Home ยป if it sounds too good to be true…

if it sounds too good to be true…

I’m all about pre-made breakfasts for the busy work week. And when I saw this recipe, it sounded too good to be true. The second half of that saying reads, “…then chances are it is.” And that it was…too good to be true. 🙁

Pumpkin & Caramelized Banana Baked Oatmeal from Healthy Food for Living

canola oil cooking spray
1 Tbsp unsalted butter 50/50 Smart Balance Butter Blend
2 large yellow-green bananas, sliced
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 Tbsp pure maple syrup
2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup dried fruit of choice (I used raisins)
1/2 cup chopped toasted nuts or seeds (I used walnuts)
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 1/2 cups skim milk
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp pure maple extract


Preheat oven to 375° F. Lightly coat an 8-inch square or round baking dish with cooking spray.

Melt butter in a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add in the sliced bananas and cook for 2 minutes, gently stirring every now and then. Add cinnamon and maple syrup and let mixture boil & thicken for about 30 seconds. Spoon the bananas into the bottom of the prepared dish, and spread in an even layer. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, mix together the oats, dried fruit, nuts or seeds, brown sugar, baking powder, and pumpkin pie spice. Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the milk, pumpkin puree, egg, and maple extract.

Stir the oat mixture into the milk & pumpkin mixture. Pour over the bananas in the dish.

Bake for 35-40 minutes, until the top is lightly browned and crisp. Allow to cool for a few minutes before serving. Serves 4.

Nutrition Information: 517 calories; 15.5 g. fat; 60 mg. cholesterol; 338 mg. sodium; 87 g. carbohydrate; 38 g. sugar; 10.8 g. fiber; 13.8 g. protein

Result: 🙁 I’ve made lots of Lauren’s recipes and this has been the first bust. I was really excited about the recipe as I was preparing it — pumpkin, oatmeal, maple syrup…yum! When I ate it yesterday morning, I took about 4-5 bites before throwing it all out…. and I HATE wasting food. I was totally disappointed, especially after calculating the nutrition information. It’s a good thing I didn’t eat much of it…the carbohydrates are about 2x what I aim to have in a meal, and the grams of sugar are really high (this is because of the raisins, not the sugar). Other than the carbohydrate/sugar issue, the oatmeal bake was really dense and dry. Total bummer!

Some of you have asked if I ever make recipes I DON’T like and obviously unfortunately the answer is yes! I really do try to give fair, constructive, and honest reviews of the recipes we try.

I’m going to make a tried and true baked oatmeal this morning that comes in at 245 calories and 41.2 g. carbohydrate. I have my heart set on baked oatmeal, what can I say? 😉

Mr. P and I enjoyed some delicious pizza Sunday night made with the amazing Parmesan Pizza Crust and zucchini and spicy turkey sausage toppings! A combination of my favorite pizza crust recipe and my favorite pizza topping recipes… YUM! YUM! YUM!

Question: What was your last disaster in the kitchen? Did you end up eating it or tossing it?

P.S. Don’t forget to enter my giveaway for chances to win one of 2 mandolines! You have until tomorrow at 9pm EST! :-d

Have a super day!

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  1. September 28, 2010 / 6:56 am

    Oh what a BUMMER!! I hate wasting food too, especially after you’ve worked hard to prepare it (or at least put some time into it). But you know what else I hate? WAsting calories on disgusting food. What’s the point?! YOu may as well eat the foods you enjoy!

    So, when are we going to Burgers, Dogs, and Fries?! Let’s plan something for the third week in October (the 23rd??). Maybe on a Saturday night?? That way Market District will be open, and then maybe we can do a fire at our house, and it will finally be colder outside!

  2. September 28, 2010 / 7:20 am

    Boo!! I hate recipe fails!

  3. September 28, 2010 / 7:25 am

    I’m sad the baked oatmeal didn’t work out- I usually love it!

    My last disaster was the eggplant incident… not pretty!

  4. September 28, 2010 / 7:59 am

    Cooking fails always make me feel guilty. I hate throwing food out, too. Mine usually involve eggplant. I can never get that right. Actually, I’m starting to wonder whether I just don’t like the texture.

  5. September 28, 2010 / 8:04 am

    It’s always disappointing when a recipe doesn’t work out the way you hoped. I tried making ginger chicken with sesame spinach one night and it was completely awful. After one bite we decided that anything else would be better. lol

  6. September 28, 2010 / 8:49 am

    Bummer, that pumpkin oat breakfast really did sound delicious. I love premade breakfasts/snacks as well. This leads me to want to experiment creating one of my own.

  7. September 28, 2010 / 9:14 am

    I bookmarked that recipe and was totally excited about it! Now I’m glad I read about your experience before making it myself… Total bummer because you’re right, most of Lauren’s recipes are great!

    • September 28, 2010 / 9:21 am

      Katie – please try the baked oatmeal if it sounded/looked good to you on my blog. It came out perfectly when I made it :).

