Baked Protein Oats
Baked apple protein oats
Not quite porridge and not quite a cake bar – this baked oats recipe is an alternate gluten free breakfast idea with an added protein powder kick. Mix it up with different berries and a swirl or two of peanut butter.
PREP TIME: 5 MINS
COOK TIME: 20 MINS
TOTAL TIME: 25 MINS
A healthy porridge alternative
I usually get up disgustingly early to work out before heading to the office for the day, so I’ve got into the habit of saving a precious 15 minutes in bed by taking breakfast to work. That being said, I’m not hard-core enough to just chug a post-workout recovery shake and count that as actual food.
Thus began my quest for high protein, portable, gluten free recipes. Porridge was my starting point, mostly because I’ve been eating it for breakfast every day for almost as long as I can remember. When I first got a personal trainer however, he pointed out that this was basically all carbs and not much else. As a result, I’ve been on the lookout for ways to customise oats with some extra healthy fats and protein.
This has been a bit more complicated than I initially thought. Adding protein powder straight to the mix made the consistency pretty gross, and having oats with a side of sausage or eggs felt a bit weird.
Then, during my weekly Sunday session of meal-prep improv, I discovered that baking eggs, oats and protein powder together creates a thick crumpet-like consistency without the need to add any flour, sugar or butter.
This ticks a lot of boxes
- It’s ready in 25 minutes
- Easy to meal-prep in bulk
- Convenient to transport with you
- High in protein
- Low in sugar and fat
Kind of a banger if you ask me.
Protein powder tips
As far as using protein powder goes, you could happily get away with using most types, and probably most flavours too. Being dairy-free, I used unflavoured soya protein isolate powder – however any other vegan or whey based powder should be fine too.
Alternately, if you can tolerate lactose-free dairy, whey isolate protein is probably the most neutral powder you can add. I’ll shortly be releasing a full guide to gluten free, vegan, dairy free and sweetener-free protein powders, as finding ones that work for me has been a bit of a minefield this last year.
Although I tend to opt for unflavoured powders in order to avoid the artificial sweeteners, people who are less fussed should have no problems adding a flavoured powder to this recipe. Your best bet is sticking with delicate flavours that would compliment any oat-based breakfast like vanilla or cinnamon, but feel free to try out some more exciting ones too.
Maybe give the mint choc chip a miss though…
If you want to skip the extra protein
You don’t actually need to include protein powder at all if you don’t want to – just double up the flour content instead.
A lot of people get a bit freaked out at the association with gym buffs who flex at themselves whenever they walk past a mirror. In reality, it’s really just a more convenient way to get enough protein in your diet – particularly if you’re a vegetarian or trying to cut down on your meat intake.
Protein powder when you gain weight easily
For some body types – particularly endomorphs like me who have a tendency to gain fat as soon as they sniff a bit of cake – the best day-to-day diet to follow is one higher in fat and protein but lower in carbs.
The issue with following this kind of diet is that you’ll probably find yourself struggling to get enough protein to curb the hunger from eating less pasta and rice. This is where a scoop of protein powder here and there comes in handy.
Personally, I’m not really a fan of drinking shakes, so recipes like this one which hide the powder in a more edible form is ideal.
Baked protein oats
- Large mixing bowl
- Baking tin or roasting tin
For the base recipe
- 90 g (1 cup) gluten free oats
- 3 scoops protein powder - I use unflavoured vegan powder, but you could use any other type for this recipe
- 3 medium eggs
- 50 ml dairy free milk e.g. coconut or soya
- 1.5 tsp baking powder
- 3 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tsp mixed spice
- 1.5 tsp vanilla extract
- 150 g blueberries
- 1 large apple, chopped into small chunks (I love pink lady apples)
- 100 g almond butter
- 1 tbsp honey or maple syrup - if you like it a bit sweeter
- 3 tbsp dairy free yoghurt/cream equivalent to serve
- Preheat the oven to 175°C or 350°F
- Grease and line a square 6x6 inch roasting tin. If using a shallower baking tin, use a larger size to allow the mixture room to rise
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk the eggs and milk together until slightly fluffy
- Tip in the oats, protein powder, baking powder and (optional) cinnamon, mixed spice and vanilla essence
- Using a metal spoon, stir the mixture together until the lumps of protein powder have disappeared. Don't worry if some small clumps still remain
- Tip in the blueberries and chopped apple and mix gently
- Pour the whole mixture into the tin and bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown
- Cut into slices and eat warm. If desired, serve together with yoghurt or cream