breakfast

Sunbutter Banana & Chia Seed Oatmeal

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This month I have decided to focus my thoughts and recipes mainly on calcium and vitamin D for the athlete. This is probably the topic I talk about with young athletes most frequently. I know calcium and vitamin D probably do not seem like a big deal when new to your sport or injury-free, but it can really be a big deal if you are cutting it out of your diet completely! Not getting enough calcium can lead to low bone mineral density, and not only osteoporosis later in life, but stress fractures now if the athlete is overtraining and not resting and eating adequately.

When I meet with athletes, the hardest meal to pack nutrition into always seems to be breakfast. So, for that reason I started looking at what I eat for breakfast and what clients eat for breakfast most frequently and then see if I could make these breakfast choices more valuable to an athlete’s nutrition and training plan. Today’s recipe is an oatmeal recipe. I am an oatmeal fan because you can easily pack a lot into it. This oatmeal can be made the morning of or prepped the night before and then heated up in the microwave while getting ready for work or school in the morning. I love it because it’s hearty, it’s super satisfying and it packs in protein, quality carbohydrates, fiber and healthy fats in just one little bowl. For those athletes who have morning practices, it can also be stored in a small airtight container in a lunchbox with a cooler and heated up in the microwave after practice. I have really been enjoying this for breakfast these last couple of months and hope you enjoy it as well. I use a sunflower butter typically but, of course, you can use any nut or seed butter that you prefer. Here you go - the recipe for my Sunbutter Banana & Chia Seed Oatmeal…

Happy Fueling!

Taylor

SUNBUTTER BANANA AND CHIA SEED OATMEAL

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Makes 1 bowl

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/4 cup dry rolled oats

  • 1/2 cup milk

  • 1/2 teaspoon brown sugar

  • 1 teaspoon flaxseed or chia seeds

  • 1 teaspoon Sunbutter (or nut or seed butter of choice) + about 1 teaspoon more drizzled over the oatmeal*

  • 1/4 cup mashed banana (about 1/2 medium banana)

  • The other half of the banana, sliced over cooked oatmeal

  • Dash of cinnamon, to sprinkle over the top after cooked.

    I like this Sunbutter and this Sunbutter because they are super simple and doesn’t have added sugar and lots of other added ingredients (not sponsored at all. I’ve just discovered these to be my preferences after lots of trial and error of different products).

DIRECTIONS

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  1. Combine first 5 ingredients in a cereal bowl or travel container and stir together.

  2. Microwave 2 to 2 1/2 minutes.

  3. Stir in the mashed banana until well incorporated.*

  4. Microwave another 30 seconds to 1 minute.

  5. Stir together and top with sliced banana, extra bit of nut or seed butter and sprinkle of cinnamon.

  6. Enjoy!

  • If taking to the office or school, you can go ahead and add the mashed banana in with step one. I think it just mixes in better if you add it once the oatmeal has cooked some.



NUTRITION INFO (per bowl)

294 cal; 10.75 g protein; 6.38 g fat; 48.5 g carb; 6.6 g fiber; 22.75 g sugar; 1.38 mg iron; 205 mg calcium; 0.53 mg zinc; 250 mg vitamin A; 50 IU vitamin D; 27 mg magnesium; 22 mg phosphorus, 326 mg potassium; 1 mg sodium; 20 ug folate



A Simply Stress-Free Christmas Brunch

Hello friends! It’s pouring here in Memphis and dad and Kyle are at the duck club, which makes it a perfect day for writing and recipe testing. Thought I would do a little post to tell you about our Christmas brunch and how I tried changing it up this year to keep things stress-free and with more time to sit around the Christmas tree!

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Usually for Christmas my family drinks coffee and exchanges gifts first thing in the morning and then we tidy up and start making brunch. This year, however, I decided to try mixing it up a little and seeing if we could enjoy breakfast and each other’s company around the table in the den while doing our gift exchange, leaving more time to sit and chat and not hear our stomachs growling while we open gifts! After thinking about what I could prep ahead, I landed on my Crustless Sage and Sausage Quiche. Because it’s only me, dad and Kyle on Christmas morning, we don’t need to go overboard on the food and so we bought some in-season fruits and our favorite whole grain bread to pair with it. The fruits I selected included grapes, oranges and pears and they were so sweet and juicy diced up as a fruit salad. Our bread of choice these days is Dave’s Killer Bread and it was hearty and nutty, toasted up and served with butter. And that was our Christmas brunch! Both dad and Kyle loved the quiche and I’m assuming they were telling the truth because it was almost all entirely gone by the end of Christmas morning!

