Baked black forest oatmeal

In my continuing effort to find new and interested uses for the massive bags of quick cooking oats I have, I decided to put on my mad scientist lab coat and experiment.  I have seen a variety of baked berry and fruit oatmeals floating around Pinterest and Facebook, but none that would use the 21oz can of cherry pie filling I was hoping to use (I have found a much better recipe for cherry pie, which I will hopefully get around to posting once I get some better pictures of a pie).  As a result of this experimentation, last night I created baked black forest oatmeal.

*Lightning crash. Wolf howl*

*Lightning crash. Wolf howl*

Ok, so that may be a bit dramatic. It’s basically a chocolate and cherry baked oatmeal, with some chocolate bits on top, and if you want a more complete black forest cake type experience, you can certainly serve it with whipped cream (even booze-spiked whipped cream). I wasn’t really intending to make a black forest oatmeal variant, as I was just throwing stuff in a bowl, but this was the end result.  It’s tasty enough that I may want to remember how the heck I got there in the future, so up on the blog it goes.  Chris is really not a fruit+chocolate person, so he’s pretty lukewarm on it, but if you like black forest cake (and like eating cake for breakfast), this may be worth a try.

Ingredients (for 12 generous servings)

1 can (21 oz) cherry pie filling

3 very ripe bananas, mashed

1 cup milk

2 eggs

1/4 cup cocoa powder (natural or Dutch processed-I used Dutch this time)

4 cups quick cook oats

2 cups rolled oats

2 tbsp (depending on your tastes) vanilla extract

1/3 cup dark chocolate chips

1/3 cup white chocolate chips

 

Method

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In a large mixing bowl, mash the bananas, then add the rest of the wet ingredients and stir until combined.  Add in the cocoa powder and mix well,  Once the mixture is well combined, stir in the oats until coated.  Pour into a greased 9″x13″ tray, and top with both kinds of chocolate chips.  Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until oatmeal is set.  It can be served warm, or just stash it in the fridge and heat individual servings.  I like to reheat it with a good pour of milk over it, but it’s actually pretty tasty just as is.  If you want to use frozen cherries instead of the pie filling, go for it, but you’ll want to add some more milk and some sweetener of some sort (1/2 cup sugar, maybe? That’s just a guess at amount).   Similarly, if you don’t have bananas that you desperately need to get rid of, you can probably use an extra egg, 1/4 cup sugar and a couple of tablespoons of canola oil or melted butter instead (at least, that’s what I’d try first as a sub for those).

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