Oatmeal is like going to the gym: either you love it or you hate it. There's no gray area here, so if you're one of the haters who thinks oatmeal is too bland and boring to jump-start your morning, it's time to think again. When I came across Trader Joe's Steel Cut Organic Oats, one of the healthiest and cheapest ($3) options on the market, my life changed forever.
Unlike the most commonly bought rolled oats, steel-cut oats are 100 percent whole grain. They're low in sugar but high in protein and fiber, which keeps you feeling fuller longer. Added perk? They keep cholesterol low and help burn fat . . . umm, hell yeah! This healthy grain delivers a fuller texture, which means it's a bit chewier than rolled oats or oat bran. No need to fret because it's actually a great thing. You can be sure you're eating a whole grain loaded with tons of nutrients if you have to chew a bit more, so don't be lazy. Health is wealth, right?
I've prepared my oatmeal in many ways but very recently discovered the easiest of them all: overnight oats. I know I'm incredibly late on this trend, and for that apologies are in order, but no judgments are allowed. I'm legitimately obsessed — like, I weep at how easy this method is.
Why do I love this product? Trader Joe's Steel Cut Organic Oats are marvelously chewy, full of nutrients, and übersatisfying. There are no artificial additives, just the natural sweetness of milk (I use almond) and fresh fruit. Add a handful of nuts and drizzle a little honey on top if you're feeling fancy. Also, the fiber and protein keep me full all the way until lunchtime, no snacking necessary, and it's so simple and nutritious.
Each 1/4-cup serving has only 150 calories but four grams of fiber and five grams of protein. Better yet, a serving only has one gram of sugar, so you can feel comfortable adding natural sweeteners, like fruit, on top to perk it up. If you need some oatmeal inspiration, try my go-to recipe.
Prices and products may vary by Trader Joe's location.
— Additional reporting by Lauren Harano