Friday, June 28, 2013

Brownie Batter Oatmeal

Cocoa powder is just the best. It's really one of the few ingredients that can turn anything into a decadent treat without harming its nutritional profile. I think I've put cocoa powder in all my breakfasts for the last week and a half. I used to save that only for weekends (so it felt special), but now I'm just throwing it in everything with reckless abandon.


This is a porridge that's been ruling my mornings (and a couple dinners...) lately. It actually began when I was making my favorite Fudgy Banana and Peanut Butter Oatmeal, but I used Country Choice Organic quick-cooking steel-cut oats instead. I noticed the consistency and flavor was highly reminiscent of brownie batter. Thus, the idea was born.

If you look at this recipe, it seems like it's just a chocolate banana oatmeal. Wrong! The steel-cut oats MAKE this porridge what it is. If you used rolled oats, it just wouldn't be the same, and yes, it probably would just taste like chocolate banana. I'm not sure what it is, but with the steel-cut texture, this oatmeal takes on an entirely new persona and the banana taste is almost completely absent. (If you are against the banana idea, you could use dates or liquid sweeteners instead. As always, I highly endorse the banana.)

Quick-cooking steel-cut oats are probably my new favorite thing. They work beautifully in overnight oatmeal. Like, really beautifully. Like, I'll-never-use-rolled-oats-in-overnight-oatmeal-again beautifully. Just like how "instant" oatmeal is just "old-fashioned" oatmeal that's been ground up a little bit more, quick-cooking steel-cut oats have been chopped up into slightly smaller pieces so they can cook in just 5 minutes instead of the traditional 30 (although, like I said before, it never takes me that long).


If you try a quick-cooking steel-cut oatmeal and you dislike it, try again with another brand. I used Trader Joe's quick-cooking steel-cut oats once and absolutely hated them. They wouldn't get soft. When I used them for overnight oats, they would still be unpleasantly hard in the morning. I'm so glad I tried it again in another brand because it has become my favorite "cut" of oats to cook with. (You could definitely adapt this recipe to use actual steel-cut oats! All the more power to you.)

On another note, today marks my second-to-last day as a New Jersey resident. All I have to say is...DEUCES. I am really looking forward to living in Manhattan next year. (Actually, that's an understatement. Maybe caps will help: I'M REALLY LOOKING FORWARD TO LIVING IN MANHATTAN NEXT YEAR!!!! ...Nah, that was just obnoxious. ^_^) I will not miss sniffing the aroma of urine in Newark Penn Station, enjoying bouts of nausea on the PATH train,  or rambling through the fluttering litter and dazzling shards of glass on Broad Street or on the sidewalks of Washington Park. I will miss Elbow Room, and...no, that's pretty much it. :)


Anyway, I am returning to hell South Dakota in a few days to visit friends and family for the month of July. You will notice a drastic change in photography for the blog. It seems like whenever I get used to taking pictures in a location, I move. I guess that's the life I chose for myself. No complaints here. :)

Brownie Batter Oatmeal

by The Oatmeal Artist
Prep Time: 2 min
Cook Time: 5 min
Ingredients (serves 1)
  • 1 cup milk of choice, or water
  • 1/4 cup quick-cooking steel-cut oats (I use Country Choice Organic)
  • 1 banana, mashed thoroughly
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • pinch of salt
Instructions
  1. Bring milk (I use 1/2 c almond milk and 1/2 c water) to a boil, add oats, and reduce heat to medium. (If you'd like to add flax or chia seeds, do so now.)
  2. Add mashed banana and stir into the cooking oats.
  3. Once more of the liquid has absorbed, add vanilla extract, cocoa powder, and salt. Stir.
  4. If you'd like to add any extra ingredients (coconut oil, almond or peppermint extract, dried fruit, nuts, sunflower seeds), do so now.
  5. When you're pleased with the consistency of the oatmeal, transfer to a bowl. Add a splash of your milk of choice and any other additional toppings (chocolate chips, shredded coconut, nuts, etc.).
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*You could also use regular steel-cut oats and increase your cooking time to 15-25 minutes. To replace the banana, use either 1-3 finely chopped dates or 2-3 tsps of liquid sweetener (maple syrup, agave, or honey).

**You can also find hundreds of other oatmeal recipes (as well as tons of other meatless recipes) on my Pinterest account!  You can also like The Oatmeal Artist on Facebook. Thanks!

37 comments:

  1. That's so funny - I was JUST thinking about how I've had chocolate in my oatmeal 3 times this week. (I used to wait until the weekends too!) Thanks for the post - I'll have to try this!

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    1. I'm so addicted to cocoa powder right now. :)

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  2. When you live in NYC we should do a meetup at Oatmeals

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  3. This looks amazing! Enjoy Manhattan!

