Elizabeth's Overnight Steel-Cut Oats

Elizabeth Laseter

Assistant to the Director of House Programming, James Beard Foundation

Steel-cut oatmeal, Elizabeth's go-to weekday breakfast, is high in nutrition and flavor, low on prep time, and is easily jazzed up with fresh fruit or a dollop of peanut butter. Steel-cut oats usually take forever to make, but this overnight method saves precious time. In the morning, she packs the oatmeal in a 16-ounce canning jar, reheats it in the microwave at work, and piles on her favorite mix-ins.


  • 1 cup steel-cut oats
  • Butter or olive oil (optional)
  • 3 cups water
  • Optional mix-ins: fresh fruit, peanut butter, Nutella, fruit preserves, sliced nuts, ground cinnamon, honey


Toast the oats in hot oil or butter in a saucepan before soaking. (This is optional, but it brings out a deliciously nutty flavor.) Next, add the water. Stir well, then bring to a boil. Remove from heat, cover, and let sit overnight. In the morning, spoon the oatmeal into jars or containers (leftovers keep well in the refrigerator). When ready to eat, reheat in the microwave, stirring every 30 seconds or so. Top with desired ingredients and enjoy!


Makes three 1-cup servings