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The quiche is super savory and so really complemented the sweet winter fruits served along side it. I always have a starch of some sort with a meal and the toasted Dave’s Killer Bread was perfect. I love having home-cooked meals at the table but I don’t think everything has to be homemade, especially if that means sacrificing time with family or friends. I know I could have made some homemade biscuits or bread or sweet rolls but dad doesn’t eat many sweets, and I didn’t want to spend all of my Christmas Eve in the kitchen. So the quiche was my home-cooked item that I prepped on Christmas Eve and placed in the oven Christmas morning and the other items were easily assembled Christmas morning while the quiche baked. It was a fun, relaxing and delicious Christmas morning.


And What About the Leftovers?

That’s another great thing about the quiche! It can be refrigerated and reheated for breakfast, lunch or dinner on any of the days to follow. I cut the remainder of the quiche into small squares, wrapped each square in plastic wrap and stored half of them in the refrigerator and half in the freezer so dad can have a quick protein-packed breakfast once Kyle and I are back in Dallas.

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Five Ingredient Breakfast Sandwich

I discovered the breakfast sandwich by chance.  It wasn't at McDonalds or another fast food place.  It was something my mom would make on slow Saturday mornings for herself to sit and enjoy.  I remember one morning at our place on the lake in Hot Springs, Arkansas, waking up and walking into the den to find mom taking her first bite of that eggy cheesy sandwich.  It looked like she was loving it and so, of course, I was curious.  I asked for a bite and was hooked!  After that, slow Saturday mornings (which typically meant the ones at the lake because all other Saturday mornings I was up at the rink at 5:45 AM skating) meant egg and cheese breakfast sandwiches.  It wasn't anything over the top, simply 2 slices of whole wheat bread, egg and American cheese, but to me it was just a touch away from gourmet.  

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Today, I still love a good breakfast sandwich, but I like to play around with ways to mix and match ingredients & flavors and, of course, find ways to make it simple and workable for busy schedules.  The other weekend after a good Saturday morning run and nothing on the calendar in the near future I decided to bring out the breakfast sandwich for a little Saturday morning brunch.  I've tried different recipes in the past but this one is my favorite so far.  I have made this particular recipe for Kyle and my dad, and both gave it a thumbs up.  

The thing about this sandwich is that while yes, it does take more time to make as opposed to pouring yourself a bowl of cereal or topping some yogurt with fruit, it's still relatively quick and simple.  If you really want to simplify, you can make the goat cheese - tomato spread the day before to have ready to go or you could even make these guys a night or two before, wrap them tightly and then freeze them to be quickly heated up the next morning before heading out the door!

So, whether you're looking for a slow savory Saturday morning breakfast or a quick and simple bite to grab and go, I think I've got you covered with this small but mighty 5 ingredient breakfast sandwich.

Happy Fueling!

 

 

MY FAVORITE FIVE - INGREDIENT BREAKFAST SANDWICH

Makes 1 sandwiches (but makes enough goat cheese spread for 2 sandwiches)

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 whole wheat English muffin

  • 1 tablespoon goat cheese

  • About 4 sun dried tomatoes, packed in oil, lightly blotted to remove some of the excess oil, and diced

  • 1/2 small avocado

  • 2 eggs

DIRECTIONS:

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1. Toast one English muffin in a toaster.

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2. In a small bowl crack two eggs and whisk together, adding a pinch of salt.

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3. In a small mixing bowl, add the diced tomatoes and 1 tablespoon of goat cheese.

4. Mash and mix together with a fork until the two ingredients are well incorporated.

5. Set aside.

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6. Heat a small non-stick pan on medium-low heat.

7. Add your 2 scrambled eggs to the pan, letting them get firm on the bottom, but turning the pan frequently to let the liquid uncooked egg spill over to the outside of the pan and cook.

8. Push the sides of the eggs down as you go to keep the eggs in a thin circle shape at the bottom of your pan (this should only take a few minutes).

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9. Once there is barely any liquid left on top, fold over one side of the circle so that the outer side is touching the center line - like in the picture above.

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10. Now fold over the other side so the outside of the opposite side touches the center as well - see picture above.

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11. Now fold over the other sides to create a small square pocket.

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12. Now flip the square pocket over with a spatula and cook for one more minute so that any uncooked egg gets cooked. I usually flip it and then put a lid on top to trap steam in and cook it quickly without drying it out.

