The Three Bears Superfood Porridge

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I’m starting to get a taste of what toddlerhood is all about, and it’s humbling. Incredible in so many crazy ways, yet very, very humbling. Adriana yells more, squirms more, protests more, talks more, eats more, laughs more, and moves more by the day.*insert monkey covering eyes emoji* The baby stage is challenging in many ways, but an almost 14 month old with a strong will and a mouthful of about-to-pop teeth can be downright scary. I wouldn’t change it for the world though (ok, maybe the teething); I know we’ll look back on these days as some of the best.

Even though Adriana should win a gold medal in the food throwing/slingshotting olympics, she really does love to eat! I can always tell when she’s about to throw food because she warns us with a, “no… no…” as she whips the food off the tray. Then she leans her head over the edge and peeks at the food on the floor while saying “no, no…no, no”. It takes everything in me not to reinforce her hijinks because it’s pretty darn cute, if not grey-hair inducing. It’s usually a sign that she’s finished, or at least ready for a different food.

Lately, I’ve been experimenting with different breakfast ideas that we can share together in the morning. She really took to this oatmeal bowl (which I like to call porridge because it reminds me of Goldilocks and the three bears!), so I decided to share it on here since I’ve been asked so many times for easy baby/toddler foods. I love to use oatmeal as a vehicle for so many add-ins; in this recipe, finely grated carrots and zucchini bulk up the oats with energizing vegetable power, and hemp hearts and chia seeds boost the healthy fats, protein, calcium, fibre, etc. It really is a great start to the day. I don’t even measure it anymore, just throw in what I have on hand and thin as desired.

I was once told that a little one can need up to 30 exposures to a new food before they start to really take to it. Once I heard this, it relaxed me as I didn’t expect her to go wild over a new food right away. I now see it as a learning process for all of us, and it can take time before a food clicks with her tastebuds. This porridge was similar; the first time I gave it to her she was a bit unsure of it (full disclosure: she spit it right out with a dramatic face!), but the second time I offered it she ate a bit more. Now, she just inhales it and gets so impatient if she has to wait for it to cool down! Funny how things can change. Even though every little one is different, it can be reassuring to hear that persistence sometimes pays off. I also try not to get discouraged by an “off” day of eating – some days, for whatever reason, she’s just not into food compared to other days. I figure it all balances out in the end and try not to sweat it!

I’ve been making this breakfast every morning while we’re away, so I snapped a few quick photos for this post. Hope you enjoy!

superfoodporridge

The Three Bears Superfood Porridge

Vegan, gluten-free, nut-free, oil-free, refined sugar-free, soy-free

By

4.9 from 14 reviews
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This thick and hearty porridge is naturally sweetened with mashed banana and finely shredded carrot, and it’s packed with superfoods like chia seeds and hemp hearts. I also love to stir in some finely grated zucchini to pack in even more vegetables. If I’m thinking ahead, I will mix the oatmeal together before bed so it can soften and thicken in the fridge overnight. Soaking cuts down the cook time drastically - all I do in the morning is throw it into a pot and reheat it. It’s unbelievably easy, and when you have a hungry toddler tugging your pants and screaming at your feet, fast is a necessity! Of course, you can prepare it from scratch in the morning too. I also serve Adriana this porridge chilled with great success (I think it feels soothing on teething gums!), so that’s a good option if it’s summer or if you just don’t have time to heat it up.

Yield
3 cups
Prep Time
Cook time
Total Time

Ingredients:

  • 2 large very ripe bananas, peeled and mashed well (heaping 3/4 cup)
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and finely grated (lightly packed 3/4-1 cup)*
  • 1/2 cup finely grated zucchini, optional
  • 1 cup rolled oats, certified gluten-free if necessary
  • 2 1/4 cups water or milk of choice
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • Dash of pink Himalayan sea salt, optional
  • 1-1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon, to taste (I use Ceylon)
  • 2 tablespoons hemp hearts

Directions:

  1. In a medium bowl, mash the banana until almost smooth. Place it into a medium pot.
  2. Peel the carrots. Using the fine grate hole on a box grater, grate the carrots and measure 3/4-1 lightly packed cup. Place it into the pot along with the banana. Grate the zucchini (if using) using the fine grate hole and place it into the pot.
  3. Add the rolled oats, water or milk, chia seeds, and optional dash of salt into the pot. Stir well until combined.
  4. Increase heat to medium and cook the oats, uncovered, stirring frequently and reducing heat if necessary, for about 10-15 minutes until the oats are softened and the mixture thickens. (If you soaked the oatmeal overnight, simply heat it and serve.)
  5. At the end of cooking stir in the cinnamon to taste and all the hemp seeds.
  6. Serve and enjoy with your desired toppings (such as sliced banana, granola, nuts, etc). Leftovers will keep in the fridge in an air-tight container for up to 2 days. To reheat, add oatmeal into a pot on the stove-top and heat over medium heat, stirring in a splash of water or milk if necessary to thin out.

