Gingerbread Oatmeal Casserole

Oatmeal casserole with coconut creamOatmeal Casserole– (scroll down for the version that is both dairy-free and egg-free, totally vegan!, excellent for those with allergies!)

Here’s another favorite oatmeal standby- I first discovered the basic recipe around 1990-ish in Help for Growing Families- I think that was the title.  Bill and Mary Pride edited and published it.  It was a newsletter full of helpful, practical advice and recipes from other larger than average families.

The original recipe used butter or margarine, and was sweetened with brown sugar, lots of brown sugar, and it tasted something like an oatmeal cookie with milk. We’ve tweaked it in various fashions, and this is one of our favorites:

 

——-Gingerbread Oatmeal Casserole

4 eggs
2 cups milk
1 cup melted coconut oil
1/2 cup molasses
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon each cinnamon, allspice, and ginger
6 cups oatmeal (not instant)

Combine above ingredients, mixing well. Pour into greased 13X9 inch pan.
Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

12-15 servings

You can serve it plain, or in a bowl with cold milk. Some like it hot.
Some like it cold. Some like more molasses for a flavor that it is bold!

This recipe has endless variations. It’s incredibly adaptable.
Here are some of the variations we have used and enjoyed:
Use one can of frozen juice concentrate instead of molasses (we like apple juice)
Substitute 1 cup melted butter for the fat (any oil can be used here)
Use maple syrup instead of molasses You can use brown sugar for sweetener, up to 1 1/2 cups. This makes it taste like oatmeal cookies!
Vary the spices to suit your family’s preferences- you can add vanilla or orange extract. We like a version where the only spices we use are orange extract and cinnamon.
Sweeten with applesauce or mashed apricots.
Add dried fruit

Add a can of pumpkin, or use pumpkin instead of the eggs if somebody is allergic to eggs.

Use water or coconut milk if you don’t do dairy.  Other milk substitutes work as well.

gingerbread oatmeal casserole with coconut creamThis is one of the first breakfast meals my children learn to make, because it is so easy (and so forgiving!). It’s easy to mix it the night before and bake it in the morning. It is also popular with overnight guests, even guests who think they do not like oatmeal. In fact, I recently attended a woman’s retreat at an area camp where they all kept talking about the special oatmeal dish this place was famed for, and how they hoped that was what was served- and when it was I surprised to see it was just my old friend the oatmeal casserole!

 

Egg-free; Dairy Free

1 can of pumpkin (you could also use mashed sweet potatoes)
1 can of coconut milk (I use Thai Kitchen Organic)
1 cup melted coconut oil
1/2 cup molasses or brown sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon each cinnamon, allspice, and ginger
6 cups oatmeal (not instant)

Combine above ingredients, mixing well. Pour into greased 13X9 inch pan.
Bake at 350 degrees for 30-45 minutes.

2015-01-06 10.37.34I doubled the recipe and made these in disposable foil pans so that we could freeze them for a lot of company coming.

I added pecans and golden raisins to some of them and left the others as they were….

2015-01-06 10.10.45

 

I added frozen blueberries to one of them, at my grandchildren’s request- I did a layer, oats mix, berries, more oats:

2015-01-06 10.11.00

 

How did the grandchildren like it?  Three of them were here for breakfast.   Within about five minutes:

2015-01-06 10.18.53

 

I think there are finger marks in the plates the older and younger left behind.

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