Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Cranberry, chia seed and carob porridge (oatmeal)

I know I did a giant porridge post not that long ago, but it has snowed twice here this week. Snow in London isn't all that common and so it very much feels like porridge weather. This cranberry, chia seed and carob porridge is a perfect breakfast for cold mornings. 

Our first snowfall was on Saturday, when I was graced with falling snow for miles 4 to 10 of my long run. It didn't really settle, but we had another light scattering yesterday and there were a few snow topped houses and white parks. It's a beautiful aspect of winter. 

I added chia seeds to this porridge bowl and have Shannon of Yup, It's Vegan and Kate of No Meat and Three Veg to thank for the idea. They mentioned using chia and flax seeds in their comments on my porridge round-up post. Chia really thickened up this porridge and of course packs added nutrition too.

In addition to the chia seeds, the porridge includes dried cranberries, fresh apple, and carob powder. I know not all of you like carob powder, and cocoa would work instead if you prefer. I added a dash of cocoa nibs to my bowl too, just because.

If you like your porridge sweet, you may want to add some extra sweetener to the mix. Regardless of the sweetness level, this will provide a full-flavoured, nutrition-packed, snow-worthy start to the day.

Cranberry, chia seed and carob porridge
A delicious way to start the day
Makes 1 modest serve; adjust the oat quantity to taste

Author: Bite-sized thoughts, with inspiration from your comments on this post

1/4 cup oats
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
1/4 cup water
1 tbsp chia seeds
2 tsp carob powder (or cocoa powder)
1 tsp cocoa nibs
1-2 tbsp dried cranberries
1 apple, chopped

Sweetener, optional and to taste

If cooking on the stovetop, combine the oats, almond milk, water, chia seeds and carob/cocoa powder and cook over medium-high heat for 1-2 minutes, until the porridge reaches simmering point. Reduce heat to low, add the cocoa nibs, cranberries and apple, and cook for another minute or so. Add sweetener at the end if you desire.

If cooking in the microwave, combine the oats, almond milk, water, chia seeds and carob/cocoa powder in a deep bowl and cook on medium-high heat for 1 minute, monitoring carefully to avoid it bubbling over. Stir, add the cocoa nibs, cranberries and apple, and return to the microwave for an additional 1 minute of cooking. Stir, and heat for a further 30 seconds if needed. Add sweetener at the end if you desire.

What are you starting your day with at the moment?


  1. It definitely sounds like porridge weather. How lovely to run with snowflakes falling all around you - so much more special and wondrous than rain xx

    1. Most definitely - I am a snow convert now!!

  2. Oh this looks like such a delicious breakfast! Love the colour, it looks so rich. I've been looking for more ways to use up my carob ... :)

    1. I'm always happy to oblige with carob uses :)

  3. I've been adding chia seeds to my oatmeal also!! It's such a great addition!!

    1. Isn't it! I really do love chia, it is such a great ingredient.

  4. Wow, that looks like a bowl chockfull of yummy goodness. I'm adding it to my list - although lately I've been eating oats as a dessert and I think this would be delightful then too.

    I love the contrast of your bright shoes in the white snow! x

    1. Thanks Lisa - and yes, this would definitely work as a dessert too!

  5. That's so cool that you got to experience snow! Sadly it's totally passed us by here in Bath. Lil' L would love it to snow though as he's got sledges and snowball slingers sitting in the garage that he's never got to use. I guess there's still time!
    Your porridge bowl sounds absolutely delicious! I'm obsessed with cocoa porridge at the moment, and have eaten it pretty much every day for the past two weeks. I'm still really keen to try carob powder. I'm totally intrigued as to how it compares to cocoa.
    p.s. When I saw your recipe ingredients I realised what a greedy guts I must be... I have 1/2 cup oats every morning (double your amount) then pile lots of nuts/fruits on top!

    1. What a shame you missed the snow, but as you say, it could still happen this winter!

      I regularly have a 1/2 cup oat porridge on weekends but during the week I tend to have a smaller breakfast and then snack more regularly across the day :-) I have no idea what a standard serve is but 1/2 cup sounds entirely normal to me!

  6. snow and porridge sounds very cosy - your run sounds lovely - we are not quite getting lots of heat but it sunny enough for me - E is still eating porridge every morning but Sylvia and I are eating chocolate muesli and yoghurt most mornings.

    1. If you combine E's breakfast and yours/Sylvia's you almost have this bowl ;)


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