I was recently sitting with a bunch of parents and the conversation turned to food sensitivities and allergies. 4 out of the 9 parents there were told by a doctor to restrict their children’s diet in some way or another but few of the parents were sent home with any steps in how to successfully manage this transition. One parent of a gluten-free child had started relying on rice crispy treats in the morning, what the hell doc? This is an opportunity for a re-education in nutrition, give them a chance by arming parents and kids with some good alternatives.
Breakfast is our best chance for starting the day on the right foot, you guys know I’m a fan of the morning smoothie. But when kids have been used to cereal or pop tarts or crispy treats switching to smoothie 7 days a week can be too big of a transition. Here’s something that’s served in our house at least once a week, Gluten-free Baked Oatmeal. It’s so flexible, and can accommodate so many restrictions. I make it the night before and leave it on the counter for an easy, breezy morning (refrigerate in airtight container after morning breakfast – keeps 3 days). Here’s the basic recipe:
(adapted from Baked Oatmeal on MayoClinic.com)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees
2 eggs (cage-free, organic)
1 TBS Safflower Oil
1/2 Cup applesauce (unsweetened)
1/4 Cup brown sugar
3 Cups Gluten Free Oats (Bob’s Red Mill offers a good one and I’m working on getting this in bulk at our regular g store)
2 TSP Baking Powder
1 TSP Cinnamon
1/2 TSP Sea Salt
1 Cup Nut Milk, Rice Milk, Goat’s Milk
Coconut Oil or Ghee or Butter to grease your baking dish (I use a 9″ pie dish)
Combine first four ingredients, add 1 cup oats, add Baking Powder, Cinnamon, Sea Salt, stir.
Add rest of oats (1 cup at a time), add milk, stir. Once combined, pour into a greased or oiled baking dish.
Bake for 30 minutes at 375.
Make it Vegan
Skip eggs and Add another 1/2 cup applesauce, making it a full cup.
Refined Sugar free
Skip brown sugar and substitute with equal amount agave nectar, stevia or try 3 TBS honey or maple syrup
Skip all sugar or sugar alternatives and add a layer of fruit on the bottom for sweetness, chopped apple, sliced banana, or blueberries mixed in.
Have kids with different tastes or needs?
-More protein: After baking slather the top with peanut butter, almond butter, cashew butter
-Sweet tooth – Drizzle with maple syrup or sliced banana on top or both after baking 🙂
-More calcium or magnesium – sprinkle with sesame seeds after baking
You get the picture, it’s one versatile dish! Gets about 7-8 servings, so that’s usually two easy breakfast mornings for me!
For lots more information here are some sites I think are beautiful and healthful: