Say Goodbye to Instant Oat Packets!

by Cassidy Stockton in Featured Articles, Gluten Free, Recipes

I admit it, I’ve bought instant oatmeal packets. Shhh, don’t tell Bob, he’d be so disappointed in me. They’re hard to resist. I love oatmeal and I’m always pressed for time in the morning. The packets are so EASY and already portioned for me. They’re also expensive and filled with weird flavors and sugar (even the ‘healthy’ versions).  On top of that, Bob’s Red Mill doesn’t make any.

Not only was I spending more than I wanted, I was buying oats that weren’t our superior oats and I was getting extra sugar and gross chemicals in the mix. I started thinking about it and a brilliant (well, pretty obvious and basic) idea occurred to me. Why don’ t I make my own instant oat “packets?” I didn’t want to waste plastic baggies making “packets” and I didn’t really want to use instant oats. I whipped out a plastic container and filled it with what I wanted in a packet—quick oats, flaxseed meal, chopped walnuts and wheat germ—voila! an “instant” oat breakfast was mine! I threw a quarter cup measuring cup in the container and I was set! I keep the container in my desk, along with a bowl. Each morning, I scoop out 1/2 cup of oats and add 1 cup of hot water from the hot water spigot on our water cooler, let stand for a few minutes and I’m off and charging with a health, easy breakfast. quick oats, quick cooking oats, oatmeal packet

To make your own, you’ll need:

Mix and match, but be sure not to add more than your container can hold.

  • 1/2 cup Flaxseed Meal
  • 1/2 cup Wheat Germ
  • 1 cup chopped Nuts
  • 1/2 cup Hemp Seeds
  • 1/2 cup Chia Seeds
  • 1/2 cup Wheat Bran
  • 1/2 cup Rice Bran
  • 1/2 cup Oat Bran
  • 1 cup Sunflower Seeds
  • 1/2 cup Pumpkin Seeds
  • 1 cup Almond Meal
  • 1 cup dried Fruit
  • 1 cup Shredded Coconut
  • 1 Tbsp Cinnamon or other spices

Mix to combine and you’re all set. This lasts me about 2 weeks. Because you will probably use it within a month, you do not need to worry about refrigerating the flaxseed meal and other normally perishable ingredients.

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Does Laurie Figone's Italian Pinhead Torta have what it takes to win? We certainly think so.

Golden Spurtle 2012: Wish them luck!

by Cassidy Stockton in Featured Articles, Golden Spurtle

In just a few short days, the Bob’s Red Mill team and Spar for the Spurtle winner Laurie Figone will embark on their journey to Carrbridge, Scotland to compete in the 19th Annual Golden Spurtle World Porridge Championship. This year, Laurie will compete with her Italian Pinhead Torta and our steel cut oats against 14 other oat connoisseurs to see if she can bring home an award in one of the three categories (heck, maybe she can bring home all three!).

Does Laurie Figone’s Italian Pinhead Torta have what it takes to win? We certainly think so.

Yes, you read that right, this year, unlike previous years, there will be not two categories, but three! Laurie will cook traditional porridge using our steel cut oats, water and salt in the Traditional category for a chance to take home the Golden Spurtle, the same award we secured in 2009. She’ll also pit her amazing Italian Pinhead Torta against all sorts of other culinary creations in the Specialty category. The third category, People’s Choice, is new this year and will allow three spectators to collaborate with the three official judges to select an additional specialty dish winner. You can view past winners and other specialty recipes that have competed at the Golden Spurtle here.

Wish Laurie luck in the comments.

The competition takes place on October 6th, this year and our team couldn’t be more excited. We’d like them to know just how excited we are for them- help us wish them luck in the comments. We’ll have a full recap after the competition. Check our Facebook page and Twitter feed to keep up to date on how the competition went.

