Jennifer Garner Made Brownie Baked Oatmeal and It's Like Eating Dessert for Breakfast

She's right—sometimes you need a little morning comfort food.

Jennifer Garner on designed background
Photo: Getty Images / Axelle/Bauer-Griffin

Sometimes, waking up in the morning feels like the most strenuous thing you could do all day. For those mornings when you can't quite make yourself be productive, Jennifer Garner has a life-changing solution for you: treat yourself.

"You know when you need to be living life, but your heart isn't ready?" Garner asks in her latest episode of #PretendCookingShow. "Sometimes you just need a little comfort-something." Garner's comfort-something is making Brownie Baked Oatmeal à la Danielle Brown of Healthy Girl Kitchen (while wearing sweatpants under a dress, as she reveals in her low-key cooking tutorial).

The recipe is simple and vegan, so you can get in on this decadent-but-healthy breakfast even if you're plant-based. (Not that we need an excuse to make more oatmeal for breakfast—it's one of our go-to morning meals at EatingWell.) To follow in Jen's footsteps, you'll need to gather coconut milk, maple syrup, peanut butter, vanilla extract, rolled oats, cocoa powder, baking powder, flax, a little salt and some chocolate chips. If you're feeding vegan pals, just be sure your maple syrup and chocolate chips are vegan-friendly. (Any maple syrup that is labeled as organic should be safe for plant-based folks!)

Add all of the wet ingredients to a bowl and whisk to combine. Then add your dry ingredients and mix them in. For the last touch of chocolaty goodness, add in some chocolate chips and stir to combine them with the rest of your baked oatmeal batter. We'd recommend using dark chocolate chips in this recipe for an added healthful boost. Pour the mixture into a greased 6-by-9-inch pan and bake at 350°F for 40 minutes.

Garner points out that those 40 minutes of baking time leave you plenty of room to make a quick call to your representatives to express your support of gun safety bills. CNBC reports that Democrats in the House of Representatives plan to advance a group of gun control bills at the beginning of June. While experts say they are not likely to pass the Senate, you could always place a call to your senators to express your feelings on the subject. (You can read about all of the stalled bills and what policies they include in this rundown from The Hill.)

Garner borrowed a script from Jessica Yellin, a former CNN correspondent, to get her point across. Here's the full text if you want to read it off yourself: "Hello, I'm a constituent. I'd like to let the senator know it is important to me that they vote for the gun safety reforms coming before Congress." If you're comfortable, you can introduce yourself at the beginning of the call and end the call expressing why such a reform is important to you. To call your senator's office, simply phone the United States Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121 and ask to be connected.

The House Judiciary Committee plans to vote on the gun measures as early as Thursday, according to CNN. That comes the day before June 3, which kicks off Wear Orange Weekend, the Everytown for Gun Safety initiative that encourages people to wear orange and attend a rally or demonstration to support survivors of gun violence. This year, Wear Orange runs from June 3 through June 5, and they have a whole collection of ways you can get involved, including ways to do so remotely.

By the time you've read up on all of the possible gun control bills and phoned in a quick call to your senator, we bet your oatmeal will be ready to come out of the oven. Dig in with a cup of coffee or tea. If you have leftovers, store them in the fridge so you can microwave them on demand. On tough days, this breakfast sounds like a true slice of comfort.

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