In addition to being nutritious, they're cheap, easy to prepare and when done right, they are delicious.
A bowl of oatmeal will keep you satisfied for hours.
Oats are naturally high in fiber, which helps keep blood-sugar levels stable and naturally lower cholesterol and rich in minerals like magnesium, antioxidants and B vitamins, which are essential for converting carbohydrates into energy.
Start your day with oatmeal. It's fat soluble fiber takes a long time to break down, reducing your body's insulin level and speeding up your metabolism!
Much more than a warming breakfast meal, oats can also add a boost of nutrition to a wide variety of dishes.
Oatmeal 101 - Types of Oats
There are several different types of oats you can choose from:
Rolled Oats or Old-Fashioned Oats are oats that have been rolled and flattened into flakes so they cook in just 5 to 10 minutes. Though I love a morning bowl of oatmeal, my favorite way use old-fashioned oats are in sweet baked treats like these banana oatmeal cookies and low fat chocolate chip oatmeal cookie bars.
Quick Cooking or Minute Oats are rolled oats that are chopped into smaller pieces so they cook in about 1 minute. They also are a great replacement for bread crumbs in recipes like Paula Deen's meatloaf and no bake chocolate oatmeal peanut butter cookies.
Instant Oats are oats that have been rolled even thinner and finer so they cook in seconds. They are usually pre-flavored and full of sugar, so they're not the best choice when you want to eat healthier and lose weight. Look for a low sugar variety for when you are pressed for time.
Steel Cut Oats are also known as Irish oatmeal or Scottish oats. They have been cut into pieces instead of rolled and have a hearty, nutty taste and texture, but take longer to cook - about 30 minutes. You can shorten the cooking time to 5 to 10 minutes by soaking them overnight.
Notes from Readers for Making Steel Cut Oats in the Crock Pot:
I love to eat steel cut oats for breakfast, but mine are even easier to make. I use the water bath crockpot overnight method. In a 4 cup glass measuring cup, I place ¼ cup oats and 1 cup water for each serving I want to make. Add a pinch of salt and a splash of vanilla, then place the whole thing in your empty crockpot. Fill the crock (around the measuring cup) with water at least halfway up the cup. Cover and cook on low for at least 5 hours but as many as 10. When you wake up, take the cup out with a hot pad, stir and serve. Let the water in the crockpot cool before dumping, or leave it in with the lid on and reuse it for the next night's batch. I jus leave my water-filled crockpot on my counter now, so a hot breakfast takes me 5 minutes a night now!
I use a 1-½ Quart crockpot to prepare my oatmeal and it doesn't burn or dry out. You also don't have to worry about possibly burning yourself lifting a measuring cup out of hot water. I put 4 cups of water or a few drops more along with 1 cup steel cut oats into the crock pot. Turn it on about 10 PM and it's perfect when I wake up at 5:30 or 6 AM.
I have been making steel cut oats in the slow cooker for a few years now. I use 1 cup steel-cut oats and 4 cups water. I set it on warm for 8 hours or overnight. If you only have a low setting, four hours is probably plenty of time. I don't have a 'warm' setting, so I cook mine for four hours and then put them in the fridge for quick and easy reheating in the microwave . They are awesome and the cheapest oatmeal you could ever make. Much better than instant or quick oats.
Favorite Weight Watchers Oatmeal/Porridge Recipes:
Crock Pot Apple Oatmeal
(240 calories | *9 WW Freestyle SmartPoints | *6 PointsPlus)
Slow Cooker Eggnog Oatmeal
(158 calories | *8 WW Freestyle SmartPoints | *4 PointsPlus)
Slow Cooker Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal
(122 calories | *8 WW Freestyle SmartPoints | *3 PointsPlus)
Hungry Girl's Growing Oatmeal Bowl
(240 calories | *6 WW Freestyle SmartPoints | *5 PointsPlus)
Healthy Oatmeal Topping and Stir-In Ideas:
Oatmeal is like a blank canvas to which you can add all kinds of healthy and delicious ingredients. Here's a list of wholesome additions worth considering:
- Ground spices, like cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, allspice, ginger, cardamom, or anise
- Dried fruit, chopped if necessary, such as raisins, dried cranberries, apricots, figs, dates, pineapple, or pears
- Chopped nuts like walnuts, pecans, or almonds
- Seeds like sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds
- Fresh fruit, chopped or sliced as necessary, such as apples, bananas, strawberries, apricots, peaches, blueberries, cherries or raspberries
- Jam, jelly, marmalade or preserves. Strawberry, raspberry and apricot are personal favorites.