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Meatless Mondays: Raspberry Oatmeal Dumplings

by Cassidy Stockton in Featured Articles, Meatless Mondays, Recipes

This recipe comes from Kerri Willoughby, a finalist in our 2012 Spar for the Spurtle. These oatmeal dumplings make a special treat for a cool, Autumn morning and would also be a fabulous dessert served with ice cream. They come together easily, but give the effect of something that took hours to prepare. To make this gluten free, simply replace the steel cut oats and thick rolled oats with our gluten free versions and use our GF Biscuit Mix in place of the Buttermilk Biscuit Mix.

Like Kerri’s video entry, this dish was fabulous- check out her video here. Cheers!

Raspberry Oatmeal Dumplings

In a heavy bottom stock pot, combine and bring to medium simmer:

  • 2 (12 oz.) packages of frozen Raspberries
  • 1-½ cups of Sugar
  • 1-½ cups of Liquid (Juice, Lemonade, Water, Red Wine, whatever strikes your fancy)
  • 1 Tbsp Vanilla Extract

In a medium mixing bowl, gently stir together:

Drop the mixture by large tablespoons into the simmering raspberry liquid allowing room in between each.  Cover; bring to an easy boil for 7 minutes.  Turn off heat and allow to cool slightly.  Remove lid and allow to rest for 10 minutes.

Serve dumplings warm with ice cream or freshly whipped cream, fresh raspberries, mint, oat granola (recipe follows), and cinnamon garnish.

OPTIONAL:  For a delicious granola crunchy topping, combine:

Toast in a DRY heavy skillet until light brown.


  • 2 Tbsp Butter
  • ½ cup Molasses

Cook until it begins to get sticky, and then turn off heat.  Serve hot or room temp.

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Paradise Porridge Potstickers

by Cassidy Stockton in Featured Articles, Recipes

This recipe from Spar for the Spurtle finalist, Lanie Smith, was a big hit at our cook-off on August 10th. While Lanie did not win with this dish, everyone who tasted it was thoroughly impressed. Lanie resides in Topeka, Kansas and writes the blog The Vintage Cook, where she puts modern twists on dishes that your grandmother made. Lanie will be guest blogging for us later in October, but for now, we wanted to share her wonderful recipe for Paradise Porridge Potstickers. I love this dish because it’s a little exotic and familiar at the same time. Plus, because the contest required that the dish be completed in under 30 minutes, this takes no time at all to whip up. (Watch Lanie’s entry video here.) Make these potstickers for a decadent breakfast or a fun appetizer. Enjoy!

Paradise Porridge Potstickers


  • 1/2 cup local Honey
  • 6 ounces fresh Raspberries, sliced in half lengthwise
  • 1 cup frozen Coconut Milk Ice Cream, Coconut Gelato, or Vanilla Ice Cream

1. Soak 1/2 cup of Bob’s Steel Cut Oats in 1 cup filtered water (covered) overnight in the refrigerator.

2. In a heavy 3-quart pot, bring 1-1/2 cups filtered water to a rapid boil on high heat. Add salt.

3. Drain oats in cheesecloth-line colander over bowl. Reserve the oat-water. Stir oats into boiling water. Cover and reduce heat to medium-low for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. In last two minutes, remove lid, increase heat to stir out moisture and oats become very thick. Remove from heat, pour into a large bowl and cool for two minutes.

4. Stir in nuts, Bob’s Red Mill Evaporated Cane Juice Sugar, nutmeg, mango, and banana.

5. Dampen the inner edges of wrappers with oat water. Place a tbs. of oat mixture on center of each wrapper, fold and pinch closed along the moistened edge with fingertips to make a moon shape. Dip in oat-water and shake excess.

6. Heat oil in a non-stick 12-inch fry pan to medium-low. Add the dumplings and cook until the bottoms are just light golden. Turn dumplings over and replace lid, cook another two minutes. Remove with slotted spatula onto serving plate.