Tips:

Tips:

*I like to use a full cup of shredded carrots, but feel free to use any amount you prefer!

**To save on cooking time, prepare this mixture at night before bed and let it soak in the fridge (covered). In the morning, simply stir and heat on the stove-top, adding more water or milk if desired.

This recipe yields a very thick oatmeal (and it thickens even more when chilled). Feel free to use more liquid if you prefer a thinner consistency.

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{ 68 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Sammi November 9, 2015

I like it being called porridge too because of the Goldilocks story and I’m 26… ;) Sounds delicious and healthy!

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2 Sarah Noelle @ The Yachtless November 9, 2015

Wow, this is such a cool idea to mix in carrots and zucchini! I have overnight oats literally every day for breakfast, but it had never occurred to me to put vegetables in them. I guess it’s kind of similar to making carrot or zucchini bread, isn’t it? Those vegetables just go well with grains. I will have to try this soon — thanks for the idea!
Beautiful photos too (as always). :)

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3 Rachael November 9, 2015

I wouldn’t have thought about putting carrots in my porridge! I love Chia seeds and sliced banana in mine but carrots could add a lovely twist! Thanks so much!

Rachael

http://Www.hellosunday.co.uk

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4 Anne November 9, 2015

Love your recipes! Our family are big ‘porridge’ eaters so this recipe really caught my eye. I’ve never thought to add vegetable to it so might have to try this out!
Funnily enough, I started making changes to our morning porridge when my children were little and we still eat it the same now. I also add mashed bananas in while it is cooking and then stir in either ground flax seed or hemp hearts. I also add in frozen blueberries (and sometimes raspberries). This started as a way to cool the porridge down for my hungry toddlers! I used to throw them in once the porridge was cooked. I also used to throw in cubes of frozen stewed fruit (that I kept in cubes to be added to plain yogurt). Now I add them near the end of the cooking time so that they are cooked through too.

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5 Heather J November 9, 2015

I’d love if you shared more baby-approved recipes! I love when my almost 1 year old can eat the same meal as me.

Btw, I made your veggie burger from the OSG cookbook. I loved them but accidentally used a medium spiced chilli powder… Baby was not impressed!

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6 Julie November 9, 2015

My daughter used to warn me w/ a “no no no!” before she did something she knew she wasn’t supposed to, too… one of my fave memories of when she was a toddler & a story I still share frequently (she just turned 16 last week!).

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7 Jessica November 9, 2015

I have just started switching over to oatmeal in the mornings now that the cold weather is coming. This looks absolutely delicious. Excited to give it a try!

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8 Bella B November 9, 2015

Yum! I love this type of breakfast. I am only 17, but growing up I was one of my only friends that ate so many foods. My parents just fed me anything and everything. I am now a huge lover of food and cooking and I think it was because I wasn’t given chicken strips and fries each and every day. I was given figs, beets, mango…so many good things. ♡♡

xoxoBella | http://xoxobella.com

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9 Alina November 9, 2015

I am so glad the days of throwing food are behind me. My 3 year old and 6 year old are settled into a nice routine and are very good eaters. I know what foods they like and I expose them weekly to new foods to expand their palate.
Hang in there. With love and consistency from you, Adriana will learn to enjoy most foods. It is a long road, but not impossible :). You are doing great!

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10 Laura ~ Raise Your Garden November 10, 2015

Ha, my 3 year old is still the biggest food thrower on the face of the planet. I can see my husband blood actually boiling as she launches rice across the room. And my 5 year old isn’t much better. At least they’re pretty cute or I’d cry. I think you won the title for the cutest title ever for a blog post! Looking forward to trying this though. Breakfast is lovely.

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11 Heidi Kokborg November 9, 2015

I don’t know much about kids but Adriana sounds like a wonderful little kid! & she looks absolutely adorable in the photo..
& the porridge sounds (and looks!!) so good, yummy, and healthy. I can’t wait to try this :)

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12 Paige November 9, 2015

This porridge looks amazing! We’re definitely going to be trying this for breakfast tomorrow morning!

