Slow Cooker Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal

 

If you’re friends with me in real life, follow the blog on Facebook or Twitter, or check out my pictures on Instagram, you may know that I’m not a morning person – at all. I try. I really, really do.

Usually.

I’ll admit that I haven’t tried very hard for the past eight months as this pregnancy has left me crabby and a bit exhausted. I’m cranky when I have to get up before I’m ready, and I thankfully have kiddos that roll with it.

We’ve adjusted our schooling so that the majority of it takes place after lunch and the kids start their day by playing Lego together or watching Magic School Bus. I’ve learned that I can get more time to sleep sit and enjoy the little ones playing contentedly if I prepare breakfast the night before.

I’m loving slow-cooker breakfasts so much that we’re having them 4-5 times a week. At least. I like that a hearty breakfast is waiting for the kids as soon as they’re hungry, and I love that I get to help Brian’s morning along, too. Unfortunately for him, I’ve never been the charming wife who gets up, brews coffee, scrambles eggs, and sits with him before he heads off to work. He’s the angel that leaves me a travel mug of coffee on my nightstand so I can face my day. You know I’m blessed, right? Slow-cooker breakfasts allow me to give back a little.

Convinced? Ready to try this yummy recipe? It’s really easy…

You’ll need a slow-cooker. I recommend a bigger size cooker with a smaller casserole dish that fits inside the crock. You can make this oatmeal in the main slow-cooker itself, but I’ve had more success, and found that I like the creamy consistency better, when I add a smaller dish and surround it with a bath of water.

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium size apple {I like the tartness of Granny Smith}, peeled, cored, and diced.
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of unsalted butter, diced up.
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 1 cup whole or steel-cut oats {I mix my grains, though. As long as I keep the total grains to 1 cup, the recipe turns out delicious. In the pictures below, you’ll see small grains too. I usually use 2/3 cup whole groats and 1/3 cup millet to increase the protein. Millet is really yummy.}
  • 3 cups of water {or 1/2 apple juice & water}

 

Apple Oatmeal Steps

 

Throw all of the ingredients into the slow-cooker {or casserole dish} and mix together like steps 1-5 above.

If you’re using a separate casserole dish {and again, I highly recommend it as it keeps the oatmeal creamy, almost custard-like, and keeps a steam in the pot so everything is simple to clean up}, place your dish in the crock. Fill the crockpot with water to just below the rim of the casserole dish.

Cook it all night on low. If you placed your oatmeal in the slow-cooker itself, I probably wouldn’t leave it on for more than 7-8 hours. If you use the casserole & water bath method, you can leave it on as long as you want.

I usually put it in around 11:00 p.m, Brian takes the first serving around 6:30-7:00 am and replaces the lid. The kids and I eat it around 9:00 am, and it’s still creamy and delicious.

I like mine with toasted walnuts on top – I just toss them on the stove in a small skillet for a minute or two until they’re warmed. The kids either eat theirs as is or add a bit more brown sugar or a little agave. Yum!

Please let me know if you try this yourself. I’d love to know how it turned out for you or if you have suggestions for improving the recipe. And, if you have other ideas for simple make-ahead breakfasts, I’d love to hear about those, too. Share your ideas over on the Facebook page so we can all enjoy them.

I hope your Monday is blessed,

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Colleen Kessler

Colleen is an explorer, tinkerer, educator, writer, creator, and a passionate advocate for the needs of gifted and twice-exceptional children. She has a B.S. in elementary education, a M.Ed. in gifted studies, is a sought-after national speaker and educational consultant, and is the founder of the popular blog and podcast Raising Lifelong Learners, as well as Raising Poppies, a community of support for parents of gifted children. She lives in northeast Ohio with her four bright and quirky kiddos, patient husband, and ever-changing collection of small reptiles, mammals, and insects.