Oatmeal is a great way to start any day. Not only is it a healthy, filling breakfast, it tastes great. Plus, you can customize the flavor to whatever you want with a few simple ingredient swaps.
But the downside is it can sometimes be a pain to make in the morning. It takes a little time and preparation which on busy mornings, is not always convenient.
Enter the slow cooker! With a (very small) bit of preparation in the evening, it can do all the work while you sleep. Next morning, wake up to the fragrant, warming smell of oatmeal and breakfast is ready.
It’s important to note that regular rolled oats (or instant oats) won’t cut it in the slow cooker. You definitely need steel cut oats, which are as nutritious as regular oats with a slightly nuttier in flavor.
This recipe is enough for a 4 quart slow cooker. Put the ingredients into the slow cooker and set it off before going to bed. If the timing won’t work and your slow cooker is not programmable, try using a timer like this one.
Slow Cooker Healthy Oatmeal
Grease the slow cooker first – it will save time with clean up later on. This can be done with butter or oil of choice.
Combine all the ingredients in the slow cooker. Cover and cook on LOW for 8 to 9 hours (or on HIGH for 3 to 4 hours) until thick and creamy.
Stir well and scoop into serving bowls with a spoon. Serve hot, pouring on more milk, a drizzle of honey, fresh fruit and some chopped nuts if you like.
- You can substitute 1 – 2 cups of the water with half-and-half, fat free milk or non-dairy alternative like almond or coconut milk. This will make it creamier 🙂
- Try different flavors. Use other dried fruit such as apricots, sultanas, dried apple, cranberries. Make it apple and cinnamon by cutting or grating fresh apple and adding ground cinnamon. A dash of vanilla extract is good too.
- The oatmeal will get crusty, particularly if overcooked. This is normal – and like any ‘crust’ is quite yummy!
- Leftovers can be easily stored in the refrigerator. Make a batch and you have breakfast for a week.
- If the recipe doesn’t come out ‘just right’ the first time, please try it again and adjust cooking times and quantities. The above is what has worked for me, but I know others have had to tweak it to their tastes and slow cooker.
Slow cooked, healthy oatmeal is a great breakfast you must try. Once you’ve perfected it, it may just become a favorite…forever.