I forgot how much I love apricots until they popped up in the produce section of Trader Joe's. For the past week or so, these juicy little guys have been my favorite to snack on in between breakfast and lunch, but I wanted to figure out a way to incorporate them in my actual meals. Sure, I could make a salad and set an apricot or two on the side for my sweet treat after a bowl of greens and veggies, but sometimes you just wake up craving fruit and since I haven't made a batch of overnight oats in awhile, I figured why not combine the two? And so the mason jar full of Chocolate Dipped Apricot Oats was born.
What's ironic about my eating habits during the summer is that I refuse to drink anything hot in the heat (except tea - I'll never not drink a cup of tea), but I'll slurp a chilled smoothie any time of year. I played around with a lot of different fruit and cacao pairings throughout wintertime, so it's only fitting that I'd be just as curious to experiment with chocolate flavored summer fruits. Smoothies are still a huge staple in my diet right now, but I can admit when I've been overdoing it, and I've definitely been overdoing smoothies lately. Ergo, I wanted to switch it up with something just as cool and decadent, and the first thing to come to mind was overnight oats.
Now, there are three specific ingredients that I used in order to make this breakfast (or lunch, or dinner) unique. The first - and most important component to overnight oats - is The Soulfull Project's Four Grain Blend of whole oats, whole grain rye, barley, and toasted quinoa.
What I love about this brand's hot cereal options is that their bags come unsweetened. Generally speaking, I like to be in control of my sugar intake, and this brand allows me to do just that. There's only four non-gmo ingredients making up this bag of grains - and I love supporting real, whole foods that are made up of limited ingredients I can recognize and pronounce. Plus, one serving also yields a whopping six grams of fiber, so yay for foods that are good for your gut.
The second ingredient that sets this batch of overnight oats apart from most is the inclusion of Nutiva's new MCT powder. Another super star ingredient for gut health, MCT powder is easy to digest, boasts three grams of fiber, and is a fatty acid that offers your brain and body a ton of energy with the benefit of prebiotics working their magic on your digestive system, and a creaminess to it that makes for a beautifully textured meal.
And last, but certainly not least, BeeKeeper's Naturals Superfood Cacao Honey. This ingredient is optional, but adds a little something extra to the oats that your taste buds won't want to miss out on. This was my first time experimenting with BeeKeeper's cacao formula and needless to say I was not disappointed. The brand describes this superfood spread as an “alternative to nutella,” with the added bonus of being made from raw cacao that's swarming with essential vitamins and minerals. It has a very dense consistency, though, so you really only need to spoon out a tiny bit and disperse it throughout the oats as best as you can. Trust me: A little goes a long way for big flavor.
What You'll Need:
1/2 cup of oats (I used The Soulfull Project's Four Grain Blend)
3/4 cup of dairy-free milk (I used the Trader Joe's brand unsweetened almond milk)
2 tablespoons of raw cacao (I used the Trader Joe's brand)
1/2 scoop of Nutiva's MCT Powder
1 tsp of BeeKeeper's Naturals Superfood Cacao Honey (optional)
2 small apricots (or as many as you'd like!)
In a mason jar or sealable glass container, stir oats, dairy free milk, raw cacao, mct powder, and honey altogether.
Cover your container and store in the refrigerator overnight to chill and condense.
In the morning, slice two apricots in either long pieces or short cube-like chunks. Sprinkle over your overnight oats.
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Mix all ingredients together with a spoon, and enjoy!