Slow Cooker Overnight Oatmeal Recipe

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Slow cooker overnight oatmeal is the perfect way to have a hot breakfast ready to go when you first wake up in the morning!

This delicious slow cooker overnight oatmeal breakfast will be ready for you when you wake up in the morning and you won’t have to lift a sleepy, coffee-deprived finger to do it. True story.

This bad boy will cook all night while you sleep. Yup. A full 8 hours!

Clean Eating Slow Cooker Overnight Oatmeal Recipe

Sorry, no, I can’t include the 8 hours of sleep with this recipe. I barely get that myself these days. But I can promise you a “wake-you-up-it’s-so-delicious” breakfast you’ll enjoy again and again this season. And all you have to do is throw it together the night before when you’re still somewhat conscious! How’s that for convenience?

SLOW COOKER OATMEAL

Oats are really a perfect slow cooker food if you get the ratio of oats to liquid just right. The resulting texture after cooking all night is pretty darned perfect. It’s almost like a creamy, sweet risotto that’s been made with great care. Add the right flavors and ingredients, and breakfast will be a thing of beauty.

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SLOW COOKER OVERNIGHT OATS RECIPE:

Clean Eating Slow Cooker Overnight Oatmeal Recipe

Clean Eating Slow Cooker Overnight Oatmeal

Note: I don't recommend using any other type of oats with this. Steel cut oats seem to stand up to long cooking times far better than other styles of oats. Also, if you prefer your raisins chewy, add them after cooking. Cooking them makes them very soft. However, if you do not cook them with the oats, you will most likely need more sweetener.
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Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 8 hours 5 minutes
Servings: 2 servings
Calories: 271kcal
Author: The Gracious Pantry

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup steel cut oats
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup raisins )R fruit juice sweetened, dried cranberries
  • pure maple syrup as garnish

Instructions

  • Combine the oats, water, cinnamon and vanilla extract in a small, 1 or 2 quart slow cooker. No larger. (You will need to multiply the recipe for larger slow cookers)
  • Cook on low for 8 hours.
  • Stir in the raisins OR cranberries and maple syrup when serving.

Notes

Please note that the nutrition data below is a ballpark figure. Exact data is not possible.

Nutrition

Serving: 0.5the recipe | Calories: 271kcal | Carbohydrates: 56g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 3g | Sodium: 22mg | Potassium: 299mg | Fiber: 7g | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 50mg | Iron: 2.7mg

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82 Comments

  1. Thanks to finally getting this recipe, been waiting since yesterday!

  2. Margaret R says:

    I make mine up in the afternoon and put my insert in the fridge. The I pop it in the crockpot at bedtime. It is amazing in the morning when I wake up and it smells awesome.

  3. Sounds good to me. Thanks!

  4. Yay!! I’m so glad to find a crockpot oatmeal recipe that I don’t have to get up in the middle of the night to cook!

  5. Sounds interesting. I’ve never tried overnight oatmeal! I will probably have to do so soon!

  6. Mariann Buonadonna says:

    If you have one of those itty bitty crock pots it’s perfect for one serving-divide the recipe exactly in half. I am the only steel cut oats fan in my house. I tried making a bigger batch and reheating left overs, but I prefer them just made.

  7. graciouspantry says:

    I’m not sure what gluten free oats are like. How long do they take to cook? If they are gluten free steel cut oats, then they should be fine. But if they are the quick-cook variety, they probably won’t hold up too well.

  8. graciouspantry says:

    Steel cut oats are very filling, yes. Pair it with some eggs and you’re set to go! πŸ™‚

  9. graciouspantry says:

    Because it will overcook the food. It would be the equivalent of using a tractor to plant one little seed. It’s just too much.

  10. graciouspantry says:

    If you use the proper size slow cooker and use the correct balance of liquid to food, it shouldn’t burn at all. πŸ™‚

  11. Danyalle Friday says:

    I have had my itty bitty crock pot for 5 years now and have never used…thanks for giving me a reason to pull it out!!

  12. Jill Esham says:

    I have done overnight oatmeal for a long time. My favorite is with apples chunks, walnuts and cinnamon. What a great time-saver.

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  14. graciouspantry says:

    It rewarms just fine. Use a microwave, or put it in a pot with a little extra liquid to warm on the stove.

