Breakfast Banana Bread

I love a good banana bread! Actually… I don’t think I’ve ever tried a banana bread that I didn’t enjoy. I definitely know what makes banana bread delicious (in my opinion), and that is lots of banana flavor and a little bit of crunch. I also prefer my bread to not be too sweet and to have a dense, moist texture.

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Aside from my love for banana bread (and really all things banana for that matter), I think I have said many, many times how much I enjoy breakfast food. Whether it’s a hearty smoothie bowl or a big bowl of oats, breakfast is definitely my favorite meal of the day. For these reasons, I decided to try to combine the two and make a banana bread that wasΒ  not only delicious, but could serve as a quick breakfast when I don’t have a lot of time.

A few other fun facts about my food preferences that explain a few of the ingredients in this recipe….

  1. I LOVE raw nuts like walnuts, cashews, pistachios, and almonds. I eat raw nuts every day as a snack or find ways to add them to my meals. I love a good crunch and they health benefits of eating a variety of nuts aren’t too shabby either!
  2. I love a good salty/sweet combo. I always have a difficult time picking savory or sweet when it comes to breakfast. Pancakes and waffles are always so comforting on a Saturday morning, but there is also nothing like a good hearty egg sandwich oozing with smashed avocado.

With that said, this recipe turned out better than I expected. I’m so excited to share it with you and hope you give it a try! I love it with a little nut butter spread on top after warming it for a few seconds in the microwave. Store this bread for 5-7 days in the refrigerator.

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Breakfast Banana Bread

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: medium
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Ingredients

  • 2 medium sized bananas, mashed
  • 1 whole large egg
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • pinch salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup walnuts
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • granola (for garnish/on top)

Directions

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees

In a medium size bowl, smash banana until fairly smooth. Whisk in 1 whole egg, coconut sugar, olive oil, and almond milk.

Fold in flour, oats, baking soda, and spices (nutmeg, cinnamon, and salt) until all flour is moistened. Lightly chop walnuts into smaller pieces. Stir in walnuts and cranberries.

Lightly grease a loaf pan and evenly distribute the batter. Top with granola of choice and an extra sprinkle of cinnamon. Bake for 28-30 minutes or until the center is firm and the top is golden brown. Let cool for 5-10 minutes before serving.


Apple Spiced Baked Oatmeal

Is anyone else in total Christmas mode?! We have our Christmas tree up, decorations out, and cozy blankets all over our house (because believe it or not it is COLD in the morning!). What is better on a cozy Sunday morning than a warm and comforting breakfast?! Don’t get me wrong, I love my smoothie bowls, but sometimes I want something a little more comforting and hearty when the mornings are crisp and cool.

This oatmeal bake is SERIOUSLY so easy. I don’t know if I can really emphasize that enough. All of the ingredients I already had in my house, and it took a total of about 30 minutes form start to finish. It is also delicious, so it was definitely a win all around!

This base of this recipe is very simple: oats, egg, and banana. It is slightly sweet and best straight out of the oven. If you are cooking for yourself, leftover oatmeal can be stored in the refrigerator for 3-4 days and re-heated for breakfast as desired!

I chose to top my baked oats with a little peanut butter. Other yummy toppings may include chopped nuts, honey, maple syrup, greek yogurt, or other nut butters. If you are looking for a simple and fast breakfast to serve at your upcoming holiday brunch, this would definitely be a good option! I hope you enjoy this tasty and simple recipe! Happy Sunday everyone!

Apple Spiced Baked Oatmeal

  • Servings: 3-4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 1 brown banana, mashed
  • 1 whole large egg
  • 1/8 c brown sugar, unpacked
  • 1 capful (~1/8 tsp) vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch pink Himalayan salt
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1 whole Granny Smith apple
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or milk of choice)
  • cooking spray

Directions

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees

In a medium size bowl, smash banana until fairly smooth. Whisk in 1 whole egg, ~1/8 cup (or fill 1/4 cup half way) brown sugar, cinnamon, pink salt, and vanilla.

