I remember oatmeal mornings from my childhood. When my mother would put a piping hot bowl of oatmeal on the table in front of me, I knew that I would not have to deal with a growling stomach before lunchtime. Cold cereal? Roar-o-rama. So, when I wanted to create a new habit of eating a satisfying breakfast every morning, I went on a search for ideas to use steel cut oats and other oatmeal for a “5 Days of Oatmeal for Breakfast” challenge.
At first, the idea of eating oatmeal for breakfast every day for five days sounds boring, but when you get creative and make your own tasty concoction using Quaker Oatmeal as your base, the possibilities are endless.
The weekend prior to my challenge, I stopped by Target to purchase everything I needed. They had a display ready for me with lots of topping choices and ideas for personalizing my oatmeal recipes.
Day One – Apple Pie Quick Oats
On the first day, I decided to involve my husband in the challenge and gave him a bowl of (what I call) Apple Pie Quick Oats. You can make this in minutes following the directions on the canister of the Quaker Oats Quick 1-Minute Oats.
Just core and dice an apple or two. Then, when the salted water begins to boil, put your apples in the pot with the oats. I also added vanilla, ground cinnamon, nutmeg, and brown sugar. Continue to cook the oats according to the package’s directions.
I let my husband decide how to top his oatmeal, and I decorated my own. Notice his has crumbled bacon, chopped pecans, AND extra brown sugar while I settled for pecans and a splash of maple syrup.
But that is the awesome thing about oatmeal. Everyone can express his or her own personality… I mean, preferences.
The next three days, I played around with different combinations of nutritious ingredients:
Day Two – Blueberry Peach Oatmeal Smoothie
Day Three – Cherry Cacao Oatmeal Bars (recipe coming soon!)
Day Four – Goji Berry Pumpkin Seed Granola (recipe coming soon!)
Doesn’t it look amazing?!?
Day Five – Overnight Cranberry Orange Steel Cut Oatmeal
Then, on the Day Five, I wanted to create a recipe with steel cut oats. I’ve heard there are tremendous benefits to using steel cut oats but had always been fearful of the cooking time. So, I attempted to use the slow cooker.
I read horror stories about how the oatmeal burns and the edges get crusty but decided to try anyway.
The results were wonderful!
Even without a water bath in the slow cooker, my oatmeal turned out perfectly. Perhaps the reason why they did not overcook was because I have a small, low-wattage slow cooker and the “low” setting cooks very slowly.
I think the eight hours it took in my slow cooker might only take six in an average crock pot. However, the small size worked perfectly for four servings of oatmeal.
Or maybe it was because I sprayed the inside of the crock pot liner with coconut oil non-stick cooking spray. Regardless, this is one oatmeal recipe we will have again and again because it is simple and satisfying.
Slow Cooker Cranberry Orange Steel Cut Oatmeal
- 1 cup steel cut oats
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups milk or almond milk
- 2 cups water
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- Zest from one orange
- Juice from one orange
- Spray inside slow cooker liner with non-stick cooking spray.
- Add all ingredients to the slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.
- Stir to evenly distribute all ingredients and serve.