I’m convinced there’s two types of people in the world: those who get up as soon as their alarm goes off in the morning, and those who hit the snooze button half a dozen times first. As someone who sheepishly falls into the latter category, I welcome any motivation that’ll get me up and going on groggy days. With winter quickly approaching, this cranberry cinnamon oat bowl is just the thing to ward off those frigid mornings when you want nothing more than to stay nestled under the covers. Cozy, warm, and comforting, it’s the perfect quick-fix breakfast to buy you back some time on those days that get off to a slow start.
While people assume I eat really well since I’m a chef, in reality I rarely sit down for an actual meal since I’m usually cooking in the kitchen all day. Instead, I grab a quick bite or a taste here and there while I’m tinkering around and testing out recipes. That makes breakfast all the more important for me, and it’s one of the reasons why I genuinely love this recipe, along with the other oat bowls in our breakfast launch — they’re fast, plant-based and nutrient-dense to fuel even the busiest of mornings.
When we started creating our new line of oats bowls, our goal was to create a breakfast option that’s yummy, quick, and filling. Most oatmeal recipes require that you add liquid or have them sit overnight in the fridge, but we wanted to make sure our oat bowls were truly instant and hassle-free, perfect for when you want to enjoy an effortlessly healthy meal.
But breakfast options tend to be a predictable spread of foods and flavors, so we really wanted to think outside the box when it came to our breakfast line, and create a broad range of flavors — a few familiar ones, with our own added twists, and more unconventional ones too, to push the boundaries of what an oat bowl could be. We ended up with an amazing variety of savory options, including a congee-inspired shiitake ginger bowl, a sun-dried tomato bowl based on an everything bagel, and a veggie sausage and Gouda bowl that puts a fresh spin on classic breakfast flavors.
While our savory oat bowls are to die for, I was personally really excited for the opportunity to incorporate some sweeter fruit-based flavors in this product launch. Our previous bowls have all fallen on the more savory spectrum, since they’re intended for lunch or dinner, so it was a welcome departure for me to get to experiment with sweeter flavor profiles. Two of my favorites in this category, besides the cranberry cinnamon, are the peanut butter and banana (a grown-up riff of a childhood classic, but elevated with cacao nibs and hazelnut), and the golden milk and blackberries, inspired by the turmeric latte craze, and sweetened with juicy blackberries.
The cranberry cinnamon is an especially great bowl because it has two contrasting flavors that really balance each other out — subtle sweetness from the oatmeal, and tartness from the compote...plus the added bonus of a little cinnamon spice. That contrast is truly my favorite part of this dish. The oats get their luscious texture from creamy almond milk, adding a nice subtlety to an otherwise plain base of steel cut oats. Because they’re a great blank canvas for cooking, I intentionally kept the oatmeal on the more plain and simple side to let the toppings shine. During the development for this dish, I initially started with rolled oats but found the texture to be too mushy after the reheat process. In contrast, steel cut oats have a stronger texture that holds up better during cooking, freezing and reheating. To add an extra pop of protein to the grains, I mixed in some quinoa. Quinoa also gives a nuttier flavor compared to a standard single grain oatmeal.
Over the oats, I added a tart cranberry compote topping, made with frozen cranberries, coconut sugar, a pinch of salt, and fortified with chia seeds to add another boost of nutrients. To be quite honest, I wasn’t a chia seed fan until recently, but given its huge health benefits, like omega 3's, antioxidants, and protein, I’m officially won over. The chia seeds also act as a great binder that really helps gel the compote together. To finish it off, I threw in a touch of ginger to give it a little more depth.
Overall, you’ll find that the textures in the dish work really well — the oats are super creamy, and the tart compote gets stirred evenly throughout the dish. And the final garnish of hemp seeds, toasted walnuts, pumpkin seeds and sweetened dried cranberries gives you a nice crunch in every bite. Altogether, it’s a delicious medley of flavors, with a beautiful complexity you won’t find in a typical bowl of oatmeal!
I hope you love this cranberry cinnamon recipe as much as I loved creating it. This line of oat bowls is especially dear to my heart as it’s the product range I pitched to Matt and Sam during my first interview at Mosaic. What a crazy, surreal feeling to see that initial seed of an idea come full circle! I’m excited to share this recipe with you, but if you don’t have the time to make them, you can order the exact recipe directly from us for just $5.99! Explore our Cranberry Cinnamon Oats along with the rest of our Oat Bowl line right here– we’ll ship them directly to you so you can stock up on delicious, quick, and nutritious breakfasts that are ready at a moment’s notice.
Cranberry Chia Compote
- 2 cups frozen cranberries
- ¾ cup water
- ¼ cup coconut sugar
- ⅛ tsp. ground ginger
- ⅛ tsp. kosher salt
- 2 Tbsp. black chia seeds
- In a small pot, add cranberries, water, coconut sugar, ground ginger and salt
- Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thickened and the cranberries are broken down
- Turn off the heat and add chia seeds, stirring to combine
- Let the compote cool at room temperature before assembling your oatmeal
- 2 cups unsweetened almond milk
- 2 ¼ cups water
- ½ cup steel cut oats
- 3 Tbsp. quinoa
- ¼ cup coconut sugar
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp. kosher salt
- In a medium pot, whisk together all ingredients
- Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cook for 25-30 minutes, stirring frequently until the oatmeal is creamy but pourable
- Top your oat bowl with the cranberry compote, hemp seeds, dried cranberries, toasted pepitas and walnuts!