Baked Oatmeal
I know oatmeal is good for me but I had a really challenging time finding a recipe that I liked. They were usually too bland or too sugary. I came across the cousin of what has become my go-to oatmeal recipe while leafing through a vegetarian cookbook. I liked that it was baked. I liked that they referred to it as creamy.

What came out was a creamy, fluffy oatmeal that was too sweet but, happily, filled with delicious treats. I decided to start with their basic premise — baked in the oven — but to make it my own by reducing the sugar and using almond milk instead of dairy. I also tested a version that fed two (or, rather, something I only had to eat for two mornings); this is the version I’ve included here. It works really well multiplied.

What I love most is that I can make Irish or Traditional oats without standing over the stove for over half an hour and, potentially, losing the whole batch to burning at the end. I just do the stove top bit (takes about 10 minutes), pop it in the oven and either work in my office on a weekday or snuggle in with a movie on the weekend until it’s done.

Here you go —

Baked Oatmeal with Fruit and Spices

Serves 2

1 3/4c. almond milk
1/2c. Irish or Traditional oats
3/4 tsp. pure maple syrup
1/4 tsp. nutmeg (freshly ground if you have it)
1/8 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 to 3/4c. peeled and diced pears or apples
1/3c. raisins
1/4 tsp. salt

optional: sprinkling of almonds, walnuts or pecans

Preheat the oven to 375°.

Add milk to a saucepan; place oats, nutmeg, cinnamon, pears or apples in a bowl; measure out raisins and add salt to the measure. Get the maple syrup and your measuring spoon ready.

Heat the milk on medium heat until it’s very hot but not boiling. Stir occasionally to avoid burning/scalding. Stir in the bowl of oats, spices and pears. Add in the maple syrup. Place back on the heat and bring the mixture back to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the raisins and salt.

Place this mixture in an oven safe dish and cover. Bake this for about 30 minutes.

Once it’s ready, stir it well and add in the nuts, if desired. Eat it hot.

To re-heat the oatmeal, add a little almond milk to the bowl and place it in the microwave for 30-60 seconds. Stir and enjoy.

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