I know what you’re thinking…it’s almost the new year and you just polished off all those holiday treats…and here I am, bringing you another chocolate-filled recipe right when you’re trying to eat healthy. Well, don’t you fret, my friends! This is going to help you on your way! During the years I lived in Hawaii, one of my favorite quick breakfasts was a cup of cocoa rice. Made with creamy coconut milk, the chocolatey breakfast “soup” was always perfectly paired with thick, fluffy bread for dipping. As good as heavy meals like that taste, I’m always falling asleep mid-morning unless I fuel myself with something wholesome and healthy first thing, like a veggie and fruit packed smoothie. On the days when I don’t want to freeze as I sip my smoothie, I love making a warm bowl of oats! I’m always looking for ways to sneak chocolate and a little bit of Aloha into every meal of the day, especially in the winter, and every time I eat these cocoa oats I’m reminded of those sunny mornings on the island!
While this bowl may look like a bit much for those of you who like a more savory start to your day, it actually isn’t as sweet as you’d think! I stir in chia seeds and almond butter for some extra protein, fiber and omega-3s. Raw cacao is very bitter, so I like to sweeten the oats up with a pop of vibrant pomegranates, a sprinkle of unsweetened shredded coconut, and a spoonful of maple syrup to give it a more balanced flavor. This is my new go-to warm breakfast; a healthful way to indulge without the sugar rush and crash a few hours later! It’s so quick and easy, you should definitely give it a try, even if it’s just a sweet treat on the weekend! I hope you have a wonderful time celebrating the start of a new year, and am so thankful for all of the fun we’ve had in 2017!
Winter Cocoa Chia Oats with Pomegranate & Almond Butter
(Serves Two. Inspired by Deliciously Ella)
2 cups unsweetened, unflavored almond or coconut milk
¾ cup oats (I use quick oats)
2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder (or you could probably use chocolate protein powder)
1 Tbsp chia seeds
1 Tbsp almond butter
2 tbsp cacao nibs
Combine almond or coconut milk, oats, and cocoa powder in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, lower the heat and let cook for 8-10 minutes, or until the mixture thickens, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and stir in chia seeds, almond butter, and cacao nibs. Top with another splash of almond or coconut milk, pomegranates, unsweetened shredded coconut and sweetener and enjoy warm!