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REAL Food Fast: Oatmeal in the Microwave from Rolled Oats {Not Quick or Instant Oats}

Oatmeal in the Microwave From WholesomeMommy.com

I’ve been sharing several quick weekday breakfast with ya’ll and thought I share another go to breakfast for my kiddos {and myself}.  This is a building block recipe:  You need this one to make several other ones. :)   I make microwave oatmeal often but make it different by what I mix into it!

The first thing that is important to note about this recipe is that it calls for Rolled Oats {or Old Fashioned Oats – they are EXACTLY the same thing}.  I buy organic rolled oats in bulk VERY cheaply in the bulk bins at my Whole Foods store.  As a matter of fact, I find that it is cheaper to purchase this way than conventional store-bought oats at the regular grocery store!  This is especially true when I purchase a 50lb bag – because I get the 10% “case” discount that Whole Foods offers when you buy the entire thing.  I just store them in food safe buckets once I get home and they’ll last all year. I keep a small amount in my pantry in a big half gallon mason jar to work out of.  I can use these to make oatmeal {obviously} but oats are also delicious in my oat pancakes, in muffins, and other bread products.  They can also be used as a filler in meatloaf and are fantastic in cookies!  Regardless of whether you buy the whole bag or not, rolled oats {or old fashioned oats} are MUCH cheaper than instant oatmeal – and MUCH healthier too!

What are Rolled or Old Fashioned Oats?

Rolled Oats or Old Fashioned Oats are whole grains of oats that are steamed to make them soft and pliable, and then pressed between rollers and dried. The resulting “rolled oats” re-absorb water and cook much more quickly than whole groats or steel-cut oats.

Why are they Healthier than Instant?

The biggest difference in instant oats and rolled oats are texture {rolled oats retain more texture where as instant oats are more like mush}.  Nutritionally they aren’t much different.  HOWEVER, most instant oats are sold in individual packets with other ingredients mixed in – like sugar, ingredients that read more like a lab experiment, and food colorings!

For instance, Quaker Oats Instant Maple and Brown Sugar Oatmeal packets have 10 ingredients.  To make similar oatmeal at home you need 2 or 3 ingredients: oats, brown sugar, and maple syrup.

So, as usual, it is healthier to MAKE YOUR OWN.  But, it doesn’t have to be hard or take too long!

Here’s what you do:


The oatmeal won’t have much flavor on its own.  So, at this point we add things like a spoonful of raw honey, a little more milk or cream, some fresh fruit, and/or nuts.  You can also add brown sugar, maple syrup, raisins, or other dried fruit. Stay tuned for my recipe for apple pie oatmeal coming next week! :)

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  1. I put mix my oats and milk together the night before, and microwave for 2 or 3 minutes in the morning. The milk softens the oats overnight!

  2. Kelly Clayton says:

    Do you believe that the microwave changing the nutrients , minerals and vitamins in the food?

  3. Just FYI, you need a pretty large container to prevent your oatmeal from overflowing in the microwave. For either a single or double serving I use a 4 cup Pyrex measuring cup.

    • Denisesawyer says:

      Yes, Melissa is correct. Use a bigger bowl than you think. I make 4 servings in a big glass bowl.
      Wholesome Mommy

  4. Yum! We enjoy oatmeal about once a week. Great for cold winter mornings. Low cost too! Have you ever made your own brown sugar? Add about a tsp molasses to a cup of sugar. Perfect each time :-) We use evaporated cane juice as our sugar. Its less processed then the white sugar most use. Found a #8 bag at Walmart for under $5, very happy find. Thanks for sharing!!!!

    • Denisesawyer says:

      I haven’t been able to find the can juice. :( I have found organic cane sugar and would prefer it, but can’t afford it. I haven’t ever tried making my own brown sugar but recently saw a post about it and I really want to try. It is on the to do list next time I run out! Thanks for sharing!
      Wholesome Mommy

      • We learned about making our own brown sugar about a year ago. I needed some for a recipe, but was out. I haven’t bought brown sugar since! My kids LOVE the freshly made kind, and it is SOOOOO easy. White sugar and molasses. I can make it as light or as dark as I want.

  5. I few months ago we made the decision to go real food. However my children are addicted to instant oatmeal. I have tried making oat meal every which way but to no avail. They have had instant oatmeal every day since they were born and they do not want to give up the over sweetened chemical stuff they are use too. I tried to over sweeten the stuff I make, Let them pick the mix ins,. Does any one else have any ideas for me?

    • Not sure if will help, but I have made our own instant oatmeal packets. Check Pinterest or google it. There are many different options for this. I tried several different ones until I found one that my hubby and kids liked. Running the oatmeal through the food processor briefly gives the homemade packets the same texture as the store bought packets.

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