Most days I do myself the service of sitting down to a proper breakfast as I check email, read the news, wake up slowly. Last week…not so much. On Saturday, I went on this little adventure with Emma, then Sunday we took a day trip up to Seattle to meet a certain brand new family member and enjoy an impressive (yet simple) dinner here. The remains of the week were dedicated to an exciting photoshoot I was asked to take part in by these good folks, and then playing catch-up on the holiday tasks and other life things that a girls’ gotta keep in check.
The good news about this? I emerged on the back end of a hectic week with a to-do list of holiday confections (yay! Stay tuned!) and I finally had a good reason to make this Carrot Cake Oatmeal and oh boy was it worth the wait. And, basically, the preparation is simple enough that it just sorta came together amongst the chaos.
On Friday night, while I was making dinner, I grated some extra carrots and combined all the dry ingredients. Before the kitchen was clean, I pressed them into the baking pan and whisked together the wet ingredients then put them both in the fridge overnight. When I woke up early the next morning, I turned on the oven, poured the wet ingredients over the dry and baked the oatmeal while I was enjoying a trainer ride. By the time I was out of the shower, the oatmeal was cool enough that we could scoop it out into little travel mugs to eat on the road (and en route to all those 6am meetings the week held.)
Already, the recipe has worked its way into our repertoire and will probably make the menu list for our drive to Montana for the holidays. I can’t wait to hear what you all think of it and how you’re employing it. It seems to me that this would be an excellent holiday brunch dish….non?
A couple of notes….
There are a bajillion ways that you can mix this recipe up. Tired of oatmeal? Try spelt, or any other rolled “flakes.” Vegan? No problem — the version of the recipe I have written below is friendly for you. Not vegan? Great – you can use eggs instead of chia and honey instead of maple if you like! Mix up the nuts, the dried fruits, the milk you use to bake with….try it all based on whatever you have in your pantry and to your liking but most importantly, enjoy! xo – L
- adapted ever so slightly from Green Kitchen Stories Baked Carrot Cake Oatmeal
- FOR THE DRY MIXTURE
- 2 cups rolled oats
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp all-spice
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- pinch of sea salt
- 1 1/3 cup grated raw carrots (roughly 4 carrots)
- 1 big handful of raisins
- FOR THE WET MIXTURE
- 2 Tbsp chia seeds bloomed in 1/3 cup water OR 2 large organic eggs
- 2 1/4 cup milk (I like hemp milk - any dairy or plant milk will do
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract (or 1/2 vanilla bean, scraped w/ pod discarded)
- FOR THE TOPPING
- 4 Tbsp maple syrup
- 2 Tbsp coconut oil, at room temperature
- 1 cup of pecans, or your favorite nuts
- 3/4 cup pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds
- Preheat your oven to 375F degrees. Lightly grease the base of a 9x13 inch baking pan with coconut oil and set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine all the dry ingredients and make sure they're mixed well.
- If you're using chia seeds, go ahead and bloom them until all the water has been absorbed. Then, mix the bloomed seeds up with the other wet ingredients in a medium bowl, again making sure to mix well. Set aside.
- Lastly, toss the nuts and seeds with the oil and maple syrup. If you're going to bake the oatmeal at a later time, go ahead and store all the wet, dry and topping ingredients in SEPARATE airtight containers. Don't wait more than 48 hours to bake the oatmeal!
- If you're ready to bake now, let's assemble! Place the dry ingredients in the prepared pan and spread out evenly with the back of a wooden spoon. Pour the wet ingredients over and again, make sure that all ingredients are evenly distributed. Lastly, shake the topping over the oatmeal, covering completely.
- Bake the oatmeal for 25-35 minutes. You'll know its done because the topping will be lightly browned and fragrant, and the oatmeal will be set. Let cool just a moment before eating!