13. Now that it's cooked, turn off the burner and remove skillet from the heat.

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14. Spoon your avocado out into a small bowl ....

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15. .... and roughly mash with a fork. I like mine to have some small avocado bites in there!

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16. Begin to assemble your sandwich by spreading 1 tablespoon of the goat cheese - tomato mixture on the top half of your English muffin.

17. Place the egg pocket on the bottom half of the English muffin.

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18. Dollop 1 tablespoon of mashed avocado onto the top of the egg and spread out gently with your spoon, knife or whatever utensil you are using.

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19. Add the top to your English muffin, goat cheese spread - side down and press gently.

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20. Voila! The perfect Egg Sandwich!

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21. Slice if you'd like or dive in and enjoy!

NUTRITION NOTES

Egg:  protein, lutein, vitamin D, choline, vitamin B12

Avocado:  monounsaturated fat, vitamin E, potassium, fiber

Sun dried tomato: vitamin C, vitamin K, niacin, iron, magnesium, potassium

Whole grain English muffin:  fiber, protein, carbohydrate, 

Goat cheese: protein, fat, calcium, phosphorus

Sun Butter Squares: Doubled for the Growing Young Athlete

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Hey there!  Hope you had a fun and restful weekend.  To kick off this week I want to share with you a twist on this recipe that I previously posted.  It's yummy as originally written, but I created this modification in response to a need I commonly see in the young athletes I encounter.  Lately as I've been working with young athletes, I realize that we often talk a lot about ways to pack nutrition and /or energy into small quantities.  That's because one of the obstacles with young athletes can be getting enough calories and good nutrition in them throughout the course of their busy days and jam-packed schedules.  Breakfast has to be quick, lunch is short, snacks need to be easy.  

With that in mind, I decided to re-make my Cherry Sun Butter Squares but this time double the recipe.  I tried them this weekend and loved them just as much as the original recipe.  The taste was the same but they were denser so more to bite into.  And being thicker, or denser, than the original recipe, made it a little easier to cut them into squares, not crumbling as much when I sliced through them (there will be some crumbling b/c there is no flour, egg, butter, etc. in these).  If you or your young athlete have trouble getting a bite in before running out the door in the morning or if your young athlete doesn't have a huge appetite in the morning, these could be an easy solution.  Now that I've doubled the recipe you get more "bang for your buck".  They are great either way, but if you're having trouble getting enough breakfast in the morning, these bars, or something like them (because you can create your own variety with your favorite dried fruits, nut / seed butters), could be a great option.

The doubled recipe is below.  For my initial post with step-by-step pictures of how I put it all together, click the link here!

SUN BUTTER QUARES: FOR THE ATHLETE THAT NEEDS MORE

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups rolled oats (quick cooking)

  • 1 cup Sun Butter

  • 1/4 cup (or 4 tablespoons) dry milk powder

  • 1 cup dried tart cherries, chopped

  • 1/2 - 1 tsp. ground cinnamon

  • 1/4 cup (or 4 tablespoons) honey

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Add all ingredients to a large mixing bowl.

  2. Mix ingredients together with a rubber spatula until well-incorporated (can also use a fork).

  3. Line a 9x9 inch baking dish with parchment paper ( I actually used an 8" x 8.5")

  4. Spread oat - Sun Butter mixture out evenly along bottom of dish, making sure to get to all sides and corners

  5. Cover dish and place in the freezer. Allow to rest in the freezer for at least 3 hours. I leave mine in the freezer overnight.

  6. When ready, bring dish out of the freezer and lift up the bars with the parchment paper, placing parchment paper and bars on a flat surface.

  7. Run a sharp knife through hot water and then blot carefully to remove excess water. Making the knife really hot will make it easier to slice through the cold bars.

  8. Slice evenly into 9 individual bars.

  9. Serve bars immediately or wrap, individually in plastic wrap and store in the freezer so that squares are ready to go as you need them!

Hope you and your family enjoy these bars as much as we do!

Happy Fueling!

Taylor

No Bake Cherry SunButter Squares

Last week I was scrolling through the recipes on my blog looking for this particular recipe and realized that over the past 3 years of making these I never posted the recipe!

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These squares are one of my favorites for breakfast or snack or paired with lunch or dinner.  I love them when I need a quick bite after a morning workout and, when time allows, I also love to sit and savor them with a cup of hot coffee, or currently, a glass of cold iced coffee.

They are also no-bake, which means no ovens, stoves or other heat-producing appliance needed!  This is double perfect for my current situation, a resident of Dallas, Texas, where temps continue to hang out over 100 degrees (hence my suggestion of ice coffee).

