Make Your Own Instant Oatmeal And Other Great Ideas From "The Homemade Pantry"

December 17, 2012   17 Comments

I spend a lot of time looking at cookbooks to find good ones. This one made me smack my head and wonder why I hadn't thought of it.

DIY Instant Oatmeal

"The Homemade Pantry" by Alana Chernila is filled with ideas for making the processed food that you buy yourself. Take that PopTarts! I am not going to buy you anymore!

Actually, I don't buy PopTarts if I can help it, but I did make my own just to see how they would come out. Yeah, that would be yummy.

There are recipes for ketchup, tortillas, chicken nuggets, and salad dressing (and lots of other stuff). Alana has chosen a bunch of things that we can make fairly easily and the photos in her book are enticing.

Take that Heinz!

Okay, I don't know how many of you will find the time to make your own ketchup - but you should find the time to make your own instant oatmeal. This is simple, delicious, and will save you a ton of money if you buy those little packets.

Also, you can regulate how much sugar is in your mix, which is why I haven't found an instant oatmeal to feature on Snack Girl. Too much sugar!

The instant oatmeal recipe was featured in her book for her children to make when it is the weekend and Alana stays in bed until 8 AM. Ummmm, I think she may have to right another book about how she manages to get her kids to let her sleep (or do anything for that matter).

For those of you trying to stop buying processed food at the grocery store, this is a great book to get you started.

DIY Instant Oatmeal

Instant Oatmeal from The Homemade Pantry

1.8 from 16 reviews

reprinted with permission from “The Homemade Pantry” by Alana Chernila

makes 12 to 15 servings

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6 cups (1 pound, 3 ounces) old-fashioned rolled oats
½ cup (4 ounces) packed light brown sugar, homemade (below) or store-bought, or more or less to taste
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
Optional: dried or dehydrated fruit


Preheat the oven to 325°F. Spread the oats on a baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes. Cool slightly.

In the bowl of a food processor, combine 4 cups of the toasted oats, the brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Pulse until the mixture is a rough powder.

Pour into a large wide-mouthed jar or container. Pour in the remaining 2 cups of oats and the fruit, if using. Stir thoroughly and top with the lid.

To make the oatmeal, combine 1/2 cup of the mixture with 1 to 1 1/2 cups boiling water. Cover with a plate and let sit for 5 minutes before stirring and serving.

Store at room temperature in covered container up to 4 weeks
Refrigerate in covered container up to 3 months
Freeze in freezer-safe container or bag up to 6 months

Nutrition Facts

For one serving of 15 = 179 calories, 2.8 g fat, 0.0 g saturated fat, 32.6 g carbohydrates, 6.7 g sugar, 5.6 g protein, 2.0 g fiber, 155 mg sodium, 5 Points+

Make your own brown sugar!

Combine 1 cup granulated sugar with 2 teaspoons unsulphured molasses. Fluff with a fork or beat in a stand mixer until the molasses is entirely incorporated in the sugar. There will be a tense moment—the molasses will clump—but carry on! Mix a bit more and you will have brown sugar. For darker brown sugar, increase your molasses. Store in a covered container for up to 6 months.

Points values are calculated by Snack Girl and are provided for information only. See all Snack Girl Recipes

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Love the recipe for the brown sugar. Now when I am baking and run out I can make my own. As for oatmeal I don't add any sugar but will make this without and add chia seeds and walnuts last.

Love oatmeal!! This would make for a great gift for those oatmeal fans in your life!!

Thanks, Lisa! I've always hated instant oatmeal! This sounds so much better! I love old-fashioned oatmeal, & this sounds like it would be so easy, once you had it toasted & out of the food processor!

I just put 1/2 cup old fashioned oats in a bowl, pour enough water to just a bit more than covered, add cinnamon, microwave 45 seconds, stir, microwave 45 seconds, done. If I want it thicker I microwave 15 seconds more. Super fast and easy in the morning. Packaged oatmeal is horrible - there is so much sodium that my teeth feel funny for half the day after eating it.

