In this adaption of a classic Baked Oatmeal Squares Recipe from AndreAnna at Life As A Plate, oats are soaked overnight to reduce phytic acid and increase the nutrient availability. Thanks, AndreAnna!
I developed this Baked Oatmeal Squares recipe a few years ago to be able to make versatile breakfasts for myself and my husband when we both worked in an office. It makes a lot of servings and I’d make this batch on a Sunday and it would feed us both all week. I’d cut off a square, stick it in a Tupperware bowl and with a 20 second stint in the microwave would have a healthy breakfast. Except back then I used quick oats and no soaking. Recently, as I’ve grown and learned and researched my way into the Real Food World, I’ve learned the benefits of using whole steel cut oats as well as why it’s so important to soak them.
From Sally Fallon in Nourishing Traditions:
All grains contain phytic acid (an organic acid in which phosphorous is bound) in the outer layer or bran. Untreated phytic acid can combine with calcium, magnesium, copper, iron especially zinc in the intestinal track and block their absorption. This is why a diet high in unfermented whole grains may led to serious mineral deficiencies and bone loss. The modern misguided practice of consuming large amounts of unprocessed bran often improves colon transit time at first but may lead to irritable bowel syndrome and, in the long term, many other adverse effects. Soaking allows enzyme, lactobacilli and other helpful organisms to break down and neutralize phytic acid. As little as seven hours of soaking in warm acidulated water will neutralize a large portion of phytic acid in grains. The simple practice of soaking cracked or rolled cereal grains overnight will vastly improve their nutritional benefits.
So this recipe for baked oatmeal calls for you soaking your steel cut oats for 24 hours following her method. For each cup of oats, I use 1 cup of warm water and 2 tbsp of whey (I have a lot leftover from making my raw milk yogurt so this was perfect). You can also use buttermilk or yogurt.
I also bake this slow at a low temperature for an hour and it lets the oats soak up the milk and cook slowly. I used raw milk, cinnamon, and raisins but the possibilities really are endless: you could use almond milk and cranberries, coconut milk and dried mangos, etc. You could add sliced nuts, fresh fruit, or – gasp – whipped fresh cram – when it’s done, hot and piping out of the oven.
Baked Oatmeal Squares Recipe
- 3 cups steel cut oats (Because we’re a gluten-free family, we get the certified GF kind) (find steel cut oats)
- 3 cups of water
- 6 tbsp fresh whey or buttermilk
- 4 cups raw milk
- 2 tbsp vanilla extract
- 1 egg, beaten
- 12-15 drops liquid stevia (can sub 1/4 c. honey or sweetener of your choice)
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 1 c. raisins
1) Pour the oats in a large bowl and pour in the warm water and whey. Stir gently, cover, and let sit for 24 hours.
2) After 24 hours, pour off the soaking water.
3) Add in the 4 c. raw milk, beat egg, and the other ingredients you’re using: in this case, the vanilla, cinnamon, stevia, and raisins.
4) Pour into 13X9 baking dish. It WILL not be a batter and will be liquid. Don’t worry; it’ll cook up in the oven.
5) Bake on 325 for 45-60 minutes until firm.
6) Cut into squares and serve with your choice of toppings.
Enjoy your baked oatmeal squares!