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Apple Blueberry Oat Bake

Article written and reviewed by Cyrus Khambatta, PhD and Robby Barbaro, MPH
Published April 5, 2022

This Apple Blueberry Oat Bake is a yummy twist on your normal breakfast oatmeal. This nutrient-rich, all-in-one dish is perfectly baked and a great healthy start to any day!

Warm Up with this Delicious Apple Blueberry Oat Bake

Winter weather lends itself to starting the day with a hot breakfast. If you are getting sick of your normal, boring oatmeal, this dish is a great way to change things up.
This baked dish is full of nutrients and healthy fruits (and even a sneaky veggie!) and is great for the whole family. The recipe features apples and blueberries, but can be easily customized to meet your tastes. Even if you are following a plant-based diet, this is a perfect start to the day.
You only need one dish to prepare and bake this meal, so clean-up is a snap! No need to spend any extra time in the kitchen than you have to.

Are Steel-Cut Oats Different from Rolled Oats?

All oats are a whole grain that contain a significant serving of the nutrition and fiber a body needs to keep it running optimally. Going metric by metric, rolled oats and steel-cut oats are almost the same when it comes to nutritional value. However, steel-cut oats beat out rolled oats in two areas - fiber content and density. This makes steel-cut oats the best bang for your nutritional buck.
Steel-cut, rolled and quick oats all start out as oat groats. Oat groats intended for human consumption are exposed to heat and moisture to make them more shelf-stable. The oat groats are then processed in different ways to create either steel-cut, rolled or quick oats, all of which have distinct characteristics.
Also known as Irish oatmeal, steel-cut oats are most closely related to the original, unprocessed oat groat. Steel-cut oats have a coarser, chewier texture and nuttier flavor than rolled or quick oats.
Rolled oats, or old-fashioned oats, are oat groats that have gone through a steaming and flattening process. They have a milder flavor and softer texture and take much less time to make than steel-cut oats, as they have been partially cooked.

Which Type of Oats is Healthier?

Both steel-cut and rolled oats have comparable health benefits. They also have similar nutritional profiles and contain many of the same healthy compounds and fibers.
Since steel-cut oats are the least processed of the three, they contain the most fiber — but only by a small difference. The fiber found in steel-cut oats is beneficial for digestive health, fueling the good bacteria in the intestines and promoting healthier digestion. Steel-cut oats can help you feel full for longer, which could help you manage your weight. Steel-cut oats are a complete form of oats with little processing, which means they take longer to digest than quick or rolled oats.
Oats are also loaded with beneficial compounds, including antioxidants and beta-glucan, a type of soluble fiber linked to health benefits. For example, the beta-glucan found in oats is effective at lowering both “bad” LDL and total cholesterol, which may help keep your heart healthy.
Specific groups of people may prefer one type of oats over the other depending on their preferences and needs.

The Effect of Steel-Cut Oats on Diabetes

Another benefit of steel-cut oats is that they rank fairly low on the glycemic index. The glycemic index gives foods a numerical value that tells you how it impacts your blood sugar when you consume carbohydrates. Steel-cut oats are good no matter where you are in your diabetes journey. For some people, high glycemic fruits and natural carbohydrates may be better to avoid in the short term, but are a powerful long term solution.
People who suffer from health conditions like diabetes or prediabetes can consume carbohydrates that are low on the glycemic index, and this can help them avoid dangerous spikes in their blood sugar levels.
This makes steel-cut oats a very good choice for individuals who must keep a close watch on their glucose.
In a recent study of people with type 2 diabetes, those who consumed 100 grams of oats per day experienced significant reductions in fasting and post-meal blood sugar, compared to those who did not consume oats.

Buying Tip

Be careful and check labels, because sometimes oats could be processed with other grains that do contain gluten and suffer from cross-contamination. Steel-cut oats also do not naturally contain gluten, which makes them a great option for individuals trying to stick to a gluten free diet.
Make sure to check labels to see if the steel-cut oats you buy have been processed with any other materials, or look for steel-cut oats that are clearly labeled as gluten free oats. Even if you are not gluten free, it helps to have steel-cut outs because they are the best, but obviously most oats without additives are going to be good.
In short, steel-cut oats are a delicious way to meet your body's daily fiber requirements and help keep your body healthy and functioning at its best!

Photo credit: Michael Fleming
Recipe Credit: Beverly Verwey

Apple Blueberry Oat Bake

Beverly Verwey
This Apple Blueberry Oat Bake is a yummy twist on your normal breakfast oatmeal. This nutrient-rich, all-in-one dish is perfectly baked and a great healthy start to any day!
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Servings 2 people
Calories 440 kcal

Equipment

  • 1 Casserole Dish

Ingredients
  

  • 1/4 cup steel-cut oats
  • 1 1/2 cups oat milk or your favorite non-dairy beverage
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 medium apples any kind, chopped
  • 1 1/4 cup blueberries fresh, or frozen
  • 3 cups baby spinach chopped
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp ground flaxseed

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to Bake at 350°F.
  • In a baking dish or casserole dish combine the oats, oat milk, water and vanilla extract. Set aside and let soak while preparing the other ingredients.
  • Once prepared add the apples, blueberries and spinach to the soaked oats and mix.
  • Sprinkle the cinnamon, nutmeg, flaxseed and mix in.
  • Bake for 45 minutes.
  • Serve fresh from the oven and enjoy with a cup of hot tea!

Nutrition

Serving: 2gCalories: 440kcalCarbohydrates: 74.1gProtein: 8gFat: 7gSodium: 125.7mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

About the author 

Cyrus Khambatta, PhD and Robby Barbaro, MPH

Cyrus Khambatta, PhD, and Robby Barbaro, MPH are the coauthors of the New York Times bestselling book Mastering Diabetes: The Revolutionary Method to Reverse Insulin Resistance Permanently in Type 1, Type 1.5, Type 2, Prediabetes, and Gestational Diabetes. They are the cofounders of Mastering Diabetes, a coaching platform that teaches people how to reverse insulin resistance via low-fat, plant-based, whole-food nutrition. Cyrus has been living with type 1 diabetes since 2002, and has an undergraduate degree from Stanford University and a PhD in Nutritional Biochemistry from UC Berkeley. Robby was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 2000, and has been living a plant-based lifestyle since 2006. He worked at Forks Over Knives for 6 years, and earned a Master’s in Public Health in 2019.