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Homemade Instant Oatmeal Recipes

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Jar of instant oatmeal.

If your family enjoys oatmeal for breakfast, but you don't have the time to cook the regular oats, make your own instant oatmeal. Making your own instant oats is easy and can save you money. This page contains homemade instant oatmeal recipes.



Read and rate the best recipes below by giving them a "thumbs up".

Tip: Cheaper Instant Oatmeal

Make your own premixed oatmeal using baggies. The pre-packaged is 34 cents a pack. The homemade is 19 cents! Use half cup of rolled oats with 2 teaspoons of powdered milk, 1 tablespoon of brown sugar, and one half teaspoon of cinnamon mix together put in bag. When ready to use add three fourths water or milk. Microwave for 30 to 40 seconds and mix. Then add honey, fruit, nuts or whatever you like!

By coville123 from Brockville

Recipe: Instant Oatmeal Packets

Make your own "instant" oatmeal bags. Measure out a weeks worth of oatmeal and place into ziploc snack bags. To each bag, add 1 tsp. chopped nuts and 2 tsp. chopped dates for date nut flavor. F

or maple flavor, add 1 1/2 tsp. brown sugar and a pinch of salt. You can substitute any dried fruits, according to your tastes. Don't forget to re-use the zip lock bags!

Try different flavors. Use cinnamon or pumpkin or apple pie spices. Add syrup or honey instead of sugar. Coconut is good, and so is nearly any fresh fruit. If you can't have sugar, use whatever artificial sweetener you choose.

Flavor extracts and coffee syrups can also be used to create different flavors. You save money, use less sugar, and save on calories too.

By duckie-do from Cortez, CO

Recipe: Morning Oats Mix

Glass canister filled with oatmeal mix.I mix this up ahead and it's easy to make in the mornings. It also makes a good gift in a decorative jar.


  • 12 cups large flake, rolled oats
  • 4 cups raisins
  • 2/3 cup of flax seeds
  • 1/2 cup of sesame seeds
  • 2 Tbsp. nutmeg

Mixing Instructions:

Toss oats, raisins, flax seeds, sesame seeds, and nutmeg. Transfer to large jar or scoop 1/2 cup portions into small sandwich bags and seal shut.


To make stir 1/2 cup of mix and pinch of salt into 3/4 cup of water. Microwave on high one minute, stir, and microwave until bubbling, about 45 seconds. Serve with milk and brown sugar.

Servings: 32 1/2 cup servings
Prep Time: 5 Minutes
Cooking Time: 2 Minutes

By coville123 from Brockville, Ontario

Recipe: Frugal Oatmeal

Mix together a large batch of instant oatmeal and scoop up a serving that costs only about a quarter a day.


  • 1 container (18 oz) quick-cooking oats
  • 3.2 oz nonfat dry milk
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup raisins


In a large bowl combine all ingredients. Transfer to an airtight container. Makes about 16 servings.

For breakfast: scoop 1/2 cup oatmeal mix into a bowl and add 1/2 cup water. Microwave on high for 1 minute.

By Laurie from Manitowoc, WI

Recipe: Homemade "Instant" Oats

Steel cut oats or Groats are the only type of oats that actually reduce cholesterol and lower triglycerides according to a study published last year. That is due to the fact that the bran is still intact. The process of partially cooking and pressing the oat removes much or all of the bran from rolled oats. The nutty flavor of the whole oat adds much flavor and texture to your morning breakfast


  • 1/2 cup steel cut oats (Bob's Red Mill can be ordered online)
  • some dried fruit (I like dried cranberries, chopped dried apricots but use any type you like)
  • a sprinkle of sliced almonds and walnuts
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon


Mix ingredients in bowl. Boil 3/4 cup water and pour over mixture. Cover and leave on counter overnight.

In the morning, microwave on high until hot. Sweeten with honey or your favorite sweetener. Add milk if you want, but I find I don't need it.

Servings: 1
Prep Time: 3 Minutes
Cooking Time: 5 Minutes

By Pat B. from Strathmore, Maryland

Tip: Make Your Own Instant Oatmeal

Instant oatmeal is pretty quick and easy to make yourself to have at the ready. No need for all those little baggies! This recipe is especially nice for those of us who have kids or otherwise demanding lifestyle where we need something quick and healthy.

If your family eats instant oatmeal, you can save a significant amount of money, by making it yourself. All you need is: quick cooking or instant oats, sugar (either white or brown), salt (I prefer kosher salt), and optional flavorings such as cinnamon, nutmeg, raisins, or chopped dried fruit.

I use my stand mixer for this, but of course you could just use a bowl. First, combine 1/2-1 cup or so of sugar with two teaspoons or so of salt. Then mix in about two quarts of oats. Then pour the mix into whatever storage vessel you have.

This works out best if you have access to large bags of quick cooking oats. You can find such a thing through Costco, a food co-op, restaurant supply, etc. A 25 pound bag of Bob's Red Mill at my local Cash and Carry is $14.28, which works out to about 3.5 cents per ounce. For a quick comparison, a decent brand of oatmeal is about 40 cents per ounce. Granted, this doesn't factor in the small amount of sugar and other flavorings, but I think you get the picture!


By Vegetable Garden Cook from Beavercreek, OR

Share Your Feedback: Have you tried this recipe? Do you have your own variation which you would like to share? Click "Share a Recipe" above!


Here are questions related to Homemade Instant Oatmeal Recipes.

Question: Homemade Instant Oatmeal

Is there a recipe for sugar-free instant oatmeal, plain or flavored?

By Linda L from Bloomington, IL


Most Recent Answer

By Patty [2]06/25/2011

This is a good one that we use at our house: ... ts-a-visual-guide-and-cost-analysis/


Thrifty Fun has been around so long that many of our pages have been reset several times. Archives are older versions of the page and the feedback that was provided then.

