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7 Savory Oats Recipes


Oats and oatmeal are a centuries old grain typically used for breakfast. Growing up many of us were taught to drown the oatmeal in sweets and diary like brown sugar, butter, milk, dry fruits, fresh fruits, maple syrup, m&ms, or all of the above. Oatmeal toppings were always sweet …. until now!

Here are seven oatmeal variations that shift sweet to savory making this traditional dish more attractive to plant-based whole food eaters who wish to forego dessert for breakfast. Enjoy these recipes for lunch or dinner, too.

Try these Savory Oatmeal recipes and share what you think.

7 Savory Oatmeal Recipes:

1. Oatmeal with Soy Nuts and Seagreens


“…a nutty, crunchy textual contrast…”

Serves: 1

1 1/4 cups water
3/4 cup rolled (old-fashioned) oats
1/4 cup soymilk
1 handful dried, pre-cut wakame seaweed
1 1/2 teaspoons soy sauce
1 handful soy nuts, for garnish

Bring water to boil in a small saucepan. Add oats and lower to medium heat. Simmer for 3 minutes, until water has reduced and oats are starting to thicken. Turn heat to medium-low and add soymilk and wakame, stirring for another minute. Add soy sauce and stir another minute or until seaweed has softened. Pour oatmeal into a bowl and garnish with soy nuts.


2. Spicy Oatmeal with Peanuts, Cilantro, and Ginger


“I love how colorful this oatmeal is! … a sweet tartness from the tomatoes and a spicy, gingery kick.”

Serves: 2

1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
2 cups water or veggie broth
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
2 tablespoons unsalted peanuts
3 tablespoons chopped onion
1/2 serrano chile, with seeds, minced
1-inch piece ginger, minced
1 pinch red chili powder
2 pinches curry leaves
1 roma tomato, diced
Salt to taste
1 small handful cilantro (or to taste), chopped

1. Combine oats and water and cook on high heat in microwave for 2 and half minutes or cook per package directions. Set aside.
2. Heat canola oil in a skillet over medium-high heat and add mustard seeds. When they start to pop (about 1 to 2 minutes), add peanuts, onion, serrano, ginger, chili powder, and curry leaves. Stir and cook about 3 minutes, until peanuts are lightly toasted and spices are aromatic. Add tomato and salt to taste. Pour in oatmeal and cook another 1 to 2 minutes, until heated. Stir in cilantro and serve.

3. Spinach Oatmeal


“…classic Italian flavors, this reminds me of spaghetti bolognese. It has no meat, cheese, or pasta, but it’s just as hearty,” …

Serves: 1

1 cup water
1/4 cup steel-cut oats
1 cup frozen spinach
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
1/4 cup marinara sauce
1/3 cup ground beef-style vegetable or soy protein crumbles (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste

Boil water and stir in oats, reducing heat to medium. Cook for about 5 minutes, then taste-test oats; they should be about halfway done. Stir in spinach and nutritional yeast, and continue to simmer on medium heat about 5 minutes or until spinach is thawed and oats are at preferred chewiness. Stir in marinara, protein crumbles, salt, and pepper and cook another 1 to 2 minutes to evenly heat all ingredients.

4. Curry Oatmeal


“… this spicy one-pot meal can be tweaked depending on whatever veggies you have in the fridge,” …

Serves: 1

1/4 cup steel-cut oats
3/4 cup water or veggie broth (more or less, depending on if you like them softer or harder; or coconut milk)
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
Salt to taste
1/8 red pepper, sliced
1/8 green pepper, sliced
1 bunch pea sprouts
2 shallots, sliced
Green onions, sliced, for garnish

Bring oats and water to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-high and simmer for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until liquid has evaporated. Toss in curry powder, salt, and mix. Add veggies and remove from heat. Garnish with green onions.

5. Oatmeal with Tofu


“By adding in unusual ingredients like cilantro, soy sauce, and tofu, oatmeal can be transformed into a bowl of comforting gooey, creamy mess packed with tons of Asian flavors and many good-for-you nutrients,” says Stephanie Chung.

Serves: 1

3 ounces silken tofu
1/4 cup corn kernels (fresh or frozen)
1/4 cup edamame
1/4 cup peas
3/4 cup cooked steel-cut oats
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro leaves
2 tablespoons chopped scallions
Soy sauce to taste (optional)

Add first six ingredients to a small pan over high heat, stirring well and breaking tofu into chunks. Bring to a boil, then turn down the heat to simmer until tofu is heated thoroughly, about 5 minutes. (Add water if mixture gets too thick.) Remove from heat and stir in scallions. Serve with splash of soy sauce, if desired.


6. Oatmeal on a Bed of Spinach


“… love the combination of sweet and savory, as well as the soft texture of the oats and avocado with the crunchy pepper and juicy pineapple,” …

Serves: 2 to 3

1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons white wine (or water)
3 cups sliced mushrooms
1 lime, zested and juiced
1 tablespoon mixed dried herbs (basil, oregano, marjoram)
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 cup rolled oats
1 1/2 cups water (or vegetable broth)
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
2 cups spinach
1 red pepper, chopped
1 cup chopped fresh pineapple
1 avocado, sliced

1. Heat a pot over medium-high heat and cook onions and garlic in wine or water for 5 minutes. Add mushrooms, lime zest and juice, herbs, paprika, and salt and cook for another 10 minutes, until mushrooms are softened. Add oats, water, and nutritional yeast and stir to combine. Turn heat down to medium-low and let cook for 5 minutes, or until oats are softened and liquid is absorbed.
2. You can either serve this over a bed of fresh spinach and topped with pepper, pineapple, and avocado, or stir spinach, pepper, and pineapple in to cook a little bit and then serve topped with avocado.


7. Sichuan Oatmeal


“… flavors of my favorite noodle dish, dan dan noodles, this is creamy, spicy, peanutty, and overall very flavorful,” Stephanie Chung says.

Serves: 1

2 cups water
1/2 cup bean sprouts
1/2 cup shredded Taiwanese cabbage
1/4 cup low-sodium vegetable stock
3/4 cup cooked steel-cut oats
1/2 to 1 teaspoon chili sauce
1/2 tablespoon peanut butter
1/2 tablespoon Chinese sesame paste
2 tablespoons finely chopped scallions
Sesame oil

1. Bring water to a boil in a pot over high heat. Add bean sprouts and cabbage and simmer on medium heat until tender, about 5 minutes. Drain and set aside.
2. In the same pot over medium heat, add stock, oatmeal, sprouts, and cabbage. Cook for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
3. Meanwhile in a small bowl, mix together chili sauce, peanut butter, and sesame paste. If mixture is too thick to stir well, add a splash of hot water to help paste blend together. Set aside.
4. When oatmeal is heated thoroughly, add sauce and scallions. Stir well and remove from heat. Cover pot and let sit for 2 to 3 minutes. Serve drizzled with sesame oil.

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