Pumpkin Pie…It’s What’s For Breakfast!


I always wanted to have a good reason to name a post like that!

Early Rising Challenge Day 3:

  • I was asleep by 11:15pm (in bed at 10:30pm) and naturally rose at 6:15am this morning! I found it very difficult to get into bed at a good time last night because I had work to do. My mind was swirling with thoughts for a long time when my head hit the pillow! Hate that. Any tips for quieting the mind??
  • A space heater at my desk is crucial to tolerating the first 30 mins. until the house warms up.

This certainly helped me wake up…

Pumpkin Pie Baked Breakfast Cake



  • 1/2 cup almonds
  • 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats (not instant)
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
  • 2 t pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 banana
  • 1-1.5 Tbsp agave nectar or maple syrup (to taste)
  • 2 t pumpkin pie spice (or a mix of cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger)
  • Pinch fine sea salt
  • 1-2 T scoop Manitoba Harvest Hemp Vanilla Protein Powder (optional)
  • 1 and 1/4 cups unsweetened almond, soy, rice, or hemp milk
  • Dark Chocolate or cacao nibs (to garnish)
  • Graham crackers (to garnish)

Directions: Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 4-6 cup (1-1.5 L) casserole dish or three small oven safe dishes. Throw all ingredients except the toppings into a blender or food processor and blend until smooth, stopping to scrape sides if necessary. Evenly distribute the batter into the dishes and then garnish with chocolate chips, cacao nibs, and/or crushed graham crackers. Pop in the oven for about 35 minutes at 350F or until golden brown and firm. You can refrigerate for 4 days and they apparently freeze well too!

Makes 3 servings. [Breakfast cake is adapted from Ricki’s Breakfast Pudding.]

Tip: These cakes are great right out of the fridge for a quick snack or dessert!

The Manitoba Harvest Vanilla Hemp Protein Powder I used:


This was just a naked pumpkin pie! I think I will put a dollop of soy yogurt on top!


This was garnished with cacao nibs and delicious homemade vegan graham crackers that I whipped up (a new ingredient in my V-day Glo Bar!).


This one was made into a double layer pumpkin pie and I garnished with dark chocolate chips.


The nutritional information for one cake is below:


This nutritional information is for the basic cake (oats, almonds, unsweetened almond milk, spices, vanillas, banana, unsweetened applesauce, pumpkin, sea salt, agave nectar). without any toppings or protein powder.

As you can probably tell, I subbed out half of the nuts for oats in this recipe, as compared to the Baked Cherry Pie recipe. This is a ‘lighter’ version of the baked breakfast cake. Taste wise, I do prefer the original version (with more nuts), but this one was still nice too and it gives you a bit more wiggle room to play around with fun toppings!

The great thing about this recipe is that you can adapt it to how you want it. If you want it sweeter, add more sweetener. If you want it more filling, add some protein powder like I do. More healthy fats? Experiment with different nuts and chia seeds. The sky is the limit!

Earthquake in Haiti

The recent earth quake in Haiti has left approx. 3 million people – a third of Haiti’s population- in desperate need of emergency relief. After watching this video (note: some graphic scenes), I knew I had to contribute in any way possible.


CARE Canada, Oxfam Canada and Oxfam Quebec as well as Save the Children have banded together to form a central hub for donations called The Humanitarian Coalition, which is accepting donations online and by phone.

In the US or the UK? See here for a list of reputable charities that you can donate to.



I’m baking today for a donation I did for the Alberta Association of Services for Children and Families Conference. If you will be there, keep your eyes peeled for my Glo Bars at the registration table! :)

Make today GREAT!


Awake before the sun is risen, I call for my pen and papers and desk.
Christopher Smart

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{ 79 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Lori January 14, 2010

This sounds so great. I’m definitely giving it a try. Nothing wrong with pumpkin pie for breakfast. :)


2 Diana January 14, 2010

Wow – looks so yummy!
I too wish the sun rose earlier – all of my morning pictures look terrible because there just isn’t enough light! Looking forward to summer already! haha.


