Instant Pot Creamy Oatmeal Recipe

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Make a quick and delicious breakfast with this easy and healthy Instant Pot Oatmeal Recipe. This creamy oatmeal is filling, high in fiber, and infinitely adaptable for every member of your family!

A black bowl of oatmeal with a silver spoon in the bowl on a wooden table with a towel to the left of the bowl.
Warm Instant Pot Oatmeal

Do you find oatmeal bland, tasteless and a pain to cook? 

I was in the same boat until I began making it in the Instant Pot. This hands-free method of making oatmeal yields the creamiest oatmeal every time and the best part – you don’t have to worry about constantly stirring or cleaning up burnt oatmeal messes. 

Making a bowl of oatmeal has never been simpler. All you have to do is dump the ingredients, set the program and walk away – it is completely hands-free. While you might find many flavored packs of oatmeal on the market, the healthiest and most filling bowls of oatmeal are the ones you make and flavor yourself.

Before we chat about the recipe, let’s do a quick oatmeal 101 where we cover the difference between oats and oatmeal and understand how quick, instant, rolled, steel-cuts, etc, differ from each other.  

What is the difference between oats and oatmeal?

While some people may use the terms oats and oatmeal interchangeably, they are, in fact, different. Oats refer to the unprocessed, cylindrical kernel. When it is processed i.e either ground, steel-cut, or rolled, it becomes oatmeal.

Various types of oatmeal are formed depending upon the level of rolling and processing the oats go through. Here are a few examples – 

Different type of oats

4 piles of oats on a wooden table. The pile at the top shows steel-cut oats. To the right is a pile of rolled oats. The bottom pile labeled quick oats, and the pile to the left labeled whole oat groats.
Different Types of Oats
  • Whole oat groats – When the oats are cleaned and hulled, you get whole oat groats, which look a lot like whole wheat. They take a long time to cook, which is why they are not commonly used to make oatmeal. 
  • Steel-cut (Irish oats) – These are made by splitting groats into two or three pieces using a sharp metal blade. They have a tougher texture and take longer to cook compared to instant or rolled oats, but they are faster to cook than whole oat groats. These oats take about 30-40 minutes to cook on a stovetop. 
  • Scottish Oats When whole oat groats are ground by stone instead of using a steel blade, you get Scottish oats. Stone grinding results in oats that are more finely ground, which yields a creamier porridge compared to steel-cut oats. Their cooking time is similar to steel-cut oats. They take about 30-40 minutes to cook on a stovetop.
  • Rolled oats (old fashioned or regular) – To make old fashioned oats, groats are steamed, rolled and flattened to turn them into flakes. Since they are lighter and fluffier, they cook faster. These are often used in baking. This kind is preferred over instant or quick oats since it keeps you satiated longer. These take 5 minutes to cook.
  • Quick oats – When oat flakes steam longer and/or roll out thinner, you get quick oats. They take only about a minute or two to cook, making them very popular. 
  • Instant oats – The process to make Instant oats is similar to making rolled oats, except that it is steamed one more time before being dried. Since these are pre-cooked all you need to do is add boiling water to make oatmeal. They are great for traveling when you want to make oatmeal on the go. Just make sure to avoid the ones with added sugar/flavors.
  • Oat flour – The groat pulverized into flour. It can be used in baking. Considered whole grain because the entire whole oat groats are used.

For more information regarding different oats and whole grains check out this Whole grains 101 article.

Which one is the healthiest

Steel-cut oats are minimally processed and have more fiber than the rest, which is why it is considered the healthiest. But for the most part, all kinds of oats are very similar in nutritional value.

Oats and their uses

Baking – rolled or quick oats
Granola bars, Granola – rolled oats [check out this recipe to make granola in about 10 minutes using an air-fryer]
Oatmeal – Steel cuts for a nuttier and chewier structure. For a creamier texture, use rolled, instant, or quick oats. 

How to make oatmeal

Different ways to make oatmeal and which method is better 

  1. Slow cooker – best for steel-cut oats, the slow cooker is another hands-free way to make a morning bowl of oatmeal.
  2. Stovetop – all kinds of oat cook well on the stovetop. This method involves being present to stir the oats to prevent burning on the bottom of the pan.
  3. Instant Pot – steel-cuts and rolled work well in the Instant Pot. This hands-free recipe makes cooking oatmeal a breeze!
  4. Microwave – quick or instant oats work best for the microwave. This method quickly cooks oats but can often overflow the bowl and leave a mess in the microwave. 

