This healthy baked steel cut oatmeal recipe has just the right amount of sweetness and only takes minutes to prep. The combination of maple syrup, cinnamon, and caramelized banana slices on top will have you ready to jump out of bed in the morning!

Baked Steel Cut Oats
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Why I Love This Recipe

Oatmeal is such a lovely way to start the day. It’s healthy, full of fiber and can be prepared with so many wonderful flavor combinations. But when busy mornings make it tough to cook oatmeal in the microwave, this baked steel cut oatmeal recipe is there to save the day!

This is one of my favorite make-ahead breakfasts. The maple syrup and cinnamon give the base such a delightful flavor, but if I’m being honest, the banana slices are really the stars of the show! By baking them on top, we get the slices to caramelize and melt into the oatmeal. It’s every bit as irresistible as it sounds

I also love how easy this oatmeal recipe is to prep. Just mix the ingredients, bake for a little under an hour, then store in the fridge to enjoy throughout the week. When you’re ready for breakfast, simply microwave a square for 30 seconds. That’s it!

Trust me, this is the kind of breakfast that will have you jumping out of bed in the morning. Kids love it, too! Everyone will be raving about the banana slices, and you can always add an extra drizzle of maple syrup if you like. Once you give it a try, this might become your go-to weekday breakfast!

What are steel cut oats?

Any kind of oats you get at the store started out as oat kernels that had their tough outer shell, also known as the hull, removed. From there, oats are split up into categories based on how much they’ve been processed.

Steel cut oats are the least processed version of oats. They have a little more texture and flavor than rolled or quick oats and also take the longest to cook. That’s what makes them great for baked oatmeal!

Rolled oats, also known as old-fashioned oats, have been steamed or flattened ahead of time. This allows them to cook faster compared to steel cut oats. Quick oats or instant oats are rolled oats that have been processed even further so they’ll cook more quickly. 

Steel cut oats, on the other hand, are neither steamed nor flattened ahead of time. The advantage of using steel cut oats is that they retain the most nutritional value! And when they’re prepared the right way, I think they have the best natural texture and flavor.

baked steel cut oats

Benefits of Oats

If you’re looking for a healthy breakfast that will energize your morning and keep you full until lunch, oats are a fantastic choice! They’re a whole grain, which means they’re a good source of both protein and fiber. This combination is what makes a bowl of oatmeal so satisfying.

Aside from the health benefits, I also love that oats are so budget-friendly. They’ll last in the pantry for a long time, so you can buy them in bulk without worrying about whether or not you’ll be able to eat them all. Believe me, once you try this baked steel cut oatmeal recipe, you’ll have no problem finishing them off!

Can you cook steel cut oats without soaking?

Yes! This recipe doesn’t require any soaking, so you can get this in the oven in no time. Some recipes call for soaking steel cut oats so they cook faster, but that’s not necessary for this recipe.

baked steel cut oat ingredients

Ingredients & Substitution Ideas

  • Fruit — I highly recommend trying this recipe with banana slices at least once. The way the slices caramelize on top is crave-worthy! But you can certainly use another fruit either with the banana or in place of it.
  • Sweetener — Feel free to swap honey or another sticky sweetener for the maple syrup.
  • Milk —You can use any kind of milk. I like to make this recipe with almond milk, but feel free to use whatever you have on hand whether that’s dairy milk, coconut milk, or soy milk.
  • Vegan-friendly —For a plant-based version, try my vegan baked steel cut oats.

How to Reheat and Store Leftovers

Once the baked oats have cooled, cut them into squares and store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They will stay fresh for up to 5 days. You can also store them in the freezer for up to 3 months!

When you’re ready to enjoy, microwave the individual squares for 20-30 seconds or until heated through. Top with an extra drizzle of maple syrup if you like and enjoy!

How to Make Baked Steel Cut Oatmeal