Coconut Apricot Overnight Oats

Overnight oats and I have had an interesting relationship. When I first saw it on Pinterest (where all good ideas come from), I thought it was silly. It doesn’t take that long to make oatmeal, why do we need to make it ahead of time?

And then I made this batch and everything changed. Imagine walking downstairs half asleep in the morning and just grabbing a jar from the fridge, fumbling for a spoon, and knowing that is the only work you have to put into breakfast. Yes you have to prep it the night before, but the prep itself is minimal. Just throw your ingredients together in a jar, shake it all up and chuck it in the fridge for a bit. It really can’t be any simpler than that. I love anything I can eat from a Mason jar with a spoon. And cold oatmeal totally works! If cold oatmeal isn’t your thing, try heating this up a bit in the microwave. Please just remove the metal lid first.

Overnight oats shouldn’t just be limited to breakfast though. Try making a batch to have a lunch, or packing a jar for a quick dinner on the go! I’ve done two variation on the blog, but almost any combination of fruit, nuts and seeds, nut butters, dried fruit, or anything else will work. Or try a savory jar and top it with an egg for a different twist!

This recipe makes 1 serving.

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Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup large flake oats
  • 2/3 cup coconut milk
  • 1/3 cup skim milk
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened coconut
  • 5 dried apricots, chopped
  1. Combine everything in a clean 500 mL mason jar. Shake to combine and refrigerate overnight. Reheat if you want, or eat cold.

12 Awesome Apple Recipes to Get You Through Fall

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Apples are one of those fruits that I always forget I like. If someone asked me my favourite fruit, it would probably be something like apricots or raspberries or peaches. But there are always apples in the crisper drawer in our fridge. They last for ages, they pack in lunches and, judging from this awesome list of recipes, we can use them in all kinds of things! And it’s fall, so if you try to eat locally and in season, there will be tons of apples coming your way soon!

  1. Apple Muffins with Cinnamon Streusel from A Virtual Vegan

Deliciously soft & fluffy apple muffins, loaded with sweet, tender fruit and topped with an irresistibly crumbly, cinnamony, streusel topping.

2. Green Apple and Quinoa Coleslaw from The Leafy Cauldron

Green Apple and Quinoa Coleslaw

3. My Apple Pie Green Smoothie

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4. Skinny Apple Pie Milkshake from Joe and Sue

5. Spiced Apple Breakfast Bowl from I Love Vegan

Spiced Apple Oatmeal Bowl - ilovevegan.com

6. Chai Applesauce, Apple Butter & Apple Leather from Making Healthy Choices

Chai Applesauce, Apple Butter and Apple Leather

7. Apple Carrot Lemon Ginger Juice from Justine Celina

Apple Carrot Lemon Ginger Juice // JustineCelina.com

8. Homemade Oven Baked Apple Chips from She Loves Biscotti

Homemade Oven Baked Apple Chips

9. Raw Apple Pie from The Bewitchin’ Kitchen

Raw Apple Pie

10. Apple Cinnamon Slow Cooker Oatmeal from Savour and Shine

Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal // seen on savourandshine.com

11. Super Quick Vegan Oatmeal Breakfast from Eye Candy Popper

Super quick vegan oatmeal breakfast

12. My Spinach-Apple Omelette

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Grilled Butternut Squash

September can be a tricky time for food. There’s still so many warm sunny days that make you want to BBQ and sit out on the deck. But it’s also (finally) starting to cool off and leggings and fuzzy socks are beckoning you to come sit and eat your favourite fall comfort foods while wrapped up under a blanket. I like to think this squash is a middle-ground transition dish that fits in perfectly right now. The grilled aspect hangs on to summer just a little bit longer, while squash helps us ring in fall. Try it and savour the last few weeks of BBQ season. Unless of course you’re my father who shovels a path to the BBQ in January.

Meal Prep Pro Tip: Make this squash ahead of time and keep it in the fridge. Use in lunches and dinners all week. I’ve eaten mine on top of an arugula and spinach salad, in a warm orzo salad, and as a side with chicken thighs. This squash can go pretty much anywhere, so be creative!

Just a side note, my new favourite lunch to take to work are salad and grain bowls. I’ve been packing a small container of a grain (barley, rice, couscous, orzo) and a protein (taco meat, white beans, hard-boiled eggs) and heating them up in the microwave at work, then topping them with a big pile of veggies and some avocado or homemade ricotta. It is seriously the best way to use up weird combinations of leftovers, as well as the strange odds and ends that get left in the cupboard indefinitely. Every night when I make my lunch, I just reach into the fridge and see what awesome combination I can come up with next! This squash has been featured in these, and I have more ideas for it this week!

This recipe makes 6 servings.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 large butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and sliced into 1/2-inch thick rings
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp thyme leaves
  • 1 tsp basil leaves
  1. Preheat the grill over medium-high heat. Place the squash rings in a large bowl and drizzle with oil. Sprinkle seasonings over top and toss to coat evenly.
  2. Place squash on grill and cook, covered for 15 minutes, or until soft, turning halfway.
  3. Serve as a side, on salads, or as part of a grain bowl.

How To Freeze Kale

This post is in line with last year’s posts about freezing carrots and parsnips, as well as the one about canning applesauce. I find it really hard to throw out food, and it’s just painful to throw out produce that came right from the backyard. Therefore, I try to preserve every thing I can! Last year, this included freezing some tomatoes, and this year it’s involved lots of jam making, eating corn constantly, and canning a batch of tomato sauce! I was telling this to someone recently, who replied “oh you’re  a squirrel”. If a squirrel means I love preserving food in season to eat during the winter, then yes, I am proudly a squirrel.

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With the dry summer we’ve had, the kale plants in the garden had a rough start. And then pretty much overnight after a handful of rain drops, they took off and started getting out of control! Even making a huge kale salad every day or two, we could not keep up with them. At that point we started hauling in giant armfuls once a week and blanching the leaves to freeze.

Kale is not super expensive to buy at the grocery store over the winter, and I’ll still choose fresh kale for a salad, but having these bags of kale in the freezer will be perfect for soups, stews, casseroles, frittatas, sauteing with some lemon zest and almonds… I have lots of ideas. And it’s cheaper to freeze the kale to use in these dishes than it is to let it go to waste and end up buying it all winter. I think I’m up to 5 large freezer bags stashed away now, so maybe that will be enough? An extra row of kale went in the garden recently that will be ready towards the end of the month, so there may be more to put away yet!

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  1. Wash all kale and rinse well. Make sure there is no remaining dirt or bugs attached.
  2. Shred the kale into large leaves. Prepare a large bowl or sink of ice water.
  3. Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil. In batches, add the kale to the pot and stir to make sure it all gets submerged. Let cook 1 minute.
  4. Using a slotted spoon, remove kale leaves from water and place in ice water to stop cooking. Repeat until all kale has been blanched
  5. Divide kale between labelled resealable plastic bags and freeze.
  6. Frozen kale can be added to soups and stews while still frozen, but should be defrosted in the fridge for other recipes.