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  4. I moved to NYC from Long Island a month ago and love it. I'm also a teacher and also got sick of the commute! Love your blog and am looking forward to trying more of your recipes. :)

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  5. can you make these overnight oats?

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    Replies
    1. Absolutely! I've already done it. :) Reduce the liquid to about 1/2 a cup and add chia seeds if you have them.

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    2. Would you add yogurt or not?
      Emily J.

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    3. No because the consistency becomes too "pudding-like" with yogurt, and brownie batter is usually thicker than pudding!

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  6. I have the exact same steel cut oats and have always cooked them with 3/4 cup liquid as it says in the directions. Does it change the consistency much when adding the last 1/4 cup liquid? Sometimes it does get a little thick and I need more water to thin it out but other times it turns out perfectly.

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    1. Ha! Good thing I read the directions...not! :) I read it enough to learn I was only supposed to use 1/4 cup of oats, but I guess I missed the 3/4 cup of liquid detail. Oops! Well, it's probably ideal to only use 3/4 cup, but I've honestly been using a full cup all this time and haven't had a problem. I think it's just not getting as thick as it's supposed to, but not in a bad way. :)

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  7. I just recently discovered your blog and have been trying lots of recipes, I look forward to breakfast every day now! (this coming from someone who's definitely not a morning person). Could I use Dutch cocoa powder for this? I'm not being snobby, but here in Holland we only really have the Dutch kind..

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    1. Yep! Any kind of cocoa powder works. And I know exactly what you mean about looking forward to breakfast. Oatmeal made ME a morning person, too! Sometimes I wake up at 6 AM on the weekends and I literally jump out of bed and get to work on breakfast. It's a problem of mine. :P

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  8. I have a question regarding an "overnight oats" version of this: does the amount of quick-cooking steel cut oats, 1/4 cup, remain the same or do I need to increase it to 1/2 cup? Thanks!

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    1. Well, technically you would keep it at 1/4 cup. However, most people (including myself) have noticed that overnight oatmeal creates less oatmeal in volume than stovetop oatmeal, so if you want, you could increase the oats to 1/2 a cup. :)

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  9. I absolutely love your blog! Am a college student looking to make cheap, nutritious meals. Used to think instant oatmeal was the way to go.

    I repent.

    One thing, and I know you touched on this in your FAQ, but: rolled oats vs. quick-cooking steel-cut oats. Can you make any recipe with either? Or should I just buy both kinds?

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    Replies
    1. You can use either, but the textures will be different. Also, use 1/2 cup of rolled oats, but only 1/4 cup quick-cook steel-cut.

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  10. I'm new to your blog and it looks fantastic! I don't know if you know this, but if you don't have quick cooking steel cut oats, you can grind regular steel cut oats in a blender before you cook them. When you do that it shortens the cook time by over 80% and the oats only take 4-5 minutes to cook on the stove. The ground oats aren't chewy (they have the same consistency as porridge), but they are still delicious! I imagine the gooey texture of the ground oats would be heavenly with cocoa powder.

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    Replies
    1. Oh She Glows has a great recipe for Banana Bread oats using this cooking method. It's delicious!

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  11. Do you use milk or water in your oatmeal? Personally I use all water and a dash of milk at the end but am wondering if using milk makes a huge difference

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    Replies
    1. I use half almond milk and half water. Using any type of milk will make it creamier and add a more pleasant flavor (depending on the recipe, it can taste a little bland if it's made with just water).

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  12. "I think I've put cocoa powder in all my breakfasts for the last week and a half. I used to save that only for weekends (so it felt special), but now I'm just throwing it in everything with reckless abandon."

    story of my life, lol. I just can't resist using it daily.

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  13. Wow! This is one of my favorite recipes on your blog! The steel cut oats really made a difference. I seriously felt like I was eating warm, gooey brownie batter for breakfast. And it was HEALTHY! Thank you so much for this(and all of your other) delicious recipes! :)

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  15. Is the key to this being like brownie batter the splash of milk at the end? I made this and it's definitely the best oatmeal I've had but it was a little dry.

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  16. Can you eat this as overnight oats as well?
    so skip the cooking, just put everything together and eat in the morning?

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  17. Have you ever replaced the banana for applesauce instead?

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  18. I threw in a cocoa butter wafer (food grade) at the end with the cocoa powder and it was even more chocolatey and delicious!
    Thanks for posting!

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  19. Thank you for the recipe!!!
    Delicious paradise)))))))))))))))
    I added more coconut and raspberry filling out and oooh amazing !!!

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  20. If i were to use just regular quick oats, not quick steel cut oats, would the measurement (1/4 cup) still be the same? I know you said the consistency will be different, but asking just incase my store doesnt have quick steel cut oats.

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