Instant Pot Steel Cut Oatmeal

Oatmeal is a simple and nutritious breakfast. Steel cut oats take 30-40 minutes to cook on the stovetop, but take a fraction of that time in the Instant Pot. The oatmeal is so creamy and has a really wonderful texture. It reheat really well too, so I love making a big batch when I’m meal prepping for the week and it only takes a few minutes to reheat on the stovetop.

Steel Cut Oatmeal made in the Instant Pot topped with fresh berries, blueberries and strawberries

A bowl of creamy and warm oatmeal is a perfect breakfast that is both healthy, nutritious and comforting too. I love the nutty and grainy texture of steel cut oats but they take so long to cook on the stovetop that I rarely make them that way.

In the Instant Pot, they take 13 minutes to cook and it’s a hand off way to prepare them. That means I can add all the ingredients in, turn it on and go get myself and my children ready for the day and not have to worry that the milk will run over (what a mess!) or the oatmeal will burn.

I also really appreciate the steel cut oatmeal reheats beautifully. I can make a big batch, store it in my refrigerator and it only takes a few minutes to reheat on the stove.

Video of How to Cook Steel Cut Oatmeal in the Instant Pot

What is Steel Cut Oatmeal?

Steel cut oatmeal is made with oat groats that have been cut into pieces instead of flattened, like most other types of oatmeal. It takes much longer to cook, at least 30 minutes, but also has a much less mushier texture. You can actually feel the oat groats in each mouthful.

What is the Difference between Steel Cut Oats, Old Fashioned Rolled Oats, Instant Oats, Quick Cooking Oats, Instant Oats?

Steel cut oats vs old fashioned oats

With all these different options of oatmeal sold in the store, what is the difference between them all? They are all oat groats that have been processed differently. The main differences between them all is how long it takes to cook and the texture of the oatmeal when it is cooked. All these options are great choices – healthy and nutritious.

  • Steel Cut Oats: These are the only oats that are cut into pieces instead of being flattened. This type of oatmeal has the most interesting and pronounced texture. This is the most minimally processed oatmeal, so it retains all the fiber and nutrients. Do not bake with steel cut oats. Steel cut oatmeal reheats really well, the rest do not.
  • Old Fashioned Rolled Oats: Instead of being cut into pieces like steel cut oats, old fashioned oats are flattened. They cook much faster than steel cut oats, 5-10 minutes, depending on the type and brand. Besides steel cut oats, old fashioned oats These are the perfect type of oatmeal for granola, many baking recipes and overnight oatmeal too.
  • Quick Cooking Oats: Just like old fashioned oats, these are flattened and then processed even more, they are thinner and smaller grains. They take even less time to cook, 1-3 minutes on the stovetop and are soft in texture. They can also be used in some baking recipes.
  • Instant Oats: Also flattened like old fashioned oats and quick cooking oats, they are processed to the most thin and fine consistency and cook “instantly”, just a minute or so. They have the smoothest and softest text, almost like a puree.

What Kind of Milk Can Be Used For Oatmeal?

Any kind of milk can be used for oatmeal, or use water instead. You’ll have the creamiest texture if you use milk, but it’s entirely up to your taste preference.

We buy whole milk, so that is what I use, but reduced fat, low fat milk, lactose free milk will also work. You can also use any type of dairy free milk too, such as almond milk, cashew milk, oat milk, coconut milk, etc.

Important Things to Remember When Cooking Oatmeal in the Instant Pot:

  • Make sure the sealing ring is in the lid before placing it on top of the Instant Pot. Without the sealing ring, the Instant Pot will not come to pressure properly.
  • Use a sealing ring that you didn’t use previously to cook savory aromatic things, like chicken broth, anything that you cooked with onions and garlic and other things that have a strong flavor and smell. The sealing ring absorbs odors of what it is cooking and will infuse those flavors into the food that is cooking in the Instant Pot. I have several sealing rings and use one for savory recipes and one for sweet and neutral aroma recipes, such as oatmeal and yogurt.
  • Release the pressure very carefully and slowly if you choose to release it manually. Only release the pressure manually if you cook 1 cup of oats. If you cook bigger batches of oatmeal, let the pressure release naturally before you open the lid.
  • Oatmeal will thicken significantly as it stands and even more when it cools and is refrigerated. Use more or less water depending on how thick you like your oatmeal. If I make oatmeal and serve it right away, I use 1 cup of oats, 1 cup milk and 2 cups water. If I make oatmeal in advance, I add an extra cup of water.