So, this weekend in attempts of staying out of the Texas heat as much as possible, I spent (a very short amount of) time throwing together a batch or two of these scrumptious squares.  They are so simple and their flavors are a mix of savory, sweet and a touch of tart (I buy organic SunButter or the Sunflower Seed spread from Trader Joe's that I just recently discovered.  Both have no sugar added).  I can't wait to enjoy these this week and I hope you love them too!

FOR THE YOUNG ATHLETE

These squares can also make a great addition to the young athlete's sports nutrition plan.  They are simple to make and easy to eat.  They pack a good amount of nutrition into one little square, which means that they can help fuel the busy athlete having trouble getting enough nutrition due to his/her jam-packed schedule and increased nutrition needs.  From my visits with high school sports teams and one-on-one sessions with teen athletes I also know that it is quite common for the young athlete to skip breakfast entirely, choosing more sleep over morning nutrition, which can set them up for sluggish practices and games later in the day.  The great news here is that these bars are BEST when right out of the freezer, which makes them perfect to grab and eat while running out the door, on the bus, in the car, etc.

These squares provide energy, protein, healthy fats, zinc, magnesium, fiber, and iron in just a few small squares.  And, it's easy to change up the mix-ins to match taste preferences.  I use Sun Butter and cherries and make them nut-free; however, you can use any nut or seed butter you prefer and change the mix-ins up each time you make them.

So, here you go - the recipe for my No Bake Cherry Sun Butter Bars.

Happy Fueling!

Taylor

 

NO BAKE CHERRY SUN BUTTER SQUARES

Makes 9 squares

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INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cups rolled oats (quick cooking)

  • 1/2 cup Sun Butter

  • 2 Tbsp dry milk powder

  • 1/2 cup dried tart cherries, chopped

  • 1/4 - 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

  • 2 Tbsp honey

 

DIRECTIONS:

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1. Add all ingredients to a large mixing bowl.

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2. Mix ingredients together with a rubber spatula until well-incorporated (can also use a fork).

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3. Line a 9x9 inch baking dish with parchment paper.

4. Spread oat - Sun Butter mix out evenly along bottom of dish, making sure to get to all sides and corners.

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5. Cover dish and place in the freezer. Allow to rest in the freezer for at least 3 hours. I leave mine in the freezer overnight.

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6. When ready, bring dish out of the freezer and lift up the bars with the parchment paper, placing parchment paper and bars on a flat surface.

7. Run a sharp knife through hot water and then blot carefully to remove excess water. Making the knife really hot will make it easier to slice through the cold bars.

8. Slice evenly into 8 individual bars.

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9. Serve bars immediately or wrap, individually in plastic wrap and store in the freezer so that squares are ready to go as you need them!

NOTE:  I'm also experimenting with doubling this recipe but placing in the same 9x13 baking dish to make bigger bars.  I think they will be just as good.  Will keep you posted!

 

NUTRITION NOTES

Sun Butter:  protein, fat, iron

Dried Cherries:  iron, fiber

Dry Milk Powder:  protein, calcium

Honey:  carbohydrate

Rolled Oats:  protein, fiber, zinc, magnesium, iron

 

Cherry Vanilla Overnight Oats

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As you all know, I have been on a bit of an overnight oats kick lately.  A bit behind the trend, I'm aware, but, then again, I've never been super trendy.  These have been such a time-saver in the last month, though!  With work fully underway in its busiest time and my Junior League commitments still going strong I need something quick and easy but that still tastes delicious and leaves me satisfied.  I will say it's a toss-up between these and my SunButter Banana Oats for which I like best.  The SunButter oats are a bit more savory, while these definitely have that fruiter juicier taste from the cherries and the yogurt.  I have resolved to alternating for the time-being because I really love them both.  I can keep these in the fridge for a quick breakfast in the morning or a part of a heartier snack. 

Not only are these great for a basic breakfast but these oats could also be a great post-run or post - workout meal or snack (depending on who you are and what type of athlete / exerciser you are) due to their combination of protein and quality carbohydrate.  The protein in this dish is helpful to repair any large or small tears in our muscle as a result of exercise and the carbohydrate repletes drained glycogen (stored carbohydrate) stores and provides the body with more energy.  A body receiving a post- intense - workout meal without carbohydrate may end up having to use protein for energy instead, which could hinder maintaining or building lean muscle.   So, in short, this dish provides the protein the body needs to repair and build muscle and the carbohydrates it needs for energy and to spare protein.

