Are you a creature of breakfast habit?
For the last 5-6 years, I would say that I have pretty consistently – and willingly – enjoyed oatmeal for breakfast every morning. There’s something so satisfying about waking up to a familiar comfort that you know is going to be good. Over the years, I’ve got my recipe down to a science. Which means, I don’t have to spend precious brainpower in the morning measuring, mixing and timing (I just sensewhen it’s ready. Seriously.).
HOWEVER, I do recognize the importance of variety in my diet. As comforting as my steel cut oatmeal is, there are times when I wonder if morning stomachaches or sugar cravings could be avoided by switching up my first meal of the day. Therefore, lately, I felt the need to do a little exploring.
Allow me to introduce BUCKWHEAT. Yes, buckwheat. You may have seen it under the healthy section of a breakfast menu in pancake form, or remembered the name as a character in the Little Rascals (Otay!). But other than that, I’m guessing you haven’t had too much interaction with the stuff.
I am very excited to tell you that it is so much more than pancakes and Rascals. When I discovered a recipe on Oh She Glows called Easy Overnight Buckwheat Parfait, I decided to tweak it to make it my own. The result was something I like to call the Buckwheat Breakfast Bowl. And it was/is
But before I get in to how you can make it too, I’d really like to tell you about its health benefits. After all, if you’re going to switch up your comforting breakfast routine, you need to know why, right? No worries, I got you.
WHAT IT IS
A fruit seed, related to rhubarb and sorrel
WHAT IT IS NOT
A cereal grain
It’s gluten free!
(I’m really surprised I haven’t seen it in more recipes considering the gluten free craze)
WHAT IT HAS FOR YOUR HEALTH
- A very good source of manganese
- A good source of copper, magnesium, dietary fiber, and phosphorus
- Two flavonoids with significant health-promoting actions: rutin and quercitin
- A high quality protein that contains all 8 essential amino acids
- More fiber/cup than oatmeal, whole wheat bread, brown rice, banana, blueberries and an orange (to name a few)
WHAT IT DOES FOR YOUR HEALTH
- A lowered risk of developing high cholesterol and high blood pressure (see the Yi study)
- Protection against disease by extending the action of Vitamin C and acting as antioxidants (rutin flavonoid)
- Helps maintain blood flow, keeping platelets from clotting (rutin flavonoid)
- Relaxes blood vessels, improving blood flow and nutrient delivery while lowering blood pressure (magnesium)
I could go on, but I might lose your interest if I list all of them (there are a lot). My point is:
THESE LITTLE SEEDS ARE INCREDIBLY BENEFICIAL TO YOUR HEALTH
And they offer all of them without gluten (which is beneficial in itself to a lot of people).
Now the reason I am going so crazy about this breakfast is not only that it tastes really really good, but my breakfast change-over experiment has proven that it is mountains better for me than my beloved oatmeal in terms of the way it makes me feel in the morning. After a week of changing my morning meal from oatmeal to buckwheat, I have:
- Felt fuller longer, not needing a second snack to get me through to lunch
- Had less stomach irritation in the morning (I’m touch and go with oatmeal)
- Had no desire for coffee at all (not exactly sure what this means, but I’m guessing that increased blood sugar control = sustained energy = no need for coffee)
- Drunken more water in replacement of coffee – which is always a good thing
Lastly (and possibly most important to your immediate happiness), this Buckwheat Breakfast Bowl of mine is creamy and smooth, has a little bit of crunch, addictive and just FRICKIN DELICIOUS. And bonus: FAST. Once you make one batch, you’re set for the work week. With that, I share with you this breakfast beauty:
BUCKWHEAT BREAKFAST BOWL
- 2 Cups of raw buckwheat groats (buy them in bulk from Whole Foods) soaked in water overnight
- 1 ½ cups coconut milk (or whatever milk is your favorite)
- 2 tbsp chia seeds
- 1 frozen banana, sliced (this creates the dreamy creamy texture)
- Raw honey, to taste (I only added 1 tsp because I don’t like breakfast very sweet)
- Pinch of salt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- Shredded coconut
- Goji Berries
- Cacao nibs
- Whatever you want!
- Pour buckwheat in a large bowl, then pour water over it until it is immersed. Cover it and let it sit in the refrigerator overnight.
- Once soaked, drain buckwheat of water and rinse thoroughly in a strainer.
- Put drained, cleaned buckwheat in a food processor, adding coconut milk and chia seeds.
- Process for about a minute until smooth.
- Add frozen banana and process for another few minutes, until blended in.
- Add vanilla, cinnamon, salt and honey.
- Pour your serving in a breakfast bowl, and the rest in a sealed container to enjoy every morning for the next four-five days!
- Add whatever toppings your heart desires (I highly recommend the coconut shreds and the cacao nibs; it makes it seem very decadent – and it is, but it’s healthy decadence).
I would LOVE to hear your thoughts on this. Is anybody willing to try something different for breakfast tomorrow?