7. Drizzle on the honey. Garnish with raspberries and one small scoop of frozen dessert.

Makes about 20 dumplings

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OMSI’s Dirt to Dinner 2012

by Cassidy Stockton in Featured Articles

If you’re local to Portland, you’re probably familiar with OMSI (The Oregon Museum of Science and Industry). If you haven’t been, it’s truly a wonderful way to spend the day. Whether you’re a child of 8 or 80, OMSI has exhibits that will grab your attention and hold you spellbound. This weekend’s events are no different and are a wonderful time to explore this Portland attraction.

Dirt to Dinner is a free festival open to the public that will highlight “activities and organizations that support sustainable choices.” The event will also “explore the life cycle of food, from farm to table and beyond.” This is a great event to teach children about where their food comes from and learn more about those in the greater Portland area who are supporting and promoting this process.

Demonstrations and food tastings make up the majority of the day on Saturday, August 4th and Sunday, August 5th. Events start at 11 am and run through 4 pm. It’s going to be a hot and sultry weekend, why not escape to the waterfront and enjoy some good *free* food?

Bob’s Red Mill will be on hand on Saturday morning at 11:30 am to talk about our oats and give you some ideas for new ways to use them beyond oatmeal. Check out the full schedule of events here- we hope to see you there!

1945 SE Water Ave.
Portland, OR 97214-3354
1(800) 955-6674

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Spar for the Spurtle Finalists

by Cassidy Stockton in Contests, Featured Articles, Golden Spurtle, Recipes

The judges had their work cut out for them this year. With over 92 entries in Spar for the Spurtle, narrowing it down to just three finalists meant watching a lot of videos! There was a lot of discussion about whether the dish could really be done in 30 minutes and whether the ingredients chosen would be something that could be procured in Scotland. After all, the winner of Spar for the Spurtle will have to take their dish to an international arena for the Golden Spurtle World Porridge Making Championship and, as we learned in 2010, some ingredients are not available in Scotland.

I think the judges chose well with these three winners. If it were up to me, I’d fly everyone out and have a big spurtle party. There were so many creative videos and so many delicious dishes! We’ll be working to get recipes for each video and put them up on our site soon. Without further ado, here are our finalists. Congratulations to the three finalists and our most sincere thanks to everyone who entered and voted!

Paradise Porridge Potstickers from Lanie Smith, The Vintage Cook

Raspberry Oatmeal Dumplings from Kerri Willoughby

Italian Pinhead Torta from Laurie Figone

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Down to the Wire: Only 3 Days Left to Enter Spar for the Spurtle

by Cassidy Stockton in Contests, Featured Articles, Golden Spurtle, Recipes

The almost two months that we’ve had this competition running have flown by and the doors close on Spar for the Spurtle this Sunday night (7/22). That means you still have time to think of an idea and film your 3 minute-or-less video this weekend. I’ve been asking folks around the mill what they would enter if they could and many of us truly don’t know. It’s no easy task to come up with one of these ideas, so we’ve made a great little inspiration board on Pinterest to spark your creativity. In the meantime, entries are rolling in and here are some of my favorites from the last couple of days. As another reminder, I have no say in who gets to come to Portland.

Summer Savory Porridge from Anne of Apron Strings- this one has cheddar, chives, tomatoes AND bacon!

Creamy Eggnog Oatmeal from Jonathan (I love his enthusiasm!)

Finally, this video deserves some serious props. I don’t know who entered it, but they really went above and beyond on the video portion (plus, I happen to fancy rum balls).

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Spar for the Spurtle: FIVE Days Left to Enter

by Cassidy Stockton in Contests, Featured Articles, Golden Spurtle, Recipes

The Spar for the Spurtle arbiters have graciously extended the deadline for entry into the contest to Sunday, July 22nd. That gives you a full extra weekend to whip up your entry. We’ve been getting some great entries, but it’s still anyone’s game. As a reminder, there are a lot of great prizes floating around for this competition. We’ll select three winners from all of the videos and fly them to Portland where they’ll compete in a live cook-off for our celebrity judges. Not only is that a trip to Portland, but three nights’ accommodations in beautiful downtown Portland (where you can visit iconic places like Powell’s City of Books and enjoy the plethora of food carts), a gift bag from Bob’s Red Mill that will contain a slew of goodies plus some lovely olive oils from our friends at California Olive Ranch, $100 Bob’s Red Mill Gift Card and $100 towards cooking supplies. Not to mention that you’ll get a behind-the-scenes tour of Bob’s Red Mill from Bob himself!

