May I introduce you to my current breakfast obsession, Golden Milk Oatmeal? I love it for a few reasons, but mostly because it’s a great way to start my day with some hidden veggies, healthy fats and the antioxidant benefits of turmeric. But here’s a random fact about me: I really can’t stand drinking anything other than water or plain tea. (Or wine, if I’m being totally upfront).
Ever since I was a kid, anything that made my teeth feel “fuzzy”, like juice or (*GAG*) milk was a no-go for me and honestly it hasn’t changed much as an adult. I’m probably one of the only food bloggers out there who despises smoothies, is squicked out by the ubiquitous cool-kid green juices and who hates smoothie bowls on textural principles alone. Yeah, I’m a weirdo.
So although I loved the idea of golden milk type beverages — healthy fats! antioxidants! anti-inflammatory goodness, oh my! — I wasn’t exactly thrilled by the idea of trying to drink something that’s as thick and creamy as coconut milk based drinks are bound to be. No, sir. Which is when I had the idea to make golden milk and then add it to my favorite grainless oatmeal base! All the happiness of the “Am I Cool Yet?” beverage du jour, none of the furry teeth feeling!
While I do enjoy the spiced goodness of the classic turmeric-laced beverage in terms of flavor, it makes for a surprisingly good breakfast because it’s not quite totally savory, yet not quite sweet, either. The result is a Golden Milk Oatmeal that straddles the perfect balancing point between the two extremes and makes for a comforting breakfast bowl.
That said, working with ground turmeric can be tricky because it can be a little pungent or powdery if overdone. Which is why I decided to squeeze some fresh cara cara orange juice and zest into this recipe. The sweet-tartness of the orange helps elevate the Golden Milk Oatmeal out of “are you sure this isn’t a liquid curry?” territory and brings it firmly into “fragrant but fruity” flavor-land. It balances out the bitterness that turmeric can bring in a way that doesn’t need a ton of added sugar, either, so you can cut back on the amount of honey usually needed to make golden milk palatable.
If you can tolerate nuts and seeds or have reintroduced them successfully after the elimination phase of the AIP, a bowl of this Golden Milk Oatmeal would be fabulous finished with some toasted pepitas or walnuts. But if you want to keep elimination phase friendly, try adding a spoon of whipped coconut cream, some sliced oranges and a sprinkle of toasted coconut or — my favorite! – caramel sea salt coconut chips to finish. A pinch of salt just before serving is also fantastic, if you’re like me and love a little contrast of sweet and savory.
Although not elimination phase friendly, adding black pepper to your Golden Milk Oatmeal base will increase the bioavailability of the curcumin in the turmeric. If it’s an option for you, it’s both a healthy and tasty addition! Try adding about 1/8 of a teaspoon to start, then adjust to taste, adding a little more if you like things more on the spicy side!
All of my grainless oatmeal recipes reheat really well and this Golden Milk Oatmeal is no exception to that rule! Which means you’ll want to make a batch of this at the weekend, portion it up and stash it in your fridge or freezer. That way, you can grab a jar in the morning for a quick and easy breakfast. Bonus points that it looks totally “normal” and won’t freak out your co-workers.
You’ll see in the recipe below that I’ve given you two alternatives for cooking your acorn squash. You can do it the traditional way, baking it in the oven with a little water in the bottom of the pan. Or you can use your Instant Pot to get ‘er done in a fraction of the time.
Both methods work just fine, but there will be a slight difference in the texture and water content of your cooked acorn squash. The traditional baking method makes for a drier squash (weighing in at 200 g per cup), whereas the Instant Pot squash retains a lot more water (weighing in at 230 g per cup).
This won’t cause you any problems, but if you bake your squash, you may want to add a little extra coconut milk or water. That will give you a looser, more milky oatmeal. If you like a thicker oatmeal, though, you should be set! Oatmeal is a pretty personal thing, so don’t be afraid to tweak the recipe. Simmering the oatmeal on the stovetop will give you a thicker texture the longer you cook it. The liquid will be absorbed and evaporate as the oatmeal reduces. Choose your own oatmeal adventure!
Looking for more AIP / egg free breakfast recipes? Check out my breakfast recipe archives or 85 Amazing AIP Breakfasts!
Looking for more oatless oatmeal recipes? Try my Spiced Banana Bread Oatmeal, Rooibos Tea Oatmeal with Vanilla Scented Blueberries, Apple & Cranberry Oatmeal or my Tropical Plantain Oatmeal Bowls with Coconut & Mango!Print
Golden Milk Oatmeal with Orange & Spices
- Cook Time: 35 mins
- Total Time: 35 mins
- Yield: 4 servings 1x
- 2 cups / 400 – 460 g cooked acorn squash (see notes)
- 2 cups / 480 ml coconut milk
- 2 tbsp / 30 ml honey
- ¾ cup / 60 g unsweetened shredded coconut
- 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp / 90 ml freshly squeezed orange juice
- Zest of a small orange
- 1 1/2 tsp / 4 g ground turmeric
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground ginger
- ⅛ tsp ground mace
- Optional: 1/8 tsp ground black pepper (not AIP)
- Pinch of fine sea salt, to taste
- Coconut cream, yogurt or milk
- Maple syrup, raw honey, coconut sugar or date sugar
- Toasted coconut or coconut chips
- Sliced oranges or other fruit
- EITHER BAKE: Preheat the oven to 400 F / 205 C. Carefully cut a medium-large acorn squash in half, then scoop out the seeds. Cover the bottom of a 7 x 11 baking dish with water, then place the acorn squash halves, cut side down, into the dish. Roast until the squash is tender, about 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
- OR INSTANT POT: Carefully cut a medium-large acorn squash (or a couple of small squashes) in half. Add 1 cup / 240 ml of water to the bottom of your Instant Pot and drop the steaming rack into place. Place the squash halves on the steaming rack so that they rest rind-side out against the stainless steel insert and aren’t touching each other. Set the vent to pressure, close the lid and set the Instant Pot to manual pressure (high) for 8 – 12 minutes, depending on the size of your squash. Use quick release and make sure that the squash is fork tender, then allow the squash to cool before scooping out and discarding the seeds.
- SIMMER: Carefully scoop out the cooked acorn squash and add it to a medium sized saucepan (see notes). Add all other ingredients except the salt to the saucepan over low-medium heat and bring to a gentle simmer, stirring to combine the ingredients evenly. Reduce the heat a little so that the mixture doesn’t splash or spit and cook, stirring occasionally, until the oatmeal has thickened to your liking, about 15 – 20 minutes. Taste and add salt if you wish. Top with your favorite toppings and enjoy while hot!
- STORE: Portion the finished oatmeal up into single serving containers and refrigerate it for up to a week. The oatmeal reheats well and you can add an extra splash of coconut milk or water as you warm it up if you like. It also freezes well, so you can keep it in an airtight container for several months before thawing and reheating.
You’ll see in the recipe above that I’ve given you two alternatives for cooking your acorn squash. You can do it the traditional way, baking it in the oven with a little water in the bottom of the pan, or use your Instant Pot to get ‘er done in a fraction of the time. Both methods work just fine, but there will be a slight difference in the texture and water content of your cooked acorn squash. The traditional baking method makes for a drier squash (weighing in at 200 g per cup), whereas the Instant Pot squash retains a lot more water (weighing in at 230 g per cup).
This won’t cause you any problems, but if you bake rather than IP your squash, you may find that you want to add a little extra coconut milk or a splash of water if you prefer a looser, more milky oatmeal.
This recipe was included in the Paleo AIP Recipe Roundtable and featured on The FeedFeed’s awesome Allergy Friendly feed!
Beautiful picture and tempting recipe. A great way to get regular turmeric too. Do you think it would work with buttenut? It can be tricky to find other types of squash in England. Thanks Rachael.
Hi Jenny, yes you can absolutely swap in other winter squashes depending on the ones available to you. Something like butternut or kabocha might make for a slightly thicker & sweeter version, so you might want to add a little extra liquid as needed and perhaps reduce the honey, to taste. You could use spaghetti squash if you blend the strands with a handheld blender, if that’s an option for you. I confess I can’t remember quite what would be available back in the UK! Hope that helps! And thank you for your kind words 🙂
Thanks very much Rachael, I will give it a try. 😀🌈
Very good! I made this a couple days ago and have been enjoying it for breakfasts.
Yay, so glad you’ve been enjoying it 🙂
Hi. Does this recipe actually have oatmeal in it? Was it left out mistakenly or on purpose?
Hi Christabelle, all of the recipes I share here are completely grain free and that’s so normal for me now that sometimes I forget it isn’t for everyone, so sorry for the confusion! This is a grainless / oatless “oatmeal”, since I can’t tolerate oats or dairy personally and neither can many of my visitors here. Hope that helps clear things up 🙂
Being in Australia I could not find acorn squash so used butternut. It’s funny but it really does remind me of porridge, probably the texture of the shredded coconut. I’m new to turmeric but I liked this flavour combination. The orange flavour kept it out of curry terriorty for me. Husband’s reaction, “I’m not sure I like it. It’s like curry but not curry. ” I think I will use it as an after work snack rather a breakfast meal. Thank you for sharing. I appreciate your approach to AIP so much.
Oh, gosh, your husband’s comments genuinely made me laugh – I can totally see where he’s coming from. My husband thinks the whole “golden milk” trend is straight up gross and he’s not afraid to tell me so! (And he also hates curry, which is just on the edge of unforgivable in my food book, ha!) I always forget that acorn squash isn’t a thing in your neck of the woods, it’s a little less starchy / paler in color / less strongly flavored than the butternut. I’m glad you enjoyed the flavor combination and if you’re looking for a sweeter variation on the oatmeal-ish theme, I’ve got a banana bread & an apple and cranberry version also on the site. Thank you so much for your kind words, I appreciate you stopping by 🙂
For informational purposes, I wanted to share that I made it with spaghetti squash! I used a new “grocery” pick up feature at my grocery store, and I think they generally have teenagers doing the shopping because my produce experience was entertaining to say the least. The result was I ended up with a HUGE squash – enough for my Nomato dinner last night, tomorrow night, the night after… basically, too much. So I thought i’d give this a try. It’s surprisingly good. I cooked for a full 30 minutes to soften the squash a little more.