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Recipe: Buttermilk Oatmeal Carrot Breakfast Squares

03/14/2016 04:18 EDT | Updated 03/15/2017 05:12 EDT

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Okay, all of you non-breakfast eaters, you now have no excuse. These buttermilk oatmeal carrot breakfast squares are too easy, delicious and nutritious to pass up. Take half an hour out of your Sunday and make your breakfast for the entire week! Buttermilk creates a tender texture, carrots and applesauce add moisture, and maple syrup and cinnamon add a warm, comforting flavour.

These squares pack a punch of nutrition! Many store-bought muffins and loaves are made with omega-6-rich oils such as soybean oil, sunflower oil, safflower oil, canola oil, corn oil, etc. Us North Americans get so much omega-6 fat in our diets, due to the fact that we eat so many store-bought/processed foods. But what we really need are more omega-3 fats. By using omega-3 rich olive oil and walnuts in this recipe, you can do just that. Another good reason to make foods from scratch instead of buying packaged foods.

If you aren't already sold, these squares will last in an airtight container in the fridge for 4-5 days. You can also store them in the freezer (individually wrapped and placed in a freezer bag).

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Nutrition Benefits & Tips:

High in fibre: oats, ground flaxseeds, whole wheat flour, wheat bran, applesauce, carrots and walnuts are all sources of fibre in this recipe. Fibre helps to keep our GI tract healthy and can help to lower cholesterol.

Extra virgin olive oil is known to be the healthiest fat on earth. It's high omega-3 fat content and antioxidant component have some powerful health benefits, such as a reduced risk of heart disease.

Walnuts are a rich source of omega-3 fats, vitamin E, manganese, copper, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, and selenium.

Maple syrup is a natural sweetener. Substitute with honey for a different flavour.

Skim milk powder is a natural way to add a boost of protein, calcium and vitamin D. A balanced breakfast should always include a source of protein.

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup oats (quick cooking or large flake)
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup ground flaxseeds
  • 1/4 cup wheat bran
  • 1/4 cup skim milk powder
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup 1% buttermilk
  • 1/2 unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1 cup grated carrots
  • Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 8 x 8-inch baking dish and set aside.

2. In a medium-sized bowl, stir together the oats, whole wheat flour, wheat bran, ground flaxseeds, skim milk powder, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder and salt until combined.

3. In a large bowl, add the eggs and beat with a whisk. Add the maple syrup, olive oil, buttermilk, and applesauce to the eggs and whisk together.

4. Add the oat mixture to the buttermilk mixture and stir until just combined. Fold in the carrots, raisins and walnut pieces until just combined.

5. Transfer the batter to the prepared baking dish and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool on a wire rack and then cut into squares. Store in an airtight container for 4-5 days or wrap individually and store in the freezer.

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