On top of all of this, the grand prize winner will be flown to Scotland with a guest for an all-expenses paid trip to Carrbridge to compete at the Golden Spurtle World Porridge Championship. This trip includes round-trip airfare for two, two nights’ accommodations in Edinburgh, three nights’ accommodations in Carrbridge at the lovely Fairwinds Hotel, rail transportation to the Scottish Highlands and $2500 cash.

To inspire you, here are some of our recent entries. There are so many great videos, it was hard to pick just three to feature here.

Cherry Almond Porridge from Rachel Kimbrow, one of the 2011 Spar for the Spurtle finalists.

Tuscan Oats with Basil and Prosciutto from Jamie Brown Miller

Poppy Seed Raisin Oatcakes with Ginger Spiced Pears from Darlene

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More Great Spar for the Spurtle Entries

by Cassidy Stockton in Featured Articles, Golden Spurtle

We’ve had quite a slew of entries in Spar for the Spurtle come in since last week and I wanted to highlight some that are really fun. We’re not playing favorites and just because I pick these to feature does not mean they will win, in fact, I have no say in who will get flown to Portland. I just thought they were unique and the recipes sound delicious. We’ve received more savory dishes this year than sweet and I love that. I think it’s great that folks are thinking outside of the box with Steel Cut Oats.

Before we get to videos, I want to list off the winners from our giveaway. These folks were selected at random and will each receive a set of Bob’s Red Mill Steel Cut Oats and a spurtle. Thanks for voting and helping the judges see who you think should win. You still have 7 days to enter Spar for the Spurtle and throw your hat in the ring to win a trip to Scotland for two and $2500.

Our winners are: Athena, Mardell, Tanya, Ray and Renata. I’ll get in touch today to get your shipping info. Congratulations and thanks for playing!

I really liked this recipe from Maiah for Espresso Chip Pancakes. It’s creative and sounds delicious.

This recipe from Shawn Christopher of The Gluten Free Spouse uses steel cut oats to make hors d’oeuvres. I had to giggle at his creative solution when his video started running long.

Finally, this one just strikes my fancy with its savory flavors and use of salmon. This is Oat-kayu Porridge with Mirin Glazed Salmon from Bob (not THAT Bob).

Check out the rest of the innovative creations at and help us pick round one winners by voting.

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Spar for the Spurtle Entries {Giveaway}

by Cassidy Stockton in Contests, Featured Articles, Golden Spurtle

We’ve been getting some great entries over the last two weeks in our Spar for the Spurtle competition. Here are some that we think show a flair for creativity. Don’t forget, you can still enter the competition until 7/20 and throw your hat into the ring to win $2500 cash plus a trip for two to Scotland. If you visit you can see that it doesn’t take much to make a video. You’re not being judged on the quality of the video, but on the recipe, so don’t be shy- break out that smart phone and show us what you’ve got!

We love this fun take on the traditional Scotch Egg.

A finalist in the 2011 Spar for the Spurtle, Jim Schafer shares his take on S’mores.

It’s true, a good healthy breakfast will make your children more productive, although maybe not THIS productive. This video had us giggling at the end!


We want to share some spurtle love with you! We’re giving away a gift set containing a package of Steel Cut Oats and a Bob’s Red Mill Spurtle to five lucky winners. How to enter? Head over to and vote for your favorite video. You can vote for as many as you like. Then, come back here and let me know in the comments that you voted. That’s it! I’ll pick five lucky winners at random from all who enter by 11:59 pm on 7/12/12.


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Cassidy Stockton Google: Cassidy Stockton
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