Chocolate, coconut, oats and almonds in a quick, healthy and easy to make breakfast.
I tend to alternate between two weekday breakfasts – smoothies and overnight oats. Regardless of what time I get up I always seem to be in a rush by the time I get around to breakfast so whatever I eat needs to be quick and easy.
The huge advantage of overnight oats is that you do all the work the night before (what very little there is), so it’s there in the fridge ready to eat. If you prefer to eat them warm simply pop them in the microwave on full power for a minute before eating (make sure you give them a good stir when you take them out to ensure there’s no hot spots).
I’m perfectly happy eating plain and simple overnight oats, but recently I’ve been playing around with different flavours, throwing in random foods from the cupboard to see what works and what doesn’t. I honestly thought white chocolate and raspberry (one of my favourite muffin flavours) would be a stroke of genius, but sadly not. However, my coconut and chocolate experiment turned out much better.
In addition to desiccated coconut, coconut milk and cocoa powder, I also add a sprinkle of flaked almonds just before eating. They add a nice extra flavour and a little crunch. If you’re feeling a little more indulgent you can also add some melted dark chocolate or chocolate chips. It’s best to add the almonds just before eating as otherwise they’ll go soft overnight and you’ll lose the crunch.
If you don’t have coconut milk then this also tastes great with skimmed cows milk. I’ve also tried it with almond milk but I didn’t enjoy it as much.
Trying to be a bit more “Free From”
I’ve seen a trend amongst quite a few bloggers (and friends) recently to start cutting various food groups from their diets. They mostly seem to rave about the results so I should probably try it too, but I have to admit that I’m pretty stubborn when it comes to things like that and I’m resolutely sticking to eating anything I feel like. However, I realised recently that it means that I’m not all that comfortable catering for my friends and family who are following special diets.
One of the reasons I started this blog was to make myself cook more and grow my repertoire. In the past when I had people over for dinner I fussed around in a bit of a panic all day about what to cook before resorting to my staple of sausages and mash (which I still love by the way). I’m happy to say that my blind panic has now gone and I’m comfortable cooking for friends. However, as soon as someone says they have a special dietary need the panic returns. I’m just not used to having to eliminate certain food groups from any of my cooking.
I’ve decided that I need to start cooking more “free from” foods, quite simply to know that I can.
I’d originally made these oats for a while with cows milk but decided that it would be a good step in the “free from” direction to use a dairy free alternative. I know it’s only switching milk, but I’ve never bought coconut/almond/soya (and on and on…) milk before so it seemed like a good place to start. It turns out it actually made this breakfast taste better… more coconutty, so it’s definitely something I’m planning to use again. However, it’s also a first step in making myself try new foods.
I’m hoping to share more purposely “free from” recipes (they are sometimes free of certain allergens by chance rather than any special intention) as I learn more about how to cook for anybody that turns up on my doorstep.
Do you eliminate any food groups from your diet? Do you feel comfortable cooking for people that do?
Coconut Chocolate Overnight Oats
- 50 g oats - roughly ½ cup
- 15 g desiccated coconut - 1 heaped tbsp
- 1 flat tsp cocoa powder
- 120 ml coconut milk - or skimmed cows milk
- 1 heaped tsp flaked almonds
- Put the oats, desiccated coconut, cocoa powder and coconut milk into a bowl and give it a good stir.
- Cover and put into the fridge over night.
- In the morning, remove from the fridge and stir in the flaked almonds.
Free From/Suitable For…
The ingredients I used to make this recipe are all free from the following allergens. However, please check any labels carefully for allergens you need to avoid as brands can vary and product recipes can change over time.
- Suitable for Vegetarians & Vegans (not vegan if using cow’s milk instead of coconut)
- Gluten-Free (please ensure you buy gluten-free oats as whilst oats are naturally gluten-free, gluten can often be added during the manufacturing process)
- Dairy-Free (unless using cow’s milk instead of coconut milk)