Apple Cinnamon Raisin Homemade Oatmeal
On many a morning in our house, you can find me standing over a pot of oatmeal cooking on the stove. This is especially true in the colder months when summer days full of smoothies and yogurt parfaits turn to chilly fall and winter mornings that beg for a hearty breakfast that’ll warm you from the inside out.
Yes, oatmeal is a staple breakfast dish in our house. It’s so versatile and nutritious and cheap to make (plus our two-year-old daughter loves it), so I have no problem whipping up a fresh batch from scratch just about every morning.
When I was a kid I remember eating instant oatmeal from individual packets. It was loaded with sugar (which I admittedly loved) along with artificial colours and flavours and all sorts of additives that really don’t need to be in your morning meal.
Quick Oats vs. Old-Fashioned Rolled Oats
Personally, I use quick oats. I like the fact that they cook up in just minutes on the stove and nutritionally they are the same as old-fashioned rolled oats (just processed a little differently and rolled thinner), which you could easily substitute here as long as you cook them a little longer.
I haven’t eaten steel-cut oats enough to have developed a real taste for them yet, but maybe I’ll try cooking with them more soon. If you want, you could use steel-cut oats in this recipe as long as you follow the cooking directions and time for steel-cut oats.
But as for now, we eat quick oats because I love how quickly they cook up (hence their name) and that’s what we have a ton of in the pantry at the moment.
Related: Turmeric & Garlic Scrambled Eggs
How to Make Oatmeal from Scratch
Oatmeal of any kind is incredibly easy to throw together from scratch. As with most things that I’ve started making from scratch, I now wonder why anyone would ever use the store-bought, highly processed, often unhealthy and even carcinogenic versions of the whole food recipes and natural items we can make very easily and frugally at home from scratch. Oatmeal is one of these things for sure.
I often throw in handfuls of whatever frozen or dried fruit and nuts I have on hand, as well as a little applesauce and some brown sugar, honey or maple syrup to sweeten it up.
Mixed berry oatmeal is very popular in our house because I almost always have frozen blueberries, strawberries, raspberries and blackberries in the freezer. But I also love using dried fruits that I’ve either bought in bulk or put up myself. Dried apples, cherries, cranberries and raisins rehydrate well in oatmeal and taste delicious.
This particular homemade oatmeal recipe is one of my favourites, and combines apples (fresh or dried) with raisins, cinnamon, pecans (optional) and a little brown sugar (or maple syrup) and butter (or coconut oil). It’s simple but full of flavour and 1 1/2 cups of oatmeal feed me, my daughter and my husband and there’s usually enough leftover for someone to have another bowl, or to put in the fridge as a snack for later.
Start by cooking your oatmeal (quick oats take just a couple minutes to cook up). Then add about a tablespoon of butter and stir it in until it’s well mixed. Add your fruits, spices, sugar and nuts (if using) and stir well to combine. Serve hot with a cup of coffee (or milk for the little ones) and start your day off with a full, satisfied belly.
*You could also substitute the sugar for a little Stevia. I add about 1/4 cup of brown sugar to this recipe, so you would probably only want to add about 1/2 teaspoon or so of Stevia because it’s much sweeter. You’d have to play around with it.
Homemade oatmeal in the morning is such a quick, easy, hearty and nutritious way to start your day and will fuel you up for an honest day’s work;) Plus, it’s a super frugal meal that will help stretch your food budget when you’re trying to save money or make ends meet (and who isn’t, amiright?)
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