I’ve heard a lot of talk about “savory” oatmeal. But I like a little sweet with my oats. Although, it’s like most other grains, so why not? We eat sweetened rice when we make rice pudding, but most commonly dine on savory rice dishes. And with the health benefits we gain from eating oats, it should, perhaps, be considered.
I have seen oats used as a binder in meatloaf in place of crackers or breadcrumbs. And we often see oats atop wholegrain breads. More and more, as folks eat less gluten, oat flour is becoming popular, and no doubt used for savory cooking and baking. Oat milk is gaining in popularity, as well, as people search for traditional dairy alternatives.
We often have breakfast for dinner, and oatmeal makes an appearance on a regular basis. I don’t use quick oats very often. I usually opt for old-fashioned rolled or whole oats. They take a tad bit longer to make but the texture is worth it.
If you notice my recipes this time of year, in times past, you know I am one of those pumpkin spice girls. All things pumpkin, and pumpkin spice. Did you see the one where an oil change business wanted in on the fun this year? Their marquee read “Pumpkin-Spice” oil changes! You would think it gets a bit out of control, even on the aisles of the grocery store each fall, but it’s creative and adventurous.
When I developed this recipe for pumpkin spice oatmeal, I decided to borrow a little bit from the savory/salty world, while preserving a little sweetness, and the combination was a flavor explosion. The creamy, smooth pumpkin, with a touch of brown sugar or maple syrup, topped off with crunchy pumpkin seeds, and crispy bacon was dynamite.
Be a little adventurous, and enjoy food made fresh!
Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal
2 ½ cups whole milk, (or other milk)
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon butter
1 ¼ cup old-fashioned rolled/whole oats
Crumbled crispy bacon
Toasted pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
Place milk, pumpkin puree, brown sugar, pumpkin pie spice, and salt in a medium saucepan. Whisk together until well combined. Add butter, and when melted whisk mixture again. When it comes to a low-boil, reduce heat to medium low and add oats. Stir to combine. Cook over medium heat for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring often, until oats are tender and have absorbed a good bit of liquid. Remove from heat and let rest for 5 minutes.
Stir, then serve with desired toppings, such as crumbled bacon, pumpkin seeds, and maple syrup. Makes 2 to 4 servings.
ANGELINA LARUE is a food writer, recipe developer and author of “The Whole Enchilada Fresh and Nutritious Southwestern Cuisine.”