[Post #71 for 365 days of Vegan, Gluten-Free, Portable Power Pucks]
Happy late summer, everyone! I hope you have been enjoying the final hurrahs of the season, including the remaining books on your summer reading list, the late-summer sun, and the mouth-watering fruits and vegetables from your garden or the farmer’s market. I was lucky enough to raid my mother’s abundant garden while visiting in California. Her zucchini inspired these portable oatmeal cups.
With apologies for sounding like a vegetable size-ist, it’s easy to love petite, tender squash. Slice them thin for raw, crisp salads, spiralize for flash-cooked “zoodles,” or quickly char on the grill with a slather of olive oil and sprinkle of salt. No recipe required.
Their baseball bat-sized brethren require some manipulation. Their middles are squidgy, their flavor tame from months of sunbathing. Yet you can turn these traits into attributes by cranking up the oven and getting your bake on.
It’s zucchini bread season, and that includes an array of zucchini bread-inspired like these portable, baked oatmeal pucks. They are naturally vegan, gluten-free, low in calories, high in superfood goodness (vegatables, whole grain, & omega3 fat from the flax), fillling, portable, cheap, easy, and, of course, delicious. They are exactly what you need to make a smooth transition from summer to fall, too.
Purists can make them plain:
Raisin-lovers (we exist!) can add raisins or other dried fruit:
And chocolate lovers (aka, everyone) should definitely consider a smattering of chocolate chips.
I like these best when the zucchini is finely shredded, but big shreds will do the trick, too. Try other varieties of squash, too, or carrots, whatever floats your late-summer boat. Happy gnoshing, everyone.
- 1-1/2 cups rolled oats (certified GF, as needed)
- 1-1/2 cups nondairy milk (or dairy, if not vegan)
- 3 tablespoons ground flaxseed meal
- 1 cup packed, finely shredded zucchini
- ¼ cup coconut sugar, brown sugar, or sweetener of choice
- 1-1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice or ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- OPTIONAL STIR-INS: ¼ cup chopped dried fruit, chocolate chips, raisins, nuts or seeds
- Preheat oven to 375F. Line (recommended), grease or spray 10 cups of a standard size muffin tin.
- In a large bowl, combine all of the ingredients (including stir-ins, if using). Let stand 15 minutes while oven preheats and then divide evenly between prepared cups.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 18 to 22 minutes until the centers feel set to the touch and the surface appears somewhat dry. Let cool completely on a wire rack.
- Remove the oat pucks and store as directed. Serve cold, room temperature, or rewarm in the microwave for 20 to 30 seconds, as desired.
Flax substitute: If you do not wish to use flaxseed meal, replace it with either 2 tablespoons chia seeds, or 4 teaspoons psyllium husk plus 2 teaspoons oil of choice (e.g., virgin coconut oil).
Additional Nutrition Highlights:
*Low in saturated fat
*Very low in cholesterol
*Very high in manganese
*High in magnesium
*Very high in phosphorus
*Very high in vitamin B6