Here are all the best oatmeal recipes to start the day off right! Make up a bowl in all sorts of ways: creamy, baked, instant: you name it.
Want to start the day right? Here’s one way you can’t go wrong: oatmeal! Oatmeal is one of the healthiest breakfast ideas out there. This whole grain is full of plant-based protein, fiber, and can keep you full all morning. Contrary to what you might think, oatmeal’s not just a big bowl of gloppy goo. We get lots of people who say, “But I just don’t like oatmeal!” Allow us to change your mind.
There’s a myriad of ways to serve oatmeal! Here’s what to know:
Oatmeal types: First off: there are two basic types of oats: rolled oats and steel cut oats. Rolled oats are flattened in rollers: they’re what you think of when you first think of oatmeal. Rolled oats include Old Fashioned, quick cooking and instant oats (we generally use Old Fashioned). Steel cut oats are the whole grain cut into nubs; they’re more like rice and take longer to cook. See Steel Cut vs Rolled Oats.
Cooking methods: You can cook oats on the stovetop to make a creamy bowl, or in a pressure cooker. You can also make them baked, overnight, or even the microwave! There are so many options.
The best oatmeal recipe? THIS ONE. We’re pretty opinionated about our oatmeal. No gloppy or soggy oats allowed. This oatmeal recipe comes out with a chewy texture and a toasty flavor: it's absolutely perfect! Top it with your favorite toppings and it's the ideal healthy breakfast.
Try this delicious Peanut Butter Oatmeal recipe! Oats can be gloppy, gooey, or under-seasoned. But cook up a pot the right way, and it tastes like a dream. The best way to top oatmeal is with a little nut butter, in our opinion. We make this every day (no joke) and it’s incredibly filling…and satisfying!
Try this creamy Banana Oatmeal! Adding banana to your morning oats adds a little natural sweetness and creamy texture. Here it’s offset with warm spices and vanilla to make a cozy and easy breakfast. We’re always looking for ways to mix up our daily oatmeal intake. This one is a fun variation that’s perfect to fit into the rotation!
Are you a steel cut oats fan? These chewy oats have a porridge-like texture and feel like a cozy hug in the morning. They’re a fun way to mix up the standard Old Fashioned oats, and may have some slight benefits over them: though both are an incredibly healthy way to start the day! You can make a big pot of steel cut oats in 25 minutes and eat off of the leftovers all week.
Have you tried savory oatmeal? If not, it’s high time to start. The American breakfast is built on sugar. But want more savory breakfast ideas? This recipe is the place to start! This makes a pot of chewy toasted oats that are irresistibly tasty. Top the bowl with a fried egg and garlicky sauteed kale, and the yolk makes a creamy sauce that covers everything in goodness. Eating a veggie-filled healthy breakfast just got easier.
This oatmeal recipe tastes incredible: it's full of toasty flavor! It’s vegan so it’s a plant based way to start the day. AND it is full of plant based protein so it is seriously filling: you’re literally full for hours after you eat it. Top it with peanut butter and healthy strawberry jam, and it's a revelation.
Here’s an easy, healthy breakfast recipe for weekdays or entertaining guests: Instant Pot oatmeal! If you’ve got a pressure cooker, oatmeal is even easier to make. The oats are toasted in butter until fragrant, then mixed with milk and cooked for just 3 minutes. What comes out is the creamiest, tastiest, easiest pressure cooker oatmeal you’ll find.
This homemade instant oatmeal recipe is so simple we wish we would have thought of it ages ago! Instead of standing over the stove in the morning, this instant oatmeal can be made in just 2 minutes in the microwave. Simple as that! And in terms of flavor, this truly is the best instant oatmeal.
Another great oatmeal recipe, this one involves no cooking at all. In fact, you can mix up a jar in just 2 minutes! Leave rolled oats in the fridge overnight with milk, and it magically makes them into a sort of porridge. Eat them cold topped with berries or nut butter and they’re absolutely fantastic! This easy breakfast has been trendy for years now, and you need to jump on this bandwagon.
Here’s an oatmeal recipe that’s so full of cozy-spiced flavor, you’ll wonder where it’s been all your life. Meet this incredible easy and healthy baked oatmeal! Here’s that perfect breakfast or brunch recipe you search for when you have house guests to impress. But guess what? It also works for quick mornings! Bake up a pan in advance and then grab a square to go. It’sbeyond easy, and the combination of the cinnamon, allspice and maple makes magic. Use any fruit mix-in you like!
