Sep 03, 2015

NOT Restaurant Oatmeal… how to cook oatmeal that rocks.

The last time I ordered oatmeal at a restaurant was the very last time I will ever order oatmeal at a restaurant again. Have you had this stuff? I had forgotten how really bad it is. It’s sloppy, gooey, watery, mushy and tasteless. I honestly don’t know what the cooks are thinking back there… maybe they think that if someone wants oatmeal for breakfast they want tasteless slop. Maybe they don’t understand that this is an actual meal as opposed to eggs and bacon. Who could possibly eat this and get any pleasure from it whatsoever? I think the restaurant cooks should have to eat it. Maybe then they would change their recipes. Honestly, going out for breakfast, oatmeal is really about the only thing I can order unless we drive about 30 miles to a place that has vegan options.

It’s really a bummer, too, because it gives oats a bad rap. Oats are a great way to start the day and the way I cook them they are al dente, chewy, fluffy and flavorful. Top with a splash of your favorite plant-based milk (I love my oatmeal with homemade cashew milk). Add some fresh fruit, nuts, seeds, a sprinkle of cinnamon… whatever your taste buds enjoy.

You may think I’m crazy posting a recipe for oatmeal but, trust me, there really is a technique to cooking a hearty bowl of delicious oats. Let me tell you my secrets…

First of all you must start with good, thick-cut oats. Not regular rolled oats, not “Old-Fashioned” rolled oats and, heavens no, not instant or quick-cooking oats. Bob’s Red Mill has great, extra thick rolled oats, certified gluten-free, that I buy at VitaCost. Have you shopped there yet? They have seriously competitive prices and very low or free shipping. I purchase a lot of things there. Anyway, I digress. So get yourself some thick or extra-thick rolled oats. You can sometimes find them in the bulk bins at health food stores, too.

Yes, I do eat steel-cut oats and, technically, they are better as they are less processed so they take longer to digest and have less of a glycemic effect, but they just take so darn long to cook! So most of the time I opt for these thick rolled oats and they satisfy the need for a hearty bowl of oatmeal that sustains me through the morning. Now that the cooler weather is on its way, I thought you’d like to enjoy some too.
Ingredients:

  • 1½ cups thick rolled oats
  • 2 cups water
  • pinch of sea salt (optional)

Directions:

  1. Combine the oats and water (and salt if using) in a saucepan and bring to a low boil.
  2. Immediately remove the pan from the heat and cover.
  3. Let sit, covered, for about 10 minutes. That’s it! The oats will absorb the rest of the water on their own. DON’T STIR, DON’T TOUCH. Just let it sit and you will have amazing oatmeal.

Serves 2. Enjoy!

Healthy trails,

9 responses to “NOT Restaurant Oatmeal… how to cook oatmeal that rocks.”

  1. Jan-Marie says:

    What? No boiling for ten minutes and stirring constantly? I'm going to give this method a try. I usually eat mine raw or do steel cut in the pressure cooker — three minutes is all.

  2. Helyn says:

    Pressure cooker sounds like a good idea for the steel cut. But doesn't yours take a while to heat up and cool down? I know it's a short actual cook time but to me it seemed like it still took a while. 🙂

  3. Sarah Orr says:

    Boy, yours look delicious! I just made the steel cut variety and they look nothing like yours. I will definitely give your recipe a try!

  4. jan says:

    It takes less time to heat up than any other pan with a lid and then the pressure begins…and to quickly cool down you can put the pan in the sink and run cold water over it.

    Not everyone likes their oatmeal the same. One of my friends loves it the way you make it. I have another friend who likes it almost hard! I love it creamy, so I start my oats in cold water and bring to a boil. It is done within a minute or I just pull it off the burner and let it sit a few minutes while I do other things. I use 1/2 cup of oats to 1 1/4 cups of water. I add salt too.

  5. jan says:

    Also, in the book "Year of Plenty" by Craig Goodwin, I believe he said he saw Bob's oats being packaged from the same lot of oats as many other providers, so nothing special to pay for there. Craig brought this up in a seminar I found on youtube.

  6. Gira says:

    I have never thought to order oatmeal at a restaurant! When traveling, I usually take my own dry rolled oats (with raisins and cinnamon) and a small travel kettle. I add hot water to the oats and let sit covered for about 5 minutes. It turns out perfect! Oatmeal is my favorite food ever!

  7. Helyn says:

    Thanks for the info, Jan! I will try the steel cut in my InstaPot… good to know about Bob's! 🙂

  8. Helyn says:

    GREAT idea to travel with your own personal oatmeal making kit! :))

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