Paige
http://thehappyflammily.com

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13 Fox Kitchen November 9, 2015

oh, so simple but a nice way of incorporating veggies into breakfast!

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14 Emma November 9, 2015

LOVE this! More baby friendly recipes please, although a lot of yours are already and have proved very popular with my two! Keep up the amazing creations!

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15 Liora (Allthingsloveli) November 9, 2015

Love that morning light! Now that the weather has cooled down I’m also enjoying warm oatmeal for breakfast. I also don’t get sick of it because there are unlimited add ins to keep it exciting.

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16 Caroline November 9, 2015

Would never have thought to add carrots in there but I should give it a try. Looks amazing as always!

http://www.mademoiselleaventure.com

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17 Kelley November 9, 2015

I need to try this! My very own toddler has expressed interest in oatmeal and also has a tendency to eat two bites of a banana before abandoning it.

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18 Jennifer November 9, 2015

This porridge looks delicious! I bet stewed apples would make a great topping for this dish :)

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19 Olya November 10, 2015

Intriguing!! Will soak it tonight, thank you for the recipe!

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20 Diana November 10, 2015

My girls’ favourite breakfast at the moment is quinoa, banana and blueberry. I blend 1/2 cup cooked quinoa, 1 banana and 1/2 cup blueberries. Makes 2 servings for my 8 month Olds. Probably wouldn’t have to blend it for now older baby!

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21 Adina November 10, 2015

I never would have thought to put carrots and zucchini into porridge, it definitely makes me curious, I would love to try this, especially since I am extremely uninspired when it comes to breakfast. And I don’t mean to scare you or anything, but wait until your daughter is about 2 (and until 5 or 6), meal times will really be “fuuun” then. :)

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22 Dawn @ Florida Coastal Cooking & Wellness November 10, 2015

OMG so true. Raising children is the most difficult but most rewarding thing we can ever do.One of the biggest joys is teaching my daughter about eating whole, clean, plant-based foods. I love seeing her now teach other children what she’s learned. She even wants to start her own business to help other children learn about what’s in the foods they’re eating. (i.e. those little build-your-own meals full of processed cheeses and meats…you know what I’m talking about.) This is an AWESOME option and I love that you tied it into a story!

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23 Allysia November 10, 2015

I think that “30 exposures to a new food” thing is really important both for kids and adults! So many times I hear people say they hate this food or that food, when they haven’t tried it in 20 years and had a bad experience once.

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24 Charlotte Adams November 10, 2015
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Hey Angela!

I wanted to tell you that I made this last night and ate it this morning warmed up! It was DELICIOUS! I made it in a jar and layered it like a parfait with some So delicious coconut yogurt, one banana with cinnamon and a little bit of your cinnamon granola! YUM!!!

Thank you for the recipe!

Charlotte

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25 Maddy @ The Sweetest Beet November 10, 2015

Love the produce combo in this porridge! I’ve been recently adding carrot too and I’ve found it is VERY similar to carrot cake, something that makes a perfect breakfast :) I’ll have to try the zucchini too, what a great idea! Love the blog!

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26 Vicky November 10, 2015

This recipe looks really tasty, but how many servings is it?

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27 Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat November 10, 2015

Aw I love this story Ange! I’m sure it won’t be long before Adriana is following you around the kitchen, wanting to mix batter for muffins or sneak bites of your glow bar dough! The 30 exposures thing is interesting…. I detested beets as a kid because my dad only ever had them pickled. As an adult, I now LOVE them (but usually roasted!) I’m not sure if it took me 30 exposures to get there, but it’s probably close!

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28 Peggy @ Kawartha Wellness November 10, 2015

Yum! I love anything that could potentially taste like carrot cake. Definitely going to give this a try tonight. Thank you, as always, for your delicious ideas.

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29 Kristen November 10, 2015

Angela, Hi…thank you so much for another great recipe! It is great that your back! My husband and I have missed your posts and recipes! This and the burrito bowl are on the list for this week! Would you ever consider more meal plan posts or even a meal plan we could subscribe to? So many bloggers and companies are launching them…but…although some are good … none are comparable to you! We’ve cooked your cookbook and blog for years and are blown away every time! In fact, I even freeze some meals as lunches and every time my husband takes one for lunch ..he Says WOW that was amazing! Every single time! We loved your last plan and the hidden greens smoothie is our go to breakfast! Your smashed potatoes with avocado cream are unbelievable! Your soups amazing! Granola terrific! Everything! We truly thank you for your hard work and dedication! You are making a tremendous difference in the world! ❤️

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30 Kristen November 10, 2015

And can’t wait for your new cookbook!

