Using a spoon to grab a bite from the Perfect Bowl of Oats
4.85 from 13 votes

The Perfect Bowl of Oats

How to make the perfect steel cut oats in 3 easy steps: Soak, boil, simmer. Soaking the oats is the secret to ultra creamy, fluffy, tender oats. Plus, it improves digestibility! Just 4 ingredients required for this staple breakfast recipe.
Author: Minimalist Baker
Prep Time 6 hours 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 6 hours 20 minutes
Servings: 2
Category: Breakfast
Cuisine: Gluten-Free, Vegan
Freezer Friendly No
Does it keep? 3 Days



  • 1 cup steel cut oats
  • 2 cups water (plus more as needed for cooking)
  • 1 Pinch sea salt
  • 1 Tbsp flaxseed meal (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup or coconut sugar (or other sweetener of choice), plus more to taste
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon , plus more to taste

FOR SERVING optional


  1. Add 1 cup oats to a large saucepan and top with 2 cups water (or, if making more or less, just make sure there is double the water as there are oats). Cover and soak for 6 hours or overnight (see notes for shortcuts). This will improve digestibility and also slightly speed cooking time. It also yields fluffier, creamier oats!
  2. The following day (or 6 hours later), add a pinch of salt and bring to bubbling boil over high heat. Once bubbling, reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook for 12-15 minutes or until the water is mostly absorbed and the oats are tender. If the oats appear dry, add more water as needed. Then remove from heat.
  3. Scrape any oats off the bottom that may have stuck to the pan. Add in flaxseed meal (optional), sweetener of choice, and cinnamon. Stir once more to combine. For creamier oats, add in a splash of dairy-free milk of choice at this time (optional).
  4. To serve, divide between serving bowls and top with any additional garnishes. Our go-to is berry compote with chia seeds, banana, peanut butter, almond milk, and hemp seeds.
  5. Best enjoyed fresh. Store leftovers covered in refrigerator up to 3 days. Reheat on stovetop with water or dairy-free milk until hot.


*If you don't want to soak your oats, simply bring listed amount of water to a boil in a saucepan. Once boiling, add oats, stir, and reduce to a low simmer. Cover and cook until tender - 15-20 minutes.

*Prep time includes soaking. If not soaking the oats, the prep time is only 5 minutes.

*Nutrition information is a rough estimate based on 1/2 of the recipe calculated with maple syrup and without optional toppings.

Nutrition Per Serving (1 of 2)