This could be a good post-workout breakfast for early morning exercisers, especially if it's hard to eat something first thing.  If you're someone who has trouble eating before early morning practices grab something simple like a piece of fresh fruit, dried fruit or dry cereal prior to your workout and make sure to refuel with a balanced breakfast of protein & carbohydrate like these Cherry Vanilla Overnight Oats!  And if you're an athlete that needs more than this post-workout try doubling the ingredients or add an egg or two on the side!

Happy Fueling!

Taylor

 

OH SO SIMPLE CHERRY VANILLA OVERNIGHT OATS

Makes 1 serving (1 "jar")

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/4 cup + 3 tablespoons rolled oats

  • 1/4 cup 1% milk

  • 1/2 cup frozen halved cherries (they came whole and I cut them in half w/ a sharp knife)

  • 1/4 cup cherry yogurt (I love mine with Siggi's 2% black cherry yogurt!)

  • 1/8 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS:

To a small or medium-sized mason jar* add ingredients in the following order:

  1. 1/4 cup rolled oats

  2. 1/4 cup 1% milk

  3. 1/4 cup frozen halved cherries

  4. 1/4 cup black cherry yogurt

  5. 1/8 teaspoon vanilla

  6. 3 tablespoons rolled oats

  7. 1/4 cup frozen halved cherries

* my sister - in - law puts her in saved salsa jars , which I think is a great idea too!  I'm trying it next time!

 

WHAT'S IN THIS??

Rolled Oats:  fiber, iron, vitamin D, thiamin, phosphorus, magnesium, protein, carbohydrate

1% milk:  protein, calcium, vitamin A, vitamin D, riboflavin, vitamin B12, phosphorus, carbohydrate

Yogurt: protein, calcium, carbohydrate

Cherries:  fiber, carbohydrate small amounts of vitamin C & calcium;  currently being studied for their potential possible positive influence on inflammation and post-exercise soreness!

 

NUTRITION INFO (per serving)

265 calories;  15.75 g protein;  42 g carb;  7 g total fat (1.5 g sat, 0 g mono, 1 g poly);  4.5 g fiber;  21 g sugar (0 g added); 253.5 mg calcium;  95 mg Na;  1.75 mg iron


Sun Butter Banana Overnight Oats

SUN BUTTER BANANA OVERNIGHT OATS

A SIMPLE START TO LIFE'S CRAZY MORNINGS

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Hi friends!  Hope your 2018 is off to a wonderful start.  This month, I have kicked things off by experimenting with new breakfast possibilities.  As I mentioned in a previous IG post, I have always been a breakfast eater but sometimes, when pressed for time, it's not always the most substantial breakfast I could have.  So this month I have been making it more of a priority to get a substantial (yet still quick and simple) breakfast - one that really tides me over until lunch.  After the first week of these more substantial breakfasts, just as I suspected, I have been much more productive during those morning hours (which is great, because mornings are my favorite).  Not only that, but I am not ravenous for lunch so can make the best choices that I know will fill me up and give me energy through the rest of my workday  (v.s. feeling lethargic and worn out at 2 p.m.).  It even makes those afternoon workouts better!

You may be asking, "What do you mean by 'substantial'"?  Well, by "substantial" I mean a breakfast that contains at least10 - 20 grams of protein, some quality carbohydrate, whether that comes from fruit, yogurt or whole grains, and / or some healthy fat.  My breakfasts this last week consisted of scrambled eggs and fruit, high protein yogurts with my current favorite Purely Elizabeth blueberry granola and some fruit, and several overnight oat varieties, including this new discovery, my SunButter Banana Overnight Oats.  I know, I know, overnight oats are old news.  I'm well aware.  However, as popular as they have been, I'm just now jumping on board.  I've played with different flavors, including a blueberry variety and a cherry one that is packed with flavor, not to mention the nutritious benefits!  I'll certainly give you details on these other satisfying varieties but today it is all about this Sun Butter Banana variety that has earned a spot for itself on my "breakfast go-to" list.

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This bowl is full of quality carbohydrates from the milk, oats and banana, packed with protein from the oats, milk and SunButter, full of fiber from the banana and oats, and offers some healthy fats from the SunButter.  This one-bowl-breakfast keeps me full and energized until lunch and all I have to do in the mornings is take it out of the refrigerator and stir all of the layers together.  Perfection!

So, here you go - my recipe for this SunButter Banana Overnight Oats.  I hope it simplifies and fuels your morning and, for those non-breakfast eaters out there, gets you on the breakfast eating bandwagon. 

