Pineapple Upside Down Baked Oatmeal

by Kris on April 16, 2012

Have you ever bought one of those fitness magazines? You know, the ones with a female body builder on the front, promising rock solid abs in only weeks. Well, I have a confession to make, I bought one for the first time last night. In no way do I want to be a body builder, nor do I even want rock solid abs, but I have come to a plateau at the gym and thought that this could give me some inspiration and new ideas.

While flipping through the endless pages of protein advertisements, I came across and article on foods that can help reduce belly fat. Among the list, ingredients such as oatmeal, almonds and pineapple ranked highly. I knew there was a way to combine all the ingredients into one super food, but I couldn’t decide how to approach it.

This morning at the gym, while I “engaged my abs,”  I mulled over ideas for oatmeal, pineapples and almonds but nothing seemed to stand out. When I got home, I was starving for breakfast and began pulling out the staples for my typical baked oatmeal when it hit me; Pineapple upside down baked oatmeal!

I based this recipe on my previous baked oatmeal recipe, but added ground almonds to the mix. I also used fresh pineapple, because truthfully the canned variety just doesn’t cut it for me. It’s packed full of sugar and I always find there is a metallic aftertaste. Instead of using milk, I used my homemade cashew cream. This worked almost better than when I used dairy milk as it made the oatmeal slightly creamier and added some extra protein.

I experimented with the pineapple topping, adding brown sugar to the bottom of the muffin tins on half of the batch. If you don’t want to use the added sugar, it does work without it. I did, however, prefer the end result with the brown sugar as it seeped into the oatmeal and lightly caramelized the pineapple.

This recipe is fully vegan, however it can be modified to your specific needs. It is also full of plant based protein which is ideal for anyone with an active lifestyle. You can add many additional ingredients to the mix such as chia seeds or ground flax to add even more nutritional benefits.

What protein rich foods do you eat before or after exercise? If you are a vegetarian or vegan, do you find it difficult to consume enough protein to replenish your body after working out? I’d love to hear any tricks you have!

Pineapple Upside Down Baked Oatmeal

  • 3 tsp. brown sugar
  • ¼ fresh pineapple, peeled and cored
  • 2 cups rolled oats (not instant)
  • 2 Tbsp. maple syrup or agave
  • 1 cup applesauce
  • ½ cup cashew cream (or any milk of your choice)
  • ½ cup water
  • 12  raspberries or cherries (optional)
  • 1 Tsp. vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp. almond extract (optional)
  • ¼ cup almond meal
  • cooking spray

Preheat oven to 375

Spray a muffin tin with cooking spray.

Using a small circular cookie cutter, cut pineapple into little circles. Alternately you could simply add chopped fresh pineapple. Sprinkle each mould of the muffin tin with ¼ teaspoon of brown sugar.

Place the pineapple circles in the muffin tin moulds. You can optionally add a cherry or raspberry to each as well.

Combine remaining ingredients in a medium bowl.

Fill the muffin tin to the top with oats, covering the pineapple. Press down to ensure the oats are surrounding the fruit. It should make about twelve oatmeal cakes.

Bake uncovered for 25 minutes. For a light crust, broil for an additional 3-5 minutes until lightly browned.

Cool on a rack for ten minutes. Circle the edges of each oatmeal cake with a knife to separate from the tin. Flip the tin onto a large plate to remove the baked oatmeal.

Serve on it’s own or with fresh fruit. Great for brunch or for weekday breakfasts on the run.

Makes 12 mini oatmeal cakes

Note: To make ahead, place the muffin tin in the freezer instead of the oven. Once frozen, remove from the muffin tin and place the moulded oatmeal cakes in a freezer bag. This gives you the option of baking only a few, or even one. Just pop the frozen oatmeal back into the muffin tin and bake for 25-30 minutes. Do this while you shower and you’ll have a warm healthy breakfast on the go!

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{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

Maya April 16, 2012 at 3:07 pm

Do you think this recipe would work with steel cut oats? Would you have to boil them first or put them in raw?

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Kris April 16, 2012 at 3:38 pm

I haven’t tried it so I can’t say for sure. I would probably boil them a little first. If you try it I’d love to know how it turns out!

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dixya April 16, 2012 at 6:14 pm

This recipe sounds just delicious and i cannot wait to make it. Do you think cutting pineapple into chunks would work? and thanks for the tips on baking ahead and freezing technique.

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Kris April 16, 2012 at 7:54 pm

Oh absolutely! I just cut mine into little circles for fun. I thought it would look neat. haha.

