Baked Fruit & Berry Oatmeal

Looking for a quick and easy breakfast that’s not just tasty and healthy, but also subs for dessert? Look no further!

Delicious breakfast, topped with Greek yogurt!

Filled with fiber rich foods – including bananas, apples, berries, and nuts – baked fruit and berry oatmeal has become my favorite way to greet the day.

I stumbled on a baked oatmeal recipe awhile back, and have been tweaking it ever since.

The original recipe used butter and refined sugar, which I’ve replaced with applesauce, bananas, and honey. You can make the oatmeal dairy- or gluten-free by making some easy substitutions like using almond milk or gluten-free rolled oats.

Need more reasons to love this recipe? Bananas provide one of the highest sources of naturally available vitamin B6. Berries, often described as “super foods,” are sweet, delicious, and happen to be packed with disease-fighting phytochemicals and antioxidants.

I like to whip up my oatmeal over the weekend, and instantly have breakfast for the next few days by simply reheating it in the microwave and topping it with yogurt or honey.

Oatmeal  Oatmeal (1) Oatmeal (2) Oatmeal (3)

You can find the recipe here on my friend Karen’s blog The Tasty Bite, where I posted it as a guest blogger.

Tips:

  • Although I prefer using fresh in-season berries, frozen berries also work well in this recipe.
  • Make sure to use ripe bananas. They taste sweeter due to their higher sugar concentrations. Greener, less ripe bananas contain higher levels of starch, which gives them a “starchier” taste.

Enjoy, and let me know what you think!

Banana Walnut Bread

Your hunt for a perfect banana bread recipe is over. This subtly sweet recipe updates the classic banana bread without using any butter or oil, yet doesn’t sacrifice the moist texture and flavor banana bread is known to have.

banana bread photo 1

As good as grandma’s, but healthier!

Yield: 2 small loaves (6 slices each)

Ingredients

  • Cooking spray
  • 1 cup white whole-wheat flour
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ¾ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp ground flaxseed meal, optional (adds nutty flavor)
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup applesauce
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 ½ cups mashed ripe bananas (about 3-4 bananas)
  • 1/3 cup plain fat-free Greek yogurt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Sift the flours, baking soda, salt, and flaxseed meal to combine.
  3. Place the sugar and applesauce in a large bowl, and beat with a mixer at low speed until well blended (about 1 minute). Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the banana, yogurt, and vanilla extract; beat until blended.
  4. Slowly add the flour mixture to incorporate the wet and dry ingredients. Beat at a low speed just until moist. Stir in walnuts, reserving some to sprinkle on top of the batter.
  5. Coat two 8 x 3 ¾-inch aluminum foil loaf pans with cooking spray.  Divide the batter in half and pour into pans. Sprinkle remaining walnuts on top.  Place pans on a baking sheet and bake for 1 hour 10 minutes.  The bread is fully baked when a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (this area is usually the last area to set).
  6. Cool 10 minutes in the pan on a wire rack, then remove from pan to cool completely on a wire rack.

Subtly sweet banana walnut bread

Tips:

  • Always lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups and level with a knife. Don’t use the measuring cup to scoop the flour out of the container. You can end up with much more flour than the recipe indicates.
  • If you prefer a less nutty flavor, you can make this recipe entirely with all-purpose flour; bake for 50 minutes and check on it to ensure it doesn’t overbake.
  • Banana bread should form a crack down the center as it bakes, a sign the baking soda is doing its job.
  • Make sure to use ripe bananas. Their soft texture mashes and blends easily and creates the most intense flavor.
  • Check the label on your applesauce container to ensure that it doesn’t contain sugar or high fructose corn syrup.
  • If you prefer to bake one large loaf with this recipe, spoon batter into an 8 ½ x 4 ½-inch loaf pan and bake for 80 – 90 minutes.
Two mini loaves, making it easy to share your banana bread with others.

Two small loaves make it easy to share with a lucky friend!

Enjoy, and let me know what you think!