My mom called me one day. “Rachel, I have this great idea for me and your family, and I think you could blog about it!”
Friends, it’s time to confess. This blog really is a family affair. Here’s the break-down in case you’re interested:
Husband = taste-tester, listener, encourager, editor, listener (oh, did I already mention that?)
Kids = taste-testers, posers for my pictures, budding recipe developers
My Mom = My #1 fan.
You see, my mom listens to my business plans, is always brainstorming for the blog, has recently started helping us manage our Pinterest accounts, tests my recipes and tells all family and friends about Thriving Home (blush). She does all this for free…because she’s my #1 fan. Can you believe that?
I digress. My point is that today’s recipe idea was inspired by mom. And, it’s a darn good one. In fact, we’ve made approximately 50+ bowls of these Homemade Instant Oatmeal Packs just since we initially did this project about a month ago. They are awesomely, deliciously healthy.
The concept is simple really. Make ziplock baggies with portioned out instant oatmeal, full of all the good and healthy flavors and textures add-ins that YOU like.
See all those nutritious options that we collected from our cabinets and the store above? You’ll notice you WON’T find some of the ingredients that are in Quaker Oats Instant Oatmeal Packets, like these:
NATURAL AND ARTIFICIAL FLAVOR, SALT, CALCIUM CARBONATE, GUAR GUM, CARAMEL COLOR, DEHYDRATED APPLES (TREATED WITH SODIUM SULFITE TO PROMOTE COLOR RETENTION), PARTIALLY HYDROGENATED SOYBEAN AND/OR COTTONSEED OIL**, MALTODEXTRIN, CONFECTIONER’S GLAZE, MAGNESIUM STEARATE, MODIFIED CORN STARCH, SOY LECITHIN, RED 40 LAKE, YELLOW 6 LAKE, YELLOW 5 LAKE, ARTIFICIAL COLOR, BLUE 1 LAKE, BLEACHED BEESWAX, CARNAUBA WAX, NATURAL AND ARTIFICIAL FLAVOR
These Homemade Instant Oatmeal Packs contain all real, recognizable ingredients. But, believe me, your kids won’t mind, if they’re used to the store-bought stuff. Especially, if you give them ownership in the project…
Here’s how we did this with the kids. We set everything out in an assembly line. I portioned out the base recipe (oats, dried milk, sugar, etc) in each baggie for the little people, but then they decided on their add-ins. Each of us took turns building our personalized Homemade Instant Oatmeal Packs.
My children are kind of into writing recipes. I have no idea why.
And here’s my daughter doing her job as poser. All in all, we took home about 40 packs of individualized instant oatmeal. A fine day’s work. (Actually, it only took about 15 minutes.)
And, then we promptly ate every last pack within just a few days. So we reloaded again and will continue to reload every few weeks.
The best part of this easy-peasy recipe is that we all eat a fiber-and-protein-rich breakfast that’s prepared in minutes. My oldest son can even turn on the tea kettle and prepare his own and his siblings’ bowls. No moms required!
Moms of moms have the best ideas, don’t they?
- ⅓ cup instant oats
- 1 teaspoon unrefined sugar
- 1 tablespoon organic dried milk
- ¼ teaspoon ground chia seeds (optional)
- ¼ teaspoon ground flaxseed (optional)
- cocoa powder
- mini chocolate chips
- dried fruit, chopped into bite-sized pieces (i.e. raisins, craisins, goji berries, dried bananas, apples, blueberries, apricots, mangoes, papaya)
- nuts (walnuts, sliced almonds, peanuts, etc)
- seeds (sunflower, pumpkin, etc)
- shredded coconut
- Combine all ingredients in a ziplock, seal well, and store in pantry for up to 3-4 weeks.
- Dump ingredients into a bowl. Pour about ½ cup boiling water over the top. Stir and then keep adding water until it's to desired thickness. Add fresh, sliced fruit, if desired.