How to Prepare Oatmeal Overnight

This recipe will produce the creamiest bowl of oatmeal you have ever tried. No milk required. And it will only take you 5 minutes to make in the morning.

The secret is soaking the oats overnight.

Besides the nutritional reasons for soaking grains (which are controversial) there are two good reasons to soak oats overnight.

  1. They cook up quicker.
  2. It makes them super creamy!

Here’s how to do it…

Sarah Burchard is the author of The Healthy Locavore, a natural foods chef and certified health coach whose writing centers around holistic health, supporting community and eating locally grown and made food.
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Print Recipe
Overnight Oatmeal
*Use organic ingredients whenever possible.
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Day 1
Day 2
Optional garnishes:
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Day 1
Day 2
Optional garnishes:
Instructions
  1. Place the oats, warm filtered water and lemon juice in a glass jar on the counter and let sit overnight.
  2. The next day, drain off the liquid, rinse the oats and place them in a small pot with a pinch of sea salt and a cup of filtered water.
  3. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cook about 5 minutes, stirring often.
  4. The oatmeal is ready when most of the water has been absorbed and it is thick and creamy.
  5. Take off the heat and stir in any garnishes you desire.
Recipe Notes

I like to use Bob's Red Mill Organic Rolled Oats for this.

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Savory Granola

Savory granola is something you can use on yogurt for breakfast, sprinkled in salads for lunch or as a delicious snack. With only 2 tablespoons of raw honey this is the perfect granola for anyone trying to cut way back on sugar. With so much flavor packed in from all the nuts, seeds and spices you’ll never want to go back to sweet granola again.

Local spotlight:

For this recipe I used nuts and seeds from G.L. Alfieri Farms (Ripon, CA).

G.L. Alfieri Nuts

Health bennies:

  • Oats – High in fiber and protein.
  • Nuts – Great source of protein and healthy fat.
  • Pumpkin & sunflower seeds – High in important minerals such as phosphorus, magnesium and copper.
  • Sesame seeds – Great source of calcium, magnesium and other important minerals, contain lignans which can have a cholesterol-lowering effect.
  • Coriander, ginger, cardamom – Stimulates digestion, anti-inflammatory.
  • Cayenne – Stimulates digestion & blood circulation, antibacterial, dissolves congestion, helps you absorb nutrients from other foods.

Savory Granola

*Use organic ingredients whenever possible.

Yield – 6 cups

1/2 cup Coconut oil

2 tablespoon Raw honey

4 cups Rolled Oats

1/8 cup Pumpkin seeds

1/8 cup Sunflower seeds

1/4 cup Almonds, raw, chopped

1/4 cup Pistachios, raw, shelled, chopped

1/4 cup Pecans, raw, chopped

1/4 cup Cashews, raw, chopped

1 tablespoon Sea Salt

3/4 teaspoon Black pepper, freshly ground

1/2 teaspoon Coriander, ground

1/2 teaspoon Ginger, ground

1/4 teaspoon Cardamom, ground

1/4 teaspoon Cayenne pepper

2 tablespoons Sesame seeds, raw

Directions:

  • Pre-heat your oven to 300 degrees.
  • In a small pot melt the coconut oil and raw honey together over medium-low heat. About 5 minutes.
  • In a large bowl combine the oats, nuts, pumpkin & sunflower seeds, salt, pepper, all of the spices and the coconut oil-honey mixture. Stir well.
  • Line a sheet pan with parchment paper and spread the granola mixture on to it in an even layer.
  • Bake for  1 hour, or until golden brown, giving the mixture a stir every 10 minutes or so.
  • Let cool completely.
  • Stir in the sesame seeds and store in airtight containers at room temperature.
  • Granola will stay fresh for 3 weeks.
Sarah Burchard is the author of The Healthy Locavore, a natural foods chef and certified health coach whose writing centers around holistic health, supporting community and eating locally grown and made food.
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Pitaya Bowl Paradise

Pitaya bowls

Have you tried pitaya yet? It’s going toe to toe with acai in the frozen breakfast bowl department. These bowls of frozen pureed fruit, topped with granola and berries are all the rage these days. I feel like I’m seeing a new acai & pitaya bowl shop or food truck opening up every week.

But what is pitaya? This vibrant magenta fruit from Central America is also known as dragonfruit. You can now buy pitaya pureed, portioned and frozen just like you can acai.

Health bennies:

  • High in antioxidants
  • Contain B & C vitamins
  • Good source of iron & magnesium
  • High fiber
  • Low glycemic fruit

Building pitaya bowls is fun! I like to puree my pitaya with frozen bananas for potassium and avocado for healthy fat. These ingredients also add to its silky smooth sorbet like texture. From there you can top your bowl with anything you like. Seasonal fruit, nuts, seeds, granola, bee pollen, coconut, the sky’s the limit.

