Perfect Stovetop Oatmeal Recipe

Heather Tullos | Sugar Dish Me

Perfect Stovetop Oatmeal is simple and satisfying. Learn how to make your own perfect stovetop oatmeal with these handy tips and tricks.

Making oatmeal from scratch is almost as simple as opening an envelope of the instant stuff. It’s not much more time consuming, but it is SO much more satisfying! This recipe for Apple Cinnamon Stovetop Oatmeal is one of the most popular on my own site.

And since people love THAT, I thought it would be fun to share the “good bones” of how to make stovetop oatmeal like a pro.

Perfect Stovetop Oatmeal Photo

We all know that I typically prefer my oats in cookie form (like with these White Chocolate Blueberry Oat Cookies). But a good bowl of oatmeal goes a long way in the morning and I love playing around with add-ins and toppings. Some favorites:

  • Dried cranberries or raisins
  • Sliced apples or peaches
  • Chocolate chips + bananas
  • A spoonful of peanut butter + honey
  • Maple syrup + brown sugar
  • Almonds, pistachios, or walnuts
Perfect Stovetop Oatmeal Picture

Once you have made some decisions about what’s going IN your oatmeal, you can focus on technique. I have a few tips:

  • Old Fashioned Oats will give more texture; Quick oats will be creamier and will cook a little faster.
  • If you buy the old fashioned oats and decide you prefer quick cooking oats, a pulse in the blender or food processor gives you quick oats in less than a minute!
  •  If your oats threaten to bubble up and over the sides of the pan when you add them to the hot water, you need to reduce the heat.
  • Your oats need a dash of salt to be perfect.
Perfect Stovetop Oatmeal Image

Let’s talk about this salt things really quick. Once upon a time my husband tried to get cute and make me oatmeal.

Annnnnd he added salt. But he salted my oatmeal like you would salt your pasta water.

So instead of enhancing the flavors of anything else we might have added, I just had to scrape my bowl of oatmeal into the trash #hotmess

This is on your list of oatmeal things to NOT do.

Perfect Stovetop Oatmeal Pic

On the list of oatmeal things TO DO, however, is to cook it in WATER, not milk (the milk comes later). You want simmering water, not boiling water. Boiling water will turn your oats into sticky glue. You want to bring the water just to a boil, and then reduce the heat to a simmer before adding your oats.

Also things to add to your oatmeal repertoire: 13 Oatmeal Recipes to Assure Yourself of a Healthy Breakfast (because who doesn’t need that?!!) and this Homemade Instant Oatmeal recipe (for the days you only have 1 minute to boil water).

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Perfect Stovetop Oatmeal Recipe

    1 Servings


  • 1/2 cup Old Fashioned Oats
  • 1 cup Water
  • dash of Salt
  • 1/4 cup Milk
  • Toppings and Add-Ins


  1. Bring the water to a boil and then reduce the heat to simmer.
  2. Gently stir in the oats. If the water starts to bubble over, reduce the heat even further.
  3. Cook for about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Stir in the dash of salt, and scrape the oatmeal into a bowl.
  5. Float the milk across the top and add your favorite add-ins and toppings. 


Cooking Method:
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Related Recipes:
Breakfast Recipes, Brunch Recipes, Oatmeal Recipes, Easy Recipes, Simmered Recipes
Recipe Yields:
1 serving
Prep Time:
Cook Time:
Total Time:
Related Post:
Author: Heather Tullos
Recipe Yields: 1 serving
Prep Time: 4 minutes
Cook Time: 4 minutes
Total Time: 8 minutes

Nutrition Facts

Servings Per Recipe 1

Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat 28
Calories 184

% Daily Value*
Total Fat 4g
  Saturated Fat 1g
Sodium 26mg
Total Carbohydrate 31g
  Dietary Fiber 4g
  Sugars 3g
Protein 8g

* Percent Daily Value are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
** Nutrition Facts are estimated based on ingredients and data provided by Fat Secret. Please consult a doctor if you have special dietary needs.
Heather Tullos

About Heather

Heather, the author behind the blog Sugar Dish Me, really really really loves waffles. She's our newest Breakfast fanatic, and we're so glad!

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