Archive: Make Your Own Instant Oatmeal

As a busy single mom, I can certainly appreciate convenience foods. It is not necessary, however, to pay a high price for convenience with a little advance planning. For example, you can make your own flavored instant oatmeal packets by simply combining the ingredients (quick oats and the flavoring of your choice - brown sugar, cinnamon, etc) in a ziplock baggie ahead of time. If something requires both wet and dry ingredients, you can use two baggies (wet ingredients in one, dry in the other) and combine when preparing. To use the oatmeal example again, oats and sugar would go in one baggie, a mashed banana and vanilla in another.

By Leann D

RE: Convenience Foods - Make Your Own Instant Oatmeal

This is a great idea. I usually just follow the microwave directions on the oatmeal box (round), but my son is always wishing for the packets. I could make up packages for him, and for myself that would take both of us less time.

I have also started making my oatmeal with milk instead of water. This gives you more nutrition for the same preparation time. (12/26/2004)

By odeal59

RE: Convenience Foods - Make Your Own Instant Oatmeal

Try also raisins, chocolate chips, or dried apples. This is a great tip. No need to buy the already made packets of oatmeal when you can save A LOT of money packaging up your own. (12/26/2004)

By Cavelady

RE: Convenience Foods - Make Your Own Instant Oatmeal

I have been making these for about 4 years and I love them! I have saved a lot of money as well. Even the store brand oatmeal packets are expensive now. Check them out and see for yourself.

Creamy Homemade Fruit Oatmeal Packets

  • 1 cup quick cooking oatmeal
  • 3 tabs, powered coffee creamer.
  • 2 tabs dried fruit or (2 tabs. fruit preserves) of your choice,
  • 2-3 tsp. sugar. More or less to taste

Directions for Each Oatmeal Packet:

Place 1/2 cup of the oats in a blender and grind until powdery. Then place in zip-lock bag along with all of the other ingredients. I make up a weeks worth at a time. When ready to use. Open one bag and pour in a bowl. Add 1/2 cup boiling water and stir. If you like thick oatmeal use less water and if you like thinner oatmeal use more water. Enjoy. Sandy-TN (01/13/2005)

By tink0952

RE: Convenience Foods - Make Your Own Instant Oatmeal

Thanks for the tips, guys. I have been wondering this for a few months and I finally did a Google search on the topic. Glad I found this thread and this website. I love being thrifty!

Lori - Kansas City, MO (11/02/2005)

By Lori

RE: Make Your Own Instant Oatmeal

My kids were mad when I stopped buying it. I asked them what they liked about it that mine didn't have and they said the dinosaur eggs. So, I bought a pkg of inexpensive dinosaur, creature, and floral sprinkles (I let each child choose their own) to put on my homemade prepackaged oatmeal after it's cooked. They're in heaven and haven't complained a bit since!

Sometimes it's the little things that make all the difference. (04/16/2007)

By Toni

Archive: Make Your Own Instant Oatmeal

I wanted to share a tip with all those busy moms who love instant oatmeal, but can't stand those awful prices. I take regular oatmeal and put it in my blender and just give it a few zaps, to break up the oats. You can add different ingredients to make it taste better.

Here are a few of mine.

Cinnamon Apple

  • 1/4 cup of blended oats
  • A few chopped dehydrated apples
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • A bit of brown sugar

Peaches and Cream:

  • 1/4 cup of blended oats
  • 1/2 peach from can or fresh if you have it, cut up
  • 1-2 tbsp of vanilla instant pudding powder

All you have to do is bag up the mix. Be sure to only store dry ingredients. I like using dehydrated fruits and instant puddings. they store well and you can put them in single serve bags or bowls and all you need to do is add hot water.

By Melissa from Pine City, NY

RE: Make Your Own Instant Oatmeal

The Quick Oats can be prepared in the microwave exactly as they come out of the box. There is no need to process them more. Time is same as for "instant". I emailed Quaker about this over a year ago and this was info they gave me. TC JAN (10/12/2007)

By itsmejan

create your own oatmeal

I read this article and I have to say I was baffled as to why the oats would be put into a blender. Anyway, my contribution to this post is my own creation, something I have done for years and I love. I, too, use the Quaker quick oats, add a handful (or so) of orange flavored dried cranberries and some hot water. I used to use orange extract and Craisins, but found the orange flavored dried cranberries to be even faster. :) I used to make "apple" flavored oatmeal for my daughter when she was a toddler, using the quick oats and apple juice. I also used to use maple syrup and brown sugar to get that maple and brown sugar taste, but found that it took a lot of both to create a good flavor, and stopped because of all the sugar I was putting in her body. Cinnamon and apple juice is so much better :) (10/12/2007)

By Valerie

RE: Make Your Own Instant Oatmeal

Another tip: I hold onto small canisters, including larger used spice jars, to carry my oats. I keep them lined up on the kitchen counter to grab on the go! I am not a parent, but I am a busy young adult working in a competitive career field -- having a healthy instant breakfast I can stick in my purse then mix in a bowl with hot water at my office is a huge boon for me.

I am so grateful for the ideas on add-ins! None of this had occurred to me before. I just mix my oats with powdered honey, purchased in large quantities at Tastes like regular honey when mixed with water, but more convenient and slightly cheaper. (11/20/2007)

By Amy

RE: Make Your Own Instant Oatmeal

To save time and money I set out my crock pot before bed and make long cook oatmeal. I add chopped apples and cinnamon and leave it on low all night. I end up with a very velvety oatmeal in the morning. I put most of it into containers in the fridge so anyone in my family can microwave a bowl during the week for breakfast. I work so this saves time and the family can still get a hot healthy breakfast. (05/25/2008)

By frugalelf