The Daily Beet

13 Nov No-Stir Steel Cuts Oats

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I’m just gonna say it. You’ve been had. Bamboozled, tricked, lied to, and deceived. What I am I talking about? How laborious it is to make steel-cut oats. If you want them to have that great texture there are no short cuts. Right?  There is the overnight/crock pot methods but I found them to be over cooked and mushy. You might as well just make rolled oats if the texture is lost in the cooking process. Most recipes for steel-cut oats seem so labor-intensive. I mean who wants to stir their breakfast for 30 minutes?

Well I am here to tell you that you don’t have to. In fact you don’t have to stir at all. This recipe is simple and super tasty. It requires very little work and I would argue that it can be done any day of the week. It does still take 30-40 minutes to make but you walk away after the first 5 minutes until its done.

While there is almost no nutritional difference (half gram of fat less in the steel-cut) between steel cut oats and rolled oats there is a major difference in texture, and I would argue, flavor. The first step in this recipe is roasting the oats in a dry pan which really creates a nutty distinct flavor you never get from rolled oats which are steamed and rolled and re-steamed and rolled again. Why let the machines digest your food when you body was designed to that work?

No-Stir Steel-Cut Oats

1 cup steel-cut oats
4 cups of water
Heat a medium sauce pan over high heat. Meanwhile boil 4 cups of water.
Toast the oats in the saucepan stirring constantly for approximately 2-3 minutes until the oats are browned and toasty smelling. Adjust the heat down if you are using a thinner pan.
Reduce heat to low and slowly pour the boiling water into the pan. Bring to a full boil then reduce heat to simmer and cook uncovered and undisturbed for 25 minutes.
Turn off the heat and cover with a lid and let sit for 5-10 minutes.And that’s it!

Top with your favorite additions.
Some of my favorites are-
Spices (cinnamon, mace, nutmeg, ginger)
Fruit fresh or frozen (bananas, berries, mango)
Nuts and seeds (walnuts, pecans, slivered almonds, cashews, flax seed, chia seed)
Crystallized ginger (diced)
Almond milk/soy milk
Brown sugar/Date Sugar/Coconut sugar


I’m not your momma so I won’t tell you how much of any of the additions to use but I will say that over the last year I have naturally reduce the amount of sugar in my oatmeal down to zero and its just as tasty. For me its been a matter of re-calibrating your taste buds to taste natural sweetness from the grain as opposed to the super concentrated sweetness from refined sugar. Additionally a gram of sugar is a gram of sugar. Just because it comes from dates vs. GMO grown sugar beets your blood will respond the same way. Now the portion and calorie content is another story.
Peep this-

serving size    calories      sugar (grams)
White Sugar    1 tsp             16         4.2

Brown Sugar      1 tsp             11         2.9
Date Sugar         1 tsp             10         2.0
Honey                1 tsp             64        17.2
Agave Nectar     1 tsp             20        5.3
Coconut Sugar   1 tsp             15        4.0

Have a great breakfast!


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  • StarchEater
    Posted at 13:14h, 13 November

    Thank you for this recipe, it couldn’t have come at a better time! I tried making steel cut oats this morning and they came out too “al dente” for me. I can see now that I used too much water, and I’m really looking forward to trying your no stir method.

  • Jen
    Posted at 17:06h, 13 November

    Yum! Just in time for the chilly weather here in Atlanta. Thanks!

  • Caroline
    Posted at 18:10h, 13 November

    I make a batch for the whole week and store it in individual containers. Every morning I take a container, put the contents in a small sauce pan, add a small amount of water and some cinnamon and cook it till it is hot and the water is absorbed. It comes out perfectly, and not too “al dente,” every time.

  • Lou
    Posted at 00:21h, 14 November

    Totally agree, steel cut oats are so easy. But I use a rice cooker, a small one, and it comes out perfect everyday, and only takes about 15 minutes. Disagree about sco being same nutritional value as rolled. I read online that sco were much more filled with good nutrients that were processed out of the rolled oat. Anyone know more about that

  • Lea
    Posted at 09:42h, 14 November

    Easiest method of all…At night before you go to bed boil the water, turn off the gas, pour in the oats & cover. In the morning just heat it up and you are good to go. No messy pan or stove AT all !

  • Lauren
    Posted at 07:14h, 16 November

    Just made these and they are delicious! I use just a little cinnamon and powered PB 2….great product!

  • Jennifer Edwards
    Posted at 15:11h, 16 November

    I had never stirred mine; didn’t know I was “supposed” to! I am a huge fan of SCO; they are my go-to breakfast, with cinnamon and vanilla extract.

  • YogaMan
    Posted at 16:24h, 21 November

    Better than oat processed into s.c.o. – is this recipe using WHOLE oat groats [Organic best]: 4 cups water and one cup groats {good option is 3/4 cup oats & 1/4 cup Brown Rice}, pinch sea salt if desired > Bring to boil & simmer 5 min. > Turn off heat, let sit overnight. > Next am. bring pot to boil, stir, add water if needed for creaminess. > Let simmer 45 – 60 min., occasional stirring. Compare: I see better Taste, Texture, stick to ribs, etc. Once you go WHOLE, you won’t go back to processed. 🙂

  • deb
    Posted at 14:49h, 25 November

    I make mine in a slow cooker and make enough for the week so I can just reheat in the morning.

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