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Natalie April 16, 2012 at 6:27 pm

These are so cute and creative! They’d be such a hit at a springtime brunch, especially if combined with a couple other flavours, and people would probably never guess how healthy they are!

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Kris April 16, 2012 at 7:57 pm

Thanks Natalie! It would be fun to do a variety of dessert flavors and serve it with a big fruit salad. I love tricking people with healthy food :)

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Stephanie April 17, 2012 at 5:01 pm

I made the cashew cream and I can’t wait to try it in some oatmeal!

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Kris April 17, 2012 at 5:09 pm

You gotta try it! It’s so much creamier than when I made it with milk. I highly recommend it :)

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CJ at Food Stories April 19, 2012 at 6:38 pm

This looks so yummy and I can’t wait to try these!

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Javelin Warrior April 20, 2012 at 12:46 am

I love baked oatmeal, but this goes way beyond that! I’m so impressed with the color, texture, contrast – so creative and so appetizing… I am featuring this post in today’s Friday Food Fetish roundup (with a link-back and attribution), but please let me know if you have any objections. As always, it’s a pleasure to be following your creations…

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Kris April 20, 2012 at 9:00 am

Thanks for the feature! You have a lot of great looking recipes on today’s roundup! I’ve bookmarked a few!

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Kayleigh April 20, 2012 at 7:21 pm

This sounds really great. I think I’ll go without the almonds… but I shall have to try this one out!

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Kris April 21, 2012 at 8:15 pm

Thanks Kayleigh. If you leave out the almonds you may want to reduce the liquid a little or replace it with more oats. Let me know how it turns out! :)

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Renae April 21, 2012 at 2:46 pm

Wow, that looks so tasty!

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Kris April 21, 2012 at 8:06 pm

Thanks Renae!

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eva @VegucatingMyKids April 26, 2012 at 10:58 am

i made these 2 days ago and finished the last few today!…first of all, how yummy!!!…so easy to make…and a different taste for breakfast (the pineapple)….
i ended chopping my pineapple (had remnants of fresh pineapple already cut up)…i used soy milk instead of cashew cream…i happened to buy a high quality almond extract the other day, so that really made this dish that much more tastier…i loved the crunch of the oatmeal side contrasted with the soft top of the pineapple side…this is a high quality breakfast….my 10 & 8 year old loved it as well..this recipe goes into the permanent files : )
thank you

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Kris April 26, 2012 at 12:08 pm

I’m so glad you and your kids liked them Eva! I bet the almond extract really made a difference. I’m almost out of my little bottle, which is just a cheap kind (nothing fancy). I think I’ll replace it with something a little higher quality. I make my own vanilla extract and nothing can compare.

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Christy May 18, 2012 at 6:58 pm

Is there something else I could use in replace of almond meal? This looks amazing, but that is something I never have in my house. Thanks!

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Kris May 18, 2012 at 7:03 pm

If you have almonds and a coffee grinder you could make your own. Just pulse the almonds until they’re fully ground and get a flour like consistency. Otherwise you could leave it out and just add the same amount of oatmeal or flour.

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Cat June 14, 2012 at 11:47 pm

Yes, yes…I am spamming up your blog with my comments.

As a vegan, I do not freak out about my protein ratios but do strive to be conscious about getting a protein combo with every meal. After I work out, I usually drink 1 cup almond milk/cashew milk and have 1 slice of Ezekiel bread with 1tbsp peanut butter. Ezekiel bread is flourless and provides a complete protein, and the nut milk provides a healthy fat. For breakfast and post-workout, I try to get a good macronutrient combo (Fat, Carb, Protein) because I find that helps me stay satiated much longer.

I don’t currently track my protein day-to-day, though I have in the past. I think that even for a vegetarian or light meat eater, getting the 40-60 grams that is recommended by the USDA can be challenging. I do try to make sure I am getting a COMPLETE protein.

To supplement my protein sometimes I add a couple tbsp raw, organic hemp powder to a breakfast or post-workout smoothie. But that’s when I am feeling ambitious. The fact is, if you do not eat soy or meat, getting enough protein does take a little extra time and planning. But I choose not to worry too much about it.

For the last 4 months of my pregnancy I chose to eat meat (GASP!) to make sure my body was getting 100grams per day to build healthy, strong tissues. Don’t know if that was necessary, but I had a very smooth natural delivery with absolutely no complications whatsoever. (*Prepares to be stoned by the Vegan Police*)

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Xio January 27, 2013 at 5:53 pm

Haven’t tried the recipe yet. But if it’s as good as your photography, then your oatmeal is a winner!

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