Food and Drink

Porridge recipes: 8 ways to pimp your oats this winter

From sticky toffee apple toppings to antioxidant-rich ‘purple porridge’ bowls, transform your favourite winter breakfast with one of these delicious recipes.

Porridge is considered to be one of the top superfoods, containing 25% more protein than refined grains such as white flour, pasta and white rice.

Throw in the fact that there’s no better way to warm yourself up on a cold winter’s morning than with a steaming hot bowl of porridge oats, and you have an abundance of reasons to change your perspective on the typically bland breakfast staple.

If you’re sick of plain old oats with milk and sugar (or salt, if you’re one of those people), then try pimping your porridge with one of the delicious recipes below.

Because, from sweet to savoury, wholesome to outrageously decadent, there truly is something here to suit everyone’s taste.

Bon apetit!

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First things first, make your porridge:

Most cereal manufacturers will include cooking guidelines on the box. As a rough guide, though, aim for 50g porridge oats per person.

Pop them in a saucepan with 350ml milk, milk substitute, or water. Bring to the boil and simmer for 4-5 minutes, stirring from time to time and watching carefully that it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.

And then… voila! Your porridge is ready, leaving you primed to pimp it with one of the following recipes…

  • Strawberry-Lemon Chia Seed Jam

    Strawberry-Lemon Chia Seed Jam
    Strawberry-Lemon Chia Seed Jam

    Chia seeds have a great little party trick: when you mix them with water they turn into a gel. Ta-da! This makes them perfect for jam making. Just mix your strawberries (or any other fruits you love) with these tiny seeds, and you’ll get a beautiful, fresh-tasting jam that is just the right consistency without using tons of sugar.

    • 3 cups (495 g) sliced strawberries, plus
    • 8 whole strawberries, hulled
    • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
    • 2 tablespoons maple syrup or honey
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • ½ teaspoon fresh lemon juice
    • ¼ teaspoon lemon zest

    Method: Place the sliced strawberries in a medium skillet and heat over medium heat. Gently stir until the strawberries begin to break down and the liquid evaporates, about five minutes.

    Transfer the cooked berries to a high-speed blender and add the fresh berries, chia seeds, syrup or honey, vanilla, lemon juice, and lemon zest and briefly blend until it reaches a jam-like consistency. Allow the jam to cool to room temperature.

    Serve immediately with your porridge, or pour it into a jar with a lid, cool, and place it in the fridge. The jam will continue to thicken as it chills, and should be fine in the fridge for about 10 days.

    Recipe supplied via Pescan: A Feel Good Cookbook by Abbie Cornish and Jacqueline King (Abrams, £21.99)

    Image: Ren Fuller

  • Toffee Apple Porridge

    Toffee Apple Porridge
    Toffee Apple Porridge

    This deliciously sticky toffee apple breakfast recipe can be used to top porridge or pancakes: the choice is yours!

    You will need:

    • 40g essential Waitrose Dairy Butter
    • 4 apples, cored and cut into thin wedges 
    • 3 tbsp clear honey
    • 3 tbsp light brown soft sugar
    • 4 generous scoops clotted cream
    • 25g hazelnuts, chopped and toasted

    Method: Heat the butter in a large frying pan. Add the apple wedges and fry for 3 minutes until beginning to soften and turn golden. Stir through the honey and sprinkle over the brown sugar. Continue to cook for a further four minutes until sticky and glazed. 

    Divide topping between six to eight bowls of porridge, or set some aside to cool and freeze for later. Top with a scoop of cream, drizzle over any sauce left in the pan and scatter with hazelnuts before serving.

    Recipe supplied via Waitrose & Partners. Find this and thousands more recipes at www.waitrose.com/recipes.

    Image sourced via Getty.

  • Oatmeal Cacio e Pepe

    Chrissy Teigen (as in, actual Chrissy Teigen) invented this savoury porridge recipe for Cravings, and shared it via her Instagram.

    “Oats get a bad rap for being bland, but their neutral flavoring makes them a perfect base for any mix-ins… even savoury ones!” she says.

    “While oats and cheese may not be the first combo that comes to mind, who can deny a morning cheese pull? Meet your new go-to treat yo self cosy bowl.”

    You will need:

    • 1 cup milk
    • 1 cup water
    • 1 cup rolled oats
    • 1 cup finely grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, plus more for garnish
    • ¼ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
    • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
    • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste

    Method: You can find the recipe in full on the Cravings By Chrissy Teigen website.

    Recipe and image sourced via Cravings By Chrissy Teigen.

  • Purple Porridge

    Purple Porridge
    Purple Porridge

    Anthocyanins – a specific pigment found in high concentrations in blackcurrants, blackberries and blueberries, as well as in aubergine (in the skin), red cabbage, cranberries and cherries – are a very beneficial antioxidant. And this Purple Porridge recipe is a wonderful way to get your daily anthocyanin boost.

