Slow-Cooker Steel-Cut Oats

Slow-Cooker Steel-Cut Oats

This is a practically effortless way to have a hot breakfast ready to go the moment you wake up. The trick to cooking perfect steel-cut oats in the slow cooker is to make use of the auto-warm setting, which switches on when the set cook time is over. (The majority of modern slow cookers have this function, though some older ones may not.) Cooking the oatmeal on low for two hours, then on warm for up to six more ensures very creamy, risotto-like oats that have a pleasant chew. (You can also cook the oats on low for 4 hours, then immediately serve, but if you venture any longer than that, the oats may overcook.) Think of this as a whole-grain meal that you can take in any sweet or savory direction you like: Top with a pat of butter and a squeeze of honey, or a sprinkle of salt and a bit of hot sauce, or any of the topping suggestions below.
  • Total:
  • Serves: 4 persons



  1. Step 1

    In a 6- to 8-quart slow cooker, combine the oats, salt and 4 cups water. Cover and set the cook time to 2 hours on low, at which point the slow cooker will automatically switch to warm. Cook on warm until the oatmeal is creamy and tender, about 6 more hours. (The 6 hours on warm is not optional; the oats will not be done after 2 hours on low. If you wish to cook them more quickly, you can cook for 4 to 5 hours total on low.) Ladle into bowls and serve with the toppings of your choice.