Stupid question: why are we adding sugar to oatmeal? When did breakfast become about cookies and cakes?

My oatmeal recipe?
mix in bowl:
1/3c steel-cut oats
1/4c rolled oats
1-2T chia seeds
some cinnamon
some nutmeg
dash salt
1-2T raisins

4-6oz water (depends on how thick/runny you like)

stir, stick in fridge overnight, heat up (microwave, stovetop, whatever) the next morning.

I usually dice up apples and bananas as a topping.

Sweet fruits? Yes. Refined sugar? No thanks.

I don't get it. I make oatmeal everyday in minutes and do not go through all this prep. Rolled Oats and almond milk in the microwave for 2.5 minutes then throw in some fresh or dried fruit. Oatmeal in minutes. Am I missing something?

Oh, OATS! How do I love thee? Let me count the ways! So many ways, but esp. crunchy nutty fruity granola in almond milk, or just baked til crunchy and enjoyed like boxed cereal [which I never buy anymore] topped with a myriad of healthful nuts, seeds, fruits; or groats soaked overnight parfait style [compliments to Food], or Snack Girl's recipe sans sugar. Just made 4 qt jars of pumpkin granola for standby gifts, so darned cute with their gingham bonnets and handmade labels! I haven't tried chia seeds yet but soon. BTW, I use Bobs Red Mill thick-cut organic oats since it's such a staple here. :)

As the author states, this instant oatmeal is also for kids who like some sweetness and need something very simple.

I buy Bob's organic quick oats and add water to cook then add p.b. and jelly and it's made in under 5 min.!

I'm interested in checking out her book for some new ideas. I'm always interested in eliminating another form of processed food in my house.

I make my own instant oatmeal - instant in that the ingredients are ready to throw in a bowl to cook. I measure out single servings of oats, a little bit of brown sugar and a little bit of splenda into a small container. In the morning I throw it into a bowl, add water and microwave.

I do this with both large flake oat variety and steel cut oats. I just need to get the steel cut oats into the microwave earlier!

I'd rather cook the oatmeal in the microwave longer than bake and put oatmeal in a food processor ahead of time but that is just me.

Love this idea! I will definitely be trying a batch of homemade instant oatmeal over Christmas.

I am going to try this with my porridge oats! I love to make them but that typically requires a pan on the stove... I buy sliced almonds at trader joe's to add on top.

Thank you! I bought old fashioned oats because it's the season for baking, and so I haven't bought any quick oats because I don't want two giant canisters in my overpacked kitchen. I will definitely be doing this because sometimes scrambled eggs for breakfast gets so boring!

I'm having this for breakfast today :-). I made it last night and brought it to work. (Of course, I had to try some last night -- it smelled so good! -- it was delicious!). My answer to those who ask why bother doing this when you can put regular rolled oats in the microwave: I don't own a microwave! I don't plan to own one, and I'm happier without it. Also, many offices have a water bubbler that dispenses hot water, but they may not have a microwave. I plan to make a big batch of this to give to my dad for Christmas. Thanks, Snack Girl!

would steel cut oatmeal work as well in this recipie?

I use old-fashioned oats, and cook it in the microwave. I use 1/3 c. oats, 2/3 c. water, and cook on high for 90 seconds. (You can do 1/2 c. oats & 1 c. water, and cook it a little longer.) I usually chop up a few dates and throw them in, and sprinkle some cinnamon on top, then sweeten the oatmeal, and add milk (hubby doesn't) when it's done.

I will definitely try this.

I've been making a no fail, big batch oatmeal for years. Store in the fridge and reheat in micro. When my husband and I were working I made this recipe because there was no measuring after making it each morning:

5 cups water
2 cups rolled oats
1 chopped Apple
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 T butter
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup raisins or chopped prunes
1/3 cup chopped walnuts

Bring water to a boil, add oatmeal and chopped Apple, simmer 7 min.

Add rest of ingred, it will be a bit soupy but it will thicken up as it cools. I change it up adding different dried fruits and nuts. Sometimes I'll have it as a dessert after supper.


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