I was going to write up a big introductory post, but I decided instead that the best way to start this blog is to share a favorite recipe. That’s what food blogs are about, right? (If you do want to learn more about this blog and why I started it, I do have an informative little About page.)
Before I had my daughter, this recipe—and variations of it—was my favorite breakfast. I’d make a batch with whatever fruit was in season, cut it into individual servings, and pop them in the freezer. And after I had my daughter (we’ll call her Little Pea), this was one of the first recipes that got me back in the kitchen. It felt so good to have a warm, filling breakfast ready for me every morning during those hectic, sleep-deprived weeks.
(Incidentally, if you’re looking for a freezer meal to make for a new mom, this is it! So many people will bring over dinners, but if you want to be a real hero, bring breakfast.)
Now that Little Pea is a toddler, I make these oatmeal squares for her. I cut them smaller so they fit her bitty little hands, but other than that, the recipe is the same. The squares are almost like a very moist, dense cake—they’re similar to a bread pudding, not dry and crumbly like some other baked oatmeal recipes I’ve tried, so they’re a perfect breakfast for baby-led weaning or transitioning from purees to finger foods.
As I mentioned above, you can customize these baked oatmeal squares with any kind of fruit, nuts or seeds you like. I’m not quite ready to say good-bye to summer just yet, so I used fresh, local peaches, but if you’re in a fall kind of mood, apples and pears are fantastic in this. Mango and coconut flakes, strawberries, raspberries, and raisins are other favorites.
Yields 16 squares
These baked oatmeal squares are the perfect size for toddlers. Substitute seasonal fruit for the peaches when they're not in season.
10 minPrep Time
35 minCook Time
45 minTotal Time
- 2 1/4 cup old-fashioned oats
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 egg
- 1 3/4 cup whole milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 peach, diced (or about 1 cup of any diced fruit that's in season)
- Preheat oven to 375ºF. Spray an 8x8-inch baking dish with oil.
- Combine the oats, cinnamon and baking powder in a large bowl. Beat the egg in a small bowl, then stir in the milk, vanilla extract, and honey.
- Pour the wet mixture into the bowl with the oats and stir to combine. Fold in the peaches.
- Transfer the oats to the prepared baking dish. Bake for about 35 minutes, or until the oatmeal is set and just beginning to brown at the edges.
- Let the oatmeal rest for 5 minutes, then cut it into squares and serve. If you're freezing them, allow them to cool in the baking dish and then cut them into squares. Place the squares on a parchment-lined baking sheet and put them in the freezer until they're completely frozen through (about 3 hours). Remove the oat squares from the baking sheet and place them in a freezer bag. Keep them in the freezer for up to 3 months.
- To reheat the squares, bake them in the oven at 350ºF until warmed through (15-20 minutes) or microwave them for 45-60 seconds.