Pitaya bowl prep

Pitaya bowls

Yield – 2-3 servings

2 (3.5 oz.) packs Pitaya puree

2 Bananas, frozen & chopped

1 Avocado, chopped

Garnish:

Freshly sliced strawberries and peaches

Fresh blueberries

Granola

Hemp seeds

Chia seeds

Tools: Vitamix blender with tamper (or other high speed blender)

Directions:

  • Place the pitaya packs under cool running water until you have defrosted them about half way.
  • Place the pitaya puree, chopped frozen banana and avocado in your vitamix blender.
  • Blend until smooth (you will need to use your tamper to help with the pureeing).
  • Pour the puree into bowls and top with garnishes. Enjoy immediately.
Sarah Burchard is the author of The Healthy Locavore, a natural foods chef and certified health coach whose writing centers around holistic health, supporting community and eating locally grown and made food.
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Hippie Hemp Seed Milk

hemp seed milk

I remember back in my early teens listening to The Dead while making macramé necklaces and bracelets with hemp. Never did I imagine in a million years I would be making milk from hemp seeds over 20 years later.

This is one thing that is great about the health food industry. It is always looking for the nutritional benefits of anything and everything so they can find the next trendy thing to sell. Sometimes it’s a sham but sometimes we totally reap the benefit.

Enter hemp seeds. Not only are they great for digestion and keeping inflammation down, they are very versatile as well. You can sprinkle them on yogurt or salads, add them to granola, healthy energy bars or desserts make them into a pesto and yes you can make milk out of them.

Health bennies:

  • Good balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids which is crucial to fighting chronic inflammation.
  • A complete protein – contains all 20 amino acids (including the 9 essential amino acids that our bodies can’t produce).
  • High fiber
  • Good source of minerals – Calcium, magnesium, iron, zinc
  • Good source of vitamins – Vitamin A, D & E and a variety of B vitamins.

Hemp Seed Milk

 Yield – 3 cups

½ cup Hemp seeds, raw & hulled

2 cups Filtered water

1 Tablespoon Raw honey

1 pinch Sea salt

1 teaspoon Vanilla extract

Directions:

  • Place hemp seeds in a large glass jar and cover them with filtered water, let sit on counter for 6 hours, strain and rinse well.
  • Combine the soaked hemp seeds, 2 cups filtered water, raw honey, salt and vanilla  in a blender and blend for one minute
  • Store in a glass jar with tight fitting lid in the fridge up to 5 days.

 

Sarah Burchard is the author of The Healthy Locavore, a natural foods chef and certified health coach whose writing centers around holistic health, supporting community and eating locally grown and made food.
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Creamy Cashew Milk

Cashew Milk

Step aside almond milk. There’s a new non-dairy sheriff in town and it’s name is cashew milk. Y’all be cool.

OK, all movie jokes aside I’m in love with cashew milk. It’s sweet, it’s creamy and the cashews break completely down in the blender so there is virtually no waste to strain out. It’s great in coffee, tea, cereal, you name it.

Health bennies:

  • Excellent dairy substitute for those who are lactose intolerant.
  • Good source of protein, iron, magnesium and vitamin K.

Creamy Cashew Milk

*Use organic ingredients whenever possible.

Yield – 2 3/4 cups

1/2 cup Raw cashews

3 cups Filtered water

  • Combine cashews and water in a 1 quart glass jar and let sit on the counter for 6 hours. Drain & rinse.

2 cups Filtered water

1/2 cup Soaked cashews

1 teaspoon Vanilla extract

1/8 teaspoon Sea salt

Directions:

  1. Place 2 cups water, soaked cashews, vanilla extract and sea salt in a blender and blend for one minute.
  2. Strain through a fine mesh sieve.
  3. Store cashew milk in a glass jar with a tight fitting lid for up to 5 days.
Sarah Burchard is the author of The Healthy Locavore, a natural foods chef and certified health coach whose writing centers around holistic health, supporting community and eating locally grown and made food.
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Homemade Coconut Peanut Butter

Coconut Peanut Butter

Ok, so I’m not gonna lie. You need some pretty heavy equipment to make this happen. But if you have these appliances already than you gotsta be making your own nut butter! It’s stupid easy, delicious and by making it yourself you know exactly what is in it.

So here is the equipment you need (don’t go running out to buy it if you don’t already have it, this is pricy stuff):

Health bennies:

  • Coconut manna (pureed coconut) – High in lauric acid, fiber & protein.
  • Peanuts – High in monounsaturated (good) fat. Great source of protein, vitamin E and antioxidants.

