Raspberry, Pear & Chocolate Overnight Oats

IMG_20170421_091924_883I tend to go through phases with breakfasts. The porridge phase (okay, that one never ends), the pancake phase, the eggs on toast phase, the shredded wheat phase…and the overnight oats phase. This is one of my favourite variations on overnight oats. You’ll find plenty of recipes for them under the food section of the blog, though the combination of sweet pear, bitter dark chocolate (we’re using cacao, though if you really like things much sweeter you can either add maple syrup, or use a cocoa powder / hot chocolate mix instead), and juicy, sharp raspberries is amazing. Any overnight oats recipe is ideal for mornings when you know you’ll be in a rush, and short on time to make something. Continue reading

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Pear & Chocolate Protein Smoothie

wp-1484842033994.jpgAfter the gym, if I need a snack instead of a meal, then I always opt for a smoothie. Usually a banana and chocolate smoothie, as I’m not generally a fan of tropical smoothies. However, pear and chocolate is one of my other favourite chocolate combos- and so that’s that we’re doing today.

I used a mixture of cacao and pea protein powders to give me both chocolate flavour and protein, making this suitable for vegans and those who can’t eat dairy- but a chocolate whey protein is also an ideal substitute for these ingredients.

Happy blending!

Ingredients

  • 1 large pear, chopped into small chunks, microwaved until tender, and stored in the fridge overnight (ALTERNATIVELY, you can use 80g of canned pears for ease; this also gives a smoother texture- but make sure that they are chilled. As these blend more easily than fresh pear, you could even freeze them to ensure a super-cold and refreshing drink)
  • 200ml unsweetened almond milk
  • 1tbsp cacao powder (I used Seven Hills)
  • 1tbsp pea protein (I used Pulsin)
  • Pinch of cinnamon
  • OPTIONAL: 1tsp maple syrup (if you really have a sweet tooth; I personally didn’t add this), ice

Method

  • Into a blender place all of the ingredients, and simply blend until smooth. My blender isn’t too high-tech, and so there were still some pear chunks, but as I’m not fussy this was no issue for me! (If chunks are an issue, then see the “alternative” in the ingredients).

Christmas Porridge No.1: Hazelnut, Chocolate & Pear

wp-1481464521141.jpgChristmas breakfast is one of my favourite things about the entire day. In fact, of late I’ve been diving for my breakfast before my presents. My top picks are always either something involving eggs or smoked salmon (or both), shredded wheat with loads of toppings- or, more often than not, a bowl of porridge. But since Christmas is a time for making things that bit more special, I’ve decided to make three different- more luxurious- Christmas  porridges for you over the next week. This is the first one…

Hazelnut butter is a mega-luxury as it’s so expensive, and so as Christmas is a time for pushing the boat out a bit, I like to use it this time of year. Alternatively, you can use whole hazelnuts, which are much cheaper- just chop them, and add them as directed below. If your are treating yourself to hazelnut butter, then I highly recommend Meridian- nothing has matched theirs so far. Chocolate on Christmas morning is something I know many of us enjoy, but this chocolate flavour comes from cacao, making it super-rich and just that little bit better for you, as it is richer in antioxidants. If you aren’t a fan of bitter dark chocolate-esque flavours, then go ahead and add in 1-2tsp of maple syrup to sweeten. Finally, the pear means you get in one of your 5 a day, provides a little sweetness itself, and it works beautifully with both the cacao and the hazelnut.

Now, a little word on the egg whites…these are completely optional. I love egg white oats, and so I added them. The extra protein makes this a well-balanced breakfast, and you can’t actually taste them. The texture just becomes super-thick (which is something I like in my porridge), and your breakfast super-filling. If you’re sceptical then feel free to skip them, or even sub in protein powder if you’re into that. For more on egg white oats you can read my post and recipe here.

Let’s get going…

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup of porridge oats
  • 1/2 cup freshly boiled water
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1tbsp cacao
  • 1 pear- three thin slices put to one side, and the rest chopped into chunks
  • 1tbsp hazelnut butter (I used Meridian)
  • Pinch of each: cinnamon, ginger, mixed spice (just a little!)
  • OPTIONAL: 2 egg whites, frozen berries, maple syrup (I highly recommend adding the egg whites- this recipe works fine without the berries, but they do add a little colour, and you can read about the maple syrup in my intro)

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