Happy Fueling!

Taylor


SUNBUTTER BANANA OVERNIGHT OATS: 

A SIMPLE TO LIFE'S CRAZY MORNINGS

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats*

  • 1/4 cup 1% milk

  • 1 small (6" - 7" long) banana, cut into two halves.

  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 2 tablespoons 1% milk

  • 1 tablespoon sunflower seed butter (I used SunButter here) or other seed or nut butter

* I recommend the regular rolled oats.  Steel cut may not soften enough over night and still be tough in the morning and the quick cooking oats may get too mushy.


DIRECTIONS:

In a small bowl or on a cutting board, mash 1 of the banana halves.

  1. To a medium size container or mason jar add 1/4 cup dry oats.

  2. Add the 1/4 cup milk.

  3. Add the mashed half of the banana.

  4. Add 1 tbsp seed, peanut or nut butter, spreading as evenly over the mashed banana layer as you can.

  5. Sprinkle cinnamon over the seed/peanut/nut butter layer.

  6. Top cinnamon with 3 more tablespoons of dry rolled oats.

  7. Add 2 tablespoons of milk.

  8. Seal the jar / container with its lid.

  9. Place in the refrigerator over night.

  10. In the morning, top the oats with sliced bananas from the remaining half of banana.

  11. Serve and enjoy!

 

WHAT’S IN THIS?

Oats:  fiber, iron, vitamin D, thiamin, phosphorus, magnesium, protein

Milk:  protein, calcium, vitamin A, vitamin D, riboflavin, vitamin B12, phosphorus

SunButter:  mono & polyunsaturated fats, fiber, iron, niacin, protein, vitamin E, folate, phosphorus, magnesium, zinc, copper, manganese

Bananas:  potassium, vitamin B6, vitamin C, manganese

Cinnamon:  manganese and a little calcium

 

NUTRITION INFO:

380 calories;  12 g protein;  58 g carb;  13 g total fat (2 g sat, 7 g mono, 3 g poly);  8 g fiber;  19 g sugar (0 g added);  5 mg cholesterol;  155 mg calcium;  743 mg potassium;  103 mg Na;  3 mg iron;  145 mg magnesium;  3 mg zing;  381 mg phosphorus;  1 ug vitamin D;  

Warm Apple Cinnamon Waffles + a Few Facts on Fiber

Recently I have been working on a couple of articles - one illustrating ways to increase protein at breakfast and one illustrating appetizing breakfast, lunch and dinner options with fiber.  While I have not yet finished the posts (stay tuned), I have come up with a super simple, warm and delicious way to start my day.  What I liked about this discovery was that not only did it provide me with a new quick and simple recipe but it also tied in with some common questions I get from clients, allowing me to provide a teaching point or two along with my recipe.   

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So, before I share this recipe with you I want to talk a smidge on the topic that inspired today's recipe and that is the topic of FIBER.  I know, super thrilling.  Don't worry, the recipe is much more exciting :) Fiber - how much do we need and why do we need it?  Well, if you're a female between 18 and 50, you want 25 grams a day.  If you're a male between 18 and 50 you want 38 grams a day.  Men over 50 want 30 grams a day and women over 50 want 21 grams a day.  Fiber does all kinds of great things for us like promote a healthy gastrointestinal system, help lower our cholesterol, keep our blood sugars steady, and help us feel full.  Fiber can be SOLUBLE or INSOLUBLE and I have explained the differences below.  While some foods are higher in one type of fiber than the other, both forms are usually present to some degree.  As a general guideline, I wouldn't overthink it - just make sure you get a variety of these fiber-filled foods each day.

Soluble fiber attracts and absorbs water during digestion, which helps slow digestion and, therefore, keeps you fuller longer and keeps blood sugars steady (slower digestion means slower release of glucose into the blood stream).  This is also the fiber that has been found to help lower our blood cholesterol because it can bind to LDL, which is then removed from the body with the fiber. Soluble Fiber is found in foods such as: oat bran, oatmeal, barley, nuts, seeds, beans, lentils, peas, apples, pears and blueberries. It is also found in psyllium, which is a popular fiber supplement.

Insoluble Fiber adds bulk and helps move everything through your stomach and intestines.  It also helps create a feeling of fullness, which can aid in weight management.  Insoluble fiber is found in foods such as: wheat bran, vegetables, seeds, nuts, and whole grains.

