Yesterday was the longest day of the year, and I hope you got to spend at least some of it basking in the sunshine and eating ice cream. Here in New Jersey, the beaches are bustling, kids are officially out of school and the local farmer's markets are overflowing with more and more good stuff each week.
Jersey fresh blueberries just kicked off their season, and I've been gobbling up as many as I can get my grubby little paws on. Because of the exceptionally cool and rainy May we had, this year's crop is plumper, juicier and sweeter than ever. Perfect for snacking, and even better for tucking into your favorite baked goods.
Have you ever tried baked oatmeal before? It's become a staple in our household. It's simply oatmeal mixed up with milk, brown sugar, eggs and baked with whatever fruit, nuts and spices you fancy. It's great served warm, eaten like a dense breakfast cake or muffin (aka, with your hands), or served in a bowl, with a splash of your favorite milk and eaten with a spoon. My favorite milk of the moment? It is definitely Dream Ultimate Almond.
Unlike the usual almond beverages on the market that are watery and bland, Dream Ultimate Almond is made with four times more California almonds in every cup, and you can definitely taste the difference. It's super rich and creamy, not to mention packed with 5 grams of natural protein from almonds.
Baked oatmeal is a Pennsylvania Dutch tradition. It's typically made in a pan and cut into squares, but I opted to make little individual portions using mini muffin tins. They're perfect for taking breakfast on the go, and unlike muffins - which are essentially cake - these babies are packed with fiber, protein, nutrients and happen to be completely dairy and gluten free. You can even go a step further and substitute a flax or chia egg for the real eggs if you'd like to make this totally vegan. It's a very forgiving recipe.
If you can't find beautiful, plump local blueberries, this recipe would work nicely with raspberries, strawberries, blackberries, and even peaches or plums. Your best bet is always to use the freshest, ripest and sweetest fruit you can find. You can also try switching up the vanilla extract for almond extract to get an even bigger boost of almondy goodness.
What makes these little baked oatmeal cups even better is that they freeze up beautifully. So you can make up a big batch on a rainy day and have them ready to eat all summer long. Just pop one in the toaster oven for a few minutes, and be on your way. Less time making breakfast means more time for sun basking and ice cream eating, two things we all need to do a little more of for the next three months. Check out the video below for a super easy no churn vegan salted caramel ice cream recipe!
Thank you to Dream Ultimate Almond for sponsoring this post! Dream Ultimate Almond comes in Original, Vanilla and Unsweetened and can be found in the shelf-stable or in the refrigerated section of the grocery store. Look for it in Whole Foods and Sprouts, and head over to dreamplantbased.com for a coupon!
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