How To Make Oatmeal in the Slow Cooker: The Simplest, Easiest Method

How To Make Oatmeal in the Slow Cooker: The Simplest, Easiest Method

Meghan Splawn
Jan 17, 2018
(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Oatmeal from the slow cooker sounds practical and kind of boring, but the resulting oatmeal is so luxuriously creamy that no one would ever believe you made it in the humble slow cooker.

While cooking oats in the slow cooker can be purely utilitarian for serving a crowd or staggering breakfast diners, it's also the ultimate breakfast to treat yourself to.

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Why You Should Make Oatmeal in the Slow Cooker

Stovetop oatmeal takes about 10 minutes to make, so it begs the question: Why would anyone want to make oatmeal in the slow cooker? There are actually plenty of scenarios when you'd want to make oatmeal in the slow cooker — maybe you need to use the slow cooker because your stove is being replaced or because you have a crowd to feed in the morning and they'll be eating in staggered shifts. But the very best reason for using your slow cooker for oatmeal is the resulting oatmeal itself. Unlike stovetop oatmeal, which is chewy and fluffy, slow cooker oatmeal is soft and creamy, with a luxurious feeling to it (the cream helps).

How to Make Oatmeal in the Slow Cooker

This is a pretty set-it-and-forget-it recipe, but here are a few key pointers.

  • Combine the oats and water in a small slow cooker. A small slow cooker is best for this oatmeal. Give the oats and water a quick stir and then cover and set to low.
  • Cook on low without stirring. Cook on low for eight hours. Go to bed or walk away and avoid stirring while it cooks.
  • Finish with cream and sugar. Once the oats are cooked, add a bit of cream and brown sugar and stir to combine. Switch the slow cooker to warm to avoid overcooking before serving.

Serving Slow Cooker Oatmeal

Personally I find this oatmeal oh-so-satisfying on its own, but additional cream and chopped fresh fruit or nuts are a nice contrast to this ultra-rich oatmeal.

How To Make Oatmeal in the Slow Cooker: The Simplest, Easiest Method

Serves 4

What You Need


  • 3 cups


  • 1 cup

    old-fashioned rolled oats

  • 1/4 cup

    heavy cream or half-and-half

  • 1/4 cup

    packed brown sugar

  • Equipment
  • Measuring cups and spoons

  • 2-quart slow cooker


  1. Combine the water and oats in a small slow cooker. Place the water and oats in a 2-quart slow cooker and stir to combine.

  2. Cover and cook on LOW 8 hours. Cover the slow cooker. Cook on the LOW setting for 8 hours or overnight.

  3. Add the cream and brown sugar. Add the cream or half-and-half and brown sugar. Gently stir the oats but avoid over-stirring, as the oats will be incredibly creamy.

  4. Serve with additional toppings if desired. Serve the oatmeal with more cream, sugar, or toppings if desired.

Recipe Notes

Gluten-free: For gluten-free oatmeal, make sure the oats are labeled gluten-free, meaning they are processed in a facility that does not also process foods containing gluten.

Doubling the recipe: You can easily double or triple the amounts in the recipe and still cook for 8 hours on low in a larger slow cooker.

Storage: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

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