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31 Heather Mason @NuttyNutrition November 10, 2015

wow, I love that you managed to pack in not one, but TWO veggies with breakfast. Never tried carrots in oatmeal before, but I guess I’m going to have to now.

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32 Chelsey November 10, 2015

I never would have thought to add carrots or zucchini to porridge! Great idea :)

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33 Joe T November 10, 2015

Breakfast is something I’ve been trying to rethink lately, so it’s funny you posted this today as I was just thinking the other day “what can I do with oatmeal to shake things up a bit”… needless to say, this recipe is mixed up and in the fridge for the morning… hopefully my three little bears will give it a go!
Thanks!

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34 Heather@TheSoulfulSpoon November 11, 2015

What a cute recipe! I love making oats every single night and they are one of the top foods I recommend to everyone … big and small. I used to love when my mom would make me oatmeal as a child and I know that’s why I still love it to this day. I’m sure your sweet little one will feel the same some day about oats (and you!) too:) Plus, look at all that goodness in there! I have yet to try zucchini in my oats but do love it in smoothies, so I’m sure it is delicious in oats too. Thanks for the reminder!:)

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35 Michaela November 11, 2015

Love the recipe….

How is breastfeeding ? do you still breastfeed my girl in that time refuse breast and prefer real food …but every baby toddler is different

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36 Cristal Porter November 11, 2015
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Yes yes yes. This made my LIFE. Love oatmeal but this was like comfort baby food. Took me back to being a kid! Will be having my 7 month old try a small bite. Thank you for sharing!

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37 Jessica @ Styled Nutrition November 11, 2015

Yum! I’ve been needing some new breakfast inspiration!

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38 Katie November 11, 2015

Yes! I make an oatmeal like this that I call “zucchini bread” oatmeal (because, sometimes I put chocolate chips on it!) and it’s delish. I have a 15 month old who is very suspicious of new foods. It truly does take a good 10 times with certain dishes before he warms up to them.

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39 Dave November 11, 2015

Sounds like a wonderful recipe. Question could this recipe be cooked in the crock pot on low? Just curious if anyone has tried and what the results would be. I might give it a try to help save on time and have a nice breakfast ready in the morning.

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40 Kristina November 11, 2015
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These are delicious! Made a half-batch this morning because I only one banana. I will definitely be making this in the future. Kudos, Angela!

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41 Tiffany November 12, 2015
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This porridge is amazing! I added just a little honey and my husband absolutely loved it!

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42 Summer November 12, 2015

I just made it this morning for my one year old. I put it together last night, but the oats didn’t absorb as much liquid as I thought they would. I heated it up, and he didn’t like it. I cooked it a bit longer, so it’s nice and thick and chewy now, and he LOVES it. It’s much tastier than I anticipated, and I love how much extra nutrients it has. Thank you!

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43 Sonia November 13, 2015

Thanks for this! Just got some suction bowls for my 1 year old. She’s going to love this recipe, and I will too! Awesome idea to sneak in veggies. Thank you thank you!

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44 Adina November 13, 2015

I made this porridge and have been eating it for 3 days now, I just love it. I left out the zucchini, because I did not have any. Thank you for the recipe. :)

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45 Tara November 13, 2015

This sounds like exactly what I’m going to do with the leftover “pulp” from my juicer!

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46 Anne November 14, 2015
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Just made some in my steam oven which make the best porridge. I also added grated ginger. This was the porridge ever! My husband better get up soon or there will be none left.

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47 Anna Lee November 14, 2015

Wow, I would have never thought to add zucchini or carrots to porridge. What a great idea to sneak in some veggies! I can’t wait to try this!

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48 Kristin K November 15, 2015
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This is the first recipe I’ve tried from your website and I just loved it! Thanks for the ideas. I’m always looking for ways to incorporate more veggies in my diet :)

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49 Kathleen November 15, 2015
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Porridge was a success for me and my 11-month-old! Delicious using your almond milk recipe :)

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50 Joana Gil November 16, 2015
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I tried this recipe this morning… It was sooo delicious! Never thought of putting vegetables in my porridge. The only thing I did differently from the recipe was that I didn’t use zucchini as I didn’t have it. Thank you for this tasty recipe! :)

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51 Jessica J. November 16, 2015

i want to make this for breakfast tomorrow. I have some zucchini from the summer garden that i shredded and froze to use in a zucchini bread this winter – but this sounds way better.

do you think the frozen zucchini will make much difference?

