A Bite Inspired by… Hiking:
One of my favorite hobbies is hiking the U.S. National Parks with my family. Whenever we go hiking, it’s super important to have a filling, healthy, and delicious breakfast that will keep us full all day. My Blueberry Basil Overnight Oats are the perfect breakfast to start your day, no matter what activities you have planned! Chewy oats topped with sweet blueberries, fragrant basil, and crunchy almonds– what more do you need? If every good day starts with a good breakfast then these oats are a must! Enjoy!
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Whenever people ask me what my favorite hobby is, my answer is always the same: hiking. Hands down, no questions asked. I love to hike. I was pretty much raised on hiking. It’s one of our favorite activities to do as a family and we went almost every other weekend when I was growing up.
My mom has the lofty goal of hiking every National Park in the United States during her lifetime. There are a total of 59 National Parks and we’ve done 21 of them, so a little less than halfway there. We keep track of all the National Parks we’ve been to on this awesome poster that I got my mom as a present a few years ago. It’s basically a giant map with all the National Parks marked and you put a sticker on each one that you’ve been to. This map is one of our favorite family possessions and is proudly displayed in our living room. It’s a great conversation piece. We always end up pulling out all of our trip photos when people come over and ask about the map. If you’re interested in keeping track of your family’s National Park adventures, you can get the same exact map that we have right here.
Another cool thing that we use to keep track of our National Parks visits is the “Passport to Your National Parks”. As you can see from the picture below, we have more than one copy of this little book (we actually have 3 copies because we filled up the first two). These passports are awesome if you’re a fan of U.S. travel. Basically, every time you visit one of the 417 units in the National Parks System (this could be a National Park, a National Monument, etc) you get a cancellation stamp with the name of the park, its location, and the date you visited. They’re a really fun souvenir for both kids and adults (I first started when I was kid) and a great way to keep track of your travels. You can get one of these passports in the Gift Shop at any National Park Service owned park, monument, or area. After that, you can get the cancellations stamps at each park you visit in the Visitor Center.
While hiking all 59 National Parks in a lifetime definitely won’t be an easy feat, my mom is pretty determined, so I have faith that it will happen for her. Whenever we go hiking, we always need a very filling, hearty breakfast that has a good balance of carbohydrates and protein. Our go-to for the perfect hiking breakfast is overnight oats. You can make them the night before, store them in the fridge or a cooler, and then add the toppings in the morning. This is particularly helpful when we’re staying at the Park overnight. I just pack the prepared oats in a well-insulated thermos (I recommend this one here) and pack the toppings in a cooler. The next morning, I open the thermos, add the toppings, eat my breakfast, and then I’m ready to hike!
If you’re not hiking, you can just make these oats at home in a bowl and stick them in the fridge overnight. It’s perfect for a quick, nutritious breakfast before work. They’re so easy and delicious!
My version uses soy milk, so it’s dairy-free, but you can use any milk that you want to prepare these. I also add a little maple syrup for a touch of sweetness and ground flaxseed for an extra nutrition boost. Plus, I add a tiny pinch of salt, which really brings out the flavor of the oats. I put all my ingredients in a bowl the night before and then when I wake up in the morning, I add my toppings and have breakfast ready to go!
If you’ve read my Strawberry Basil Smoothie post, you know that I really like the combination of fruit and herbs. Basil is such a natural herb to pair with fruit because it has an inherent sweetness to it. I’ve topped this version of overnight oats with blueberries, torn basil leaves, and some slivered almonds. It might sound simple, but the flavors are lovely together and the basil adds a nice complexity, while still complementing the other ingredients. You can also use this overnight oats recipe as a base and add whatever toppings you want. It’s super versatile. Get creative!
Whether you need a filling and healthy breakfast before a hike, a run, work, school, shopping, playing with the kids, or whatever else your day has in store for you, these Blueberry Basil Overnight Oats are the perfect way to start your morning! They’re delicious and will keep you full for hours. Enjoy! 🙂
- For the oats:
- 1 cup soy milk
- ¾ cup rolled oats (see note)
- 2 teaspoons maple syrup
- 2 teaspoons ground flaxseed
- Pinch of salt
- For the topping:
- 1 large basil leaf, torn
- Large handful of blueberries
- Large handful of slivered almonds
- Pour milk into a bowl. Add maple syrup and ground flaxseed. Stir well.
- Add rolled oats to the bowl. Stir carefully until combined.
- Add salt. Stir.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in fridge for at least 6 hours.
- Remove bowl from fridge. Stir the oats.
- Arrange blueberries, basil, and almonds on top of the oatmeal. Enjoy!