If you are looking for a way to easily boost the nutrients in your little one's meals then look no further! Mixing puréed fruit and veggies into oatmeal is a super easy way to offer a boost, and provide maximum benefits with minimum effort!
One of my all time favorite combos is butternut squash and oats. These oats are packed with fiber for digestion, vitamin C for immunity, vitamin A for healthy eyes and skin, protein to support growth and development, and so many beneficial micronutrients for your growing babes. These oats are low in sugar and make the perfect breakfast to help you and your little ones start the day off right. They are easy to make and you can modify them to suit your tastes and preferences.
Let’s get more specific about all the great nutrients in this recipe:
Oats are known for their rich fiber content but did you know they have more protein, iron, and zinc than some other whole grains? This means they are not only good for your little one’s digestion but also for their growth and development, blood health, protein synthesis, and immune system.
Now for the star of this recipe: Butternut Squash.
This orange winter squash has a sweet and nutty flavor and is rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber.
Just one cup of cooked butternut squash has over 450% of the recommended daily amount of vitamin A, over 50% of the recommended daily amount of vitamin C, and 7 grams of fiber. That’s a lot! Basically this tasty squash is super good for your kiddo’s eyes, skin health, immune system, and digestion.
Not to mention this recipe is a perfect way to introduce nutrient-dense seeds to little ones.
Chia seeds have tons of fiber to keep your little one’s digestive tract going, calcium to help build strong teeth and bones, and iron for healthy blood.
Flaxseeds are high in omega-3’s for brain health, magnesium for heart health, and are a great source of fiber for bowel regularity and digestion.
In addition, both of these super seeds provide many different benefits including protein, zinc, B-vitamins, and more!
Now let's talk about those spices!
Spices are packed with a ton of nutritional benefits and are rich in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties that help with disease prevention and immune function.
Here’s what you need:
1 cup old fashioned oats
2 tsp chia seeds
2 tsp ground flaxseed
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp nutmeg
¼ tsp of cardamom
2 cups frozen butternut squash (can also use fresh squash, cooked)
2 Tbsp maple syrup*
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup unsweetened plant milk
*can omit for younger babes
Here’s what you do:
Microwave the squash for about 30 sec-1 min until soft
Using a food processor or blender, purée the squash until smooth
Add all remaining ingredients into a medium mixing bowl making sure everything is well combined
Mix in the butternut squash purée, making sure everything is thoroughly combined
Divide the mixture into two 8 oz. mason jars or two glass containers and attach the lids
Allow the oats to sit in the fridge overnight (or a minimum of 4 hours)
Remove, heat if you choose (they can also be enjoyed cold), top with toppings of choice, serve, and enjoy!
These oats taste great topped with chopped nuts, additional seeds, dried fruit, shredded coconut, dairy-free chocolate chips, dairy-free coconut whipped cream, or frozen berries.
FUN FACT: Do you know that botanically squash varieties are actually considered fruit?
Comment below if you loved this recipe!
Kubala, J. (2019, January 17). Butternut squash: Nutrition, benefits, and uses. Healthline. Retrieved January 27, 2022, from https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/butternut-squash#nutrition
McGuire, M., & Beerman, K. A. (2018). Nutritional Sciences: From Fundamentals to Food. Wadsworth Cengage Learning.
Sangwan, S., Singh, R., & Kumar Tomar, S. (2014). Nutritional and functional properties of oats: An update. Journal of Innovative Biology, 1(1), 003–014. https://doi.org/www.jibresearch.com; ISSN: 2348-6473