3 Heather (Where's the Beach) January 14, 2010

If you can figure out how to quiet the mind for a good night’s rest, please share with me too!


4 Shannon January 14, 2010

That looks amazing! I will be trying this one, for sure!


5 Heather @ Side of Sneakers January 14, 2010

That looks FANTASTIC!!


6 Jessica @ How Sweet It Is January 14, 2010

Yum! As for quieting your mind, it may sound crazy, but I tend to just keep saying prayers over and over – the same one until I fall asleep. It really works for me.


7 megan January 14, 2010

you get so much done in a day it’s amazing! to quiet my mind at night, I recite bible verses to myself. It’s very comforting and the repetetiveness puts me to sleep :)


8 Erin (Travel, Eat, Repeat) January 14, 2010

This one looks like a winner!

Are you using whole almonds or almond powder in the recipe?


9 caitlin January 14, 2010

YOU HAVE TO TRY THE COUNTING BACK FROM 300 BY 3’S tip. I swear it works – if it can make me fall asleep before the marathon, it can definitely help you.


10 Nicole January 14, 2010

I also count back from 100 until I fall asleep. It works!


11 Jolene January 14, 2010

My number one tip for quieting your mind at night is to read a chapter or two (or whatever you have time for) of FICTION. I prefer non-fiction and always read it before bed … but I discovered once I started reading the Twilight series before bed, and now any fiction book, I fall asleep much quicker because my mind isn’t thinking about real world things.


12 Julie @savvyeats January 14, 2010

Delicious! When I have a lot of thoughts swirling through my head when I’m trying to sleep, I jot them all down on a notepad I keep next to the bed. That way, I know I won’t forget about any of them the next morning when I get up!


13 skinnyrunner January 14, 2010

im loving your breakfast “cakes”. they look so decadent but are so healthy!


14 Liz January 14, 2010


I wanted to finally comment here. I’ve been reading your blog for a few weeks after running into the BLESSED, Green Monster over and over on blogs galore. I finally ran a search for said Monster and came to the movement site. Why I didn’t look it up sooner and just stayed in my curious state for quite a while, I do not know. The wait for Christmas (I asked for a blender as one of my gifts) was strenuous and seemed to go on forever as I was SO excited to try it. LOL Been drinking them a bunch!

On a side note, these “pies” look great and I’m going to probably give them a try this weekend. I really appreciate and love how you post the nutrional information. That’s GREATNESS! Also, I’ll be cruising on over to the GloBakery site soon to purchase some bars. Do you print the nutritional info on each bar or just online?

Have a great day! You inspire me!


15 Ricki January 14, 2010

I just love how you’re adapting this recipe! I’ve eaten actual pumpkin pie filling (well, my healthy version, anyway) for breakfast, but never mixed pumpkin with oats. This sounds divine!


16 Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman January 14, 2010

This is such a great post for me. I’ve eaten oatmeal for breakfast for two years, and yesterday I decided I was so sick of it. I’m on the hunt for a good replacement breakfast. I will definitely have to try this. It looks so good! As for quieting the mind pre-sleep: I find reading a dry book helps. When I start glazing over words (or paragraphs), I know I’m ready for bed.


17 Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg January 14, 2010

I know it sounds cliche, but when I can’t go to sleep because I have so many thoughts running through my mind, I count sheep! I also find that counting backwards from 100 works to lull me into sleep. Good luck, girl!


18 Morgan @ Healthy Happy Place January 14, 2010

Thanks for posting ways to donate to the Haiti Earthquake victims. I work for CBS (the network who’s video you aired) and it gets really emotional gathering and delivering news like this.


19 Jackie @ TriToLose January 14, 2010

Looks delicious! :)


20 Danielle (Coffee Run) January 14, 2010

Your breakfast cakes all look so good! I’ve tried hemp protein before and it wasn’t my favorite :? But maybe your brand is better


21 Kara January 14, 2010

That looks so delicious!

