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Eat Well Oct. 17. 2014
Breakfast

Mexican Chocolate Zoats

Oct. 17. 2014
Breakfast
McKel Kooienga, MS, RDN, LDN

McKel Kooienga, MS, RDN, LDN

Dietitian, Founder and CEO

Zoats? You may be thinking “McKel, did you make a typo?”, I promise I didn’t. I’m only at it again sneaking veggies into your meals, this one being breakfast. Last month I shared a new favorite way of mine to incorporate zucchini into breakfast, in my Blue Morning Smoothie Bowl, today I’m making a delicious high protein porridge. If you’ve been following me on Instagram, I’ve been LOVING porridges for breakfast and you may have caught on to be mentioning zoats. They’re incredibly high in fiber, protein, nutrients, filling and taste amazing… anytime you can enjoy chocolate for breakfast is a win in my book.

What are zoats? Zucchini + egg whites + a small amount of rolled oats + other ingredients (variable) which result in a porridge texture that’s high in protein and lower in carbohydrates than straight oatmeal. This recipe at first may elicit a hesitant reaction because let’s face it, a sweet egg and zucchini recipe doesn’t necessarily get many of our stomachs rumblin’ in a good way. Today I challenge you to try this recipe and hopefully you’ll become a fan after trying this.

I enjoy oatmeal, actually I love eating oatmeal for breakfast. It loaded with health benefits from fiber and nutrients, but it also is higher in calorie and carbohydrates when compared to zucchini. This recipe is perfect for those individuals who are focusing on their weight loss, fat loss goals, maintaining/building muscle, but still want to enjoy the fullness and volume of an oatmeal dish. Not to mention, it’s another way to sneak in veggies throughout the day (yey for veggies!).

Besides sneaking in veggies into this breakfast porridge, I’m using cocoa and the warming spice of cayenne and cinnamon for a bold flavor. I love using chocolate, cinnamon, and cayenne together- for example in my McKel’s Hot Chocolate recipe– I adore those combinations of sweet heat. Enjoy this recipe plain, because trust me you don’t need to go heavy with the toppings since it’s so flavorful, but here are a couple delicious additions to these zoats.

Zoats Toppings | 

  • Nuts/seeds
  • Nut butters // almond, peanut, walnut, cashew, sunflower seed, etc.
  • Maple syrup
  • Local honey
  • Shredded coconut
  • Dried fruits// apricots, goji berries, blueberries, banana “chips”, dates, etc.
  • Fresh fruit // berries or green apples for lower sugar fruits, starfruit (as pictured), bananas, etc.

I’m a huge fan of carbohydrates and by all means I don’t avoid them, but I also take into consideration most of the Standard American Diet (SAD) is loaded with too many refined carbohydrates, not enough vegetables, protein nor healthy fats. All in all, most of us could benefit from having lower carbohydrate recipes every now and then (especially those who aren’t getting much activity or dedicated exercise).

I get asked many times (a week!) about carbohydrates and how many grams should be eaten, what types are better than others, etc. This is a great question and should be left to be answered while you’re being coached by a dietitian or health care professional with expertise in nutrition as carbohydrate amounts differ on MANY variables. There is no standard cookie cutter carbohydrate requirement that I would give anyone and if you’re working with someone who is, maybe take a second look around.

Cinnamon Vanilla Zoats
Recipe Type: breakfast, dessert
Author: McKel Hill, MS, RD, LDN
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 1
A porridge recipe using shredded zucchini, egg whites and oats. High in protein, fiber, and lower in carbohydrates. GF
Ingredients
  • 1 organic zucchini, grated/finely chopped (yields about 2 cups)
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 whole egg + 3 egg whites, farm fresh if possible
  • 1/4 cup rolled oats (optional)
  • 2 tablespoon high quality cocoa powder
  • 1/2- 1 tablespoon of ground fresh ginger root
  • 1 tablespoon of coconut flour
  • dash of ground cinnamon
  • dash of ground cayenne pepper
  • stevia to sweeten (or you may use honey/maple syrup)
  • pinch of sea salt
Instructions
  1. Take chopped zucchini with almond milk and add to a blender or food processor.
  2. Pulse zucchini (or grate) until it’s in very small pieces, similar to the size of oatmeal.
  3. In a medium-hot heated pot, add the almond milk and zucchini mixture- if you’re using oats, add them here as well.
  4. Add in egg whites only (save or discard yolks) to this mixture.
  5. Bring the mixture to a boil, and continually stir. You will notice the egg whites cooking and the mixture will start to thicken.
  6. When you see all the egg whites have been cooked- the mixture should still contain liquid from the almond milk and water from the zucchini. Add in the coconut flour, cinnamon, cocoa, and any other natural sweeteners you choose. Continue cooking and stir until it’s thick like oatmeal. You may add more coconut flour to speed the process of thickening.
  7. Take off the heat. Serve in a large bowl and top with your favorite toppings. Adjust seasonings/sweeteners to your desired taste.
  8. Enjoy!
Notes
You can add as many egg whites as you need for your protein intake- keep in mind 1 egg white= about 4g protein)

So I want to hear the verdict, what do you guys think of incorporating veggies into a porridge like this? What vegetable have you tried to “sneak” into your diet because of it’s versatility of textures and flavors? Share below! I challenge you this week to try this one out!

Hope you love it!

xo McKel

The Recipe

Serves 1

Print

Ingredients:

  • 1 organic zucchini, grated/finely chopped (yields about 2 cups)
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 whole egg + 3 egg whites, farm fresh if possible
  • 1/4 cup rolled oats (optional)
  • 2 tablespoon high quality cocoa powder
  • 1/2- 1 tablespoon of ground fresh ginger root
  • 1 tablespoon of coconut flour
  • dash of ground cinnamon
  • dash of ground cayenne pepper
  • stevia to sweeten (or you may use honey/maple syrup)
  • pinch of sea salt

Directions:

  1. Take chopped zucchini with almond milk and add to a blender or food processor.
  2. Pulse zucchini (or grate) until it’s in very small pieces, similar to the size of oatmeal.
  3. In a medium-hot heated pot, add the almond milk and zucchini mixture- if you’re using oats, add them here as well.
  4. Add in egg whites only (save or discard yolks) to this mixture.
  5. Bring the mixture to a boil, and continually stir. You will notice the egg whites cooking and the mixture will start to thicken.
  6. When you see all the egg whites have been cooked- the mixture should still contain liquid from the almond milk and water from the zucchini. Add in the coconut flour, cinnamon, cocoa, and any other natural sweeteners you choose. Continue cooking and stir until it’s thick like oatmeal. You may add more coconut flour to speed the process of thickening.
  7. Take off the heat. Serve in a large bowl and top with your favorite toppings. Adjust seasonings/sweeteners to your desired taste.
  8. Enjoy!

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