Slow Cooker Steel Cut Oatmeal

We haven’t done a whole lot of breakfasts on our site, and I need to fix this because breakfast is a pretty important part of the day.

I also know it’s one of the toughest to truly cook something for. You’re bleary-eyed, fumbling for coffee, and making sure your socks match is about all your brain can handle in the morning (at least that’s how I operate).

That’s why it’s best if breakfast is already pre-made and just needs a quick warming up.

Making a big batch of steel cut oatmeal in a slow cooker is one of my favorite simple and easy pre-made breakfast solutions.

I love the fiber in oatmeal (c’mon admit it, your digestive system could use a little fibrous “push” too, right?), but I’ve never enjoyed oatmeal made out of rolled oats. The texture was just not for me, but I absolutely love oatmeal made of steel cut oats.

The only downside of steel cut oats are they take a lot longer to cook, which is why it’s a perfect candidate for slow cooking. On a Sunday night, I’ll dump everything in the pot, turn it on low, and let it go overnight for a fresh breakfast in the morning. The rest gets packaged away for the week.

I like to keep the base simple and then mix it up throughout the week.

Some days I’ll add nuts and cinnamon. I also love stirring in yogurt for some extra morning protein. And of course, you can never go wrong with any fresh fruit – bananas, apples, and berries all make great toppings. I’ll even add preserves or shaved coconut to make it a sweeter treat. Drizzle with maple syrup and this breakfast almost seems like a healthy dessert.

need more ideas?

Here are more ways to customize your oatmeal, so that you’ll always have a variety for breakfast:


Run the World: Make-Ahead Steel Cut Oatmeal

Fuel your day with a fiber-filled and hearty breakfast! Our 3 recipes for make-ahead oatmeal are healthy, tasty, and great… Read more.

Prepping Smarts

  • Steel cut oats use a 4:1 liquid to oats ratio. You can use any combination for the liquid – water, soy milk, almond milk, normal milk all work well.

Equipment Smarts

  • Slow cooker – the perfect kitchen equipment that does all the work for you. You don’t have to keep a watchful eye on the pot and worry about stirring constantly!

Slow Cooker Steel Cut Oatmeal

Most of us are too busy to make breakfast in the morning, so a big pot of steel cut oatmeal made in a slow cooker is the perfect solution to make sure you always have a healthy meal to start the day.

Prep time: 5 min

Cook time: 8 hr

Total time: 8 hr 5 min

Serves: 10-12


  • Steel cut oats – 2 cups
  • Water – 6 cups
  • Milk (any type) – 2 cups
  • Butter – 2 Tbsp
  • Apples, peeled & chopped (optional) – 2 to 3
  • Brown sugar – ¼ cup
  • Kosher salt – 2 tsp
  • Cinnamon – 1 Tbsp
  • Star anise (optional) – 2 to 3



  1. Apples (if using) – Prep as directed.


  1. Optional: Give the slow cooker a quick spray of cooking oil or brush with cooking oil to prevent sticking of ingredients.
  2. Put all ingredients in a slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours or 4 hours on high.
  3. Top with nuts, yogurt, fruit, jams, coconut shavings!
  4. If you don’t have a slow cooker, bring the ingredients to boil in a large saucepan or Dutch oven and then simmer for 45 minutes, stirring here and there to make sure it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.

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