Pumpkin is EVERYTHING. Every year, I go through this brief (very brief) phase where I think I've grown out of pumpkin. It doesn't sound good for some reason - maybe it's more that it doesn't look good. The pumpkin, in the can, it just looks so....mushy. But I always power through, and I'm quickly reminded of why I love it so much! This is the perfect example of why you shouldn't judge a book by it's cover, ya feel me? I was thumbing through a Whole Foods recipe book I grabbed the other day, and pumpkin was everywhere, which is what initially prompted me to crack open a can and get to baking.
I initially set out to make pumpkin muffins, but changed my mind at the very last minute, and wound up with these pumpkin pie oats. I had no clue what I was going for, but what I did know was that I was attempting to make a post-workout snack yesterday, I was HANGRY, and there was no way I was waiting 40 minutes for muffins to bake. Hence, the oat creation.
Even though it was unplanned, it turned out delish. So good, that I had it for breakfast today, and forced my hubby to have it too - isn't being married the best?! He eats oats every day for breakfast, plain and much less exciting, so he was hesitant to jump on board with my new creation, but he loved it too! Or he's getting better at lying about my creations... either way, it's a win in my book!
You'll see in the recipe that I used caramel extract - don't stress if you can't find this stuff, it's not available very many places. I get mine on amazon, and can find it at Walmart from time to time, but if you can't find it, feel free to replace with vanilla or any other flavor you'd like, or eliminate all together. It does add to the flavor profile and sweetness, so you might want to add in some stevia or additional honey if so.
Now that I have my first pumpkin fix of the season, I'm off to see what else I can create, because I'm once again, obsessed with something I planned to hate. Funny how that happens?