With so many different methods to make oatmeal, the best method boils down to personal preference. I prefer using Instant Pot because it is hands-free and yields perfect results every time. 

How to make oatmeal (steel cuts + rolled oats) in an Instant Pot

The secret to creamy and delicious oatmeal lies in the oats to liquid ratio. My recipe uses a 1:3 ratio of oats to liquid both for steel-cut oats and rolled / old-fashioned oats. 
 
A 6 picture guide to making oatmeal in the instant pot. Picture 1 shows the oats in a measuring cup. picture 2 shows salt being added to the instant pot. Picture 3 shows the ingredients in the instant pot. picture 4 shows the settings for the instant pot. Picture 5 shows a spoonful of the oatmeal. Picture 6 shows the instant pot full of oatmeal.
Step by Step Guide to Instant Pot Oatmeal – Rolled oats or steel-cut

To make oatmeal you need

Procedure

  1. Add rolled oats, whole milk, water, and salt in the steel inner pot of your Instant Pot and mix well. 
  2. Select the Porridge mode and cook on high for 3 minutes.
  3. After the cooking cycle completes, wait at least 10 minutes before releasing pressure. 
  4. Stir the oatmeal and serve hot. 
  5. Refrigerate extra oatmeal for about 5 days or freeze oatmeal for up to a month. 
Note

When you use 3 cups of liquid while cooking oats in the Instant Pot it may seem like a lot of liquid especially for rolled oats but it is totally needed and here’s why – 

  1. This will ensure that your oatmeal will not burn.
  2. As the oatmeal cools down it will absorb all the liquid making it creamy. If you use less liquid, you’ll notice that by the time you are ready to eat the oatmeal is dried out and clumpy.

Oatmeal toppings 

Plain oatmeal lacks flavor, but you can liven it up with the following variations. You can vary the liquid used, such as replacing water with milk, coconut milk, almond milk, etc. The toppings that you can use are endless – you never have to eat your oatmeal the same way again. 
  1. Nuts such as pecans, almonds, and even chopped cashews add a nice crunch to the oatmeal.
  2. Seeds like sunflower seeds, pepitas, or flaxseed.
  3. Nut butter adds a swirl of protein to the oatmeal. Add homemade peanut butter, hazelnut butter, or almond butter for an extra creamy bite!
  4. Sweeteners like honey, agave, and sugar take the oatmeal from savory to sweet!
  5. Spice powders such as cinnamon, cardamom, or pumpkin spice add a little extra flavor to your oatmeal.
  6. Granola tops oatmeal perfectly to give it an added kick. [Side note: Check out this easy recipe to make granola at home using your air-fryer. It takes 1/2 the time your oven would take. ]
  7. Fruit of your choice – I love bananas over oatmeal, but there are plenty of options, such as blueberries, apples, raspberries, etc. 
A black bowl with instant pot oatmeal topped with banana and oats on a wooden table with a dish towel to the left.
Creamy banana oatmeal.

Frequently asked questions

How long does oatmeal last in the refrigerator?

Refrigerate for 5 days or freeze for up to a month in individual freezer-safe glass containers.

How do you reheat oatmeal?

If frozen, thaw it in the refrigerator overnight. To reheat, add a few tablespoons of milk till the oatmeal is of desired consistency. Reheat in a microwave or over stove-top.

Can you double the recipe? 

Yes. Do not change the cooking time – keep it at 3 minutes. You’ll notice that the Instant Pot will take longer to come to pressure.

Is oatmeal gluten-free?

Pure oats are gluten-free. Unfortunately many facilities that process oats might also process ingredients containing gluten and inadvertently contaminate the oats. So, if you are gluten-intolerant be sure to read the label to confirm the oats were processed in a gluten-free facility. Here’s the brand I recommend. 

Is oatmeal good for you?

As a common breakfast food, a question often asked is if it’s okay to eat oatmeal every day. It is both okay and healthy to eat oatmeal daily since oatmeal is a nutrient-dense superfood.

Many of the health benefits associated with oats include – high nutritional content, the ability to reduce your blood sugar, and improving gut bacteria. They contain many vitamins and minerals including manganese, iron, and zinc. Additionally, the high fiber helps reduce cholesterol, while the carbs help maintain healthy blood sugar levels. 

Recommended reading: 9 health benefits of eating oatmeal. 

What is the difference between oatmeal and porridge?

Porridge refers to any grain, rice, oat, or corn boiled or cooked in a liquid such as water or milk. By this definition, oatmeal is a kind of porridge because the oat grain cooks in water or milk. 

