Crock Pot Oats & Amish Style Baked Oatmeal

Amish Style Baked OatmealOat-Cuisine
I am a big fan of oatmeal—no matter what form it comes in: whether it’s steaming from a bowl, baked in a cookie with raisins and cinnamon, or crumbled on top of apples and served with ice cream.

The good news is it’s good for you, and you can easily justify eating oats no matter what it’s iteration. I will concede that if you add too much brown sugar or butter the health benefits are somewhat diminished, but it tastes so darn good!

Because it’s winter, and it’s cold, and it’s not yet rhubarb, peach or cherry season, my love of oatmeal has been playing out on the field of breakfast. I have been trying different ways of making my warm bowl of courage, and have been pleasantly surprised at all I can do. I have found my two favorites.

Sure, you can always go the traditional salted water boiling route. It’s comfortable. It’s a known. Or you could walk on the wild side, and get wacky like the Amish do and make Baked Oatmeal with Apples, Raisins and Walnuts. Jenn Segal had me at “bread pudding-like consistency”. I’ve never met a bread pudding I didn’t like—this will be good. The downside? It’s not something you can throw together on a weekday morning.

Slow Cooker Steel Cut Oatmeal is the perfect solution for weekday mornings. There’s nothing like waking up to a hot bowl of oat-y goodness. I mess around with this recipe depending on my mood. I will add raisins, nuts, cut up apples and/or dried cranberries. Most times I leave the vanilla out and go with some combination of cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg. It’s a perfect way to make time consuming steel-cut oats during the week.

Amish Style Baked Oatmeal
Adapted from Once Upon a Chef
A traditional and comforting Amish breakfast casserole. There are endless variations—the recipe is easily adapted to whatever fruits and nuts you have on hand.

2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (not instant)
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1 cup walnuts or pecans, divided
1/2 cup raisins
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
2 cups milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more for greasing the dish
2 tart yet sweet baking apples, such as Honey Crisp, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks (about 2 cups)

Preheat the oven to 325°F. Grease an 8 or 9-inch baking dish with butter.

In a medium bowl, combine the oats, brown sugar, 1/2 the nuts, raisins, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Mix together well.

In another bowl, gently wish the eggs and add the milk and vanilla until well combined. Add the milk mixture to the oat mixture, along with the melted butter.

Scatter the apples evenly on the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Pour the oatmeal mixture over top and spread evenly. Sprinkle the remaining half of the nuts over the top of the casserole. Bake for in your pre-heated oven for 40 to 45 minutes, or until the top is golden brown, and the oats are set. Serve warm or at room temperature. This can be made ahead of time and re-heated.

Slow Cooker Steel Cut Oatmeal
Adapted from Chow

Unsalted butter
8 1/2 cups water
2 cups steel-cut oats
1 (14-ounce) can unsweetened coconut milk or 1 3/4 cups whole milk
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Before going to bed at night, coat the insert of the slow cooker with a thin layer of butter. Add the water, oats, coconut or whole milk, brown sugar, and salt and stir to combine.

Cover and cook on low until the oats are cooked through and creamy, about 7 to 8 hours. Stir in the vanilla and serve immediately.

Top your oatmeal with dried fruit, nuts, or maple syrup.

Instant Pot
You can use your Instant Pot on the slow cooker setting to make these oats. But, if you want to do something speedier (read same-day), they are simple to prepare.

Combine the oats, water, milk, butter, and salt in an Instant pot. Press the manual setting and set the cooking time for 5 minutes on high. Allow the steam to release naturally for 20 minutes before flipping the release valve. Remove the lid and stir in the brown sugar and vanilla.

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