  15. graciouspantry says:

    I would think it would be fine made with milk, but I haven’t tried. Apples and nuts should be fine too, just keep in mind that with a slow cooker, you’ll have apple sauce in your oats when it’s done cooking. Not apple chunks. You may want to do a test run of this during the day when you can keep an eye on it to see if it needs any adjustments.

  16. Milk in general does not hold up in a crockpot and leaves a funny taste. Something about it breaking down? I wonder about almond milk or coconut milk?

    1. graciouspantry says:

      Coconut milk does far better in a slow cooker. Almond milk generally does not hold up at all with this type of cooking. I’m sure there are exceptions, but overall, avoid the almond milk here.

  17. I made this for the first time last night and it turned out great. I added sliced almonds for a nice crunch. The only issue I had is it really sticks to the sides of the crock pot, which requires soaking to clean. Also, I used a baby crock pot and this recipe filled it halfway, which was perfect, otherwise a big one just wouldn’t work.

  18. I made this last night and it looked great this morning but was pretty tasteless. I added all the ingredients above except for raisins and also added walnuts. Maybe I should double up on the cinnamon and vanilla or add some other sweetner?

    1. graciouspantry says:

      Sorry about that. The raisins add a lot of sweetness in cooking. So that’s why it didn’t taste exactly right. Yes, you can add more of whatever you like.

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  20. I tried making this for the first time a few days ago. I enjoyed it so much that I made another batch and tripled it. I will never make oatmeal on the stove again. I love my crockpot!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Haha! Wonderful! πŸ™‚

  21. I love cooking oatmeal in the slow cooker overnight. I make a basic oatmeal by adding a few cinnamon sticks instead of ground cinnamon, a little nutmeg, a little salt and vanilla extract. For the liquid i alternate each time I make it depending on what I have on hand. I may use water, soy milk, coconut water, coconut milk or almond milk. Using any of these liquids I found to be tasty. I use a little extra liquid so the oatmeal is creamy. Each morning I add a different add-in such as almond nut butter, banana, apples, peaches, pears, different berries, nuts, cocoa powder, ground flaxseed the list goes on. I also may sprinkle brown sugar, honey or agave nectar if i need a little more sweetness. I don’t like sugar substitutes. This morning I tried Nectarine slices and I didn’t care for it too much. Will not do that again.

  22. Hi,
    Made this last night.
    Smelled amazing when we woke up…HOWEVER…it did not work out.
    I did use a 3.5q. pot but I tripled the recipe – 1.5C Oats, 6 cups water etc.
    WAY too much water!! LOTS of liquid and everything was stuck to the bottom.
    ( not burned at least).
    This will need fine-tuning if you have a larger pot. I have a family and I think I’ll go back to my old standby…Red River Cereal πŸ™‚

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Donna – Ya, any time you double or triple a recipe, you have to make certain adjustments. Sorry it didn’t work out for you!

  23. Sara Berryman says:

    Could you add egg whites to this? Thanks!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Sara – You could try, but I have a feeling you’d end up with some clumps of rubber egg. It’s probably best to serve them on the side with this one.

  24. I use my slow cooker as a double boiler when cooking steel cut oats. I have a large crockpot, put about an inch of water n the crockpot. Then I put all the oatmeal incredients into a smaller glass Pyrex….u know one of the small round glass ones. I set the pyrex into the large crockpot then put crockpot lid on. I do this almost every night for my hubby and he can just grab the glass Pyrex full of yummy oatmeal as he goes out the door. No cleaning up a messy crockpot.

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Heather – Sounds wonderful! Thanks for the tip!

  25. I can’t wait to try this tonight. I want to add chopped pecans to it also.

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Torre – that would be yummy!

  26. love cooking oatmeal this way. We always add a chopped up apple to the mix (golden delicious or fuji never turn to applesauce) and some flax seed. I have also thrown in farro or barley with the oats for a change and those worked out beautifully too!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Jennifer – Sounds wonderful!

  27. I made this last night and added 1diced honey crisp apple. It was a little sour, but will try again withoit the apple. Otherwise, very good and filling.

