|Fruit and Cream variety with fresh raspberries and strawberries|
I have told you about my love for my crockpots and that Stephanie O'Dea is my go to girl. Well, I also love a good oatmeal. In her book, Make It Fast, Cook It Slow, she has a recipe for Apple Oatmeal, which is very yummy. After the umpteenth time of eating it though, I became really, really bored with eating the same thing. So, in my usual fashion, I started to play and then I really started to play and came up with numerous varieties!
Some of my varieties:
1) Fruit and Cream: Add chopped fresh fruit such as raspberries, peaches, strawberries or bananas to finished oatmeal and top with heavy cream.
2) Oatmeal Raisin Cookie: Place 1/2 cup of raisins in warm water for 10 minutes. Drain and add to crockpot with other oatmeal ingredients.
3) Smores: Cook oatmeal as usual. Top with ground graham cracker crumbs, chocolate and caramel ice cream topping. This was way too sweet for me, but I could see a kid chowing this down and getting their fiber in a fun way.
4) Maple and Brown Sugar: Top with maple syrup and a teaspoon of brown sugar. I have been known to throw some heavy whipped cream on top of it, as well.
5) Tropical: Crushed pineapple, toasted coconut and either chopped pecans or macadamia nuts. I actually prefer the pecans to the macadamia nuts. They are softer.
6) Pumpkin Pie: TO THE BASE, add 4 tablespoons canned pumpkin. Then prepare as directed. Top with either whipped or heavy cream and pumpkin pie spice.
This recipe is slightly different than Stephanie's listed in her book, but the gist is the same. So, here we go:
1 cup Oats
2 cups 2% Milk or less (this is very important)..anything above that doesn't work in the crockpot!!
2 T. Brown Sugar
1 T. Vanilla
1 t. Cinnamon
Very simple...Place all ingredients in a bowl and stir. Spray a 2 QT Crock very liberally (otherwise, oatmeal will stick to sides of crock) with cooking spray and empty ingredients into crock. Cook on high for 1-2 hours (mine never takes 2 hours). I stir after about 1 hour just because I really don't want it sticking to the crockpot. It stinks to try to clean the crock if it does. Either eat as is..or try some of the variations above!
**Note: When I make this, I normally mix the ingredients the night before and put into a container. In the morning, while my coffee is brewing, I spray my crockpot and pour the ingredients in. While I am getting ready for the day, the oatmeal cooks. By the time I am getting ready to leave, the oatmeal is finished and I can have a bowl before walking out the door.
Enjoy and 'til next time,