Here’s the recipe. You can make it with any kind of nut you please, almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, etc.  I love this stuff, I have it on toast a few times a week or just eat a strait up spoonful if I’m in the mood…

Homemade Coconut Peanut Butter

*Use organic ingredients whenever possible.

Yield – 2 cups

4 cups Peanuts, roasted & salted (or raw)

1/2 cup Coconut Manna

Directions:

  • Run peanuts through your champion juicer using the blank screen (see juicer operating instructions).
  • Place peanut butter and coconut manna in food processor and process until smooth.
  • Transfer to a glass jar with a lid and refrigerate. Will stay fresh for weeks.

Coconut Peanut Butter Step 1

Coconut Peanut Butter Step 2 Coconut Peanut Butter Step 3

Sarah Burchard is the author of The Healthy Locavore, a natural foods chef and certified health coach whose writing centers around holistic health, supporting community and eating locally grown and made food.
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Amaranth Breakfast Porridge

Amaranth breakfast porridge

Once used regularly by the Aztecs, amaranth grain offers up a powerful protein punch and great start to your day. It is a great option for people with Celiac disease being that it is gluten free. In addition you could also make a savory version with greens, mushrooms, herbs and spices and have it for lunch or dinner.

Health bennies:

  • A complete protein (contains 18 amino acids)
  • High fiber
  • Good source of iron, calcium & magnesium
  • Contains vitamins A, C & B-6

Amaranth Breakfast Porridge

*Use organic ingredients whenever possible.

Yield – 1 serving

1/2 cup Amaranth grain

1 cup Water

Optional garnishes:

  • Ghee
  • Raw honey
  • Sea salt
  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Fruit/berries
  • Bee Pollen

Directions:

  • Combine the amaranth and water in a small pot. Bring to a boil, reduce to low heat, cover and cook 15-20 minutes stirring occasionally.
  • When all of the liquid has been absorbed remove from heat and let sit covered 10 more minutes.
  • Serve and garnish as desired.
Sarah Burchard is the author of The Healthy Locavore, a natural foods chef and certified health coach whose writing centers around holistic health, supporting community and eating locally grown and made food.
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Basic Congee

FullSizeRender

I am so excited to say that after being with my boyfriend for 11 years I have finally found something he likes to eat for breakfast. This is the perfect food to serve to someone who doesn’t want something sweet for breakfast.

Congee for me is very much a comfort food. It’s warm, it’s flavor is mild and lets be honest you barely have to chew.

Called Jook in Chinese and Okayu in Japanese, Congee is a breakfast staple many eastern countries enjoy. Basically, its a rice porridge. It’s very common to see it flavored with soy sauce or tamari (I actually like to use Bragg liquid aminos) and umeboshi plums, which is how I eat it. It takes a while to cook so unless you are a very early riser I would recommend making a batch at the beginning of the week and then having it in the fridge to re-heat as you wish.

Health bennies:

  • Great breakfast choice in the winter to warm, nourish, ground & energize the body.
  • By eating something savory for breakfast instead of sweet you curb your cravings for sugar throughout the rest of the day.
  • Enhances circulation.
  • Easy to digest.
  • Great to eat when you are ill (think chicken noodle soup)

Basic Congee

**Use organic ingredients whenever possible.

Yield – 4 1/2 cups

1/2 cup Long grain rice

5 cups Chicken stock

1/2 inch piece Ginger, peeled and smashed

TT Bragg liquid aminos (or soy sauce or tamari)

TT Umeboshi plum paste

Directions:

  • Rinse rice, place in a pot with the stock & ginger and bring to a boil.
  • Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook, stirring occasionally for 1 1/2 hours.
  • Serve bragg liquid amigos and umeboshi plum paste on the side and season your bowl of congee to your desired taste.
Sarah Burchard is the author of The Healthy Locavore, a natural foods chef and certified health coach whose writing centers around holistic health, supporting community and eating locally grown and made food.
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Coconut-chia pudding with cocoa nibs, pomegranate and mint

Chia pudding

Chia seeds used to be these things that you soaked in water, spread on a garden gnome and a few days later it grew a beard. Then we come to find out these things are actually incredibly good for you and we started putting them in our smoothies and sprinkling them on our salads. Then people started to figure out that when you soak them they turn to jelly like consistency and expand and therefore can be used as a thickener. Enter chia pudding. A wonderful dish invented by God knows who. I started messing around with this stuff about 9 months ago and discovered there are so many ways you can go with a good basic chia pudding recipe. Below I have my basic recipe that I have added cacao nibs to. If you don’t eat cacao nibs feel free to omit them. I used pomegranate and mint to garnish but feel free to use whatever you like. Nuts, seeds, any type of fruit, fresh herbs and spices are all great options. This dish can be eaten at breakfast, as a snack or as a healthy dessert.

