This recipe came about one morning when we were running low on groceries and there was no fresh fruit in the house. Normally I’d be fine just throwing a handful of raisins into my oatmeal and calling it good, but I was looking for something a little more substantial and spotted a couple of carrots sitting at the bottom of my vegetable drawer. Perfect! I seized the opportunity to both 1) eat something resembling dessert for breakfast and 2) feel virtuous that I was getting my vegetables in first meal of the day.
Dessert aspirations aside, I actually don’t like to eat a super-sweet breakfast. That’s why the brown sugar and icing topping are optional in this recipe. Without them, this is still a warming, spicy and interesting bowl of oats. But a little sweet somewhere helps balance out the flavors and make it feel just a little bit more decadent.
- 1 small carrot, grated
- 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp ground ginger
- dash nutmeg
- pinch salt
- 1/3 cup oats
- 1 tbsp raisins, optional
- 2 tsp brown sugar, optional
- 1/3 cup almond milk
- 1/3 cup water
- 1 tbsp chopped nuts
- 1 tbsp powdered sugar
- 1/2 tsp maple syrup
- dash vanilla
- 1/2 to 1 tsp milk
- Place a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the carrot, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and salt and cook for several minutes until the raw small disappears and the carrot begins to stick to the bottom of the pan (but is not burning).
- Add the oats and brown sugar and raisins, if using. Pour in about half the liquid and use a spoon or silicon spatula to scrape up any carrot stuck to the pot. Add the rest of the liquid.
- Bring to a boil over medium heat. Cover the pan and turn off the burner. Let sit 3-5 minutes.
- Prepare icing, if using: Add the powdered sugar, maple syrup and vanilla to a small bowl. Add ½ tsp milk and stir. Add more milk if necessary to achieve a thick, pourable consistency.
- When the oatmeal has absorbed most of the liquid, give it a final stir and pour into a bowl. Top with chopped nuts and additional raisins, and drizzle with the icing if desired.
*Nutrition facts calculated with raisins, brown sugar and optional icing