Oatmeal is really, truly, a simple and healthy way to start off your day right. But what if the cooking process goes wrong? What if you’re making oatmeal mistakes? What if you have no plan B? Well, here is where we come in and help you troubleshoot your morning bowl of nutritious deliciousness.
Who has time for scrapping breakfast and making it again? Nobody, that’s who! So, if you’ve tried to make a morning bowl of oatmeal and it turned out like a paste without any defining texture and bland flavor, then it’s time to find out what went wrong. Did you make any of these following oatmeal mistakes? Let’s not let it happen again.
Especially since there are plenty of other things you can make with oatmeal that require your attention, like smoothies, oat bars, pancakes, and cookies. Here's our recipe for banana oatmeal pancakes we think you should try.
Before you do anything, find out what kind of oatmeal you have in your pantry and find out what you can do with each type. No matter which one it is, you’ll know your dish will be loaded with great fiber and plenty of other nutrients.
5 oatmeal mistakes to avoid in the morning
1. You use a small pot
Sure, if you’re making oatmeal for one, you might be tempted to go with the smaller pot. But you might want to rethink that. Why might you ask? Because of the texture of the oatmeal, which tends to form big bubbles – the kind that could spill over if your dish is too small. And wouldn’t that be a waste, really?
2. You use water instead of milk
Your bowl of oatmeal does its job of keeping you feeling full until lunch only if you mix it with a protein – aka milk and not water. That’s why you should cook your oats in some nice milk, even if it is soy milk – that one has protein, too. But if you are out of milk and need to make breakfast, add some other source of protein to your bowl. Nuts will do nicely, so will seeds.
3. You add the oats at the wrong time
This one depends on the way you like to have your oatmeal. What kind of texture do you like? If the answer is grittier, where the oats retain their shape, then you should add them to the cold milk before you turn the heat on. But if you like to go for a creamier bowl of oats, then wait until the milk is simmering, and then pop the oats in.
4. You forgot the salt
Using salt in your food is not just about flavor (though it has a huge part to play there, as well). A pinch of salt also helps the food cook better, because the sodium helps break down the molecules in food and bond them in new, different, tastier ways. So, it doesn’t matter what kinds of topping you’re going to have after the cooking. What matters is you sprinkle some salt in there, while the cooking gets going.
5. You forgot to stir in the pot
Remember how we talked about the big bubbles? Well, you need to break them up somehow, and that how is by stirring. Otherwise, your oats might just spill over and make a mess of things. Your oatmeal needs about five minutes to cook, so it’s not that much work to keep stirring in the pot to stop the bubbles. Just remember that stirring tends to make the oatmeal creamier because it helps it release some extra starch.
Want to do more with your oats? Learn how to make oat milk!