Health bennies:

Chia Seeds – Extremely rich in fiber, omega-3s and anti-oxidants, a complete protein, high in nutrients but low in calories. Chia seeds absorb liquid, which for your body means they makes you feel full and are very hydrating.

Coconut-chia pudding with cocoa nibs, pomegranate and mint

**Use organic ingredients whenever possible.

Yield – 2 cups

1 can (13.6 oz) Coconut milk, unsweetened

5 Tablespoons Chia seeds

1 teaspoon Vanilla extract

TT Kosher salt (use himalayan pink or celtic grey to benefit from their minerals)

2 Tablespoons Raw honey

2 Tablespoons Cacoa nibs

Garnish:

1 Tablespoon Cacoa nibs

1/4 cup Pomegranate seeds

2 sprigs Mint, chopped

Directions:

  • Whisk all ingredients together in a bowl. Pour into serving cups and refrigerate overnight.
  • To serve garnish the cups of chia pudding with more cocoa nibs, pomegranate seeds and mint.
Sarah Burchard is the author of The Healthy Locavore, a natural foods chef and certified health coach whose writing centers around holistic health, supporting community and eating locally grown and made food.
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Awesome acai bowls

Acai (pronounce it ah-sigh-ee) is the fruit of a palm tree native to the Brazilian amazon. Once a staple of the indigenous amazon tribes, now a favorite amongst surfers, hippies and foodies. Here in the U.S. you can find it in the freezer section, already pureed and packaged in individual portions. There are usually two types available, unsweetened and sweetened with guarana, another plant native to the amazon, used for its potent amount of caffeine.

Acai bowls are most commonly made by pureeing acai with milk and other fruits. They are basically really thick smoothies, plated in a bowl and then garnished with whatever ingredients your heart desires. The sky really is the limit with this popular breakfast dish. They are an excellent way to get powdered superfoods into your breakfast like maca, spiralina and cacao or your daily dose of fiber by adding ingredients like chia seeds, granola or ground flaxseed. Pack in some protein by garnishing with nuts and seeds and kick up the antioxidant level with cacao nibs and berries. I like to keep bananas, mango or berries in my freezer at all times to blend up with the acai.

Health bennies:

Acai is high in antioxidants, vitamins A, B & K, fiber, potassium, omega fatty acids and is an anti-inflammatory,

Here are three acai bowls I like to make at home. Garnishes change depending on what I have in my pantry & fridge.

The Classic Acai Bowl

classic acai bowl

yield – 1 serving

1 pack Sambazon Acai puree, unsweetened (200g)

1/4 cup Coconut milk, organic

1/2 each Banana (frozen or fresh), organic

1/2 teaspoon Maca powder

1/2 cup Strawberries, organic

Garnishes:

– strawberries, sliced

– blueberries

granola

– raw honey

chia seeds

– bee pollen (made from local bees, can be purchased at your local farmers market or health foods store)

hemp seeds

goji berries

Directions:

– In a high speed blender puree the acai, coconut milk, banana, maca powder and strawberries until smooth.

– Pour puree into a bowl, sprinkle the garnishes on top and serve immediately.

The Chocolate Lover’s Acai bowl

chocolate lover's acai bowl

yield – 1 serving

1 pack Sambazon Acai puree, unsweetened (200g)

1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons Almond milk

1/2 each Avocado, organic

1 each Banana (frozen or fresh), organic

1 teaspoon Cacao powder

1 teaspoon Ground flaxseed, organic

1 Tablespoon raw honey

Garnishes:

cacao nibs

– almonds, chopped

– blueberries

– coconut, shredded, unsweetened

– sunflower seeds

chia seeds

Directions:

–  In a high speed blender puree the acai, almond milk, avocado, banana, cacao powder, ground flaxseed and honey until smooth.

– Pour puree into a bowl, sprinkle the garnishes on top and serve immediately.

Tropical Acai Bowl

tropical acai bowl

yield – 1 serving

1 pack Sambazon Acai puree, unsweetened (200g)

1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons Coconut milk, organic

1/2 each Banana (frozen or fresh), organic

1/2 cup Mango (frozen or fresh), organic

juice from half  a lime

Garnishes:

– mango, diced

– pineapple, diced

– banana, sliced

– avocado, sliced

– coconut, shredded, unsweetened

Directions:

– In a high speed blender puree the acai, coconut milk, banana, mango and lime juice until smooth.

– Pour puree into a bowl, sprinkle the garnishes on top and serve immediately.

Sarah Burchard is the author of The Healthy Locavore, a natural foods chef and certified health coach whose writing centers around holistic health, supporting community and eating locally grown and made food.
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