Last fall, one of my friends gifted me a jar of homemade vanilla-pear jam. It was a tiny jar, and I ate the whole thing in two days. Craving more jam, I searched the stores to find a version I could buy, and I came up empty-handed. I’m not at all embarrassed to tell you I’ve waited all year to get to the start of pear season, just so I could recreate this jam. Something about vanilla plus pear plus cinnamon is just perfection, and I’m so happy with the way this recipe came out.
Rather than taking the long method of making jam, which kind of intimidates me, I made a chia seed version. Chia seeds work as a perfect thickener while giving this jam some healthy nutrients. The natural sweetness of the pears is highlighted with a small amount of maple syrup, making this jam delicious but not overly-sugared.
While the vanilla-pear jam is the star of this show, toasted pecans add a warm, sweet hit and some crunch to a bowl of steel-cut oats. Pecans also give some protein and fiber, helping keep you full for longer.
Give this bowl of deliciousness a try, and let me know how you like it. And of course, the jam can be spread on toast, used as a topping for pancakes and waffles, and even used on vanilla ice cream. Don’t mind if I do.
Steel-Cut Oatmeal with Vanilla-Pear Chia Seed Jam and Toasted Pecans
- Vanilla-Pear Chia Seed Jam (recipe below)
- 1 cup uncooked steel-cut oats, cooked in 4 cups of water (or per package directions)
- 1 handful of pecans
- Cook oats per package directions.
- Meanwhile, cook Vanilla-Pear Chia Seed Jam per recipe below.
- 10 minutes before oats are done cooking, toast a handful of crushed or whole pecans in a pan over medium-high heat, until nuts are warm and crackling.
- When everything is ready, add cooked steel cut oats to your bowl, then top with desired amount of jam and pecans. Bonus points if the jam is warm.
Vanilla-Pear Chia Seed Jam
- 1 ½ pears, chopped
- ½ TBSP maple syrup
- ½ TBSP vanilla
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 TBSP chia seeds
- Add chopped pears, syrup, vanilla, and cinnamon to a small sauce pot and cook, stirring frequently, over medium heat until pears soften and juices appear (5 to 10 minutes).
- Reduce heat to medium-low and stir in chia seeds. Allow mixture to thicken, and stir occasionally, about 10 minutes. Jam is done when thick.