Oatmeal can be kinda boring by itself if you eat it all the time like I do, so I wondered how you could add more nutritional value to a bowl of oaty goodness including non-dairy options and more fiber.
Today noshers, we have a special treat. Please say hello to Dave Grotto who is a Registered Dietitian (RD) and Licensed Dietitian/Nutritionist (LDN). Dave is also behind the book and website, "101 Foods That Can Save Your Life" and he's going to give us the low down on how to perk up our oatmeal courtesy of "Living Proof" from Quaker, the folks who make my dad's favorite (as he calls it), "The oatmeal in a tube."
And it gets organic better!
At the end of the interview, you all have a chance to enter to win not one but two boxes of Quaker's Organic Instant Oatmeal in the Maple & Brown Sugar Flavor. This stuff is awesome folks. I've eaten a whole box myself already. Plus, this Organic version is currently in limited distribution, but today could be your lucky day. Three of you will win! If you can't wait, here's a Quaker product locator.
But first, back to Dave and "Bling my Oatmeal"....
Steph: Thanks for your time Dave. Many of our readers are or non-dairy users because of health or personal issues. I personally avoid diary because I have a Type II allergy to cow and goat milk. What other types of milks, juices, or liquids can people use to cook their oatmeal?
is probably one of the most common misconceptions about oatmeal preparation
that I have come across. Many people believe that you have to use milk in order
to make oatmeal taste good. In fact, I have one daughter who doesn’t
tolerate dairy well so we usually just make our oatmeal with plain water. By
bringing the water and oatmeal together to a boil, that makes it a creamier
My wife makes this wonderful “weekend” oatmeal which starts off with good old fashioned Quaker oatmeal, a variety of chopped nuts and dried fruits and the liquid she uses is oat milk by Pacific Foods. She brings it all to a boil and cooks it over a low heat. As the oatmeal absorbs the liquid, she adds a bit more and whisks it until it all becomes a creamy consistency. Man is that good…I’m salivating just thinking about it!
Steph: Adding protein is a big thing for us fitness buffs. What are some ideas
for adding more protein to oatmeal that cater for general use and then again
for non-dairy and egg users?
Dave: I also do better with a little protein added to my diet in the morning, too. I tried a popular combo that you find in the south – oatmeal with eggs mixed in. At first, it didn’t sound like something that would knock my socks off but I tell you, it was pretty good. But for those who don’t tolerate or don’t prefer eggs and dairy, you can use a variety of add-ins to boost the protein content of your bowl of oats:
- Soy milk. It has more protein than any other “milk” substitute.
- Almond butter or other nut butters
- Soy or rice protein powder
- Energy Foods
Steph: Some other nutritional
bling include anti-oxidants and Omega oils for things like beautiful skin. Can
you recommend some suggestions to load up our oatmeal with that kind of good
Dave: Flaxseed is a good one for skin healthy omega-3s. Anything that ends in “erry” is terrific to help preserve cellular health of the skin. Don’t forget…don’t let that leftover oatmeal go to waste! You’d pay good money for an oatmeal mask treatment at the salon. If some just happens to fall on your face while you are eating it, leave it on for awhile and maybe you could also use it as a snack for later. Strike that last part…that’s just plain gross…
But seriously, a great
companion beverage to have with oatmeal would be
orange juice which is a rich source of vitamin C. Vitamin C helps build
collagen which is a substance vital for skin integrity. Zinc is also important
for skin health and pumpkin seeds are a good source of zinc. I like toasted pepitas
(pumpkin seeds) on my bowl of oats. Back to the OJ, Tropicana makes a version
fortified with omega-3 fats and zinc.
Steph: There is some confusion on whether Oatmeal is considered gluten-free and friendly for those with . I've heard the confusion is based on whether the oats in the oatmeal were grown in crops next to wheat fields so there is danger of . Can you help to clarify this confusion?
Dave: The FDA has yet to finalize regulations for gluten free food safety standards. However, progress is being made and those guidelines are coming. Oats themselves, though, do not contain gluten, they are often grown, stored and transported around grains that contain gluten. So, it is possible that there may be trace amounts of gluten containing grains such as wheat, rye and barley found in oat products.
The USDA does allow a certain amount of these grains to be present in oat products so even if there are small amounts, gluten can be present. Even the smallest amount of gluten can be problematic for those diagnosed with Celiac disease.
Steph: This is some really
great stuff Dave! One last question, and this is may be a bit TMI (too much
information) but it would be helpful to know. If we added Flax or Psyllium to
our oatmeal, will that help with the bowel movements for those with
Dave: It’s the simply things in life that we truly cherish. And heck, nobody likes feeling bloated and constipated!. Flaxseed is a much better addition to oatmeal than pysllium husks would be. I like adding a tablespoon or so of it along with chopped dried plums (aka prunes), figs, apples, and pears for extra fiber.
You can also add in fiber-rich
miller’s fluids with this
combo. Too much fiber and not enough liquid will have just add fuel to the
fire, if you know what I mean ;). Quaker also makes a wonderful High Fiber
Oatmeal with 10g of fiber per serving which . Be sure to drink plenty of is quick
and easy to make.
Steph: Thank you for taking the time to share some very valuable tips with us Dave! I sure learned a great deal.
Dave: Thank you for having me!
So, to enter to win two boxes of Quaker Organic Instant Oatmeal in Maple & Brown Sugar, share in the comments some of the ways you bling up your oatmeal. In this post, I share some ways I've added pizazz to my oatmeal including a Snickers-like and Toasty Sweet Pumpkin version. Yum!
You have until Thu 11/6 midnight PST to enter. Please use valid email, and indeed I will respect privacy and keep your email between you and Noshtopia until you give me permission otherwise. Three people will win. US residents only. I will announce the winners on Friday 11/7. So, start sharing your oaty favorites.