Thursday, April 11, 2013

Strawberry Vanilla Protein Oats (Slow Cooker Style)

So is it Spring or isn't it?! Mother Nature is seeming a little confused these days. One day it's warm and sunny and the next it's gray and frigid. We had some glimpses of Springtime weather on Tuesday morning and since then have pretty much been experiencing a monsoon.....okay, so maybe I'm being a wee bit dramatic, but we've had some crazy thunder, rainy downpours and the weatherman is calling for a chance of wet snow or freezing rain today today. AWESOME {enter sarcasm here} I think we can all agree that we are done with winter and want the snow to take a hike, but it just doesn't seem to want to let us go. I bought a couple {read: five} new pairs of flats that I'm dying to wear, but I made an attempt with them yesterday and my feet received a royal soaking. Today, I'm back to boots.

My cravings have been all over the board because of this weather too. One day I'm craving fresh green salads with lots of veggies and my favourite honey dijon dressing and the next day I'm thinking about making a crockpot full of veggie stew.

Last night, I decided that I needed to make a crockpot full of steel cut oatmeal for breakfast. I decided to try a new strawberry vanilla combo, so I could get a little Springtime with the berries while at the same time getting the warm and cozy comfort of the oatmeal. This combo turned out to be delicious!

I also decided to add some protein powder to my oats, which is something I've never done before. I recently became a member of Team Vega {an entire post dedicated to this amazing company and their equally amazing products will be coming very soon} and they provided me with a sample pack of products to try - I decided that their Vega One French Vanilla Nutritional Shake powder would be a perfect compliment to my strawberry oats. This flavour is the bomb-digity of protein powders!!!!!

What I ended up with was an amazing new oatmeal that I insist you've got to try. It's Springtime meets comfort food and it is SO.GOOD!!!!!

Strawberry Vanilla Slow Cooker Protein Oats
Serves 2

1/2 c steel cut oats
1 c unsweetened original almond milk (or milk of your choice)
3/4 c water
1 package vanilla-flavoured protein powder
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 c frozen sliced strawberries (fresh would probably work)

Optional Toppings: favourite nut butter, maple syrup, coconut or chopped pecans

Note: I used my small hot dip slow cooker for this recipe. It works perfectly or you could use Janetha's instructions here for using a larger sized slow cooker.

Grease your slow cooker with coconut oil or non-stick spray.

Add all of the ingredients to the slow cooker and stir well to combine.

Cook on low for 8 hours.

Serve and enjoy. Sometimes I like to add a spoonful of plain non-fat Greek yogourt to my oats and sometimes I eat them topped with chopped fruit, a drizzle of syrup (perfect way to add more sweetness for all you sweet lovers out there) or a big glob of melty nut butter. Either way will rock your socks off!

I prepare my oatmeal in the evening and let the slow cooker simmer away all night long. When I get up in the morning, I open my bedroom door to the mouthwatering aroma of freshly made oatmeal. It's such a nice way to start your day!

Are you craving fresh produce and all foods associated with Spring or are you still enjoy all the comfort foods of winter?

Have a great day!!


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