For some reason, the days that I work in the office are days when I can never fully satisfy my appetite no matter what I bring to nibble on during "slow" times or for lunch time. I find myself nibbling all day or going out for lunch after I've spent precious sleeping time on packing a wholesome, balanced meal from home.
I love oatmeal because it is quick, convenient, and healthy...when it is plain and all by itself. I loathe having to pile on the maple syrup, brown sugar, and other sweeteners to make it taste somewhat exciting and palatable. Those small store-bought packets are not nearly enough to keep me full during those agonizing four and a half hours before lunch time. I have met my solution:
I have discovered a much more healthy, creative approach to making oatmeal more satisfying and dressing it up.
I went to the store and purchased a tin of old fashioned oats. I can customize how much or how little I want to eat that morning and still, all I have to do is add some water and milk and it is just as instant as an instant oatmeal packet!
I leave my oatmeal to cool while I finish making myself look presentable for the day and then add a layer of yogurt. Depending on what I have on hand, I will use vanilla yogurt (Greek for more protein) or plain and then drizzle a little bit of honey or agave to sweeten.
I top it with any berries that I have on hand (raspberries and blackberries are shown) and walnuts.
When I don't have berries on hand (I only buy them on sale or pick them fresh) I use a flavored Greek yogurt like Chobani with peaches. They also have an apple cinnamon flavor which I think would be absolutely delightful but have not yet tried. Chopped up apples would be a great replacement for berries too!
The possible combinations are endless but ultimately, this keeps me full for hours because it takes me a while to finish the entire bowl and it is rich in fiber and protein, which keep you satisfied longer. I also feel good about starting my day with a healthy choice, which will lead to making more healthy choices throughout the day. I never thought such a simple, quick breakfast could make me feel so accomplished and powerful so early in the day! Enjoy!
Edit 11/28/12: Vanilla yogurt (as well as any flavored yogurt) usually contains a lot of sugar! I've switched to using either half of a single-serving cup of flavored yogurts or mixing some Truvia with plain yogurt and adding fresh or frozen fruit. Fruits in general have a lot of sugar but you can eliminate a lot by just adding your own fresh ingredients.