Everyone in my family (except me!) is a fan of big breakfast every day of the week. This makes me a big fan of make ahead breakfast. Using a slow cooker or crock pot to prepare breakfast the evening before is one way I maximize our morning time. This recipe is so easy the kids can prepare it with me with very little instruction. It also works well with Gluten Free Steel Cut Oats, barley or other hearty grains. I wouldn’t try quick cook oats with this one, though.
I like to pair this with berry and spinach smoothie. I have had success loading my blender the night before and then putting it in the freezer. In the morning I add the cold water and blend. Anything to make mornings go smoother in our busy home!
Let me just take a minute to explain why soaking grains is a great idea. I also want to assure you that it very easy if it is a new to you concept. Grains are seeds that are designed to pass through the digestive system relatively undigested so that they can be planted and grow. Soaking the grains can make them more digestible and help your system obtain all the nutrients in the food. So that’s the simple explanation behind soaking grains.
2 tablespoons butter or coconut oil
2 cups organic steel cut oats
5 cups water or milk (milk makes for a creamier recipe)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1 cup chopped fresh fruit (peeled and seeds removed)
1/4-1/2 cup dried fruits such as dates, cranberries, berry mix, raisins
½ cup chopped nuts (optional)
Directions: Make sure your slow cooker is not bigger than 2 quarts since slow cooker recipes tend to overcook or burn if the slow cooker is not more than half way full. Coat the inside of the crock pot with butter or coconut oil. Add the oats, liquid and salt into the crock pot. Let sit for several hours (or set timer to start at a later time). Add fruit, dried fruit, nuts and vanilla. Cover and turn on low. Cook for 6-8 hours (set timer) for best results.