We are oat-obsessed over here. I know it’s summer, and most people don’t eat hot breakfasts during summer. A nice cold bowl of cereal or an icy smoothie would make more sense on a summer morning, yes, but we repeatedly turn to oats for breakfast, even on the hottest days.
Not that this summer has been that hot up here in northwest Indiana. Dare I say most of summer has been almost early fall like? I think we maybe had one day above 90 degrees. MAYBE. It has consistently been in the 70s, and the days that get up into the 80s feel hot. I love it. I will take another polar vortex if it means mild summers. Sure, beaches and ice cream and popsicles are great, but so are zip-up hoodies for cool nights, not suffering from heat stroke on a long run, and not burning up the house when you turn on the oven.
That’s a major part why I have just loved this temperate summer – I can turn on the oven. Last summer we endured hotter temperatures and I had so many days where I just did not want to cook. Or even eat a proper meal, for that matter. Who wants to eat when it’s 100 degrees out?
Actually, I always want to eat, but never mind that. Let’s talk more about these oats, because these oats are amazing. They are part of the reason why we are turning on the stove every morning this summer.
It does not matter what season, though. Winter, spring, fall, even summer – oatmeal is one of our go-to breakfasts. What’s not to love? The creamy and hearty texture, the gentle sweetness, the perfect palate for whatever flavors you crave that day. Those dishes are always my favorite – the ones you can customize to your cravings that day. Apple cinnamon? Peanut butter banana? Maple bacon?
That’s right. Bacon. That’s another breakfast item we’re obsessed with here. Bacon, bacon, bacon. I am so guilty of adding it to everything savory – pizza, risotto, pasta, burgers – and now I’m slipping it into all things sweet. It’s not that bad, though – I mean, bacon has protein, right? Gotta repair those muscles from all the morning workouts. Everything in moderation, I believe – including and especially bacon.
Not that my muscles really needed repairing the morning I first made maple bacon oatmeal. My half marathon training plan called for four easy miles. The impending monsoon outside called for these miles to be treadmill miles. So I set the treadmill to an easy peasy pace with a bit of an incline, listened to an old Another Mother Runner podcast, and cranked out four miles before Charlie even got out of bed.
The smell of bacon, however, is enough to get a puggle out of bed. Maybe that’s because we spoil him and last time we made bacon we gave him his own slice. He probably thought I was cooking up a proper breakfast for him – no more of that kibble stuff I dump in his bowl twice a day. While I’m at it, he probably wants me to add that entire block of feta cheese in fridge to his bowl. And cauliflower, because he’s a weird little puggle like that.
Sorry, Charlie, no bacon for you this morning (or feta, or cauliflower). Two slices of bacon, one each for Ryan and I, to top off my signature oatmeal. Over the years I’ve developed my own method of making oatmeal. I prefer my oats to be voluminous and creamy, because it makes me feel like I’m eating more. I beat one egg per serving into them and then mix in some natural no-added-sugar applesauce. Plus the eggs pack enough protein to really repair muscles (let’s be real, the bacon is just there because bacon).
Despite all the extras, the maple bacon oatmeal cooks up quick enough that you can make it on a workday. The bacon can cook while you boil the milk, simmer the oats, and whip in the egg – not much longer than cooking a normal bowl of oat takes.
Because I’m chomping at the bit for fall to finally arrive, even though we’ve had such a mild summer, I added just a touch of maple syrup to this oatmeal. Maple syrup just has such a boots and chunky scarves fall feeling to it. It also tastes amazing with bacon – but then again, what doesn’t? You can top this off with any fruit – I personally enjoy adding sliced bananas to each and every bowl of oatmeal that I eat.
- 2 slices of bacon, preferably nitrate-free
- 2 cups of milk
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup of old-fashioned oats
- 2 large eggs
- 1-4oz cup natural no-added-sugar applesauce
- 2 teaspoons pure maple syrup
- Cook in the bacon in a pan over the stove to desired crispness.
- Add the milk (I used 1%) to a saucepan, and bring to a boil on the stove. Add vanilla and oats to the milk. Lower the temperature to medium low and cook for five minutes, stirring to prevent clumps or burning.
- Crack eggs into oatmeal and quickly whisk into the oats to create a custard-like texture. Allow egg to cook for about one minute, then stir in the applesauce. Remove from stove to prevent over-cooking.
- Stir maple syrup into oatmeal.
- Serve oatmeal in a bowl and top with bacon and any other desired toppings.
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