To quiet my mind before bed, I do some basic deep breathing where I really try to pay attention to the sound, movements, etc. of my breath. I know some people discourage it, but I also read (something leisurely, not work related). But I definitely have to try that counting backwards, seems like it might work if I’m really keyed up ;)


22 Jenny January 14, 2010

You may already do this, but I always write a list of things going through my mind right before bed. I’ve found that on nights where I have not done this, my mind is wild and loud. But when I take 2 minutes just to jot a few things down, it’s so peaceful and much easier to sleep.


23 Britt January 14, 2010

My mom always told me to think of a big black box. Then think of all of the sides of the box shrinking and shrinking til the box is just a little spec, and then grow it bigger again. Works for me.

After doing Bikram yoga, if I really can’t quiet my mind, I try to do Savasana – the dead mans pose. You pretty much focus on not moving any muscle and your breathing. I tend to turn off my mind pretty quickly that way :) Good luck!


24 Heather @ The Joyful Kitchen January 14, 2010

pumpkin pie for breakfast = heaven. what a great idea! thanks for sharing the recipe :)


25 Michelle January 14, 2010

I’ll share with you how I quiet my mind at night. It might sound silly but it REALLY WORKS for me! I get comfortable in my bed and tell myself that before I can move to get a glass of water, read or check email I have to count to 500. I don’t force myself to count slowly because I find that to be stressful! I often count really fast, but I think this is good because it kind of burns off mental energy. It keeps my mind occupied instead of thinking about a million other things. Usually I don’t even reach 500 and if I do I’m much too relaxed to do anything. If I do let myself get a drink or something after 500, I get right back and tell myself to count to 1000 this time. but what I think is key is burning off that mental energy. I really just count as fast as my mind wants, I don’t force myself to slow down. Eventually it gets to boring that I relax.

Another method I use is I breathe in for a count of 5 and out for a count of 5 and do this 5 times. Then I repeat for a count of 6, then 7 and then 8. Then I go down: breathe for a count of 8 five times again, then for a count of 7, 6 and so on.


26 Lauren @ Eater not a runner January 14, 2010

I try to count backwards from 100 while visualizing every number…..works sometimes, but other times I just can’t get my mind to stop churning!


27 JessicaE January 14, 2010

Establishing a bedtime ritual will probably help. I know you are a fan of tea so i would definitely utilize some chamomile or Sleepy Time tea. And wow, how funny to read the counting backwards thing. My Daddy taught me that when i was very small.


28 sham January 14, 2010

I too jot down things on my mind. This is especially helpful when the things on my mind are ‘to do’. Knowing they are written down and won’t be forgotten help to calm my mind. I also write in my grateful journal, just one-liners of 3 things I am grateful for that day. This gives my mind a little perspective before I go to sleep!


29 Laura Georgina January 14, 2010

I don’t do any work in bed so that when I hit the bed I associate it with sleep. It also helps if you can’t see the alarm clock or any glowing gadgets while you’re in bed–it seems like a tiny change, but it makes a real difference.


30 Mae @ OhhMay January 14, 2010

This looks so delicious!!! Oh wow I can’t wait to make it!!!


31 Beth @ DiningAndDishing January 14, 2010

Angela, you have inspired me to begin an early rising challenge of my own! I usually get out of bed right before work and then work-out at night. This morning I woke up bright and early to hit the gym and it was amazing!! So accomplished before 9AM. Thank you!!


32 katherine January 14, 2010

I quiet my mind by just counting breaths. It’s monotonous, but it also forces me to block out everything else going on in my mind.


33 Casey (@Spicy&Sweet) January 14, 2010

That cake looks DELICIOUS!!! YUM. :)

Thanks for the Haiti info…it’s so important to spread the word when you have so many readers!


34 Ameena January 14, 2010

The cake looks really great! You are so creative with your breakfasts. I need a bit of that creativity with mine!