- Shredded coconut
- Grated cheese
- Chopped hard boiled egg
- Poached egg
- Brown sugar
- Maple syrup
- Nut butter such as peanut butter or almond butter butter
- Milk or nondairy milk
- Pumpkin puree (This is best added during cooking)
Weight Watchers Baked Oatmeal Recipe
While I love traditional porridge style oatmeal, recently I've been enjoying baked oatmeal. It's more like a muffin that can be customized in so many ways. And it's super easy to make.
All you do is mix it up, bake it, and then store it in the fridge until you're ready to eat it. Just a quick reheat in the microwave and you've got a warm nourishing satisfying breakfast in seconds!
I love to bake up a batch over the weekend and then enjoy it during the week for a quick and easy breakfast that keeps me satisfied until lunch.
My go to recipe for healthy baked oatmeal is from the Weight Watchers New Complete Cookbook . It's easy, healthy and delicious with *7 WW Freestyle SmartPoints.
Baked Fruit-Cinnamon Oatmeal Recipe
- 3 cups old-fashioned oats
- 1 cup blueberries (or whatever fresh/frozen fruit you prefer)
- ¼ cup dried cranberries (or whatever dried fruit you prefer)
- ⅓ cup packed brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup plain fat-free yogurt
- 1 cup reduced fat milk
- ½ cup applesauce
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 1-½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Lightly spray 8-inch square baking dish with nonstick spray.
- In a large bowl, mix together the oats, blueberries, cranberries, all except 2 tablespoons of the brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.
- In another bowl, whisk together the yogurt, ½ cup milk, the applesauce, egg, oil and vanilla until smooth.
- Add the yogurt mixture to the oat mixture and stir until well combined.
- Spoon into the prepared baking dish and spread it out evenly. Sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons brown sugar.
- Bake the oatmeal until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 35 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and let cool in the baking dish on a wire rack for 10 minutes.
- Cut the oatmeal into 8 equal portions and serve with remaining ½ cup milk.
More Weight Watchers Slow Cooker Baked Oatmeal Recipes
I'm also a big fan of making baked oatmeal in the slow cooker. Here are some of our favorite recipes...
Crock Pot Baked Oatmeal
(268 calories | *11 WW Freestyle SmartPoints | *7 PointsPlus)
Crock Pot Carrot Cake Baked Oatmeal
(243 calories | *7 WW Freestyle SmartPoints | *6 PointsPlus)
Peanut Butter Banana Baked Oatmeal
(270 calories | *10 WW Freestyle SmartPoints | *7 PointsPlus)
Slow Cooker Baked Oatmeal with Coconut
(310 calories | *12 WW Freestyle SmartPoints | *8 PointsPlus)
Individual "Banana Bread" Baked Oatmeal Muffin Cups
(156 calories | *4 WW Freestyle SmartPoints | *4 PointsPlus)
More Baked Oatmeal Recipes for Weight Watchers from Around the Web:
Apple Cinnamon Baked Oatmeal Singles
*3 PointsPlus | *3 SmartPoints - Found at Emily Bites
Baked Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal
*7 PointsPlus | *6 SmartPoints - Found at Slender Kitchen
Baked Oatmeal with Pumpkin and Bananas
*6 PointsPlus | *5 SmartPoints - Found at Skinnytaste
Orange Cranberry Baked Oatmeal Singles
*2 PointsPlus | *3 SmartPoints - Found at Emily Bites
Cherry Pie Oatmeal Bake
*6 PointsPlus | *6 SmartPoints - Found at Hungry Girl
Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bake
*7 PointsPlus | *8 SmartPoints - Found at Hungry Girl
Pear Gingerbread Baked Oatmeal Singles
*3 PointsPlus | *3 SmartPoints - Found at Emily Bites
Pumpkin Chocolate Baked Oatmeal Singles
*3 PointsPlus | *4 SmartPoints - Found at Emily Bites
Strawberry Banana Baked Oatmeal Singles
*3 PointsPlus | *3 SmartPoints - Found at Emily Bites
Strawberry Rhubarb Baked Oatmeal
*6 PointsPlus | *7 SmartPoints - Found at SkinnyTaste
Weight Watchers Soaked/Overnight Oatmeal Recipes
When the weather is cool I loved to make overnight oatmeal in the slow cooker. When it's 115 degrees I rarely want anything hot for breakfast. I usually opt for a smoothie, fruit and yogurt parfait or english muffin with peanut butter.
Sometimes I want oats. The solution? Easy soaked overnight oats. Old fashioned oatmeal stirred together with any combination of ingredients and then placed in a jar or bowl and set in the fridge till morning.
It's a cool yet satisfying way to begin the day, especially when topped with fresh fruit.
You don't really need a recipe, just stir together what you like best. Here's what I did last night. It was enough for 1-2 servings depending on how hungry you are.
Stir together and place in a jar or container overnight:
- ½ cup old fashioned oats (4PP)
- ½ cup skim milk (dairy or non) (1PP)
- ¼ cup plain Greek yogurt (optional) (1PP)
- Sweetener to taste
- pinch of cinnamon
Optional additions and/or toppings:
- dried fruit (cranberries, cherries, apricots, raisins)
- fresh fruit (apple, bananas, berries, mango, pineapple, etc.)
- nuts, seeds, coconut
- cocoa powder
Want more soaked overnight oatmeal ideas?
Here's a great video for Weight Watchers...
As well as an amazing Overnight Oatmeal Tutorial with 20 Delicious Recipes from Tammy at Organize Yourself Skinny!
More Weight Watchers Oatmeal Recipes
I love to use oatmeal to bake all kinds of yummy things including muffins, breads, cakes, granola, scones and cookies.
Here are some of my favorites, all Weight Watchers friendly, of course!
- Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins
- Banana Oatmeal Cookies
- Blueberry Oat Scones
- Carmel Chocolate Oatmeal Mini Bars
- Cranberry Orange Oatmeal Bread
- Eggnog Oatmeal Muffins
- Enlightened Lazy Daisy Oatmeal Cake
- Healthy Homemade Granola Recipe
- Healthy Banana Cookies with Oats and Chocolate Chips
- Low Fat Applesauce Oatmeal Cookies
- Low Fat Lemon Blueberry Oatmeal Muffins
- Low Fat Oat Bran and Butter Wafers
- No Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Peanut Butter Cookies
- Peanut Butter Oat Cookie Bars
- Raspberry Oatmeal Muffins
- Savory Lemon Rosemary Blueberry Oatmeal Bread
- Skinny Banana Oatmeal Muffins & Quick Breads
- Skinny Cranberry Apple Oatmeal Cookies
- Summer Muesli Recipes
- Weight Watchers Cranberry Ginger Oatmeal Cookies
It turns out I'm not the only other oatmeal loving Weight Watcher. Here'a a great post from Kristen at Slender Kitchen with 50 Weight Watchers Oatmeal Recipes to Spice up Breakfast!
*PointsPlus® and SmartPoints® calculated by Simple Nourished Living; Not endorsed by Weight Watchers International, Inc. All recipe ingredients except optional items included in determining nutritional estimates. SmartPoints® values calculated WITHOUT each plan's ZeroPoint Foods (Green plan, Blue plan, Purple plan) using the WW Recipe Builder.
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