Cooking with Grains

Robin Asbell is a food writer, chef, recipe developer and chef. She’s the author of several cookbooks,, including vegan meal prep. She stopped by to share tips on how to meal prep using grains.

Jars of Oats with Berries and Coconut Yogurt

(Reprinted from Vegan Meal Prep: A 5-Week Plan with 125 Ready-to-Go Recipes, Robert Rose Books)

Cooking oats is so old-fashioned, why turn on the stove when you can simply soak? Everyone’s favorite whole grain, rolled oats, has the ability to drink up all the liquids needed to soften and flavor it. Instead of plumping the grain with water, you’ll be adding all the nutrition of non-dairy milk and yogurt, making it even better for you.

Makes 4 servings

4 1 pint mason jars or 2 cup storage containers
2 cups  rolled oats
2 cups  vanilla or plain non-dairy milk
2 cups  non-dairy yogurt
2 cups  berries, frozen or fresh
1/4 cup chia seeds       60 mL

  1. In each jar, place 1/2 cup/125 mL oats and 1/2 cup/125 mL non-dairy milk, and stir.
  2. Top with 1/2 cup berries, then 1/2 cup yogurt and a tablespoon of chia.
  3. Cover tightly and refrigerate, then eat for breakfast or a snack.

Tip

*          Using frozen berries will save you money when berries are not in season, and the berries will thaw as they sit in the refrigerator overnight, and tint the oats a lovely shade.

Variation

*          Sprinkle with flax seeds instead of chia

Quinoa and Mango Breakfast Bowls

(Reprinted from Vegan Meal Prep: A 5-Week Plan with 125 Ready-to-Go Recipes, Robert Rose Books)

This bowl is so easy to prepare, and so full of colors, textures, and spice that everyone will be happy, including the cook.

Makes 4 servings

4 cups  cooked quinoa
1 cup   non-dairy milk
1 teaspoon       cinnamon
2 champagne mangos, halved and scored, or 2 cups cubed mango
2 cups  non-dairy yogurt
1/2 cup pistachios, chopped
Cinnamon, to sprinkle

  1. In a medium pot, combine the quinoa, non-dairy milk and cinnamon and stir over medium heat until hot.
  2. Divide the quinoa between four bowls, and top with half a mango or 1/2 cup/125 mL cubes, 1/2 cup/125 mL yogurt, and 2 tablespoons/30 mL chopped pistachios, and sprinkle with cinnamon.

Tip

*          To score the mango, use a chef’s knife to slice the flesh from the pit, making two flat “cheeks” of fruit. Place the fruit, skin side down, on the cutting board and use a paring knife to score the flesh in squares, by cutting down to but not through the skin. Pull back the edges of the skin to open up the mango squares and place each half, skin side down, on top of a prepared bowl.

Variation

*          Alternatively, make individual bowls of quinoa, milk and cinnamon and microwave for 2 minutes apiece, and stir well after they are hot. Top as directed.

Easy Grain Salad

To get 4 cups grain, start with about a cup and a half of most grains, they all yield slightly different amounts.

Serves 4

4 cups cooked grains (quinoa, wheat berries, brown rice, etc)
2 cups strawberries, hulled and sliced, or 2 apples, chopped
2 cups salad spinach, chopped
2 scallions, chopped
4 ounces crumbled feta cheese or fresh mozzarella, or 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup bottled balsamic vinaigrette

Place grains, berries, spinach and scallions in a large bowl. Drizzle with vinaigrette, toss and serve.

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