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Pumpkin Spice Golden Oatmeal Recipe

A while ago I posted a simple recipe for Golden Milk Oatmeal, but given that it's the Pumpkin Spice season I'd like to share my Pumpkin Spice spin on it. (Here's another similar variation with Zucchini, if you're interested).

The base ingredients (the oats, the plant milk and most of the spices) are the same here as in the other Golden Milk Oatmeal recipes, but we're adding in a little bit of allspice and some delicious roasted butternut squash to the mix.


Depending on how much you like pumpkins there are two ways I recommend adding it into your oatmeal. There's mixing in the puree and there's adding in the roasted or steamed pumpkin pieces. I personally like to do both, because just why not. But I know that some people might prefer to not see or feel the texture of the pumpkin pieces in the oatmeal, so in that case I'd go solely for adding in the puree.


Either way, I highly recommend preparing the pumpkin in advance, you can then store it in your fridge for a couple of days or freeze for later it if you make too much and don't plan to use it for anything else.


I like to use butternut squash over the more traditional pumpkins, because I like its slightly sweeter taste, but I've found that Hokkaido pumpkins are also very tasty and work okay with anything from dinners to desserts.


There are a few ways you can prepare your pumpkin, you can steam it or oven roast it. Both are great, but I feel like the roasting brings out a little more of the sweetness due to sugar caramelization. It's up to you what you choose to do. Here's how to do it.


Now, when it comes to adding pumpkin into your oatmeal. I know it may sound a bit unusual, but it can really be a delicious meal. You can make it super sweet, but you can also have savory oatmeal, which I know isn't everyone's cup of tea, but some people love it. Like I always say, there is no one-size-fits-all, and you need to experiment a little to find what works for you. So please use my recipe as a mere guide and taste your oatmeal multiple times as you make it to adjust it to your own liking.


You will notice that like with any golden spice mix recipe I add some freshly ground pepper and a source of fat (seeds, coconut oil/milk and/or seed/nut butters). That's because we know that they help our body absorb turmeric better. Heat does that as well, so for maximum benefits make sure you don't wait until your golden oatmeal gets completely cooled down. You can read more about turmeric and its benefits here.


Pumpkin Spice Golden Oatmeal Recipe

yields: 1 serving

prep time: 10-15 minutes (that's if you prepared the roasted/steamed pumpkin in advance, instructions above)


Ingredients

  • 1/3-1/2 cup of oats (I use gluten-free oats)

  • 3/4c-1 cup of unsweetened plant-based milk (I use unsweetened almond milk)

  • small pinch of salt

  • 1/4-1/2 tsp of the Golden Milk Spice Mix (recipe here) or you can just add the following spices: about 1/4 tsp of ground turmeric, about 1/4 tsp of ground cinnamon, a pinch of ground ginger, a pinch of ground cardamom, and a pinch of ground nutmeg

  • pinch of freshly ground black pepper (for better turmeric absorption)

  • pinch (or a generous pinch if you're into it) of allspice

  • about 3 Tbsp worth of roasted pumpkin either puree or pieces, or a mix of both (pre-prepared and chilled, frozen and thawed, or freshly made- instructions above)

  • 1 Tbsp of pumpkin seeds

  • 1 1/2 tsp of ground flax seeds (brown, golden or mixed)

  • 1/2 tsp of sesame seeds

  • Optional: 1-3 pitted dates

  • Optional sweetener: maple syrup, to taste

  • Optional healthy fat-source: up to 1 Tbsp of any pure 100% seed or nut butter, I find that Tahini goes well here, or about 1/3 tsp of unrefined coconut oil, or about 1 Tbsp of canned coconut milk- I sometimes add it for extra creaminess if I happen to have one open in the fridge)

  • Optional: half a ripe banana

  • Optional: about 1/2-1 Tbsp of raw buckwheat groats (the light ones, NOT the dark brown, roasted ones)

  • Optional: 1-4 Tbsp of unsweetened plant-based yogurt of choice

Method

1) Pour the plant milk into a saucepan on medium heat

2) Add all of the spices, salt and pepper; mix well. You can use a whisk or a hand-held milk frother to get the spices to mix well.

3) If you're using pumpkin puree you can add it in now and whisk everything into an almost milkshake-like consistency, if you're using pumpkin pieces, you can add them in later.

4) If you'd like to sweeten your oatmeal with dates, chop the desired amount of pitted dates, I recommend 1-3 small ones, into small chunks and add them into the saucepan so they sweeten the warm milk. Alternatively, you can use raisins or other dried fruit.

5) Add in all the seeds (or nuts if using).

6) Add the oats into your golden-colored milk, mix well, and let it all simmer until the oats soften, steering occasionally. You might need to add some more milk or water if you find that the oats need more time, but they've already soaked up all the milk.

7) If you're using pumpkin pieces, I'd chuck them in the saucepan now, so they have enough time to warm up, (alternatively, you can add them in a little later if you want to make sure they don't become too soft).

8) If you're using coconut oil or canned coconut milk you may add it in now.

8) Simmer your oatmeal on a low heat for about 10 minutes or until the oats reach your desired consistency (some like them very mushy, some prefer a bit undercooked).

10) At some point here you may add in the banana slices to release some of its sweetness while everything is hot. If the thought of a cooked banana grosses you out, add it to your bowl or skip it altogether.

9) Once your oatmeal is done, transfer it into a bowl.

10) You can now add your seed/nut butters and/or your maple syrup if you find that you still need to make it sweeter. Now is also the time to add in some unsweetened plant-based yogurt, if using.


Like I said before, do taste the oatmeal along the way to check the sweetness level, you might find you actually do prefer the savory version in which case skip the dates, the maple syrup and the banana.


You can add in some toppings here as well, for better taste and/or presentation. Anything from some coconut flakes to grated chocolate, a little bit of vegan yogurt or a few berries.

If you're using fresh fruit just make sure that in this case it's just a mere topping. We don't want to make it too fruity otherwise you might experience some mild digestive problems, like bolating, later on, and this meal should feel like a total belly hug from the beginning to the very end, if you know what I mean. If you really want to add more fruit perhaps try something like a sugar-free homemade jam, where the fruits have been cooked first.. or simply add some berries to your oatmeal once it's still in the saucepan so they could cook together for a while. This way we'll lose some vitamins, but all in all it will actually be easier to digest and therefore more of the nutrients will actually be absorbed.


Enjoy!


*a note on using dry fruit, nuts and seeds- if possible it's best to soak them all in room temperature water overnight, but if you can't do that just make sure you add them in to your pot as early as possible so they have as much time to absorb soak up the milk while you're cooking the oatmeal. I'm not going to get into much detail here of why it's good to soak them, (I'll write about this in a separate post), but in short let me just say that it increases their nutrient availability and allows for their better absorption. They also become less drying to the body and in the case of the dried fruit such as raisins and prunes for instance their healthy laxative properties are then better able to help with our last stages of digestion and elimination.



Note: Even if you are not plant-based, please make sure that you use plant-based milk or yogurts whenever you mix your milk products with fruit, otherwise I highly recommend skipping any kind of fruit in your oatmeal, cereal, yogurt or whatever you're having that contains animal milk.

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