Benefits of Oat Bran + PB&J Oat Bran Breakfast (vegan/high protein)

I have fallen in love with oat bran. Ever since making my banana cream pie parfaits, I couldn’t believe where it was I was hiding that I haven’t tried oat bran before. It’s consistency is so deliciously creamy… plus the whole thing expands so much, making you actually feel like you’re eating a lot (unlike rolled oats, which don’t expand very much, imo).

I thought I should make this post to line out some cool facts about oat bran, just to deepen my new-found love for the product. We already know oats are great for us, no matter if they are rolled oats, oat bran, or steel-cut (I stay away from instant though). I have seen a cool review that Heather did on her blog how oat bran stands up against rolled oats. Impressive. She said:

“I was pleasantly surprised to learn that oat bran has a better nutritional profile when compared to rolled oats. Because oat bran is the outer husk of the oat grain, it contains the bulk of the dietary fiber, along with a large amount of useful minerals. “

After doing some research online, the basic info I found out about oat bran is that:

  • Whole grains have a high dietary fiber content, but oat bran provides more than rolled oats. A 100-gram serving of dry oat bran contains just over 15 grams of fiber, while rolled oats provide 10 grams. Fiber improves cholesterol levels, regulates blood sugar and also helps to fill you up.
  • Oat bran provides much more protein and a wee bit less carbs than rolled oats. A 100-gram serving of oat bran contains about 17 grams of protein and 66 grams of carbs. This same serving size of rolled oats contains about 13 grams of protein and 68 grams of carbs.
  • Oat bran and rolled oats have moderate amounts of total far, but both are low in dangerous saturated fat, which is known to cause heart disease. A 100-gram serving of oat bran has 7 grams of total fat and just under 1.5 grams of saturated fat. Rolled oats contain about 6.5 grams of total fat and just over 1 gram of saturated.
  • Oat bran is higher in B vitamins than rolled oats. A 100-gram serving of oat bran contains 78 percent of the daily value of thiamin, 15 percent of pantothenic acid and 13 percent of riboflavin. The most notable B vitamin in rolled oats is niacin — a 100-gram serving contains 1.1 milligrams. B vitamins play a key role in the breakdown of macronutrients for energy. They are also vital for red blood formation and nervous system function.
  • Oat bran has a higher iron content than rolled oats. A 100-gram serving of oat bran contains 30 percent of the recommended daily intake and this same serving of rolled oats contains about 13 percent. Iron is used for oxygen transportation in the system, and it also helps with energy production.

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Spinach and Egg Strata (high protein)

As you might have noticed my favorite kinds of recipes to do are desserts, snacks, and breakfast. Sweets are a given, even if they aren’t always the easiest thing in the world to make (but oftentimes they are), but breakfast food is just another meal that I simply adore. Although I don’t eat breakfast food at breakfast necessarily. I don’t know, is that weird?

I never feel like spending so much time in the morning to prepare my breakfast. Since I work out on empty stomach right as I wake up, when I’m done and sweaty, I want to be able to eat right now. I don’t have time to make eloquent baked oatmeals and eggs. My post-workout breakfast is usually a delicious protein shake or overnight oats. Sometimes also a parfait, because those are quick to make too.

Truth is, breakfast food isn’t meant to be only eaten in the morning (or at least it isn’t in my world). You cannot tell me you wouldn’t love to eat pancakes or baked eggs at any time of the day, I know I would. And I DO! Don’t try telling me to do otherwise because I won’t listen anyway 😉 This recipe has been saved on my Pinterest board for a long time now. Probably since I started blogging back in March. Finally I have come around to it and made some (small) adaptations. Credit goes to Erin, fully. She rocks.

Ketchup on top… Keepin it classy.

When I was eating it, I was transported back into childhood. I have no idea why, I’ve never eaten a strata before as far as I can remember. But when I put ketchup on it, some feelings of comfort took over. This warm casserole egg dish was so comforting, so warm and cozy… it would be perfect for a rainy day. Thankfully it’s cloudy today so it worked well. I could actually imagine my future as I was eating it, seeing my future kids enjoying this and asking me to make it for them on a cold rainy day, similarly as I used to ask my grandma or mom to make a dish I liked because it was comforting. It was a really bizzare feeling to be thinking these thoughts because I have never thought about my future that far ahead. Heck, I wasn’t even sure if I want kids! Ah… the power of food.

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Banana Cream Pie Parfait (high protein)

I want summer to end already. Woah, yes, that’s right – I said it. The more it randomly rains for one day, the more I realize how much I love rain, and thunderstorms, and cuddle weather… I miss Fall and I want it to be here. I also love school and I want the semester to start. I get these fluttery feelings inside when I think of Fall. It makes me think of new beginnings; it is sort of like a nostalgic feeling – I get those a lot. They are wonderful feelings because they make me feel and think of how things used to be and how I used to feel, it makes me miss my childhood. But I don’t dwell on those feelings. I do hope to recreate them eventually though, probably with my own family in the future (whenever the time comes). The cuddle warm feelings of sitting in bed while it’s storming outside. I love those moments. It is saddening to me that this will be my last year at college. As much as I am ready to conquer the world, I am not entirely ready to leave school and the light-heartedness and “lack of” serious responsibility that comes with it. It means that another chapter of my life will be closed. The thought both excites and terrifies me.

