Climate-friendly Breakfast – The Perks of Porridge

Porridge. A great climate-friendly breakfast for Fifers. In this blog the folks over at CLEAR talk about oats and how great they are for us and the environment.

Now the nights are drawing in and there’s a nip in the air. The chilly mornings have me reaching for the porridge pot for a filling and warming breakfast to start to the day. I was brought up with the traditional “Scottish” way of eating porridge, with salt and milk. It was only later in life, after living in England for a couple of years, that I discovered a myriad of other ways to serve it.

A delicious, juicy apple grated onto my porridge is an everyday favourite of mine and banana, pecan nuts and brown sugar, with or without a glug of cream, is an indulgent delight, great for a lazy Sunday brunch. I’m happy with any fruit, whether it be stewed plums or apples, autumn raspberries fresh from my allotment or berry compote and the addition of some seeds or nuts give a great crunch.  Some friends of mine add honey, or some yoghurt. One is a fan of savory porridge with boiled egg, ginger and chilli oil or a little soy sauce. I must admit I haven’t tried that one yet!

About Oats

Oats are a great climate friendly food for us Fifers. Oats thrive in a cold, damp and sun deprived climate so it comes as no surprise that they have long been a staple food in Fife, and Scotland in general. There are several processing plants in Fife (the Quaker (and Scotts) plant in Cupar and the Aberfeldy Oatmeal plant in Kirkcaldy) where the majority of oats processed by them are grown in the central belt, and Your Piece Porridge Oats (available on-line) which are grown in Fife. There are therefore very few food miles involved in their production.

As well as this, oats are closer to their wild genetic roots than the more refined barleys and wheats. They grow with less artificial help and are particularly resistant to the diseases that plague other cereals/ This minimises the amount of chemicals used and the fuel in their application, thus minimising GHG emissions and the impact on the climate.

Oats are an incredibly nutritious food packed with important vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, including zinc, thiamine and folic acid, and they’re high in fibre and protein compared to other grains.  In addition, they are very filling and have many properties that should make them a weight loss friendly food. At the end of the day, oats are among the healthiest foods you can eat.

If you don’t fancy porridge, there are other ways to eats oats including oatcakes, skirlie, white pudding, crowdie or haggis and for those with a sweet tooth like me…. biscuits.


Here’s a really easy and tasty recipe for oat biscuits (photo + recipe credit: bbcgoodfood).


75g wholemeal flour

1 tsp baking powder

75g porridge oats

50g caster sugar

75g butter

1 tbsp golden syrup

2 tbsp milk

Useful links: future ahead for Scottish oats

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