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Sonya – Ya, sometimes the type of apple makes all the difference. Try a pink lady apple or ask the grocery to recommend whatever is the sweetest in your area at the moment.

  28. Do you have a recipe for a larger quantity?

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Sue – No, but I imagine you could double or triple the recipe and use a larger slow cooker. I would try it during the day first though to be sure the liquid doesn’t need adjusting with bigger quantities.

  29. I have made this , however I used apple juice as the liquid . That was great! Thanks for your help with this . Give us more great receipts !

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Judi – Thanks for the tip!

  30. Hi GP!
    In regards to using a larger crockpot as a “double boiler” like Heather said, have you ever tried that? I only have a larger crockpot and cannot get a smaller one right now, but I would love to try this recipe, and her method sounds like a plus!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Ayanna – I haven’t tried it myself, but I do know it’s a popular method. Maybe the best way to try it is to do it during the day on your weekend the first time so you can keep an eye on it. Then if you’re comfortable, you can do it overnight.

  31. Hi this was my first time trying this recipe, I used sultanas instead of raisins as that’s what I had in the cupboard! The recipe turned out very sweet and I’m wondering is this due to the sultanas?

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Sarah – It’s possible, you can always cut back.

  32. Lisa Hardway says:

    Adding protein is essential to healthy blood sugar levels. Oatmeal does make an amazing breakfast and I’m really glad to see your wonderful oatmeal recipes. Even though oatmeal is a very good complex carbohydrate it has a high number of carbohydrate grams. Adding sweeteners, even natural ones, brings the carb load up even higher. Whether you sacrifice a little flavor by adding (unflavored) protein powder to your oatmeal recipe or simply eat some protein on the side, in order to safeguard everyone’s (but especially diabetics’) blood sugar levels it is essential that every meal or snack have an adequate amount of protein. With nearly 50 grams of carbs per serving of this recipe the ideal amount of protein needed. in this meal in order to maintain stabile blood sugar would be around 25 grams – quite a bit higher than the 4 grams provided in this recipe. The glycemic load listed is 27 – High ratings begin at 20.

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Lisa – I’m not sure I get your point. If you’re diabetic, you certainly don’t have to eat it. I do have other breakfast recipes that are far higher in protein.

  33. Kerridwen Niner says:

    This sounds good but i’ve no idea what steel cut oats are or whether there called something else here in England?

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Kerridwen – It almost looks more like oats turned into a “gravel” of sorts. They aren’t flat, it’s almost more like very coarse salt.

  34. Kerridwen Niner says:

    Oh really, well it’s a new one on me, don’t think i’ve seen anything like it so might just go with oats lol

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Kerridwen – Yes, the thick, traditional variety should work okay. Hope you enjoy it! πŸ™‚

  35. Steel-Cut oats are also called Irish oats or porridge. Maybe that’s what they’re called in the UK?

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Alisa – Maybe!!!

  36. This is something I make every Sunday night. It makes enough for breakfast for 4 or 5 mornings for my 10 year old gymnast! I love having this on hand. Quick healthy warm breakfast, which is a must for the early am practices and Michigan winter! I heat it up and then stir in some milk. She loves the reheats. I don’t do the raisins as she doesn’t like them. I do chop up two apples and throw them in with double cinnamon, double vanilla. I sweeten it with maple syrup in the am. I use a firm, crisp apple and make sure I don’t chop too small. No applesauce and my kid loves the apple chunks. I love this recipe. It is perfect for this busy, working, single mom!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Kathryn – Thanks so much! Sounds like you’ve got an active little girl there! πŸ™‚

  37. Irish out = steel cut. I spent 3 yrs in England for uni! πŸ™‚

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Kathryn – That’s what they call it there?

  38. Is this 1/2 cup of steel cut oats or 1 or 2 cups of steel cut oats?

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Judy – It’s a half of 1 cup.

  39. Elizabeth S says:

    How long is too long to cook this? I actually did 2 cups steel cut oats and 4 1/2 cups of water (plus cinnamon, walnuts, raisins). 12? or try to leave it at 8?

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Elizabeth S. – It depends on how full your slow cooker is too. I would check it at 8-10 hours, but it might be okay for 12. I haven’t tried so it’s hard for me to say. Wish I could be more help…

  40. First, gotta say, I LOVE your site! There’s so much information here for clean eating! It’s amazing and so generous of you to share what you’ve learned!