Along with the thought above, holy crap, is it really the end of July already? Like, as much as I’m all for Fall being here – where has the time gone? Seriously, it feels like yesterday was only the weekend after 4th of July. The time is going by faster than it ever has before. It’s awesome cause Fall is near but I highly doubt the time will slow down once it’s in my ideal spot – next seasons will come and go just as quickly, I’m sure. We live in such a busy hurried world.

Anywho, you might have noticed I have been on quite the parfait kick lately. This time a ripe banana had to be used that has been sitting on the counter for about a week. Super sweet goodness. Time to get in my belleh– parfait style! Yeah, this time it’s a banana cream pie parfait. I just come up with these things as I go. I might be inspired by random things. *cough* pinterest *cough* I also have a whole list of recipes I have altered that are waiting for me to dig into and finally make in the kitchen but in time… mister, in time. There’s a time and place for everything. And today, it was the time for this banana.

Oh yeah, it was also my first time cooking oat bran. I haven’t had oat bran but always seeing it on Lisa’s blog, I wanted to try it. Although I made it entirely differently than she does, I still want to credit her for giving me to inspiration to buy this product. I love oat bran now and I can’t believe it took me this long to become converted. The texture is just right – so creamy and delicious, it also has more nutritional value than regular oats. The only downside is that it takes a bit longer to cook. Doesn’t stop me though 🙂

I made this in the afternoon and ate one right there and then ate another one for breakfast. The breakfast one tasted even better, so I recommend you give it a try and stick it in the fridge for a whole bunch of hours. You won’t be disappointed.

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PB&J parfait (high protein/lowfat)

I have a big love for PB2. I actually prefer it to regular peanut butter. Yes, the main reason is because of its caloric value. But another reason is that I’m actually not a big fan of peanut butter itself. I prefer almond butter. I always have. While peanut butter is alright (but not super high) in my book, I still like the flavor of PB&J. I mean, what’s not to like? I even made vegan chocolate PB&J cupcakes before!

Anyway, this peanut butter and jelly pudding parfait is a healthier and lower fat alternative to your favorite peanut butter and jelly snacks or desserts. It is high in protein thanks to the use of cottage cheese and peanut flour. The crunch from the granola is perfect and gives an ideal combo of textures. Additionally, the use of cinnamon helps regulate blood sugar levels from all of that delicious sweetness that’s going on here. And you wonder why I add cinnamon to all my desserts? 😉 I love me some great health benefits, duh.

I also recommend finding a lower sugar or no sugar added jam variety. Fruit are sweet on their own, I don’t think it’s necessary to add any additional sweetners to the mix. Thankfully, I still have some jam from May’s trip to the Amish country.

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Greek Frozen Yogurt Chia Truffles (Guest Post by Free Spirit Eater)

Today I have a special guest on my blog, Kym from an awesome healthy eating blog Free Spirit Eater. She and I decided to do a recipe swap of sorts by using one of our recipes as inspirations. I was inspired by her awesome rice pudding cheesecake and created a similar one but different… I decided to switch some ingredients around and played around with the prep a bit differently. I created a Rice Pudding Protein Cheesecake with Berry Chia Jam. Check out my recipe on her blog here and let me know what you think.

Anyway, I’m letting Kym take over from here. Don’t drool too much!…..

Hello there lovers of food, seekers of the next tastiest item to devour in seconds and coo over for days. My name is Kym. I am the author of Free Spirit Eater, the blog devoted to all things food, writing, fitness and photography. Nothing is off limits and my recipes portray that.

Once upon a time I graduated from culinary school and began cooking in professional kitchens in NYC and NJ. I stepped foot into the food writing biz by starting my food blog, then branching out to reviewing restaurants, developing recipes and taking photos along the way. My love for photography has branched out from just food to events, lifestyle, fashion, fitness and boudoir to name a few.

My recipes are usually on the low calorie side, satisfying and guilt free versions of some of my favorite foods or just experiments gone right. But Kamila and I are swapping recipes and I happened to be in a bit of an indulgent mood. So when trying to recreate her Chocolate Chia Pudding with my own twist, I added a bit of some childhood favorites into my dessert. But by shaping them into bite sized truffle pieces I can practice portion control while enjoying the melt in your mouth feeling from the gooey morsels.

I had been curious about trying Ben & Jerry’s Greek Frozen Yogurt. So I purchased a pint of their strawberry shortcake flavor, crushed up some pretzels, smoked almonds, chia seeds, semi sweet chocolate chips and a splash of coconut milk. The tartness of the Greek frozen yogurt was made even more subtle by the coconut milk, and the addition of the almonds added a pleasantly smoky surprise. The chia seeds add a tiny pop when bit into with the pretzels and chocolate chips. For the final touch I melted some chocolate and made bite sized frozen yogurt treats.