35 Allison January 14, 2010

My morning routine is really ridiculous… every morning my alarms is set for 6:30. When it goes off I wake up, turn it off and then tell myself, “I’m going to lay here for a few minutes to visualize my day”…then I wake up an hour later and have to bust ass to get out the door on time. EVERY DAY this happens. hahahaha. Perhaps I need to partake in your morning challenge… I’ll lay here and visualize it for a few minutes…


36 Debbi January 14, 2010

When my mind is going a mile a minute and it’s hard to sleep this is what I do………….count backwards from 400! I have never gotten to 1, although sometimes I think I will. It really works.


37 Melinda January 14, 2010

That looks really good. To help my mind from going everywhere I fall asleep with the TV on low volume so it doesn’t keep me up just provides a light distraction, and then I set the sleep timer so I don’t waste electricity. If I don’t do this I will never fall asleep.


38 Bridget January 14, 2010

Give me some of that cake!! It looks so yummy!

It is so devastating what has happened in Haiti :( I definitely want to donate in some way to help them out


39 Danielle January 14, 2010

I wake up at 5:30 in order to make it to the gym (a 15 minute walk away) by 6:30. I only started getting up to exercise BEFORE work about a month ago but I’m LOVING it.


40 heather January 14, 2010

for resting the mind 4/7/8 breathing

deep breath thru nose for a count of 4
hold for 7
long exhale out thru mouth for count of 8

repeat 4-6 times focusing on breath

this helps for relaxing :-)


41 Jil January 14, 2010

Seriously, the breakfast cakes just keep looking better and better! and I find that if I write a little bit before I head to bed it helps get everything that’s swirling around in the old noggin onto paper (or computer) and out of my head. :)


42 Ashley January 14, 2010

Love love the first photo. I definitely see these breakfast cakes in my near future!!! =)


43 Natasha January 14, 2010

I count back from 100 to help stop my mind racing (it seems a few others do too). If that doesn’t work a really boring book can do the trick. Also, when I have work stuff on my mind, I put a pen and notebook on the bedside table so that I can jot anything I need to down… it’s a comfort to know it’s there, and can put my mind at rest.


44 Lauren January 14, 2010

I always get in my bed with a book. It’s the best way to quiet my mind down and get myself sleepy.


45 Chelsea January 14, 2010

I too struggle with quieting my mind. I do use some meditation techniques. I’ll imagine waves going in and out or I’ll say the chant “Ham-Sa” “Ham” on the inhale, “Sa” on the exhale. It helps but I do have to remind myself from time to time and go back to it. To be 100% honest though, sometimes I just CAN’T quiet my mind but I sure do try.

Thank you for posting about Haiti and the options for donating.


46 Lizzie January 14, 2010

That’s great that you mentioned Haiti. Another really good organisation that is already based in the country is Partners In Health, founded by Dr Paul Farmer. It is a well run group focused on providing adequate healthcare and preventative resources in countries that have next to nothing to begin with. For North Americans you can go to http://www.pih.org and they have a specific area set up for earthquake relief donations.

Your breakfast cakes look amazing – have you considered publishing a recipe book at all?


47 Lauren January 14, 2010

Every morning and night while I’m in bed lying down I do deep breathing exercises. Put your hands on your belly to ensure it’s rising and falling softly, and not your chest. It helps sooo much!


48 Alyson- January 14, 2010

Thank you, Angela for posting the link for Haiti, and bringing awareness and support. My mother is from Haiti, we live in the US, but her aunt and other relatives still live there, my great uncle is not been heard from since the quake. It is great to see the help and support from others, really worldwide.


49 Karla January 14, 2010

How yummy does that look! You never cease to amaze me with your great recipes!


50 kristen January 14, 2010

hmmm…vegan graham crackers, vegan marshmallows…s’mores bar?


51 kat January 14, 2010

I MUST try this! You have the best ideas!


52 Meghan-Rose January 14, 2010

If I can’t fall asleep b/c of too much stuff on my mine I’ll do a “brain dump”…I just take a piece of paper and write down everything I’m thinking about. That always helps me relax…I think I feel better if it’s written down so I know I won’t forget it when I fall asleep!


53 Ellen January 14, 2010

My comment is similar to what Jenny says….write before you go to bed.

