With cooler mornings comes the immediate desire for something warmer to wake up to. The cold bowl of yogurt and granola gets swapped out for a comforting bowl of oatmeal as the season turns to fall. But oats are only as good as how they are made. Here are seven tips to achieve oatmeal success throughout the season.
1. Try combining rolled and steel-cut oats for a less mushy texture.
While oatmeal is supposed to be soft and porridge-like, sometimes it can be just a little too mushy. To solve this problem, try cooking up a mix of both rolled and steel-cut oats. That way you'll get the al dente chew of steel-cut oats with the creaminess of rolled oats for perfect texture every time.
2. Toast the oats for extra-nutty flavor.
Take a minute or two to toast the oats in the saucepan with a little melted butter before adding the water to achieve even more rich, nutty flavor. It doesn't matter which variety of oats you use — a little toast goes a long way.
3. Make a week's worth of breakfast by making overnight oats in jars.
Busy weekday mornings don't always allow for the time it takes to make a fresh batch of oatmeal. Explore the world of overnight oats to solve this dilemma. Fill Mason jars with oats and hot water, seal them, and let the oats cook right in the jars overnight. Then just reach for them throughout the week as you're running out the door.
Learn How: One Week of Breakfast in 5 Minutes
4. Improve your microwaved oatmeal with a few additions.
Or if you'd rather microwave your oats in the morning for a quick breakfast, know how to make a better bowl. Additions like mashed bananas, peanut butter, and milk turn microwaved oats into ones that rival stovetop oats.
Get Inspired: 5 Ways to Make a Better Bowl of Oatmeal in the Microwave
5. Learn to lean on your slow cooker.
If you're making enough oats for the whole family, pull out the slow cooker to make it easier on yourself. Toss everything in before you head to bed, and in the morning you'll have a pot of warm cooked oats ready for everyone to dig into before they start their day.
Get the Recipe: Slow-Cooker Oatmeal with Honey and Fruit
6. Upgrade your mix-in game.
Think beyond brown sugar and cinnamon to make things more interesting. Broken-up graham crackers and cacao nibs are unconventional mix-ins that keep oatmeal fun and tasty.
Make Deluxe Oatmeal: 10 Awesome Mix-Ins
7. Start embracing savory oatmeal.
If you're really ready for a change, go a little bit more out of the box with savory mix-ins. Crumbled or grated cheese, fresh chopped herbs, and savory spices make for a unique bowl of oats. And a fried egg on top never hurt, either.
Get Inspired: 7 Savory Oatmeal Recipes