Now that I've dazzled you with the sciencey stuff, I want to share with you the yummy breakfast creation that came from this.  I was trying to think of a recipe that I, and hopefully others, could get excited about and one that would also be a good source of a fiber.  That is where this Cinnamon Apple SunButter Waffle came about.  I played around in the kitchen trying to think of ways to mix textures as well as flavors and I was so pleasantly surprised after taking my first bite of this waffle.  You don't have to bake it at the end if you don't have time, but if you do have the time, I highly recommend it.  The first time I tested this I did not bake the assembled waffle in the oven and it was good, but baking it at the end is way better!  Throwing it in the oven at the end softens and sweetens the apples while getting the waffle a little bit crispier on the outside.  You basically get warm cinnamon apples on a waffle.  But not just a plain waffle - a crispy on the outside waffle spread with warm creamy Sun Butter (or peanut butter, almond butter, etc.).  All of this topped with crunchy granola, tart dried cranberries and a sprinkle of cinnamon makes it anything but ordinary. I can't wait to make another.  Mmmmmmmm. Hope you have the time to give this one a try! 

Happy Fueling!

Taylor

Warm Apple Cinnamon Waffle

Serves 1

INGREDIENTS:

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  • 1 whole grain waffle ( I used Kashi brand)

  • 2 tablespoons SunButter (or your favorite nut or seed butter)

  • 3 fresh apple slices (thinly sliced)

  • 1 tablespoon dried cranberries

  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1 tablespoon granola

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

  2. Toast waffle in the toaster to desired doneness.

  3. Once waffle is toasted, place on a baking sheet and spread the SunButter over the top.

  4. Layer apple slices flat across the Sun Butter.

  5. Sprinkle the cranberries, cinnamon and granola over the apples and Sun Butter.

  6. Place baking sheet in the preheated oven, baking waffle for 10 to 15 minutes.

  7. Remove waffle from oven, serve and enjoy!

 

NUTRITION NOTES:

waffle... fiber, protein, iron

sun butter... protein, fat (majority poly and monounsaturated fat), magnesium, phosphorus, iron, zinc, copper, manganese, vitamin E, vitamin B6

apples... fiber, vitamin C

cinnamon... manganese, calcium

KIND granola.... protein, fiber, iron

 

NUTRITION FACTS, per serving:

Calories 340  |  Protein 9.5 g  |  Carbs 63 g  |  Fat  21.1 g total (5.3 g sat)  |  Sodium 158 mg  |  Fiber 10 g  |  Calcium 100 mg 

Banana Sun Butter Oat Bites

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These little snacks were such a fun discovery.  It was one of those mornings where I wasn't planning on any recipe development but as I was getting ingredients out for breakfast this idea popped into my mind.  I could envision the final product in my head as I quickly pulled the ingredients together, cut up the banana, spooned out dollops of SunButter and opened my box of Quaker Oatmeal Squares cereal that was already waiting to be poured.  This is so super simple I can't even really call it a recipe.  All you need are bananas, a nut butter, seed butter or peanut butter and a crunchy cereal (I think these Quaker Oatmeal Squares work just perfectly) and you've got yourself a snack for morning, noon or night.

And, not only are these easy and delicious, but they also pack a nutritious little punch, providing fruit, healthy fat and a whole grain in each bite - not to mention a little potassium, fiber, magnesium, iron, and protein.

I've already made these again since discovering.  They are delicious for adults, but could also be super cute for a kid's snack or party.  These are simple in prep, simple in ingredients and something you could make with your kids or throw together for a easy post exercise snack.  I hope you (and your family) enjoy!

Happy Fueling!

Taylor

BANANA SUNBUTTER OAT BITES

Makes about 8 - 10 bites

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 medium banana

  • About 8 - 10 teaspoons of nut butter, seed butter or peanut butter

  • 8 - 10 Quaker Oatmeal Squares (Hint of Brown Sugar variety)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Slice banana into 1/4 - 1/2 inch thick slices (for about 8 - 10 bites).

