350 degrees.
3.  Beat the cream cheese, potatoes, 1/4 cup brown sugar and cinnamon until creamy.
4.  In a medium bowl, toss the rest of the brown sugar, apples, cranberries, flour and oats.  Crumble in the butter and mix until you get coarse crumbs.
5.  Put the potatoes into the dish.  Top with the topping.  Bake for 35-40 minutes.

Recipe from Kraft

Oatmeal Cinnamon Roll

Oatmeal Cinnamon Roll on Whisk Together

Book Update:  I’m still plowing through “How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk” and agree with almost everything.  Except they mention how parents don’t listen to what their kids are saying like “I’m hungry” even when the child just ate.  Indeed, they could still be hungry.  But sometimes kids are just plain wrong.  Like “I’m not tired” and then they fall asleep 2 minutes later!  I guess everything in moderation, but overall this book really rocks.

Recipe Update: This is a desperate cinnamon roll.  I’m a cinnamon roll lover – but the problem is that one, they are so good I eat like 3 or 4 in one day.  And two, they aren’t that good for you.  This recipe solves both problems.  You only make one at a time and the main ingredient is whole grain oats.  Now, it doesn’t quite taste like a cinnamon roll per se.  But, I think some fruit on the bottom would be very tasty.

Now, if you want real cinnamon rolls, then I have LOTS of those recipes!

Bread Machine Cinnamon Rolls
Light Cinnamon Rolls
Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls
Apple Cinnamon Rolls

Oatmeal Cinnamon Roll
serves 1

1/4 cup fresh or frozen fruit (optional)
1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
1/4 cup milk (regular or almond)
1/4 cup applesauce
1 Tb. chopped pecans (optional)
1/2 Tb. brown sugar
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
dash of cloves if you like those

2 oz. Greek yogurt, plain
1 Tb. powdered sugar or maple syrup

1.  Preheat oven to 375 or convection oven to 350.  Spray a ramekin with baking or cooking spray.  The ramekin should be about 8 oz.  Or you could even use a coffee mug that is oven safe.
2.  Add your fruit if you are using it.
3.  Mix your oats, milk, applesauce, pecans, brown sugar, cinnamon and cloves in a bowl.  Pour those into your ramekin.
4.  Bake for 15-20 minutes.  Cool.  Flip onto plate after a couple minutes.
5.  To make the “frosting”, mix your yogurt and powdered sugar together.  I think next time I might try maple syrup, or just use syrup and skip the yogurt!  It was fun though and made it more like a cinnamon roll.

Oatmeal Cinnamon Roll_1 on Whisk Together

Recipe adapted from Chocolate Covered Katie

Oat and Honey Granola

Knex Car

My son LOVES Cascadian Farms’ “Oats and Honey Granola.”  In fact, this is his favorite granola and won’t eat the other ones I make or buy – even the super awesome Trader Joe’s Mango Passion Granola.  Or my delicious cherry orange granola.  He often eats this each morning because Juliana and I like oatmeal – and he doesn’t.  Well, if he wants something else he has to go make it himself.  I’m mean like that.  I use words like “you are capable” and he hangs his head.  Okay, he doesn’t really hang his head.  But you get it.  So, little Maddox snubs my oatmeal and makes the breakfast he likes:  plain Greek yogurt, granola and honey.  Honey is okay here because… plain Greek Yogurt is just plain nasty!  Honey makes it much better.

So, we were running low on oats and honey granola and… well, I was too lazy to go to the store and get it.  And, it is a little expensive to buy considering I can get old fashioned oats at Costco for 7 cents/ serving.  Therefore, I worked on my old granola recipes and meshed them together with the ingredient list on the box of oats and honey granola to arrive at this recipe.

oats and honey granola_1 on Whisk Together

I can’t call it a copycat recipe because it doesn’t taste exactly like Cascadian Farms brand.  First of all, it isn’t as sweet.  Since we use this granola on plain Greek yogurt and honey quite often, I didn’t think more sugar was needed.  Second, it doesn’t have a whole lot of flavor on its own, but I still found it quite delicious with some milk and a spoon.

oats and honey granola_2 on Whisk Together

Oat and Honey Granola
yield: 4 cups

1/4 cup honey (use 1/2 cup if you want sweeter granola)
1/4 cup canola or vegetable or grapeseed oil
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. molasses (next time I may increase this;  you can omit it)
1/2 tsp. cinnamon (optional and not in the original oats and honey ingredient list, so would be tasty, but I didn’t use it.)
3 cups old-fashioned oats
1 cup crisp rice cereal (like Rice Krispies, TJ’s Crisp Rice, etc.)

1.  Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
2.  In a microwave safe bowl, or a saucepan, warm the honey.
3.  Add the oil, vanilla, salt, molasses (optional), and cinnamon (optional).  Stir vigorously.
4.  Combine the oats and cereal in a large bowl.  Drizzle the warm honey mixture and mix until coated.
5.  Spread the mixture into a rimmed cookie sheet.  Bake for 30-40 minutes and stir every 10-15 minutes.  Cool.  It will become crispy as it cools.  Store at room temperature in an airtight container.

No Bake Energy Bites

I kind of feel left behind in the whole energy bite phase.  I made these No Bake Cheerios bites back in 2004 and published them on my blog about a year ago.  Now, if you swap the corn syrup for honey, then you pretty much get something similar to the no bake energy bite snacks.

These were very tasty.  I had all of the ingredients on hand PLUS they tasted good to everyone in the family.  I’m not a huge chocolate -holic, but when I was really hungry yet it was too early for a meal, these puppies filled me up.  Two thumbs up!

No Bake Energy Bites
yield 25 balls

1 cup oatmeal (I used old fashioned oats)
1/2 cup peanut butter (or use almond almond, etc.)
1/3 cup honey
1/2 cup ground flaxseed (Costco carries cold pressed ground flax; I used to buy it at the regular store as Bob’s Red Mill)
1/2 cup mini or regular semisweet chocolate chips
1 tsp. vanilla
(Original recipe includes 1 cup coconut flakes.  These are hard to find and actually in the original Cheerios recipe mentioned earlier as sweetened shredded coconut.  I omitted it altogether because of the added sugar to coconut in the bag.)

In a medium bowl, mix up all the ingredients.  Throw the bowl in the fridge for at least 30-60 minutes.  I used my small cookie scoop (1.5 Tb.) to scoop out the chilled dough.  Roll it into a 1″ ball between your hands.  Store in the fridge.

Recipe adapted from Smashed Peas

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