  8. September 28, 2010 / 9:19 am

    Hmmm… I’m perplexed. I loved my pumpkin baked oatmeal! When I made it, the oatmeal was neither dry nor dense. I hope others follow my recipe and are happier about the results.

  9. September 28, 2010 / 9:34 am

    Perhaps due to oven discrepancies the baked oatmeal you made was baked for too long? I’ve been pondering what might have gone wrong, and this is the only reason I can think of.

  10. September 28, 2010 / 10:35 am

    Bummer about the baked oatmeal! I’ve never had baked oatmeal and it always looks/sounds so delicious. I HATE wasting food, too. My last disaster was when I made chocolate chewy cookies….I was SO excited, and they just LOOKED bad (I was supposed to take them somewhere). I still ate them (and they did taste great!), but I was bummed about how they looked. ๐Ÿ™

  11. September 28, 2010 / 11:07 am

    My last disaster was the black bean brownies I tried to make. I haven’t actually baked anything since lol

  12. September 28, 2010 / 11:07 am

    Oooo I hate wasting food too.. and that’s why sometimes I get nervous to make new things — especially if it’s a new GF baked good. I try to really research “regular” recipes before I piece together a new creation though.. so I’ve been very fortunate… yet still had some busts!

    And OMG that pizza looks divine!

  13. September 28, 2010 / 11:12 am

    I love a good baked oatmeal. Sorry about this one. ๐Ÿ™ At least you’ve got a tried and true one to always go back to!

  14. September 28, 2010 / 1:07 pm

    Yesterday I rushed through making an easy apple crisp while exhausted and it turned out very apple not-so crisp. Despite it’s apperance though, it was delicious over vanilla ice cream.

  15. September 28, 2010 / 2:26 pm

    That sucks. I hate it when I put the effort into making a dish and it turns out gross. However, it looks like your dog was very interested in trying it out:)

  16. losingmore
    September 28, 2010 / 2:40 pm

    my last disaster was when I made your recipe for no bake cookies…I think I went wrong in using Land O Lakes light stick butter….they never set up and got hard…tasted great though. I dumped them the next day, and used regular butter, and they came out fabulous!!! Light butter can be a tricky ingredient to work with!

  17. September 28, 2010 / 2:56 pm

    I hate when things like this dont work out! Its SO disappointing.

  18. September 28, 2010 / 3:17 pm

    What a bust! I hate wasting food too but it sounds not very appetizing. My last fail… Hemp muffins. They turned out WAY too hempy.

  19. September 28, 2010 / 4:28 pm

    I love baked oatmeal! Too bad that wasn’t a good recipe. It doesn’t look as fluffy as the way I’ve seen it. Let me know if you need another recipe for it. I have one that I love.

  20. September 28, 2010 / 4:45 pm

    I’m sorry that recipe was a bust! You are right, it sounded so promising. I tend to have lots of disasters in the kitchen unfortunately. haha.
    I think the last disaster was burning bread I was using as a pizza crust. It was such a simple thing but still, burnt it I did.

  21. September 28, 2010 / 5:52 pm

    That sucks it didn’t work out! One time my husband and I woke up, turned on the t.v. and started watching a movie. It was probably close to 11:00 before I made us something to eat.

    My blood sugar was starting to drop, I attempted to make hash browns, did add oil or Pam or anything, so after about 10 minutes I went to flip them, completely stuck!

    I took the pan off the stove and threw the whole thing in the garbage! At that point my husband gave me a glass of orange juice and fixed us breakfast! I am a biotch when my blood sugar gets too low!

  22. September 28, 2010 / 7:09 pm

    Awww, sorry it didn’t work out – the pizza is making my mouth water though – I SO wish I had a piece as a pre-workout snack right now ๐Ÿ™‚

  23. September 28, 2010 / 8:05 pm

    Oh no, that’s too bad about the baked oatmeal! I also hate wasting food, but I’ve had to scrap entire batches of stuff also. The pizza looks to die for though!

  24. September 28, 2010 / 9:28 pm

    Bummer, it looks and sounds really good.

  25. September 28, 2010 / 9:44 pm

    That pizza looks divine. Love the little basil? flourish on top…

  26. September 28, 2010 / 9:58 pm

    I hate when a recipes flops. It’s the worse especially because you bought all the ingredients to make the recipe and then spend the time preparing it only to find out it was not what you expected! Bummer!

  27. September 29, 2010 / 8:00 am

    It sucks when a recipe doesn’t turn out, but if you never try, you’ll never know! I’ve had many flops, but I look at it as having two times the amount of successes! ๐Ÿ™‚

  28. October 3, 2010 / 2:27 pm

    38g of sugar ouch!, but the name of the recipe does sound tasty. My most recent kitchen disaster would be banana pancakes. I was running low on flour so I decided to make my own flour substitution using brown rice. I figured making brown rice flour shouldn’t be that hard…right? just pour some grains into the blender and pulverize until a fine & powder texture. Well, I didn’t get the grains as fine as I would like, because it was taking too long. Long story short, the pancakes were very grainy but I ate it. …..More fiber !!

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