Dice 1/2 of a large granny smith apple (or apple of choice), and cut the other half into thin slices. Granny smith apples are fairly tart and flavorful, which is why they are a great choice when baking.

Add the oats, diced apple, and almond milk to the banana and egg mixture. Mix until all oats are moistened.

In a lightly greased baking dish or pie pan, spread the oats out evenly. Use the leftover apple slices to create a fun design on top of the oats or just place at random evenly across the top.

Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the sides of the oats begin to pull away from the dish and turn golden brown. Let cool for 3-5 minutes and enjoy!


Cranberry Chocolate Pumpkin Bars

Yes… they are as good as they sound! Hi everyone! I feel like I haven’t been on here in ages, but with good reason. I have some fun updates that I will share in a later post this week, but for now… the pumpkin bars!

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These are so easy, gooey, and delicious. I have eaten one literally every day since I made them and they are the perfect ending to any meal. The base of these bars are oats, whole wheat flour, pumpkin, and banana. They are sweetened up with a little dried cranberries and a few dark chocolate chips. They only take about 20 minutes to bake and last for ~1 week covered or in a sealed container (I keep them cold in the refrigerator).

These bars would be the perfect addition to a holiday brunch or get together with family and friends. They are not too sweet and provide just the right about of pumpkin flavor. I hope you give these lovely little bars a try! Happy December friends!

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Cranberry Chocolate Pumpkin Bars

  • Servings: 12-18
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 1 brown banana
  • 1/2 can pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar (not packed)
  • 3/4 cup walnuts
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 egg
  • pumpkin pie spice (about 1/4 tsp)
  • cinnamon (~1/2 tsp)
  • pinch pink salt
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, mash 1 banana with 1/2 can pumpkin puree. Add brown sugar and mix until it’s fairly dissolved. Stir in 1 egg, vanilla, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, and salt.

Add dry ingredients (oats, flour, baking soda, and baking powder) and mix until all when ingredients are moistened. Stir in dried cranberries, walnuts, and dark chocolate chips.

In a greased baking dish, pour batter and spread out evenly. I used a square 9×9 baking dish. If wanting thinner bars, choose a larger size dish.

Let the pumpkin bars bake for about 20-25 minutes or until the edges start to pull away from the dish. Allow at least 10 minutes for cooling before cutting into squares for serving. Store in an sealed container or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.


Trail Mix Cookies

HAPPY SUNDAY! This is such a good Sunday, want to know why? I am so, so, SO happy to be done writing my Master’s final defense paper! Yay!!! Everyone just cross your fingers that it goes well in a few week! Once this is complete, I will have one class left and then I’m officially done! How stinking exciting is that?! Two years truly flew by, and I’m so proud of myself for checking (almost….) this box!

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So with all this excitement, I thought I’d bake cookies! You know, any time I’m feeling an emotion — happiness, sadness, stress — the kitchen is always one of my safe havens. These cookies came out way better than expected, so I’m extremely excited to share them!

Disclaimer:

OK… this is kind of a funny (but not really) disclaimer, so all of you dog lovers please read! If your dog is like mine and absolutely loves peanut butter, do not let these cool near the edge of the counter! These cookies contain raisins, almond milk, and walnuts, which are all things that dogs should not have…. especially raisins! Our household spent quite a bit of time on the phone with emergency vets and pet poison control yesterday afternoon after Eddie decided to jump up on the counter and have a little taste test for himself. Thankfully, he is perfectly fine (and I probably over-reacted a tad), but I just thought I’d pre-warn you…. they really do smell THAT good!

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Now that we got that out of the way, lets get to the recipe! These are super easy and perfect for a quick breakfast or pre-workout bite. I call these trail mix cookies because they have a lot of components of trail mix that I love such as dried fruit and nuts. I made this cookies fairly large, but you could always make them a little smaller to increase the final quantity. Because I made larger cookies, I got about 12-13 out of my cookie dough!

