Oatmeal can do wonders for your health. When people talk about controlling blood sugar levels or shedding off a few pounds, oatmeal seems to be one of the most popular suggestions or alternatives to sugary cereals.
As one of the healthiest grains on the planet, oats are packers with nutrients. Half a cup (40 grams) of rolled oats contains 130 calories, 5 grams of protein, 2.5 grams of fat, 27 grams of complex carbohydrates, 4 grams of fiber, and no sugar. It also contains potassium, iron, and monounsaturated fatty acids.
Oatmeal is indeed very nutritious and a good breakfast choice. However, if you noticed, it doesn’t have that much protein.
Protein is a very important nutrient to keep us going and functioning properly throughout the day. Any time the body is repairing itself or growing, it needs protein. Our muscles, tissues, and cells are made of protein. So how much protein does a healthy adult need?
For adults, the minimum requirement is .8 grams for every kilogram of body weight every day. If you weigh 120 pounds, you’ll need 42 grams of protein or more. So if you consume a cup of oats in the morning, that’s about 10 grams, which just won’t cut it.
The good thing about oats is that they’re more delicious and exciting to eat the more ingredients you add to them.
How to Add Protein to Oatmeal?
To increase the protein content of your oatmeal, you have to add protein-rich food to your breakfast.
Protein can be found in animal and plant foods. Some protein sources include meat, eggs, poultry, fish, seafood, low-fat dairy products, nuts, and seeds.
For breakfast, you want to choose something that’s light and easy to digest. Consider food options that would enhance the taste of your oatmeal breakfast. For example, low-fat dairy food like yogurt, milk, or cheese. You can also add nuts and seeds to your oatmeal recipe.
There are also fruits that have a decent amount of protein in them like avocado, jackfruit, kiwi, and blackberries. All of which contain 1-2 grams of protein per 100 grams of servings.
Making Oatmeal Healthier: Protein Oatmeal Recipes
Protein Oatmeal Recipe #1: Overnight oatmeal and chia seeds
Chia seeds contain 17 grams of protein per 100 grams of serving. It’s also a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids and fiber.
Some benefits of chia seeds include improving digestion, good for lowering blood pressure and minimizing the risk of heart disease and diabetes.
Chia seeds are small, flat, oval-shaped seeds that range from colors white, brown, to black. Part of why they’re so popular is because they’re so versatile. They can be sprinkled on top of your salad, oatmeal, or yogurt, or you can make a pudding out of them thanks to their ability to absorb liquid.
In this recipe, you’ll see just how good chia seeds are at absorbing fluids.
¾ cup milk of your choice
⅓ cup rolled oats
1 ½ tsp chia seeds
2 tsp maple syrup, agave, or honey
1 tsp raisins
1 tsp almonds
1 serving banana (sliced)
- In a bowl, combine milk, oats, chia seeds, maple syrup or honey, vanilla, and raisins.
- Mix well, cover, and refrigerate overnight.
- Add in your banana and sprinkle with almonds. Enjoy!
Protein Oatmeal Recipe #2: Chocolate and peanut butter oatmeal
Peanut butter is an excellent source of protein and is one of the best sources of protein for vegans. A tablespoon of peanut butter has 8 grams of protein and contains other vitamins like vitamin E, B, iron, and potassium.
Be careful when buying peanut butter because it does affect how nutritious the peanut butter you’re getting is going to be. Some manufacturers add more salt and sugar than others.
The healthiest kind of peanut butter is the that’s made only from just peanuts.
Here’s a simple and protein-rich peanut butter and oatmeal recipe.
1 cup water
1 cup quick cook oats
2 tbsp natural peanut butter
1 ½ tbsp maple syrup or brown sugar
½ tsp cinnamon powder or syrup
1 tsp ground flaxseed
Dried apple (or any dried fruit)
- Heat a small saucepan. Pour water and bring it to a boil.
- Add the oats and cook for 3 to 5 minutes, stir well.
- Pour the oatmeal into your bowl.
- Add in the peanut butter and stir.
- Add in the other ingredients and stir until evenly mixed. Enjoy!
Protein Oatmeal Recipe #3: Oatmeal protein bars
Protein bars became popular because they’re convenient and yummy. Many people like them because they’re a quick and easy way to add protein to a busy lifestyle.
However, many store-bought protein bars contain a lot of added sugar so it defeats the purpose of being healthy.
This no-bake protein bar recipe is easy to do at home and can be stored for about a week. You can make it once and have a ready-to-eat protein and fiber-packed breakfast stored in your fridge for the rest of the week.
3 cups rolled oats
1 cup peanut butter, almond butter, or cashew butter
4 tbsp maple syrup or honey
Your choice of nuts
Protein powder (for added protein)
1 tsp softened butter
- Mix your peanut butter, almond butter, or cashew butter, butter, and honey in a microwave-safe bowl
- Put it in the microwave for 10 seconds (or until softened) and mix.
- Add in the rolled oats and protein powder and mix evenly
- Add the chocolate chips and nuts. You can also add in dried fruits if you like.
- Place the mixture in a baking pan.
- Cover with wax paper and freeze.
- Cut into bars and enjoy! You can store it for up to a week and add whatever nuts or dried fruit you like.
Oatmeals are definitely an excellent choice if you want to start your morning right. They’re good for you and filled with more nutritional content compared to other grains.
In addition, oats are readily available and very versatile. They’re still one of the healthiest meals you can eat for breakfast. And with protein-rich ingredients, they can even be healthier.