It’s been six weeks since #whengallbladdersattack and I’ve lost about 25 pounds. More important to me is that I am really working hard at embracing the whole food, plant-based protein lifestyle. I’m not counting calories, carbs, grams of fat, points or servings of anything. I eat as much of the food that is in my home as I like, when I am hungry. Mostly vegetables, fruits, and proteins that come from plants like beans, seeds and sprouts. I’ve even found a substitute for my beloved pasta.
What I am not eating is dairy (butter, milk, ice cream, cheese), fried anything, fast food, candy and sweets, and the majority of meat. I’ll admit that even after watching documentary’s on Netflix like What The Health and Forks Over Knives, I still haven’t completely given up eggs or the occasional bacon bit and piece of chicken in my salad. I’ve also fallen in love with a sandwich at a nearby Cafe Zupas that includes crab meat, and I’m not ready to give that up yet either.
But I’m working on it.
I have also come to the realization that I am not a fan of cooking. Really. I don’t have fun with it. I loathe looking for new recipes. I mean, I have a great time pinning things on various Pinterest boards that I have that look amazing. But actually selecting something that I think I can make? NOPE. DON’T WANNA.
My other half loves to cook and is trying to take over some of the meal prep in an effort to help out. He found this recipe for Sweet Potato Oatmeal Breakfast Casserole from Angela at OhSheGlows.com and wanted to make it for breakfast. After taking a look and realizing it didn’t look that complicated, I decided that I would be game to help and we headed to our local market.
GROCERY STORE HACK ALERT: Do not buy an entire bag / box / container of a random ingredient to make one recipe. Buy just what you need in the BULK SECTION. This will include your spices. With a little math, we managed to grab just what we needed of finely chopped pecans, spelt flour, nutmeg, and oatmeal and it cost is $2.00 for these four ingredients. Pro Tip: Bring your own measuring spoons with you for reference.
We had brown sugar, a sweet potato, a banana, almond milk, salt, cinnamon, vanilla extract, chia seeds and butter at home already. (We decided to skip the maple syrup in the recipe as neither of us are big fans). All of this total (including what we could have grabbed from the bulk section if we didn’t already have it at home) made this recipe affordable for a family of four at about $10.00 total. When you look at the ingredients and the casserole dish, there’s no way you think there is enough for two adults and two tweens.
One – there is. Plenty. And two – in part it’s because we are taught that our serving sizes are supposed to be monstrous. They shouldn’t be.
Here it is – ready to go in the oven for the last 20 minutes:
With following the directions exactly in Angela’s recipe, we were able to create this fantastic breakfast for our family in about an hour start to finish. Not only was this perfect for breakfast, it filled the house with a warm smell similar to the cinnamon rolls I used to make the kids, was a completely vegan / vegetarian meal AND will be great cold in their lunchbox for school. Plus, I can make this ahead of time and freeze it for a quick meal during the week.