    You will need:

    • 2 tsp Haskapa powder
    • 1 handful of blueberries/blackcurrants
    • 2 tbsp of chopped nuts
    • 1 tsp honey (optional)

    Method: Prepare your porridge as usual, then add your Haskapa powder and mix thoroughly. Top with blueberries, chopped nuts, and a drizzle of honey, if you like your porridge on the sweeter side.

    Recipe and image supplied via Haskapa.

  • Chocolate Cherry Oats

    If you’re a big porridge fan, then you should definitely make a point of following @oatmeal_stories on Instagram, as Magda (who runs the account) is always peppering her feed with delicious and unusual twists on the classic ‘oatmeal’ breakfast. And this one, which promises to taste just like a Black Forest gateau, is an absolute must-try.

    You will need:

    • 50g (1/2 cup) rolled oats
    • 1/4 cup frozen cherries
    • 1 tsp cacao powder
    • pinch of sea salt
    • 1/2 tsp of vanilla extract
    • 1 tbsp almond or hazelnut butter
    • 1 tbsp maple syrup (or sweetener of choice)
    • 240ml (1 cup) of water
    • 60ml (1/4 cup) of almond milk

    Method: You can find the recipe in full via @oatmeal_stories on Instagram.

    Recipe and image sourced via @oatmeal_stories on Instagram.

  • Easy Overnight Maple Oats

    Easy Overnight Maple Oats
    Easy Overnight Maple Oats

    Not all porridge has to be served warm. So, if you have a busy morning ahead of you, why not try whipping up a bowl of syrupy oats overnight to grab and go the next day?

    You will need:

    • 225g rolled oats
    • 3 tbsp chia seeds
    • 600ml unsweetened almond milk
    • 4 tbsp Greek or natural yoghurt
    • 4 tbsp pure maple syrup (preferably dark syrup for its robust taste)
    • 4 tbsp roughly chopped almonds or hazelnuts
    • 1 tsp nutmeg
    • 6 ripe, stoned and chopped plums

    Method: In a bowl or sealable container, mix oats, chia seeds, almond milk, yoghurt, maple syrup, half the chopped nuts and nutmeg together Stir through five chopped plums, cover and leave refrigerated overnight

    When ready to serve, stir and divide into bowls or glasses Top with remaining chopped plums, almonds or hazelnuts, and an extra drizzle of maple syrup. And feel free to adapt this year-round dish using your favourite seasonal fruit.

    Recipe and image supplied via Maple From Canada.

  • Life-Changing Instant Superfood Porridge

    Life-Changing Instant Superfood Porridge
    Life-Changing Instant Superfood Porridge

    This porridge recipe promises to be nutrient-dense, energising, and easy to throw together. And, thanks to the chia seeds in it, all you have to do to turn it into a thick, delicious porridge is pour it in a bowl and mix it with milk or your favourite milk substitute – win!.

    You will need:

    • 1 cup (175 g) buckwheat groats
    • 2 cups (180 g) old-fashioned, gluten-free, or
    • extra-thick rolled oats
    • 1 cup (165 g) chia seeds
    • 1 cup (165 g) hemp seeds
    • 1 cup (85 g) dried coconut flakes
    • Milk or milk substitute

    Method: Toast the buckwheat in a dry skillet over medium heat for one minute. Add the oats and stir frequently, until lightly toasted, about 3 minutes more. Add the chia and hemp

    seeds and toast for another minute.

    Turn off the heat, toss in the coconut, and stir. Let cool and store in an airtight container in a cupboard for up to one month.

    For each serving, pour 60g porridge into a bowl and cover it with the warmed milk or milk substitute of your choice. Let stand for three minutes to thicken, and try topping with one of the following options:

    • Raspberries, pine nuts, and fresh mint
    • Mangoes, cashews, dates, and a pinch turmeric (best teamed with coconut milk)
    • Sweet potatoes, raisins, cinnamon, walnuts, and maple syrup (best teamed with almond milk)
    • Peanut butter, banana, and cacao nibs (best teamed with chocolate cashew milk)

    Recipe supplied via Pescan: A Feel Good Cookbook by Abbie Cornish and Jacqueline King (Abrams, £21.99)

    Image: Ren Fuller

  • A Berry Buttery Porridge Bowl

    A Berry Buttery Porridge Bowl
    A Berry Buttery Porridge Bowl

    When Stylist’s Hollie Richardson learned we were compiling a series of porridge recipes, she made it clear that her own DIY technique is every bit as delicious as it is easy.

    You will need…

    • Oat milk
    • 1 tsp butter (on a cheeky day)
    • 1 banana, chopped
    • 1 tbsp crunchy peanut butter
    • 1 handful of berries 
    • 2 tsp honey
    • 2 tsp chia seeds
    • Sprinkle of Maldon salt!

    Method: Make your porridge as normal, using oat milk and stirring the butter and salt into the pan as you heat it up on the hob. Remove from the heat, stir in the chia seeds, and leave for them to soak in for a few minutes. Top with peanut butter, fruit, and honey.

    Recipe and image supplied via Hollie Richardson.

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