Homemade Instant Oatmeal





Introduction: Homemade Instant Oatmeal

Instant oatmeal is great for a quick breakfast at the office. Not only is it easy to make your own, the homemade version is more filling and less expensive (LESS EXPENSIVE! MORE FILLING! *ahem*) than the store bought stuff, and you can make it without all the sugar and preservatives.

Update: This morning was the first bowl of oatmeal of the season, so I took the opportunity to add a brand new photo (and more appetizing, I hope).

Step 1: Ingredients

Basic oatmeal:

quick-cooking oats
nonfat dry milk powder (vegans and the lactose-intolerant can skip this)
one Splenda packet (or 2-3 teaspoons of sugar)

Additionally, for apple-cinnamon oatmeal:

dried apple bits

Step 2: Measure, Mix, and Store

Into a container or bag, put:

1/2 cup oats
1 tablespoon milk powder
1 splenda packet
1/8 teaspoon salt (or more, to taste)

If you are making apple-cinnamon, add:
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
sprinkle with dried apple bits (as much as you like)

Seal the container and shake it up. You now have one serving of instant oatmeal to take to work, school, etc.!

Step 3: Eat

To use your instant oatmeal: put it in a bowl, add about a cup of hot water (give or take), stir, and let it sit for a few minutes to cook.




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    57 Discussions


    11 years ago

    Trader Joe's sells a rolled 4-grain 'cereal' that makes for a more interesting flavor than quick oats alone. It takes slightly longer to cook, but just by a minute or so. Your local yuppie grocery will probably sell something similar in bulk.

    6 replies

    I find that hot water out of the tap is sufficient for kids - not too hot and they can go to town on it right away. Plus, it is quicker when everyone is in a hurry.

    Please be careful with this. Hot tap water can leach higher amounts of lead or other metals from plumbing or the hot water tank. It is not recommended you drink hot water from a tap.

    whats the difference if the hot water heater heats it compared to the stove or microwave? i think heating actually will remove minerals plus the heavier particles settle to the bottom of the hot water tank instead of flowing through like with the cold. Geeze lead pipes! do you drink out of lead goblets too just for kicks. I truly hope no one still has lead pipes. I guess if they did they wouldn't be able to read this anyway because of the going insane and being delirious. Really frigin' old buildings i guess? Copper and iron are not in amounts that will harm you in tap water from modern pipes. Well water is a different story, have it tested if you don't want tainted oatmeal.

    I just heard a story about lead being used in making the brass fittings--a college somewhere investigated water quality in a building where students/staff said it tasted bad--and found lead levels that were really, significantly high.

    Here's the link:


    If the link doesn't work, it's for the 'Living on Earth' show, for Nov. 19 2010.

    Here's another article for that story:


    omg i love this recipe!!!!!!!!!!

    Even whole oats are very "instant" in microwaves. only 2-3 minutes extra cooking time. less time than boiling water. and less time than blender or processor pretreatments. I am lactose intolerant so I don't use milk or powdered milk. Try my combination: water, cook stir and add 1 tablespoon ground flax seed (omega Fatty acids and lignins etc...for us chemistry geeks) then almond milk to desired consistency. Top with blueberries! or any combination of various fruits. I like frozen berry medleys because along with the almond or soy milk the frozen berries make it cool down ready to eat even instanter-er. I l know that's not a word so hush. This is my heart saver recipe. ask me how this will lower cholesterol better than any other oatmeal recipe and I'll oblige you with an answer. Notice the lack of the sodium ion, chloride ion and any artificial sweetening agents or sugar. Healthiest breakfast ever! unless you are allergic to oats, lol. take this over the top like me and sprinkle on some fiber one original cereal l to boost dietary fiber without adding sugar. Talk about regularity! oh and drink lots of water or you might get stopped up. This breakfast will clean out your arteries and your colon. I'm glad people are eating real food and not that sugared chemical preserved crap kids beg parents for. Hurray for real food!!!!!!!!

    I buy Oatmeal in bulk at the health Food store~~~the regular kind. It can be made into instant with a couple of pulses in a blender. if you are a 'stay-at-home' with kids, or even without, instant can be a convenience. Make up a bigger batch ahead of time, that you can ladle out in 1/2 c. increments, as needed. Eat at home or take with you to the office~~~if you still have to go to one.

    I think I failed to understand this. You appear to be telling people how to prepare oats, like western civilization doesn't know how. I find this quite painful, but recognise that some people haven't any idea how to feed themselves...

    7 replies

    I could swear there's a rule somewhere about constructive criticism. For myself, since I have 4 kids, this is a HUGE help. I usually end up buying three or four different boxes, because they all like different flavours. This method means that I can make it in bulk and then just add fresh/frozen fruits the way they like it. Thanks!

    I see some value in this, but it seems a bit obvious. I appreciate advanced cooking, but favour that people should be able to fend for themselves with the basics. L

    "Basics" will vary from country to country, as well as culture to culture. I can't ever recall eating oatmeal as a child, but I can recall eating grits. Although grits is a staple in the southern U.S. it would be silly to assume that every individual in the south, much less the entire country, would be familiar with the dish, both in taste or preparation. Point being, the instructables community is a diverse group of individuals with varying degrees of experience and of knowledge. What is mundane and commonplace to one, is fresh and exciting to another!

    I found this helpful. My parents never ever brought up oats for anything other than oatmeal-chocolate cookies, and they made those like, once. I'm glad I found this :D

    I do wonder what frame of mind I was in back then (>3 years ago)... See comment May 15, 2007. 1:21


    MikeTutle - Based on your Splenda argument, I shouldn't eat salt either. It's half Chlorine.

    1 reply

    I think the bigger problem with salt is the Sodium is sure to blow you up as soon as it dissolves! It's explosive in water people! That's the reason I never eat salt myself. You people are living on borrowed time. Sure, I have a firm grasp on chemistry... ;)