Oatmeal: It does the body good!
There are great benefits to beginning each day with a heart healthy breakfast, but oatmeal can be so much more.
A warm bowl of oatmeal topped with fruit, cream or brown sugar is a terrific way to start a day in the throes of a blistery winter. There are great benefits to beginning each day with a heart healthy breakfast, but oatmeal can be so much more!
Suggestions (recipes to follow):
1. Use as a binder in meatloaf in place of bread crumbs or in place of bread or crushed cereal for meatloaf or tuna patties.
2. Run oatmeal through a food processor and replace flour to coat chicken or pork.
3. Create delicious baked treats including homemade granola bars and muffins. Substitute finely blended oatmeal for part of the all-purpose flour in some recipes.
4. Store in refrigerator or freezer for long-term storage.
5. The date on the package is a “best quality” date, not a food safety date.
6. Oatmeal contains no sugar — sweeten with raisin, dried or fresh fruit, fruit juice or some honey or brown sugar.
Oatmeal is an example of a whole grain, meaning it’s full of fiber which keeps your hunger satisfied longer. The fiber also makes it great for the digestive track and helps with regularity.
A key recommendation of the United States Department of Agriculture and dietary guidelines is to consume at least half of all grains as whole grains. In the average 2,000 calorie diet (varies with age, activity level and gender), 6 ounces of grains each day are needed. In the process to increase whole-grain intake, the goal would be to replace 3 ounces of refined grains with whole grains each day.
Whether you are faithful about oatmeal as a breakfast food or not, Michigan State University Extension nutrition program urges you to “warm up” to the idea of including oatmeal in other foods!
A special thank you to Grand Traverse/Leelanau County MSU Extension for the recipes below. Further recipe resources can be found at American Heart Association.
1 3/4-2 cups cooked beans
1 1/3 cups oatmeal
2 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon Italian or pizza seasoning
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
Salt & pepper to tast
Mash beans until they have the texture of ground meat. Add remaining ingredients; let stand 10-15 minutes until water is absorbed. Add more water if mixture is too dry. Heat a tablespoon of oil in skillet. Place large spoonful of bean mixture into skillet. Press into burger shape. Cook on both sides at medium heat until browned.
Make & Bake Coating Mixes Italian
1 cup oatmeal
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 cup oatmeal
1 tablespoon dry parsley
3/4 teaspoon chili powder
3/4 teaspoon paprika
For each mix, place ingredients in blender or food processor. Cover; blend 20-30 seconds until evenly mixed. Use to coat meat, poultry, fish or potatoes; bake until done.
Peanut Butter Granola Bars
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup honey
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 1/2 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup mini chocolate chips
Heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In large bowl, beat peanut butter, honey, egg and vanilla until blended. Combine oats, brown sugar and salt. Add to peanut butter mixture; mix well and stir in chocolate chips. Batter will be sticky. Spoon onto lightly greased 13x9-inch baking pan. Use spatula to press evenly in pan. Bake 12 to 15 minutes or until set and edges are lightly browned. Cool on wire rack. Cut into squares or bars.