I actually tried doing that for the first time before going to bed a couple of nights ago, and I fell asleep much faster. Just emptying my thoughts out onto paper before I turned off the lights really helped!

The last two mornings I’ve gotten up at 5:30 (in bed around 10:00)…it’s neat to be able to see your experiences as you try to make your sleeping changes too.


54 Andrew Lowry January 14, 2010

Canadians should make sure they pick reputable charities so that the government will match their donation.


55 AGS January 14, 2010

I’m usually dead-tired when I get into bed, and am asleep immediately. That said, when I’m anxious about something, I find it hard to sleep. You yourself posted a good blog entry on this once (in late spring 2009).

What I have slowly been understanding about myself, lately, is that much of what “keeps me up at night” is driven by worry/fear. In the process of meeting countless deadlines, expectations, new endeavors, I get caught up in fear that I will fail (not get something done by deadline, not meet others/my own expectations, look completely incompetent in a new field. . .). I forget that these same things give me tremendous satisfaction and happiness! I’ve lately been trying to take up the issue that I have the worry about and try to bring up the positive emotion instead. (Obviously, this won’t work for all things. . .)

As a simple example, I work in the aviation field and absolutely love it. I also started taking flying lessons. I often worry that I’m not where I should be in learning, that my regular work schedule is sometimes so intense that I don’t have time to study. . . etc., etc. One night, as I lay there worrying about this and other things (e.g., work), I decided to remember the thrill and happy feeling I get from flying. I also started to write about it(www.westwithflight.wordpress.com). I “captured” and “felt” that thrill of take-off. By filling my mind with the happy associations, I got my body to relax, and then my mind followed.

I’m not sure that is a particular “trick”, but I thought I would share it.


56 Annalisa January 14, 2010

I keep a pen and paper near my bed for lists, recipe ideas, phone numbers, etc. When I can’t sleep it’s usually some random anxiety like call the garbage company, confirm an appointment, follow-up with someone from work, etc. I write down these things I “need to do” and usually feel better and call right to sleep.

Sometimes I sleep where I normally put my feet as a way to calm myself.

I also deprive myself of sleep for a day or twoc(get 5 or 6 hours instead of 8) and I’m usually so tired the next night I easily fall asleep!

Lastly, if my husband is willing, he does this simple relaxation technique. Basically, he walks me through quieting my body. It’s something like “relax your toes, feel each toe melting in the bed, starting with the pinky over to your big toe…feel your ankles going to sleep…..” and so on. I’m usually done before he talks about my knees.


57 Paige @ Running Around Normal January 14, 2010

Nothing like cake for breakfast! Sounds delicious, as always :)
Let’s see…is it wrong that praying makes me fall asleep? If I can’t fall asleep, I start praying, and I’m asleep before I can say amen!


58 Niki@muddyfoosteps January 14, 2010

love love love. that looks so delicious. i checked out your other breakfast cakes but i have pumpkin ready in my cabinet. you can change this recipe up in so many ways. i love all the ones you have created!


59 Guen January 14, 2010

My husband and I have the bedtime routine down. I used to suffer from the swirling mind syndrome, but no more. We have an iPod dock on the nightstand and play a Guided Meditation for Sleep by Glen Harold (sp?). I’m asleep in minutes every night. I don’t even make it through the breathing exercise anymore. Sometimes when I have to get up in the middle of the night (emergency squad call, cat meowing, whatever) I put it on again to go back to sleep faster. I got it off of http://www.audible.com.


60 j January 14, 2010

Write down whatever you are thinking about! Whenever I can’t sleep, it’s usually because I’m thinking about everything I need to do the next day. I find that if I make a list, I stop thinking about it as much and it definitely helps me fall asleep. Good luck!


61 Amber@TheMinimalistDiaries January 14, 2010

Wow – girl look at all those hyperlinks :) Pumpkin Pie for breakfast? Yes Please!


62 Katie January 14, 2010

I wonder if these bakes could be made raw? ;) Sub in oat groats for the rolled ones and then dehydrating the recipe? Hmm…I wonder.


