Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Yeah, I know. Truly, I do. But it's so HARD to find time to eat breakfast in the morning. I"m tired and just want coffee. I bet you all know the feeling. One of my favorite breakfasts is boring, old-fashioned oatmeal. Thankfully, my kids also love oatmeal. But they are much more drawn to the sweetened, flavored oatmeals. Purchased instant oatmeal is a hot commodity in our house on a school morning. I realize that there are really, really good instant oatmeal brands that you can buy in the store that aren't chock full of sugars and such. But, they are often far more expensive than I would like. Enter the instant oatmeal recipes.
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I make my own.
That way I can make oatmeal flavors I love and flavors my kids love, all the while keeping them healthy and natural and inexpensive.
Let's stop right here and talk about the hot cups. I am using plain old coffee hot cups because they were leftover from a potluck I had been a part of. I'm using them up. However, when they are gone I will absolutely be replacing them with environmentally friendly versions. I have seen instant oatmeal made in mason jars, and microwaveable containers, as well. Great options to think about. For me, I like the ease of using disposable and portable cups. My mornings are just that crazy.
Note: This recipe makes a lot of oatmeal. I make a few of the full recipe for my husband but half the recipe for myself and the kids. When halving the recipe add about 1/2 cup of water.
Pour a little less than 1 cup of quick oats in each mug.
Add about 3 tablespoons of your "flavors" to the oatmeal. Cover, label, and store until breakfast time. Really, it's that easy!
Suggestions: dark chocolate, cocoa, chopped fruits, nuts, brown sugar, ground dates, cinnamon, instant coffee, Nutella. Instant oatmeal recipes can be tweaked to include all sorts of things!
I would also recommend adding 2 tablespoons of dried milk to the oatmeal. This is completely optional, but will give the oatmeal a richer flavor. If your child is dairy-free, leave it out. Truthfully, I don't always remember to add the milk and it's still delicious.
When it comes time to make the oatmeal for breakfast, fill the cup with water until about an inch from the top. Stir and cover. Put it in the microwave for 1 minute. Leave it in the microwave (without it running) for 1 more minute. Remove and stir.
Alternately: Pour boiling water into the hot cup and stir, cover and let sit for 4 minutes.
Note: Each microwave is a bit different so adjust your cooking time to what works great for you!
Our favorite breakfast recipes for when we have time: