Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >
Jan 30, 2007 10:37 AM

Steel cut oatmeal

I was raised on instant Quaker and have heard people rave about this stuff. I bought a tin of McCann's at Trader Joes and followed the instructions on the can this morning. Are they supposed to be sort of nutty in texture or did I undercook them? Sort of like brown rice I guess. Totally different flavor than the Quaker kind. I added some brown sugar and cinnamon.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I have it every morning in the winter; I make it in a pressure cooker using the pan in pan method. It chould have a slightly chewing texture.

    12 Replies
    1. re: howboy

      Please explain the pan in pan method. I tried to make stell cut oats in the pressure cooker but was overrun by foam. how do you do it?

      1. re: jono37

        2 c. water in pc, put in steam rack. put oats and water (for oats) (and raisins, butter, brown sugar or whatever you like) in small metal bowl on rack. 25 mins @ 15psi. See Miss Vickie's Pressure Cooker Recipes for great pc hints. I use cold water release method. Comes out perfect.

        1. re: howboy

          I'll try it, but that doesn't save much time.... my stovetop steel-cut oats are done in 25-30 mins.

          1. re: jono37

            Maybe not much of a time saver, but I don't have to watch it at all, or stir it, so it allows me to shave and shower without worrying about what's on the stove.
            btw, stell cut oats also make a great addition to soups.

            1. re: howboy

              Same here. I get up, turn on the coffee maker, turn on the pot on the stove at the same time, feed the dogs and let them out. By the time I let them back in, the pot is boiling and I put the oats in and turn them down to simmer. I go enjoy my coffee and read the news and my email and by the time I'm done with that, my oatmeal is ready. Never touch it once I put the oats in.

              1. re: howboy

                Thanks for the soup tip. I've never thought of that. Any particular soups you use them in?

                1. re: debbiel

                  I usually make either a chicken or beef stock, then remove the bones and put in vegetables, some barley or rice or another grain and about a quarter cup of steel cut oats. You can also add any good multi-grain hot cereal---just a small amount.This week I made some vegetable soup and I added about one eigth cup 10-grain cereal to it. This is to about 4 quarts of liquid, so it acts like a textural element in the soup, but isn't like a bowl of cereal (of course).

                  1. re: howboy

                    Thanks howboy. I like putting barley in my soups but have never tried adding the oats. I'll try this soon (temps in the teens make it perfect hearty soup time!).

                    1. re: debbiel

                      Next time I'm out of barley, this is a great idea! (I'm never out of oatmeal) Wonder how grits would be, I have a big container.

                      1. re: coll

                        Delicious, I've used grits too.

                        1. re: howboy

                          I love when I can make a meal out of food I have laying around!

                2. re: howboy

                  Funny, I don't bother to stir my steel cut oats and they seem to come out just fine. I boil water - once boiled, throw in the oats, lower heat to a simmer and take the dog for a 30 minute walk. When I return, breakfast is done. I know it says to stir, but I don't bother.

        2. if it's hard then it's undercooked, but it should definitely be chewy. i make it almost every day... i use rice milk instead of water, often throwing in some dried currants, cranberries or cherries and topping it off with a little maple syrup or honey. Sometimes I do sliced bananas and maple syrup at the end and it turns out tasting like banana bread. yum.

          2 Replies
          1. re: annimal

            Do you add dried fruits and nuts while you are cooking the oatmeal or serve on top. Do the nuts stay crisp?

            1. re: jmax

              i add the dried fruit while cooking, they get softer and retain some of the liquid. I sometimes cut up bigger ones like cherries. I haven't done nuts but I'd do them on top.

          2. It IS nutty and chewy and tastes entirely unlike Quaker, so you probably did it right.

            1. Steel cut oats are wonderful. As howboy and annimal mentioned, they should be slightly chewy but not crunchy. My current supply is also McCanns and I've been cooking them several minutes longer than the can directions.I also like mine to be porridgy (thick, even slightly "gloppy").

              I like to cook my oats using milk or a milk/water mix. My recent mix-ins have been adding cinnamon and chopped apples in at the beginning of the cooking and adding chopped toasted walnuts at the end. Last fall I was adding butternut squash or pumpkin puree in at the beginning of the cooking.

              I find steel cut oats make a heartier, more comforting and satisfying breakfast (or lunch, or dinner) than rolled oats.

              3 Replies
              1. re: debbiel

                I read here that it's good to put it in a crock pot when you go to bed and then it's ready as soon as you get up. Once I'm done with my "instant" stuff I'm going to give it a try, last time I cooked for half an hour on the stove, and I thought the texture was weird myself.

                1. re: coll

                  I do this sometimes, with both my oats and my cornmeal. I sometimes have a problem with it getting dried out on the edges. Last autumn there were some posts about that problem, and several folks described how they set up their crockpots to avoid that problem. Here's one description of the water bath in crockpot method:


                  1. re: debbiel

                    Thanks for the refresher course, I remembered there were some warnings, now I'm ready!

              2. I should HOPE that they taste different than instant oats. I think the instant ones shouldn't even be called oats, as they are processed down to something almost unrecognizable as nutritionally acceptable.