63 Katie O. @ Fit to Wed January 14, 2010

That breakfast looks awesome! When I can’t sleep, I generally write down everything on my to-do list that is keeping me up and tell myself I’ll get to it in the morning. That quiets my mind somewhat!


64 Katie @ Food. Home. Fitness. For Her. January 14, 2010

Good job Angela, you are clearly a super hard worker and your hard work pays off through a successful blog chalk full of delicous, healthy recipes and ideas. You inspire me to work that hard at the things in life that matter most to me.


65 Jenn Douglass January 14, 2010

Thank you for commenting on my blog Angela! I must say…I am trying your breakfast cake this week and I can’t wait. :) Keep those amazing recipes cookin!


66 Alicia January 14, 2010

It helps me to walk through a simple process, like making pasta or something. It’s boring a soothes my mind. I have a nasty habit of making to-do lists in my mind before bed so I try writing everything down.


67 kaila January 14, 2010

what would the measurements be for one serving of that delsih breakfast?


68 kaila January 14, 2010



69 Leah January 14, 2010

Yum . . . this looks so good! I love pumpkin pie – who wouldve thought you could turn it into breakfast?


70 Janet January 14, 2010

Count backwards from 300 by 3’s. You need to focus to this and it is rather boring so not only can other thoughts not take over but you get bored and conk out.
Also, starting with your feet, tighten and release “individual muscles” until you get to your head.


71 *Andrea* January 14, 2010

your breakfasts make my mouth WATER! i’m a huge baked goods/sweets person so this is perfectionnnn. i usually try and take deep breaths while i’m trying to fall asleep and then picture the beach lol.. i hate bed time though because i usually can’t turn off my thoughts :( let me know if you learn any good tips!


72 Racheal - Girl on a Mission January 14, 2010

I read a book EVERY night before bed. Read something really boring will help you fall asleep too, maybe CNN, Wall Street…haha Surprisingly, Sudoku and games like that help you fall asleep. They take your mind of “your to do it” and allow you to relax. I have never been able to fall asleep easily (not like Eric or my boyfriend) so I have a lot of experiences here.


73 Cassie @ A Very Busy Mind January 14, 2010

Hmmm tips for quieting the mind…given the title of my blog, I could certainly use some myself. ;)

I have yet to try this, but my roommate has suggested to me several times to keep a notebook by my bed. She think it would help me to write all the craziness going on in my head down, and that it would help me sleep.

Maybe this could help you???!


74 Rachel A January 14, 2010

Try meditation techniques. I choose a mantra like “I am loved” or “I am relaxed.” As I breathe in I say (in my head) “I am” and say the rest as I exhale. By focusing on your breath, you relax your mind. Works for me, especially when I have to work an odd 3rd shift.


75 Jessica @ The Process of Healing January 14, 2010

Yum, who doesn’t love pumpkin pie any time of day?!

And it helps me to calm my mind by writing everything down. Anything that is going through my head, i’ll just write. It just comes out naturally when i have a lot on my mind and afterwards, i feel such peace. It really helps.


76 Carolyn January 14, 2010

I’ve heard counting backwards by 3’s from 300 helps put a person to sleep. As for getting the mind to stop thinking long enough to fall alseep, I climb out of bed and write down all the worries or things I need to do the next day, or what ever is keeping me up. Then my brain sees I am not going to forget it I can crawl back into bed and rest.


77 Stacey January 14, 2010

Loving your recipes. Can’t wait to try them all!


78 jen January 15, 2010

Hi Angela,
I love reading your blog! You have so many useful tips and recipes. I’m glad I can offer YOU some advice for once! To quiet your mind before sleep, read a book. I like to read a novel, because I can focus on the story and let my day slip away. I have the same problem you do- I’ll get all snuggled in bed, only to find my mind is still going a mile a minute!
Sweet dreams!


79 Marisa January 17, 2010


Thanks for suggesting to donate to the Humanitarian Coalition to donate to help Haiti Earthquake victims.

Marisa Curcio
Agente de communication – nouveaux médias


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