  2. Top each bite with about 1 teaspoon nut / seed / peanut butter.

  3. Top with 1 Oatmeal Square.

  4. Take a bite and enjoy!

Crustless Sage & Sausage Quiche

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This recipe was inspired by dad's most recent visit to Dallas.  First visit after the wedding.  It was so fun and sweet to have him here.  The weekend was filled with lots of laughs, good food, and a few home improvements :)

I always like to cook one good meal when dad comes into town.  Growing up and into college and grad school, one thing mom, dad, and I always enjoyed was cooking together.   We would cook and chat and laugh while we chopped, tossed, grilled, baked and sautéed, creating different dishes ranging from "dad burgers" to grilled beef tenderloin to the very experimental crab manicotti.  Whatever the outcome, good, bad, or ugly, it was at least a learning curve in the kitchen and fun memory to keep with us.  So, when I moved to Texas we always seemed to gravitate towards cooking one meal in, and, because I was in an apartment with a tiny kitchen for most of that time, that one chosen meal was often breakfast.  Fast-forwarding to the present - these days it's only dad, but we still keep up this tradition, now pulling Kyle into that familiar space of cooking, creating, laughing, and troubleshooting. A space where mistakes are just creative twists to a brand new recipe. A space where new memories and new flavors are formed.

On this particular dad visit I wanted to cook at least one meal in and I knew how much dad LOVES a good breakfast (and same goes for Kyle, so it was kind of a win all around here).  I flipped through ideas, searching for good breakfast recipe, which became easier to discover as Dad excitedly volunteered to bring his favorite breakfast sausage that he had stored in the refrigerator at home.  I love the idea of easy egg dishes and I wanted to try some new flavors and go beyond the typical scrambled eggs.  I remembered seeing a crustless quiche in a magazine not too long ago, and so thought I would give that concept a try.  You could get the quiche consistency without spending the time making the crust.  And seeing as we would be making breakfast in-between house projects, less work sounded fantastic to me.  So, I mixed and matched different ingredients in my mind - thinking about what I like, what my dad and Kyle like, what has worked (& not worked) for me in the past and the result was this Crustless Sage & Sausage Quiche (& I threw in some mushrooms, spinach & onion because a dietitian's gotta have her veggies :) ).   Now, I know the sausage isn't my typical healthier dish, but life is really all about balance, right?  And, of course, you can substitute with lean ground turkey breast if desired.  

So here you go, the recipe for my Crustless Sage & Sausage Quiche.

Happy Fueling!

Taylor

Crustless Sage & Sausage Quiche

INGREDIENTS:

  • 6 whole eggs

  • 1 1/2 cup 1% milk

  • 3 teaspoons fresh thyme

  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage

  • 1/8 - 1/4 tsp. dried ground cloves (or you could use ground nutmeg instead)

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper

  • 1/4 pound ground sausage (or substitute lean ground turkey breast if desired)

  • 1 cup diced onion (small dices so you don't bite into big chunks of onion in your quiche)

  • 1 cup shredded Gruyere cheese

  • 1 cup torn fresh spinach

  • 1 cup sliced button or baby bella mushrooms

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahreinheit.

  2. Grease a 9 inch pie dish with butter or canola oil.

  3. Combine eggs, thyme, sage, milk, salt, pepper, and ground cloves in a large mixing bowl and whisk ingredients together until the eggs are broken up completely and mixture is smooth.

  4. Heat a large skillet on medium heat and cook the sausage for about 10 to 15 minutes, breaking it up periodically, until crumbled and no longer pink.

  5. Pour cooked sausage onto a plate lined with a paper towel and let the sausage sit and drain.

  6. Heat that same skillet back to medium heat and add the onions and mushrooms, cooking about 15 minutes until the onions are translucent and the mushrooms are soft.

  7. Add the drained sausage back to the skillet with the cooked onion & mushrooms and mix all ingredients together

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8. Spread the vegetable - sausage mixture evenly onto the bottom of the prepared pie dish.

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9. Top sausage veggie mixture with the 1 cup spinach

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10. Top spinach with 1/2 cup Gruyere cheese

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11. Pour the egg mixture evenly over the top.

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12. Top with the remaining shredded Gruyere cheese.

13. Cook in the preheated oven for about 35 - 40 minutes, remove and cover with foil and cook for about 10 minutes more (to prevent the top from getting too brown).

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12. Let rest for about 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

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13. Serve with your favorite breakfast foods and enjoy!

This also makes great leftovers for breakfast, lunch OR dinner.

NOTE: There is some water at the bottom of the pie dish after baking. It doesn't affect the flavor or anything but if you don't like this you could probably cook your spinach and drain it before adding to to the quiche (spinach contains so much water!).

NUTRITION NOTES:

Eggs - protein | vitamin B12 | vitamin D | lutein | zeaxanthin | choline

Spinach - fiber | vitamin A | vitamin C | folate | vitamin K

Mushrooms - fiber | riboflavin | niacin | copper

Onions - fiber | vitamin C | part of a group called alliums, that may reduce the risk of some cancers

Cheese - calcium | protein | be careful b/c also high in saturated fat (and sodium)