I’ve had a few people ask what we do to save money on breakfast, since a lot of the recipes on Eating Richly are dinner recipes. I do have quite a few breakfast recipes on here as well, but Eric and I are really creatures of habit when it comes to breakfast. I like to mix it up every once in a while, but I usually have toast with a poached egg, or greek yogurt with fruit. Eric chooses to eat the same thing every morning, oatmeal.
He’s been eating oatmeal since he was a boy and you can offer him eggs and bacon, pancakes, or waffles, but he’ll usually turn you down in favor of a simple bowl of oatmeal.
He tends to prefer old fashioned oats because he can easily cook them in minutes each morning. In fact, we discovered steel cut oats completely by accident. We order a lot of our grains in bulk from Azure Standard, and a friend gave us some of her oats that she ordered from them to see if we liked them. We did, and she told us they were the steel cut oats, so I ordered a giant 25 pound bag of them.
Turns out they weren’t the same as the ones she had us try! Eric was so disappointed because he really missed how easy the other oats were to make in the morning and how soft and creamy the texture used to be. He thought the steel cut oats were just too chewy and too much work.
Of course, when you’re stuck with a 25 pound bag of something that’s good for you, you have to learn to like it. I began experimenting with cooking large batches to give him a work week’s worth of oatmeal that he could easily microwave each morning.
In addition to trying to get the same creamy texture, I also wanted to move him away from the processed brown sugar that he was used to using every morning. I tried using sucanat, which is dehydrated cane juice and my typical substitute for white or brown sugar. But then I discovered that organic maple syrup adds a really great flavor and some additional liquid to help with the creaminess.
Make sure you don’t skip toasting the steel cut oats. It’s a key step to add flavor and to help them absorb the liquid (kind of like risotto) to get that creamy texture. Trust me, it works. Now every morning that I’m up at the same time as Eric, he lovingly tells me, “Wow honey, you make really good steel cut oats.”
We also like to top our oatmeal with some fresh or frozen blueberries. Since our bushes are bursting with berries right now, I’ve been using fresh ones. I call them my baby vitamins! I don’t include the berries in the recipe, but feel free to use whatever fruit you’d like.
How do you like your oatmeal?
Easy Organic Steel Cut Oats RecipePrep time: 0 minutes Cook time: 30 minutes Total time: 30 minutes Yield: 5-7 servings
- 2 TBS
organic butter (or coconut oil)
- 2 cups
organic steel cut oats
- 6 cups
- 1 cup
organic 2% milk (or soymilk)
- 1/2 tsp
- 1/4 cup
organic maple syrup
- Melt butter (or coconut oil) in a large pot on medium high and add oats. Stir to coat and let toast for one minute.
- Add the water and stir. Let simmer for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add the milk, salt and maple syrup. Stir and simmer another two minutes.
- Store in a large airtight container in the fridge. Reheat individual portions in the microwave or a small pot on the stove.
Approximate cost/serving: With Azure Standard you can get organic oats for the same cost as regular bulk oats at a grocery store, I got 25 lbs for $18! I buy maple syrup in bulk (the real stuff, not pancake syrup!) as well. This ends up costing us about $1 per batch so it’s less than 25 cents a serving! You can make even cheaper by skipping the organic if you’re not concerned about that.
Vegetarian/Gluten Free: It’s vegetarian and can be vegan by using coconut oil and soy or rice milk. For gluten free, you need to find a reliable source of oats that are not cross contaminated. Azure Standard does offer gluten free steel cut oats!