    Now…about this recipe…I’ve made this 4 times now! The first time I only had old fashioned oats at home and used those – – – and it was mush the next morning. I bought some steel cut oats later that day! We’ve also added a choped up granny smith apple – delicious! I’ve shared this recipe with so many people!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Shannon – Wonderful!! Ya, the steel cut are really best for long term cooking. They hold up the best. Glad you enjoyed it! πŸ™‚

  41. Would craisins be ok to use instead of raisins? If so do you recommend a certain brand?

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Rachel – You mean dried cranberries? Sure! But you would have to get the fruit juice sweetened variety for them to be clean. I get mine at Whole Foods.

  42. I’d love to try this, but we do not like steel cut oats. Would this work old fashioned oats or quick cooking oats?

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Emily – You could try it with old fashioned oats. Get the really thick cut ones though. Not quick oats. You want them to withstand the long cooking time.

  43. Tina Geer says:

    I meet with my besties once a week for what I’ve dubbed as “Movie Morning” after us mothers of the group drop our girls off at school. We each bring something. It doesn’t have to be a breaky item, just whatever we feel like. Well I feel like this! Lol.
    I’m very new to clean-eating, and love your recipes!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Tina – What a fun idea!! I hope you enjoy the oatmeal!! (and the movie!) πŸ™‚

  44. Tina Geer says:

    I just started this for my weekly ladies “Movie Morning ” with my besties!! We’ll enjoy it (along with the other goodies they bring) while watching part 1 of “New Moon”!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Tina – Fantastic!! Have fun! (I love those movies!)

  45. Just found your blog and have enjoyed reading all the comments about crock-pot steel-cut oatmeal. For other (type II) diabetics, cutting the portion size to 3 per given ingredients, adding some greek yogurt instead of cows’ milk–or soy milk, which has more protein than cows’–or an egg or small serving of your favorite breakfast meat will add to the small amount of protein in the oatmeal. Because it is such a great complex carb, it will be metabolized more slowly than simlple carbs like sugar and be more likely to keep your blood sugar level from spiking, even without the extra protein. Unless you are doing heavy physical labor, 47 g of carb (and 25 g of sugar) can be a lot for one meal. Your doctor will probably have set you up with the number of carbs to consume at each meal; follow his/her advice.

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Carol – Thanks!

  46. Daphne Priest says:

    Love learning more about clean eating.

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Daphne – You’ve come to the right place then! πŸ™‚

  47. This was terrible. I tripled the recipe to account for the size of my slow cooker and the number of mouths I had to feed. I woke up to an amazing smell but was disappointed to find burnt oatmeal soup. It never thickened and the oatmeal just burned to the sides and bottom of the slow cooker. I tasted it anyway to see if it was salvagable at all. Its not. Tastes wayyy worse than it even looks. No sweetness whatsoever, just sour burntness. So now I’ve wasted what oatmeal we had left and the kids have no breakfast.

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Erika – I’m sorry it didn’t work out for you! What type of oats did you use? What size is your slow cooker? What was the exact measurements of your oats and water?

  48. What a terrific blog you have!! Because of dietary restrictions (Type 1 diabetes), could you provide the nutrition analysis, including carbs, sugar & fiber.
    Thanks.

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Lori – Thank you! And I’m sorry, but I can’t for the very reason you give here. To provide that information, I have to use online calculators which are not always correct or accurate. If somebody with a medical condition uses that data and it’s too far off, that would not be a good situation. So I have been removing all of that data from my site. But the good news is, sites like MyFitnessPal.com make it really easy for you to import that information yourself with just a url. Hope that helps!

  49. I used golden raisins instead and drizzled with crumbled walnuts. Taste like cobbler! Yum!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Terralyn – Yum indeed!! πŸ˜€

  50. I make oatmeal every morning and doing it overnight does sound interesting. I plump my raisins overnight in some water and in the morning add the oatmeal – increase the water depending on how generous I am with the oatmeal. When I make the recipe I’ll put the raisins in the slow cooker with the oatmeal for cooking overnight.

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Sam – Sounds great! πŸ™‚

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