Think oatmeal is bland? Think again! This post shares 6 surprising oatmeal recipes that are easy to make. You’ll also learn how oatmeal helps the gut and improves overall health.
Contrary to what people may think, I don’t always have a full battery when I wake up. Like everyone, I go through ebbs and flows of energy. Some days I have the zeal to whip up a creative breakfast for the entire family, but there are also days when I just want something easy. If there’s any meal that helps me last through a full day of picking up the kids from school, meetings and working out…it’s oatmeal!
That’s the reasoning behind this carefully curated list of creative oatmeal recipes. Included are those that make the grade in terms of great taste, health, and convenience. They’re the kind of much-loved recipes that you can easily whip up for busy mornings.
Is Oatmeal a Carb?
Oatmeal is indeed a carb, a healthy one. According to the USDA, a half cup of dry coats or 1 cup of cooked oats contain around 27 grams of carbohydrates. In the problematic world of extreme diets, carbs have gotten a bad rep. Just remember that these are the healthy energy sources that you body needs!
What are healthy carbs? The rule of thumb is if you can pick the carbohydrate straight from the farm, it’s considered a healthy carb. Quinoa, carrots, sweet potatoes, and of course oats, are part of this food group. Oats are especially healthy for you because they’re rich in fiber and can curb cravings by keeping you full.
Are all Oats Healthy Carbs?
All oats are healthy and have big nutritional benefit. Whether you choose rolled oats, steel-cut oats, or old fashioned oats, you’re basically getting the same good stuff. I do recommend avoiding the prepackaged packets of instant oats. They’re usually flavored artificially and contain preservatives. Not to mention the hidden sugars commonly found in packaged food. It’s way more fun to flavor your oats with creative and fresh ingredients, anyways, as you’ll see in the recipes down below!
Is Oatmeal Good for Weight loss?
Oatmeal is excellent for weight loss because it is packed with soluble fiber (also known as beta-glucan) which dissolves in water and forms a hearty texture in the gut. This does several things; it helps reduce your cholesterol levels, increases your feeling of fullness, and also promotes healthy gut bacteria. All excellent things if weight loss is among your goals.
What Happens When I Eat Oatmeal every day?
Here are just a few results of what happens when you eat oatmeal every day.
Spoiler Alert: They’re all good things!
- It will up your nutrient intake: As mentioned earlier, oats have the perfect balance of nutrients. They contain more healthy carbs, fiber, protein, and fat compared to other grains. Oats are also packed with vitamins and minerals (such as Iron, Zinc, Vitamin B1, and B5). Just don’t negate these benefits by drowning your oats in sugary add-ons!
- You’ll stabilize your blood sugar level: Oatmeal has a low glycemic index which can help regulate your blood sugar. If you’re someone that lives with diabetes or a metabolic condition, the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disease recommends eating whole grains like oatmeal.
- Oats will speed up your metabolism: If you feel like your metabolism could use a boost, oatmeal is exactly what you need. When we consume complex carbs like oats (which are digested slowly), they encourage the release of acids to burn fat and can also preserve muscle mass. If you want to REALLY give your metabolism a kickstart, check out my post How To Increase Your Metabolism.
- They’re good for your gut: Because oats contain the gel-like texture of beta-glucan, oatmeal feeds good bacteria in the gut, contributing to overall improved to gut health. Studies also show that oats are often used to relieve constipation. I’d rather eat oatmeal than laxatives any day!
- Oats encourage healthy skin: Due to the high amount of fiber and vitamins (and zinc!), oatmeal is great for maintaining skin health and cutting inflammation.
What are The Different Types of Oats?
This is probably one of the most frequently asked questions that lands in my DM’s. Here’s the low down on the different oats you’ll find in your local supermarket:
- Steel Cut Oats: AKA my favorite, are the least processed type of oats. They’re what happens when you take the groat (or the entire oat grain) and cut it into 2-3 parts. Being less processed, they tend to absorb more liquid and take longer to cook.
- Quick Oats: The most convenient option when you’re running behind in the morning, quick oats have already been steamed once. Because they’ve also been very thinly rolled, they only take a few minutes to cook. The main downside is that they’re the most processed of the 3 types and cook slightly mushy.
- Old Fashion Rolled Oats: These are created when the oat groats are steamed and rolled into flakes. This process stabilizes the healthy oils and speeds up the cooking time as well. If you’re planning on having a creamy bowl of oatmeal, go with these!
What Type of Oatmeal is Best for Weight loss?
Oatmeal can be a star player when it comes to weight loss! Steel-cut or rolled oats are the best types of oatmeal to add to your weight loss regimen. Personally, I tend towards steel-cut oats because they are heartier, chewier, and nuttier than the others. As mentioned before, look at the nutritional labels and avoid the prepackaged stuff!
Healthy Oatmeal Recipes
In order to really take oatmeal seriously, we’ve got to give it some pizazz! Here are my top 5 healthy (and delicious) oatmeal recipes that I’ve created over the years.
Anyone else like planning in advance? Overnight oats take just 5 minutes of prep in the evening and give you a real treat to look forward to the next morning. This recipe gives you the flavors of a sweet pumpkin pie (cinnamon, nutmeg, maple) with the hearty balance of oats for an all-star breakfast.
Strawberries, cream and oats combined is just the perfect breakfast meal for me. If you want to begin brightening your day at breakfast, this is the recipe for you.
I LOVE finding ways to enjoy treats in healthier ways. And turning an oatmeal raisin cookie into a protein shake is one of my fave inventions thus far. Both cozy and creamy, this oatmeal recipe is made with home staples like banana and cinnamon.
If you haven’t noticed this yet…I love me some overnight oats. They’re easy, healthy, yummy, and a huge hit with children! If you’ve got some blackberry’s nearby, you’ll want to try this recipe out.
I honestly love tricking my brain into thinking I’m eating a rich dessert for breakfast. But my stomach recognizes I’m getting a balanced meal with this overnight oats recipe! The joys of pie without refined sugar, flour, or butter!
You didn’t think I’d end this blog post without sharing this classic did you? A chewy oatmeal cookie is close to my heart. This recipe has all the flavors of a store-bought oatmeal cookie…but without the unhealthy ingredients. Give it a try. You’ll be glad you did.
More Healthy Oat Recipes
- Banana Oat Blender Pancakes
- Homemade Granola Bars
- Healthy Fresh Cherry Crisp
- Best Overnight Oat Recipes
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