Other breakfast recipes

Looking for other delicious and filling breakfast ideas? Here are a few breakfast ideas that will get your morning off on the right foot-

  1. Easy Chocolate Overnight Oats – Eating chocolate overnight oats will feel like you are having dessert for breakfast. All you need is about 5-minutes of prep time the night before and in the morning you will have this decadent chocolate treat waiting for you.
  2. Mango Overnight Oats – Loaded with oats, chia seeds, and sweet, juicy mango bits, this creamy overnight oats recipe is perfect for busy mornings. 
  3. Egg Paratha– Put your leftover rotis or tortillas to good use and make delicious and filling egg parathas in less than 10 minutes.
  4. Coffee Walnut Smoothie– The perfect solution for when you are debating between having coffee in the morning or chugging down a healthy smoothie.
  5. Banana Nutella Smoothie– My kids love this delicious Banana Nutella Smoothie Recipe. It’s a healthy drink made from bananas and milk with a hint of Nutella and hot cocoa.
  6. Healthy Granola– Learn how to make this healthy and easy granola with your air fryer!


Got a new Instant Pot? Check out the links below to make the most of your pressure cooker -  
A black bowl of oatmeal with a silver spoon in the bowl on a wooden table with a towel to the left of the bowl.

Creamy Instant Pot Oatmeal Recipe

4.20 from 5 votes
A warm and creamy bowl of oatmeal makes the perfect breakfast recipe. This filling breakfast quickly comes together in just 15 minutes!
Prep Time: 1 minute
Cook Time: 3 minutes
Pressure building time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 14 minutes
Servings: 2
Diet : Gluten-free
Course : Breakfast
Method: Instant Pot
Cuisine : American

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup steel-cut or old-fashioned oats
  • 2 cups whole milk, or milk of your choice - almond milk, coconut milk etc.
  • 1 cup water
  • teaspoon salt

Instructions
 

  • Add all the ingredients in the Instant Pot. Mix well.
  • Set the vent to sealing. Select the Porridge mode and cook on high for 3 minutes.
  • When the cooking cycle is complete, wait for at least 10 minutes before releasing pressure.
  • Stir the oatmeal and serve hot.
  • Refrigerate for about 5 days or freeze the oatmeal for about a month.

Notes

Note
When you use 3 cups of liquid while cooking oats in the Instant Pot it may seem like a lot of liquid especially for rolled oats but it is totally needed and here's why - 
  1. This will ensure that your oatmeal will not burn.
  2. As the oatmeal cools down it will absorb all the liquid making it creamy. If you use less liquid, you'll notice that by the time you are ready to eat the oatmeal is dried out and clumpy.

Oatmeal toppings 

Plain oatmeal lacks flavor, but you can liven it up with the following variations. You can vary the liquid used, such as replacing water with milk, coconut milk, almond milk, etc. The toppings that you can use are endless - you never have to eat your oatmeal the same way again. 
  1. Nuts such as pecans, almonds, and even chopped cashews add a nice crunch to the oatmeal.
  2. Seeds like sunflower seeds, pepitas, or flaxseed.
  3. Nut butter adds a swirl of protein to the oatmeal. Add homemade peanut butter, hazelnut butter, or almond butter for an extra creamy bite!
  4. Sweeteners like honey, agave, and sugar take the oatmeal from savory to sweet!
  5. Spice powders such as cinnamon, cardamom, or pumpkin spice add a little extra flavor to your oatmeal.
  6. Granola tops oatmeal perfectly to give it an added kick. [Side note: Check out this easy recipe to make granola at home using your air-fryer. It takes 1/2 the time your oven would take. ]
  7. Fruit of your choice - I love bananas over oatmeal, but there are plenty of options, such as blueberries, apples, raspberries, etc. 

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Disclosure: This recipe contains affiliate links to products we love and recommend. As an affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition

Calories: 302kcalCarbohydrates: 39gProtein: 13gFat: 11gSaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 24mgSodium: 259mgPotassium: 469mgFiber: 4gSugar: 13gVitamin A: 395IUCalcium: 297mgIron: 2mg

Disclaimer: Approximate Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and can vary depending on the exact ingredients/brands used. If you have health issues, please work with a registered dietician or nutritionist.

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Keyword : basic, Best, creamy, healthy

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2 Comments

  1. I just prepared your recipe, exactly as written, and the oatmeal is creamy & delicious; however, there is quite a bit stuck to the bottom of the pot, not necessarily burned, but stuck. How do I keep this from happening? Or is it not possible?

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