December 3, 2012

Slow Cooker Steel-Cut Oatmeal

I live just a few blocks from a gorgeous park (also known as my dog's other backyard).  My dog and I will often go running at the park in the morning.  Since I do not drink coffee, a frigid morning run gives me my morning jolt. ;)

Coloradoans are very active, and many in my neighborhood are out walking, running, cycling, rollerblading, and roller skiing at 5 in morning.  Maybe the thin air has made us crazy?  Just kidding.  With the headlamps, bike lights, reflective clothing, dog collar light beams, and the nearby houses adorned with Christmas lights, it reminds me of running around the Disneyland Main Street Electrical Parade.

Running the park in the morning is so peaceful.  Each day is a new slate, and while I often know what might be on that slate, much of it remains to be seen.  My early morning runs are a way to capture the peace that lives around me.  By the time my dog and I arrive back home, we're saying "hello" to the sun preparing to shine down on our world.  Life is good!

On cool mornings, it's great to come home from a run with breakfast ready.  That's where this slow cooker steel-cut oatmeal comes in.  The night before, I just load all of the ingredients into my trusty slow cooker and leave the slow cooker on "low."  While I'm snoozing (and then running), the slow cooker is cooking breakfast away.  Pairing the oatmeal with a big warm mug of tea (or joe!), your day will be off to a great start!

Slow Cooker Steel-Cut Oatmeal
Yields 5 servings

1 1/2 cups steel-cut oats
6 cups water
3/4 cup milk
1/2-3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed (use more if you like it sweeter)
1 tbsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 tsp. honey
2 tbsp. butter

Put all ingredients into slow cooker and stir to combine.  Using the "low" setting on the slow cooker, cook for 8 hours.  When the oats are finished cooking, give the mixture a good stir to combine the cinnamon.

Store any leftovers in the refrigerator, and you can reheat in the microwave.

Source: Adapted from Sweet Anna's

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