Thank you so much Kamila for allowing me to guest post and taking the time to guest post on my site as well. Enjoy!”

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Apple Pie Parfait (nonfat/high protein)

Today is the day to find out if you’ve won the Arctic Zero giveaway… please head on over to the post to see if you’ve won or watch this video 🙂

I’ve been eating this parfait for a few years now. I’ve made various alterations to it from month to month. I used to add almond butter and honey to it but I later realized it contain far too many calories that way and the combination of nut butter + honey is a trigger food for me, so I’ve been doing my best to avoid the combo lately. I don’t want to trigger my body to go into overload/binge mode.

So this is a lighter version of the apple pie parfait. It’s still delicious. It’s just less calories and fat than the way I used to make it. It’s a wonderful autumn snack although I enjoy it any day, any season (clearly).

Looks so pretty in a glass doesn’t it? I usually just eat it out of a bowl, but I’ll do anything for the sake of good pictures 😛

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MIMM #5: PB&J Protein Shake (vegan)

Hello everyone, I hope you are all having a marvelous Monday like I am! Thank you to Katie for hosting this awesomely positive and uplifting link up 🙂 First things first, I felt absolutely marvelous after yesterday’s arm workout because I think my biceps are finally starting to come into shape.

The picture doesn’t show much but let me tell you, this is a huge improvement for me. I have never had any muscle. I might have been skinnier, but strong and muscular – never. So this is a big deal for me. I am very excited and can’t wait what the future will bring. I cannot wait to look like Crystal from Spoonful of Fit. Okay, a girl can dream, alright…… *daydreaming*

Also, make sure you enter into my marvelous giveaway to win 12 flavors of Arctic Zero protein ice cream! The pints have only 150 calories per pint and the bars have 85 calories. They are delicious and great as a post-workout recovery snack or dessert 🙂 The giveaway ends on Wednesday!

A marvelous recipe: Protein shakes have been replacing my regular egg breakfast. I can’t get enough. They are just SO good!

It baffles me how people can just go and get a milkshake with all those calories, fat, and sugar when you can have an even better alternative, guilt-free, with a similar (if not better) flavor? It’s such a marvelous way to fuel your exhausted muscles after a good workout.

Here comes a PB&J protein shake. Ekhem, it’s peanut butter jelly time

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Chunky Monkey Protein Shake (vegan)

I am all for protein shakes, I love ’em! I might sometimes even drink them as dessert. Tehe.

If you are a peanut butter fan, you will love this shake. It has a very predominant peanut butter flavor with subtle hints of banana. I didn’t taste very much chocolate, even though I used dutch chocolate whey protein powder (not vegan) , but you can always add cocoa powder in there if you so desire, for a more complex flavor.

Truth be told, I don’t think I’m PB fanatic enough to make this my daily protein shake, especially if I was to add 2 Tbsp of peanut flour. I prefer a more delicate peanut flavor, so I opt for using only 1 or 1 and a half Tbsp of peanut flour. But a larger amount is nice once in a while when I’m intensely craving peanut butter. Normally though, I prefer my chocolate flavors 😉 I know a lot of you PB fans will love this though!

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Roasted Brussels Sprouts (vegan)

This isn’t a recipe. It’s too simple to be called that. I contemplated not posting this at all but since I’m recording all of my culinary adventures, I thought I should post it after all. This is a simple post telling how I made brussels sprouts in the oven. Yes, I used the oven even though it’s hot outside. Thankfully I have air conditioning and I don’t care about the heat.

I’ve had these brussels sprouts in my fridge for about a week and I’ve been meaning to make them, finally I came around to it. It’s so simple but since I’m not exactly kitchen fluent yet, I can’t guess how many minutes to put it in or at how high of a temperature to keep it at. So then that’s why this post was written. Even though many of you might be like “duh?”, this post is FOR ME too! I have been treating my blog as an online diary and notebook, kinda, that contains all food/health/fitness related stuff. So there. That’s that.

By the way these were very yummy and reminded me of chips. Well some of the leaves got very crunchy and the salt made them really similar to chips (I never eat chips, really so I could be far off, haha) but the flavor overall is very good and perfect for a snack, not just as a side dish.

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Zucchini Gratin (high protein)

I am growing up. I am making “grown up” food. Well, I wouldn’t consider this a real main dish, although that’s how I like to eat it because I tend to eat smaller meals (but eat them often) rather than have large meals. This would make a lovely side dish or a nice main dish if you’re like me.

It’s slightly cheesy and the nutritional yeast provides a phenomenal nutty flavor. It accents really well with the cumin and turmeric. Plus, these spices are really good for you – they are considered one of the best spices for a person’s health.

I liked to eat this with some salsa. But then again, I have a slight salsa-obsession.

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