I hope you give these a try! I recommend you play around with different tastes and textures if you are feeling creative. Maybe try adding coconut shreds or using different nut butters! Let me know what you think, and as always you can message or comment with questions or general thoughts! Have a great Sunday everyone!

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Trail Mix Cookies

  • Servings: 12-13 large
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 brown bananas, mashed
  • 1 1/2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/3 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar (lightly packed)
  • 1/2 cup seedless raisins
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup unsalted PB
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil
  • pinch cinnamon
  • pinch of pink salt

Directions

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees

In a medium size bowl, smash bananas until fairly smooth. Add dry ingredients (coconut flour, oats, cinnamon, brown sugar, pink salt) as well as the walnuts, cranberries, and raisins. Lightly mix to incorporate the banana and cover the dry ingredients.

Add all wet ingredients (egg, coconut oil, peanut butter, and almond milk) and mix until well combined. This will be a chunky batter!

Lightly grease a cookie sheet. Scoop large spoonfuls of batter onto the sheet and use your hands to help form the shape of your cookie. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until the edges start to become a light golden brown. Let cool for 10-15 minutes before serving!


Overnight Chocolatey Chia Oat Pudding

Who doesn’t love dessert for breakfast?! Ok… this isn’t really DESSERT, but bear with me. It’s lent and hub and I gave up sweets, so I’ll take whatever I can get right now! In all honesty, eliminating sweets (we all know I have a REALLY bad sweet tooth) has actually been really good to help get my sugar cravings back in check. I giggled this morning when I was watching the news because they were doing a segment on how addictive sugar is. Well, living proof of that right here! Hello my name is Chelsea… and I’m a sugar addict.

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OK… I’ll stop! Sorry everyone it’s been a long few weeks, and I think the lack of sleep and constant high gear at work and home has began to get to me. On to the recipe, that’s the important part right?

I have tried overnight oats and chia pudding before. Chia pudding isn’t my absolute fav; I’ve realized I’m not a huge fan of the texture. When combined with oats, I enjoy the flavor a lot more and enjoy the little change in breakfast from my usual eggs. This past weekend, I purchased a few of the vegan protein powders from Sprouts to try out. I tend to not really use protein powders that often, but thought maybe I could find a use for these. A little extra protein for me never hurt!

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When it comes to oats, I always use banana as a base. It adds natural sweetness, plus the banana flavor that I love. It’s also no secret that huge amounts of nut butter tend to find its way into my breakfast every day, so of course that served as one of my topping for this sweet little bowl. This is super easy, can be made in advance, and is perfect for all of you sugar-nuts out there like myself. The good thing is outside of the sweetness from the banana, the chia seeds, and any sweetener in the protein powder, there actually isn’t any added sugar or sugar substitute such as agave or honey! I really hope you add this recipe to your weekly breakfast rotation! It is definitely going to become more of a regular for me!

P.S. It is SUPER filling! I actually could’t even finish it and ended up eating the second half after work, so be prepared for a little leftovers. It keeps great in the refrigerator, but I wouldn’t suggest keeping it much past 24 hours.

Overnight Chocolatey Chia Oat Pudding

  • Servings: 1
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 1/2 banana, mashed
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1 Tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 heaping spoonful of Sprout’s vegan chocolate protein powder (about 1 1/2 Tbsp) OR your favorite chocolate protein powder
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or milk of choice, have not tried with others)
  • 1/8 tsp cinnamon
  • 1-2 Tbsp nut butter of choice
  • Toppings of choice: fruit (berries, bananas, etc), shredded coconut, raw nuts, extra chia seeds, chopped Lara Bar

Directions

In a medium size bowl, smash 1/2 banana until fairly smooth. Add oats, chia seeds, almond milk, and cinnamon. Stir until well combined then transfer to a Β mason jar or tupperware with a lid. Let sit overnight for at least 7-8 hours in the refrigerator.

In the morning, agitate with a fork to fluff the oats. Add toppings of choice and enjoy!

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