Medically reviewed by Amy Gorin, MS, RDN
Love cooking with oats any time of day? Then you'll love these 49 quick oatmeal recipes. Quick oats make great breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even dessert recipes!
If you love cooking oatmeal any time of day, you're going to love these oatmeal ideas for any meal. Oatmeal breakfast ideas, oatmeal for lunch, oats for dinner, and oatmeal for dessert? Yes, please!
What better time to celebrate oatmeal for any time of day? I rounded up my favorite dietitian-approved oatmeal recipes to share with you, including overnight oatmeal in a jar, baked oatmeal bars, recipes made with rolled oats, and recipes made with instant steel-cut oats, too. You'll find many recipes with quick oats for fast meal prep!
Benefits of Cooking with Oats
Are oats good for weight loss? You bet! Oatmeal is one of the healthiest foods out there. It provides fiber, as well as protein, vitamins, and minerals—such as manganese, which helps control blood sugar levels, and magnesium, important for muscle and nerve function.
And what about cooking up recipes with oats? Cooking with oatmeal can be very good for you. We’ve long known that whole grains are beneficial for weight loss. After all, oats' extra fiber helps keep you satiated and helps with digestion.
And research in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition shows that the quality—not necessarily the quantity—of
the carbs you eat are a strong indicator of how likely you are to gain weight in the future.
Spanish researchers studied 8,741 volunteers for a median of about eight years, analyzing how quality of carb intake affects weight. The scientists determined carb quality by looking at:
- The ratio of carbs from solid foods versus carbs from beverages, such as sugar-sweetened drinks and fruit juice.
- Daily fiber intake.
- Where carbs fall on the glycemic index (GI, meaning how much a food affects your blood glucose level). Foods that are high in sugar—such as white bread, potato chips and soda—typically have a higher GI. Note, though, that the research behind the GI is iffy and it's falling out of favor in the diabetes world, although it is sometimes recommended to help with weight loss.
- Ratio of whole grains (such as oats, barley and whole wheat) to total grains.
Subjects who had the greatest quality of carb intake were more likely to take in more protein, omega-3 fatty acids, and fiber. They also ate more fruits, vegetables, legumes, fish, whole grains and olive oil.
In other words? They were more likely to follow a Mediterranean way
of eating, which is linked with lower weight and increased heart health.
Because participants were followed for a long time, most experienced weight gain over the study period. But the people with a higher quality of carb intake gained less weight.
On average, this was about 0.6 pounds versus 0.8 pounds annually, the
difference of about 1.5 pounds over the study period. They were much less likely to become overweight or obese, versus those with the lowest carb quality intake.
Researchers believe that these results show that quality of carb intake, versus quantity, is a bigger determinant of obesity risk. This means that it’s more important to focus on eating higher-quality carbs than being rigorous about the percentage make-up of carbohydrate intake in your diet.
Other research supports this. Many studies show that drinking more sugar-sweetened beverages is likely to lead to weight gain, whereas eating more unprocessed foods (such as whole grains, fruits and vegetables) is less associated with weight gain.
As well, getting a good amount of fiber helps you digest food
and absorb nutrients. A good amount of fiber means 25
grams daily for most women, or 38 grams daily for most men.
Now, let's move on to those healthy oatmeal recipes I promised you!
You'll find breakfast recipes with brown sugar, maple syrup, dried fruit, and nut butter, snacks like granola bars, and desserts that include ice cream and oat flour. The best part? All take a pretty small amount of time to whip up!
