Recipe: Pumpkin Peanut Butter Oatmeal

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One of the toughest challenges of parenting sometimes happens at the dinner table. Glossy magazines may show family dinners as beautiful bonding moments, but when a picky eater resides in a house, that beauty can be replaced with struggle. Just ask me. My firstborn came out of the womb detesting vegetables. I ate plenty of veggies, while pregnant and nursing, hoping the flavors would pass to his palate. Unfortunately, we had no such luck. But, seeing as how I was a picky youngster as well, I guess he comes by it honestly. We hope he outgrows his limited taste preferences as I did. In the meantime, I began a quest to find alternative ways to pump him full of nutrients. Enter Jessica Seinfeld’s cookbook, “Deceptively Delicious.”

Recipe: Pumpkin Peanut Butter Oatmeal
In it I found a true gem of a recipe that made purchasing the book worth every penny: Pumpkin Peanut Butter Oatmeal. Since I first made this breakfast about five years ago, we have had it nearly every day since. If it doesn’t make it to the breakfast table, the kids request it for lunch or dinner instead. A day without oatmeal results in serious disappointment. My son likes it so much that when people ask what his favorite food is, he says oatmeal. I’m pretty sure the doctor thought I coached him on that answer before his last check-up.

Recipe: Pumpkin Peanut Butter Oatmeal
This recipe is also a great way to get the kids involved in the kitchen. During school breaks, my son starts his day by mixing all the ingredients, so I can finish it on the stove. It’s one of his move-out skills that his future roommates will appreciate.

Recipe: Pumpkin Peanut Butter Oatmeal
And so, here it is; the infamous recipe that has served our family well and started our days with a punch of vitamins A, C and beta-carotene for the last few years…and counting:
1 cup milk
1/4 cup pumpkin
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1 cup quick oats
1 Tbsp. peanut butter
Maple syrup, if desired

Mix milk, pumpkin, brown sugar, vanilla and cinnamon in a pan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, add oats, peanut butter and stir. Cook for 2-3 minutes until the mixture thickens to a desirable consistency. Serve and top with maple syrup for additional sweetness, if desired. For us, this serves 1 adult and 2 little ones.

{This recipe was adapted from Jessica Seinfeld’s recipe in “Deceptively Delicious.” Be sure to check out the book for yourself. It’s full of hidden-veggie recipes.}

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