steel cut oats ~two ways~

Yup, another morning of snow…

Need a little warming up on these cold winter mornings?

Try a bowl of steel cut oats!

Two ways:

Cranberry Orange Flax 

my new favorite :)

Cranberry Orange Flax Steel Cut Oats ~two ways~vegan/gluten free~

Coco Banana Cashew
Coco Banana Cashew Steel Cut Oats ~two ways~vegan/gluten free~

Yes, steel cut oats take more time to cook than old-fashioned oats, and even more time than quick-cooking oats.   But…they are better for you and in my opinion, taste better too!  They are a bit chewier than regular oats and when dressed up with spices, nuts, fruit and maple syrup, they make for a perfect winter breakfast!

Steel Cut Oats ~two ways~vegan/gluten free~

Steel Cut Oats

(for 4 servings)

4 cups water

1 cup steel cut oats

-Bring water to a boil in a medium saucepan.

-Stir in oats, reduce heat to low.

-Simmer uncovered over low heat, stirring occasionally for 25-30 minutes or until oats are tender.

Cranberry Orange Steel Cut Oats ~two ways~vegan/gluten free~

Cranberry Orange Flax Oatmeal

~Add dried cranberries, orange zest, ground flax seeds, dash of cinnamon and drizzle with pure maple syrup~

Coco Banana Cashew Steel Cut Oats ~two ways~vegan/gluten free~

Coconut Cashew Banana Oatmeal

~Top with sliced bananas, cashews, toasted coconut, dash of cinnamon and drizzle with pure maple syrup~

(would taste great with cacao nibs too!)

Helpful Hint:  To make mornings flow a little faster, cook a batch of oats the night before, separate into small containers and heat when needed.

milk maker cookies and nutrition for breastfeeding moms

My sweet friend Chelsea and her husband just welcomed another beautiful baby girl into their family!  Congrats to the whole clan!

After I had Noah, one of my closest friends sent me “milk maker” cookies.  This company is adorable, check out their logo…

too funny!

too funny!

These cookies tasted wonderful and were a quick snack; easy to eat with one hand while trying to care for a newborn!  They contain flax, brewer’s yeast and oats.  These ingredients are claimed to boost milk supply.

While I love the idea of using functional foods to boost milk production unfortunately, I learned in my CLC training that there is not enough scientific proof they actually work :(

But I say, who cares!  Eat those cookies girls…you deserve them!  I can only imagine the amount of calories burned during labor!

What has been proven to improve a mother’s milk supply is consuming adequate calories, which can be hard to do when you’ve got a new baby!  Making milk takes a lot of energy, upwards of 500 extra calories per day!  Women need to replenish their energy stores as to not become nutritionally depleted.

Breastfeeding Mommies, remember to:

-Consume 3 meals and at least 2 snacks per day

-Balance meals/snacks with fruits, veggies, grains, protein and healthy fats

-Continue taking your prenatal vitamins

-Drink to satisfy thirst

-Rest as much as possible!!! (Easier said than done!)

Oh yeah, and don’t forget to enjoy a cookie…

Here is my recipe for milk  maker cookies!

milk maker cookies ~flax, brewers yeast and oats~

Milk Maker Cookies

1 cup whole wheat pastry flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons brewers yeast (not bakers yeast!)

2 tablespoons flaxseed meal

1/2 cup coconut oil

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 tablespoon vanilla

1 egg

1 1/2 cup old fashioned oats

1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

-Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.

-In a large bowl, mix together dry ingredients.

-In a seperate bowl, cream together coconut oil, egg and vanilla extract.

-Combine dry and wet ingredients and stir in oats and chocolate chips.

-Using a teaspoon, evenly drop cookie dough on lined cookie sheets.

-Bake for 12-15 minutes.

-Serve to your favorite Momma!

milk maker cookies ~flax, brewers yeast and oats!~

cacao covered greens bars

One of my favorite snacks are chocolate greens bars.  While they are delicious they come with a hefty price tag.  Some of them cost over $3.00 each!  I was craving one so came up with this recipe instead.  While they aren’t as portable as the packaged brands they taste just as good!  To hold the shape these bars should be stored in the freezer.

cacao covered greens bars

I used wheat grass powder from one of my favorite companies Amazing Grass.  To give them superfood status; I added flax seeds, chia seeds, hemp seeds, coconut oil, raw cacao and a touch of maple syrup.  Geez…that’s a lot of superfood power!

cacao covered greens bars ~vegan~

 Don’t let the looks of them fool you, they taste amazing!  As I was licking the bowl clean, I decided there isn’t a better combination than raw cacao powder, coconut oil and maple syrup!

I attempted cereal with Noah, it bombed.  He’s hooked on green smoothies, fruit or scrambled eggs with spinach for breakfast.  I had this opened box of cereal kicking around the kitchen and no one to eat it.  So, I added it to the mix!  The toasted wheat berry flakes and flax seeds provided the perfect “crunch” factor for these bars!  You could easily substitute puffed rice cereal for a gluten free version.  If you prefer a grain free option; substitute sunflower seeds for the cereal.

cacao covered green bars

Cacao Covered Green Bars

For the Bars:

1/2 cup peanut butter (or any other nut butter)

2 tablespoons coconut oil

2 tablespoons maple syrup

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 tablespoon hemp seeds

1 tablespoon chia seeds

1 1/2 cup Toasted Wheat Berry Flakes with Flax Seeds

1-2 scoops Amazing Grass Wheat Grass Powder

(You could omit the wheat grass powder if you choose.  Or substitute with spirulina powder or a protein powder such as Sun Warrior)

For the Cacao Topping:

3 tablespoons raw cacao powder (or a high quality cocoa powder)

2 tablespoons pure maple syrup

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 tablespoons coconut oil

sea salt

-Line a 5×9 baking dish with parchment paper.

-In a small saucepan over very low heat add coconut oil, peanut butter, maple syrup and vanilla.  Gently warm until peanut butter and coconut oil is melted.

-In a large bowl, add cereal, chia seeds, hemp seeds and wheat grass powder.  Pour in peanut butter mixture and stir until well combined.  The “dough” should be sticky like cookie dough.

-Spoon mixture into the baking dish, use a spatula to evenly spread and push down until smooth.  Place in the freezer.

cacao covered green bars ~vegan~

-While the bars are in the freezer make the cacao topping.  In a small saucepan over low heat melt coconut oil.  Remove from heat and whisk in cacao powder, vanilla and maple syrup.

cacao covered green bars ~vegan~

-Remove bars from the freezer and evenly spread with cacao mixture.  Sprinkle with sea salt.  Place back in the freezer.

-Once hardened (about an hour) remove from baking dish, cut into squares and enjoy!

cacao covered greens bars ~vegan~

We experienced the most beautiful sky last night here in Wellfleet.  Noah was so excited to see the moon and the changing colors of the clouds.  It’s the little things like this that make being a mom so incredible.  I’m blessed to see the world again for the first time through Noah’s eyes where everything is magical :)


I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!  Take time to look up in the sky!