“Breakfast is the most important meal of the day” is something I’m sure you’ve all heard hundreds of times… and it’s true! Eating a nutritious and fulfilling breakfast gives our bodies the energy we need to take on the day ahead. Oatmeal is one of my all-time favorite breakfast dishes, and certainly provides the nutrients and energy our bodies need. Quick, easy, delicious, and healthy…oatmeal is a great breakfast staple. Something I’ve started doing every Sunday evening is making a large batch of steel-cut oatmeal, and storing it in sealed glass containers in the refrigerator. Meal prepping saves time and ensures I have nutritious breakfast options for the week ahead.
I prefer steel cut oats versus rolled, or quick oats as steel cut may be the best choice for those looking for better control of their blood sugar. Steel cut oats are slightly higher in fiber than rolled and quick oats. They also have the lowest glycemic index of the three types of oats, potentially making them the best choice for blood sugar control. Steel-cut oats tend to have a more firm and chewier consistency, even when fully cooked. Rolled oats, on the other hand, have a more consistent texture, although they may still be chewier than instant or quick oats. You can certainly use either form of oats to prepare breakfast cereal.
Types of Oats
Steel Cut Oats
Steel cuts are the least processed of the oat types. The oat groat (the full oat grain) is cut into two or three parts to produce steel cut oats. Being less processed they absorb more liquid and take longer to cook.
Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
This type of oat, the oat groats have been steamed and rolled. This processing speeds up the cooking time. Rolled oats are a much creamier oatmeal.
Quick or Instant Oats
The most processed of all the oat varieties. They are pre-cooked, rolled, and pressed thinner than rolled oats. They cook much faster than steel cut or rolled oats, but also lose a bit of texture in the cooking process making them mushy and less volume.
Oats are considered a natural superfood, meaning they’re nutrient-rich and beneficial to your health. Oatmeal is associated with lowering blood sugar levels, providing antioxidants, promoting healthy bacteria in your gut, helping your heart health, and many other benefits.
How to Make Oatmeal
For cooking instructions, follow the manufacturer’s suggestions. Steel cut oats take longer to prepare than rolled or quick so be prepared. I add brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and vanilla at the end of the cooking process for added flavor.
Oatmeal can of course be fabulous solo but I prefer the addition of toppings like berries filled with antioxidants, dried fruit, granola,nuts, shredded coconut, flax seeds, chia seeds, Greek yogurt, and honey.