Monday, September 17, 2012

Pumpkin Spice (Steel Cut) Oatmeal

 The aroma of cinnamon and nutmeg to me signify that it's time for the weather to cool down, it's getting closer to the holidays, and to add a little spice to almost every recipe I make, especially baked goods. This pumpkin oatmeal has cinnamon, other warm spices, uses maple syrup instead of refined sugar, and fills you up before you head off to work or school. This is the perfect breakfast for the chilly, rainy mornings that we have been having around here lately.
  Up until maybe two years ago, I'd never tried steel cut oats and when I did I wasn't so sure about if I liked the them that much. Steel oats have a very different texture compared to regular oats because of how they are processed and takes about 3 times longer to cook up. About 5 months ago, I used steel cut oats to make overnight cinnamon apple oatmeal  in a slow cooker which everyone enjoyed for breakfast and it made the house smell delicious!

  I've also seen recipes for no-cook oatmeal that you make in jars by adding the ingredients, letting it sit overnight in the fridge, and then eating it the next day. Apparently this isn't a new idea (some having been making this for years), but it's good because it's a quick on-the-go breakfast without having to turn on the stove, you can have basically make any flavor combo you can think of, and it can be vegan by using dairy free milk and yogurt. The recipe is here. The only thing is that gets me is that you are suppose to eat the overnight oats cold, straight from the fridge and in my mind oatmeal is suppose to be hot, so I might try making a jar and then just zapping in the microwave to heat up.
   The original recipe used 2 tbsp of maple syrup which I didn't think added enough sweetness so I added 2 more tablespoons. I really don't like to start off my days with having a very sweet breakfast (I say, save the sweet stuff for desserts), but for those who prefer a sweeter breakfast feel free to add more sweetener.

Pumpkin Spice Steel Cut Oatmeal
serves: 2-4

3 cups water
1 cup steel cut oats (also called Irish oats: here is a GF type)
1/2 cup canned pumpkin puree (not the sweetened pumpkin pie filling)
2 tsp cinnamon
dash of nutmeg
pinch of clove
1/4 tsp cardamom*
1/4 cup maple syrup**

1. In a medium pot, boil 3 cups of water. Add in the oats, turn the heat to low, and cover with a lid.
-Give the oats a good stir every once in a while, especially once most of the water is absorbed so the oats don't stick to the bottom of the pan and burn.
2. Once the water has been absorbed and the oats are cooked (20-30 minutes), stir in the pumpkin, spices, and maple syrup, and remove from the heat. If the oatmeal is too thick for you, add in a splash of milk.
3. Divide between bowls and top with nuts, more maple syrup, or even yogurt.
-The original recipe said that this was 2 portions, but they are very large portions so It can be 3-4 smaller portions.

Leftovers: The spices get a little stronger if you chill the leftovers to save for another day. I like to reheat extra oatmeal with a splash of soy or almond milk to thin it out a bit before adding some nuts, dried fruit, and extra maple syrup.

*If you don't have all of the spices above on hand, you can simply sub-in pumpkin pie spice or apple pie spice which generally have these spices already mixed in, plus more.
**The original recipe used 2 tbsp of maple syrup, but I added some more. You could also use agave, honey, coconut palm sugar, or even brown sugar instead of maple syrup. I've read other oatmeal recipes that used more sugar/sweetener (1/2 cup or more) so you could add more than 1/4 cup of sweetener if you desire.


  1. I haven't yet found a Gluten-free steel cut oats. How would you adapt this recipe for those who need GF?

    1. You can try Bob's Red Mill GF steel cut oats. I haven't tried it, but I've read a lot of good reviews on it.