What Are Scottish Oats? Breakfast Bites “Hero” Has Fascinating Origin Story

Alisa Reynolds Breakfast Bites, FCE, Health

Great Scott! The hero of our new Breakfast Bites: Apple Pie Oats is a super-food with amazing health benefits — and a surprising origin story.

The story of Scottish oats begins in, you guessed it … Scotland!

Oatmeal has a long history in Scotland. Because of the country’s low temperature and high humidity, oats were a better-suited grain than wheat. It even had its own holiday.

Meal Monday, also known as Oatmeal Monday, was a traditional holiday observed by the ancient universities of Scotland on the second Monday of February.

During the 17th century, Scottish university students lived in very basic accommodations. Their diets consisted largely of oatmeal, which they would make into porridge. Because their homes were some distance from the city universities, a long weekend was scheduled to permit them to replenish their supplies. Originally, these Meal Mondays would occur regularly. Eventually, there was just one official holiday, on the second Monday in February.

Meal Monday remained widely observed in Scotland during the late 19th and 20th century. Even today, the University of St. Andrews still maintains Meal Monday as a staff holiday.

So, what makes Scottish oats different from other oats?

Scottish oats are first steamed, then cut with a steel blade, and are finished by being ground into a coarse powder. The grinding of the oats allows them to have a shorter cooking time and the cooked result to have a creamier texture.

Feeding Children Everywhere chose to use Scottish oats in their Breakfast Bites: Apple Pie Oats because it gives the 42 million Americans that suffer from food insecurity the proper nutrition they need to start their day.

Within oats, there are many nutrients and minerals that are essential to a healthy body. Some of these include:

  • Dietary fiber which helps lower cholesterol levels and control blood sugar levels.
  • Manganese which helps promote bone health.
  • Phosphorus which helps maintain dental health.
  • Magnesium which helps relieve muscle aches and calms nerves.
  • Iron which helps maintain energy levels.
  • Zinc which is an effective natural cold remedy.
  • Folate which promotes heart health.
  • Vitamin B1 which is essential for the breakdown of fat and protein.
  • Vitamin B5 which helps alleviate conditions like asthma, hair loss, allergies, and stress.

In addition to the various nutrients, oats also offer many health benefits. They can:

  • Help reduce the risk of heart disease, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and cancer.
  • Lower blood pressure.
  • Promote healthy digestion.
  • Enhance the immune system’s response to infection.
  • Stabilize blood sugar.

With so many health benefits to offer, it’s no surprise that Feeding Children Everywhere has made Scottish oats one of four all-natural ingredients in its new Breakfast Bites: Apple Pie Oats. Since the Breakfast Bites were launched on the fourth of July, there have already been over 2,000 meals distributed.

Breakfast Bites is also very versatile and can be served hot or cold, recommended with any popular type of milk. Along with Scottish oats, the Apple Pie Oats meal is made with crispy puffed brown rice, real apple, and nutmeg.

Want to help provide these nutrients to those who need them most?