Here’s the ideal healthy oatmeal recipe, easy and full of irresistible flavor: banana baked oatmeal! This incredible recipe is wholesome and filling, and it’s made with good-for-you ingredients: mostly oats and bananas. It happens to be a vegan baked oatmeal, but it pleases absolutely everyone. Serve it for guests or even better, make up a big pan and eat off of it all week! Topped with a little nut butter and banana slices, it’s a decadently wholesome treat.
Here's another tasty baked oatmeal recipe: cherry baked oatmeal! This spinoff on the concept features dried cherries and cardamom for a seriously cozy breakfast. (It almost tastes like cherry crisp!) It takes 45 minutes to bake—but only 10 minutes to whip together, and it saves for breakfasts for the rest of the week.
Here’s our very favorite way to eat apples for breakfast: this Baked Apple Oatmeal! It’s easy to make with ingredients you might already have on hand. And the flavor of tender, sweet apples paired with maple syrup, cinnamon and allspice…well, you’ll want to make it every day! It works as a brunch recipe for entertaining, or you can make a big pan and eat off of it for breakfasts all week.
Steel cut oats are much different from Old Fashioned oats, but they're mega delicious in their own right! Pressure cooker steel cut oats cook up in minutes and make for better for you breakfasts all week! This apple cinnamon oatmeal is a cozy Instant Pot breakfast, creamy and perfectly spiced. Top with cashew butter and apple slices for a tasty breakfast.
This oatmeal recipe combines the chewiness of steel cut oats with the velvety, spiced-up goodness of pumpkin pie. After cooling, the oatmeal sets up and can be cut into squares for devouring. It tastes just like a light version of pumpkin pie! And who doesn’t want to eat pie for breakfast?
This carrot cake baked steel cut oatmeal recipe is cozy and comforting, flecked with orange carrots and flavored with cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. It takes over an hour to put together, so make sure to make it when you have plenty of time for prep. But the leftovers save well and make for a healthy breakfast recipe that lasts throughout the week!
Here’s a recipe for cool mornings: pumpkin oatmeal! On that first chilly morning, it’s like a switch flips. Pumpkin is instantly the most crave-worthy, novel flavor for everything from cookies to to soup to smoothies. So why not incorporate it into the first meal of the day? This oatmeal is perfect for using up that extra little bit in the can after you make pumpkin bread. It’s perfectly cinnamon-spiced and just sweet enough: the ideal fall breakfast!
Looking for an oatmeal recipe that’s a little outside the box? Meet these incredible oatmeal pancakes! They’re fluffy, they’re made with 100% oats, and they’re easy to whip up in a blender. Even better:they taste like vanilla cake! Yes, these are the best oatmeal pancakes we’ve had! Many oatmeal pancakes can be very dense or fall apart easily. These work like a charm, and they’re full of fiber and protein. Breakfast just got better.
Oatmeal nutrition info
The best reason to start the day with oatmeal? There’s no real argument here: oats are part of a healthy diet. They’re filling and full of nutrients. Here are a few of the main nutritional benefits of oats (source):
Oats are high in plant based protein. 1 cup of raw oats have 11 grams protein. That’s about 20% of your daily need!
Oats are high in fiber. 1 cup of raw oats have 8 grams of fiber, which is about 30% of the daily value.
Oats are very filling: they may reduce appetite and help you eat less calories.
For the Old Fashioned oats: Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the oats and toast for about 2 to 3 minutes, stirring often, until fragrant. Add the salt and cinnamon. Turn the heat to low and carefully pour in the water or milk, stirring. Cover and cook for 5 minutes until tender, then remove from the heat. Serve immediately for a chunky texture, or stir in another 1/2 cup milk for a creamier body. The texture is intentionally chewy (not gloppy or soggy!). Top with desired toppings and serve. Store refrigerated for up to 2 week.
For the steel cut oats: Bring water and milk to a boil. Watch to make sure that it does not boil over. Once just boiling, add the steel cut oats, salt and cinnamon and stir. Bring to a simmer. Simmer 20 to 25 minutes until the oats are creamy and tender. Serve immediately with desired toppings. Stores refrigerated up to 1 week: it will become very thick, so stir in some milk or water when reheating.
Keywords: Oatmeal, oatmeal recipe
More breakfast ideas
Looking for more healthy ways to start the day? Here are a few breakfast recipes to try:
Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.