by Tea Master DANIELA CUBELIC
Gain nutrients & make your oatmeal more delicious without any sweeteners or additives (such as the artificial flavours found in flavoured oats). It couldn’t be easier either—just cook your oatmeal in brewed tea!
I have a confession to make… I used to hate oatmeal. I tried eating it intermittently at various points as a kid, teen & young adult but I could never turn it into a habit. I found the taste of oatmeal really bland & I’d have to add a lot of “extras” like maple syrup to get myself to enjoy the taste, which took something healthy & turned it into the opposite.
Then about twenty years or so ago, studies began touting the health benefits of oats & that galvanized me into trying oatmeal again. I swept aside my past experiences, & felt very virtuous as I made myself a big bowl of oatmeal for breakfast. But then I could barely finish it because I found the taste so unappetizing. I accompanied my breakfast with a steaming cup of chai tea that morning. Part way into the oatmeal, it dawned on me that adding some tea to the oatmeal might just be what it was missing. So I poured & then stirred the tea into the oatmeal—my oatmeal suddenly became irresistible, with notes of cinnamon, cardamom & spices. The next morning, I pre-brewed chai tea but made it double-strength so that the taste would really come through. Then I cooked the oatmeal in the brewed tea, replacing all of the cooking water with tea. I knew I had a hit on my hands when my spouse became intrigued by what I was eating, & wanted to get in on the Tea Oatmeal. I had chai oatmeal every day in a row for a while, because it really was that delicious. But I couldn’t stop thinking about other tea & oat combinations, so that led me to a peaches & cream oatmeal made with our Peach Paradise Tea with a splash of non-dairy milk, along with other tantalizing treats such as fruity Sour Cherry oatmeal.
Since then, I’ve experimented with many variations & I’ve been delighted with how delicious they taste. The tea adds a burst of flavour to the oatmeal & the natural creaminess of oats is a perfect counterpoint to many teas. Our teas tend to have a natural sweetness to them & I find that I don’t need any sweetener in my oatmeal when I cook it in tea.
Experiment to see what works best for you, but it’s likely you’ll realize that you can either omit the sweetener or add much less than you might otherwise.
One of the other things I realized when I raised my oatmeal game, is that Tea Oatmeal makes a healthy, easy, quick meal or snack at any time of day. I’ve had it for lunch, dinner & as a snack food.
When you’re in a rush, use unflavoured instant oatmeal. If you’re feeding a crowd in a hurry, you can even customize everyone’s breakfast by letting them choose their tea. Then brew each person the amount of tea they need for their instant oats & let them pour the hot tea over the oats.
I’ve fallen in love with the hearty taste of longer cooking oats, but I am often in a rush in the morning, so I use the trick of making overnight oats. I place the amount of oats I’m making for breakfast in a mason jar & pour brewed tea over them. This is also a great way to re-use any leftover brewed, strained tea from earlier in the day. I refrigerate the oat/tea mixture & then the next morning I quickly heat them on the stove & they are just as fast as instant oats.
Oats have many intriguing health benefits, some of which many people aren’t yet aware of.
They are a great way to help manage healthy blood sugar levels, because they provide complex carbohydrates & fiber that help keep you full & energized throughout the day. When you’re trying to avoid snacking or wanting to lose weight, oats are a great choice because they keep you fueled for longer & prevent the energy crashes that can lead to snacking.
Oats are also rich in tryptophan, an amino acid that converts into serotonin, which is known as the "happiness hormone". Serotonin has an uplifting & mood balancing effect & it can improve sleep quality. So oats are a great choice when you’re under stress or need a lift. Stress is also a factor in overeating & snacking, so they can help out there as well.
From the perspective of traditional Chinese medicine & in Ayurveda, thoroughly cooked grains served hot are considered a very healing meal in general, & are particularly potent as a breakfast food. Cooking grains well makes the nutrients in them more bio-available, so you can digest more of their goodness. A warm breakfast is also said to help kick-start the digestion so that it works at an optimal level throughout the day. In these traditions, oats are also thought of as being very beneficial for the skin.
To enhance the mood-boosting benefits of oats, try HAPPY WELLNESS TEA instead of water to cook oatmeal. HAPPY is an uplifting green & white tea blend that will add zesty citrus notes to your oatmeal. It contains botanicals such as bergamot, lime & lemon balm that are traditionally associated with stress management. If you like the sound of this, be sure to also check out our HAPPY MUFFINS—they are scrumptious!
If you’re looking for more tips to elevate your mood, CLICK HERE for a link on the eight remarkable science-based benefits of bathing. Recent studies found a link between baths & countering depression, along with other fascinating outcomes.
You’ll see from my recipe & suggestions below that most fruity, spicy or citrusy teas are a wonderful combination with oatmeal but the occasional floral tea, such as Rose Petal also makes a lovely oatmeal. Imperial Earl Grey & London Fog teas also make wonderful oatmeal.
If you’re adding fruit, select fruit that echo the ingredients in the tea. For instance, pears & apples are a perfect pairing with spicy chai teas. Any berries or apple are a great combination with fruity tea. Citrus peel or cranberries are tasty with earl grey or any citrus teas.
Get inspired with more tips, techniques & recipes - watch & learn directly from Tea Master Daniela Cubelic in this captivating VIDEO SERIES.
Learn how to make chai tea soup, tea hot chocolates, mulled cider teas, tea infused oatmeal, ice cream tea floats, tea lemonades, iced teas & more. You’ll also discover fascinating facts & info about the health benefits of tea, tea history & secrets for tea brewing.
gluten-free, dairy-free & vegan
1. Brew your choice of SILK ROAD TEA. Use a higher proportion of tea to water than you might when you are just brewing a cup of tea, as oatmeal tends to absorb flavours. For every cup of water, I use 1 teaspoon of loose tea & steep for the usual amount of time (over-steeping your tea leads to bitterness & a reduction in nutrients).
2. Replace the hot water with the brewed tea to cook your oats, per packet instructions. As a general rule, for instant oats, it's 1.5 parts water to 1 part oats. For rolled oats, it's 2 parts water to 1 part oats, & for steel cut oats, it's 3 parts water to 1 part oats. If you're not used to making oats, try cooking the oats in the amount of water the package recommends, then make adjustments based on your preferences. I've discovered that I like my oats with a higher proportion of liquid—it tends to make them creamier. Experiment to discover what you like best.
3. Add any toppings of your choice & enjoy.
The beauty of this recipe is that it can be made with any SILK ROAD TEA! Brew a mug of everyone’s favourite tea & they can use that to make their own tea flavoured oatmeal.
TEAS FOR DELICIOUS OATMEAL
HERBAL CHAI, SILK ROAD CHAI, WINTER WARRIOR
WILDBERRY WAVE, SOUR CHERRY, PEACH PARADISE, QUENCH, MYSTIC RAINFOREST
EARL GREEN, IMPERIAL EARL GREY, HAPPY, PHILOSOPHER’S BREW, SUBLIME
ROSE PETAL, JASMINE OASIS
HAPPY, WINTER WARRIOR, BEAU-TEA-FUL, QUENCH