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52 Susan November 17, 2015
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Like the other comments, it has not occurred to me to add carrots and zucchini to oats. I made this and after cooking, portioned it out to 4 servings. It sat in the fridge for 2 days and I enjoyed this for breakfast today. It was soooo good. (And my husband loved it too). The only thing I did differently was throw the carrots, zucchini and banana into the food processor and finely chopped it (I was too lazy to grate). Love this and will add it to my breakfast rotation.

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53 Mary November 17, 2015

This is so precious! And looks delish, too. ;) Sweet to see the baby bear in the post!

https://petalsandcorks.wordpress.com/

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54 Alison November 17, 2015

Ah, I remember those early toddler years! Your comment about oats being a good vehicle for healthy add-ins reminded me that I also did the same with pureed beans. My kiddo would even eat steamed, finely chopped kale if it was stirred into beans! Over time I stopped pureeing the beans and just threw in whatever veg I wanted into a bowl of beans. She is now 13 and she still loves her beans and greens! I wish you all the best, thanks for your inspiring posts.

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55 Anbe Sivam November 18, 2015

Thanks for your wonderful article .Eat Healthy Live Healthy …Every one are not living for eating but eat for living.

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56 Heather D. November 18, 2015

Wow! Your recipes are making me hungry! I would love for you to join my recipe round up that is LIVE right now until tomorrow (Thursday) night. http://allergy-friendlytastebuds.blogspot.com/2015/11/thursday-recipe-round-up-starts-now-and.html

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57 Mishka November 18, 2015

I’m so thankful for your blog and your book, Angela!!! I recently learned I have to be gluten free from now on, so the first thing I did was go out and buy your book so I could SURVIVE! I’ve grown to love porridge now, especially as it gets colder!! Thank you ♡!!!

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58 Katie November 18, 2015
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Twenty-two month old and five year old approved–good job and thanks!

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59 Liv Faye November 18, 2015
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Love it when you can add even more goodness to a healthy dish <3 Thanks for sharing Adriana's story, I'm sure she'll develop the love for good food her mom has in no time :) She's so lucky to have you as her mom, you're doing an awesome job!

Just one question, is the carrot flavor subtle or a bit pronounced?

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60 Jess November 20, 2015

I have a three-year-old and I’ve found that every stage with him has been more fun than the last (though I expect there will be a plateau and falling off around middle school). I’m not saying that you shouldn’t savor this time in your daughter’s life, but the best days may well be yet to come. I look forward to making your porridge recipe for my little guy.

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61 Sheena Yap Chan November 24, 2015

that looks pretty interesting. never thought to put these ingredients together. thanks

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62 Janelle November 26, 2015
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What a cute little toddler! This recipe is great, I’m going to make this on the weekend and then read the three little bears to my little one, he’ll love it! :)

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63 Hooriah December 30, 2015
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Tried it and loved it, yet another innovative recipe! I used almond milk and its nutty flavour really complemented the zucchini so that was sick. I noticed you called the salt “pink Himalayan sea salt,” cute fact for you is that Himalayan pink salt comes from the Himalayan mountains, the farthest you could probably be from the sea on Earth all the love Ang ♡

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64 Ana @ Ana's Rocket Ship January 4, 2016

Anything inspired by a fairy tale was always going to be a winner with me – but then I saw how awesome this oatmeal (or porridge) was and I’m in love. It’s ‘just right’ times a gazillion!

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65 Vicki January 12, 2016
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This is SO GOOD!!!! How do you keep coming up with such great recipes?!

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66 Hypnosis Adelaide February 1, 2016

I think it was clever that you named this recipe “the three bears” because I think this recipe is just right! :)

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67 Colleen February 12, 2016

? These oats! I’m in love!! I can’t wait to try and get this nutrition packed delicious looking concoction into my 4 year old! Thanks for the idea ?

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68 Melanie Richmond March 30, 2016

I am doing the Conscious Cleanse and this is a perfect breakfast option. Made it last night and 1 minute of warming up is perfect. Great to take to work in a mason jar. Love the sneaking in of the veggies!

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