Meal Prepping, Storing and Reheating Oatmeal

Make a large batch of oatmeal, store it in airtight containers in the refrigerator for about 5 days.

To reheat the oatmeal, take out the portion that you will be eating, place it into a saucepan/pot, add some milk and/or water, mash it up to combine and reheat on low or medium heat just until warmed through.

How to Serve the Oatmeal:

Oatmeal is like a blank canvas – you can create so many flavor variations.

I usually add a bit of butter and a drizzle of maple syrup to sweeten it. You can also use brown sugar, agave syrup, honey or jam. Add vanilla extract or ground cinnamon to change up the flavor even more.

Cook some apples, pears, mangos, berries and serve with the oatmeal. Fresh fruit and berries are always so nice to add on top of the oatmeal. Other options: nuts, coconut flakes, seeds, raisins, dry fruit, chocolate chips, caramel or dulce de leche.

Print

Instant Pot Steel Cut Oatmeal

Oatmeal is a simple and nutritious breakfast. Steel cut oats take 30-40 minutes to cook on the stovetop, but take a fraction of that time in the Instant Pot. The oatmeal is so creamy and has a really wonderful texture. It reheat really well too, so I love making a big batch when I’m meal prepping for the week and it only takes a few minutes to reheat on the stovetop.

  • Author: Olga’s Flavor Factory
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Cook Time: 13 min
  • Total Time: 18 minutes
  • Yield: 34 1x
  • Category: Breakfast

Ingredients

Scale

1 cup steel cut oats

1 cup mik (any milk: whole milk, reduced fat milk, almond/cashew/oat/coconut milk, etc. or replace with water)

23 cups water (depending on how thick you like it)

pinch of salt

To Serve With Oatmeal:

butter, maple syrup, honey, brown sugar, cinnamon, vanilla extract, fruit, coconut flakes, nuts, etc.

Instructions

Place the oats, milk, water and salt in the Instant Pot. Mix ingredients together. 

Make sure the sealing ring is in the lid, place it securely on top of the Instant Pot and turn the valve to “Sealing.”

Cook on High Pressure for 13 minutes. (Some Instant Pots have a “Manual” button, others have “Pressure Cook” button.)

Rest to 5 minutes, then release the pressure very carefully and slowly, in increments. You can also release the pressure naturally. If you make a bigger batch and use more than 1 cup of oats, do not release the pressure manually, let it release naturally.

Mix the oatmeal until evenly combined.
Options to serve with the oatmeal: butter, maple syrup, honey, brown sugar, cinnamon, vanilla extract, berries, fresh fruit, cooked fruit, nuts, coconut flakes, etc. 

Store the oatmeal in an airtight container for up to 5 days in the refrigerator. 

Notes

To reheat oatmeal, place it in a saucepan/pot, add a bit of milk or water, mix to combine while reheating on low or medium heat. 

Keywords: steel cut oatmeal, how to make oatmeal, oatmeal in the instant pot, make ahead oatmeal, meal prepping oatmeal, breakfast

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5 Comments

  • Vera

    Thank you for the recipe, Olga. It came out much creamier than the ones I tried. My family loved it!
    It would be great if you could do similar instant pot recipes for other grains/“kashas” like for example millet, buckwheat, rice pudding. I know you have some over the stove recipes of those but instant pot saves the effort. And the recipes I find online tend to be too dry and not like “kasha”.

  • April

    I made this instant pot oatmeal recipe today and I am amazed at how easy and delicious it turned out! I have 2 small children and a baby so anything to help make a healthy, quick and delicious breakfast in the mornings is such a blessing. Thank you for this one!

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