Oatmeal Breakfast Recipes
2. Pumpkin Apple Pie Overnight Oats from Lauren Sharifi, RD, at Bite of Health Nutrition
3. Pistachio & Blood Orange Muesli from Alissa Rumsey, RD, at Alissa Rumsey Nutrition & Wellness
4. Banana Split Overnight Oats from Amanda Hernandez, RD, at The Nutritionist Reviews
5. Healthy Energy Bars from my own kitchen
6. Blueberry Lemon Mini Oatmeal Muffins from Holley Grainger, RD
7. Cheddar & Herb Savory Overnight Oats from Emily Cooper, RD, at Sinful Nutrition
8. Maple Oatmeal Latte from Jessica Penner, RD, at Smart Nutrition
9. Peaches 'N Cream Muesli from Jennifer Adsit, RD at Nourished NCE
10. Peaches and Cream Overnight Oats from Jessica Levinson, RD, co-author of We Can Cook: Introduce Your Child to the Joy of Cooking
11. Banana Zucchini Oatmeal Cups from Alexis Joseph, RD, at Hummusapien
13. Superfood Oatmeal Bowl from Tawnie Kroll, RD, at Kroll's Korner
14. Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal from Elizabeth Shaw, RD, co-author of Fertility Foods: 100+ Recipes to Nourish Your Body While Trying to Conceive
15. Double Chocolate Zucchini Oats from Jessica Penner
16. Ricotta Berry Oatmeal Cups from Jessica Levinson
17. Cherry Oatmeal from my own kitchen
18. Oatmeal Griddle Cakes from Jenna Braddock
20. Banana Peach Baked Oatmeal from Sarah Schlichter, RD, at Bucket List Tummy
21. Morning Glory Overnight Oats from Anne Danahy, RD, at Craving Something Healthy
22. Blueberry Pecan Baked Oatmeal Cups from Katie Sullivan Morford, RD, author of Rise and Shine: Better Breakfasts for Busy Mornings
24. Mango Overnight Oats from my own kitchen
25. Cherry Vanilla Overnight Oats from Marie Dittmer, RD, at Healthy Ideas Place
27. Slow Cooker Apple Chai Spice Steel-Cut Oats from Jamie Vespa, RD, at Dishing Out Health
28. Peanut Butter Banana Oatmeal Smoothie from Alissa Rumsey
31. The Best Overnight Oats from Julie Harrington
32. Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal with Streusel Topping from Alissa Rumsey
33. Cranberry Coconut Overnight Oats from Chrissy Carroll, RD, author of Eat to Peak: Sports Nutrition for Runners and Triathletes
34. Wild Blueberry Chia Breakfast Bowl from Jenny Shea Rawn, RD, at My Cape Cod Kitchen
35. Candy Corn Overnight Oats from Lauren Harris-Pincus
36. Mango Almond Oatmeal from my own kitchen
37. High-Protein Overnight Oats from my own kitchen
38. Vanilla Walnut Overnight Oats from Alissa Rumsey
Oats for Lunch & Oats for Dinner Recipes
39. Savory Oatmeal with Cheddar and Fried Egg from Healthy Nibbles
42. Sun-Dried Tomato, Spinach, and Goat Cheese Baked Oatmeal Frittata from Jessica Levinson
Oatmeal for Dessert & Oatmeal for Snacktime Recipes
43. Blender Bliss Banana-Date Oatmeal Cookies from Shahzadi Devje, RD, at Desi-licious RD
45. Healthier Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies from Maria Westberg Adams, RD. at Halsa Nutrition
46. Fresh Peach & Pecan Baked Oatmeal from Marisa Moore, RD, at Marisa Moore Nutrition
47. Pecan Pie Baked Oatmeal from Kaleigh McMordie, RD, at Lively Table
48. Apple Cinnamon Baked Oatmeal from Erica Julson
49. Almond Pistachio Cocoa Bites from my own kitchen
This post was updated in June 2020. A version of this content originally appeared on WeightWatchers.com.
- Research in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition
- Katie Cavuto, RD, author of Whole Cooking and Nutrition
- Lauren Sharifi, RD, at Bite of Health Nutrition
- Alissa Rumsey, RD, at Alissa Rumsey Nutrition & Wellness
- Amanda Hernandez, RD, at The Nutritionist Reviews
- Holley Grainger, RD
- Emily Cooper, RD, at Sinful Nutrition
- Jessica Penner, RD, at Smart Nutrition
- Jennifer Adsit, RD at Nourished NCE
- Jessica Levinson, RD, co-author of We Can Cook: Introduce Your Child to the Joy of Cooking
- Alexis Joseph, RD, at Hummusapien
- Jenna Braddock, RD, co-author of 200 Surefire Ways to Eat Well and Feel Better
- Tawnie Kroll, RD, at Kroll's Korner
- Elizabeth Shaw, RD, co-author of Fertility Foods: 100+ Recipes to Nourish Your Body While Trying to Conceive
- Dixya Bhattarai, RD, co-author of The Truly Healthy Vegetarian Cookbook
- Sarah Schlichter, RD, at Bucket List Tummy
- Anne Danahy, RD, at Craving Something Healthy
- Katie Sullivan Morford, RD, author of Rise and Shine: Better Breakfasts for Busy Mornings
- Julie Harrington, RD, co-author of The Healing Soup Cookbook
- Marie Dittmer, RD, at Healthy Ideas Place
- Lauren Harris-Pincus, RD, author of The Protein-Packed Breakfast Club
- Jamie Vespa, RD, at Dishing Out Health
- Meri Raffetto, RD, co-author of Mediterranean Diet Cookbook for Dummies
- Toby Amidor, RD, author of The Healthy Meal Prep Cookbook
- Chrissy Carroll, RD, author of Eat to Peak: Sports Nutrition for Runners and Triathletes
- Jenny Shea Rawn, RD, at My Cape Cod Kitchen
- Jessica Cording, RD, author of The Little Book of Game Changers
- Shahzadi Devje, RD, at Desi-licious RD
- Christy Brissette, RD, at 80 Twenty Nutrition, author of Everyday Low Carb
- Maria Westberg Adams, RD. at Halsa Nutrition
- Marisa Moore, RD, at Marisa Moore Nutrition
- Kaleigh McMordie, RD, at Lively Table
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