Oatmeal is a nutritious addition to any balanced diet. Still, many people wonder, “How much oatmeal should I eat a day to stay healthy?” Our experts answer that question and discuss the benefits of eating oatmeal every day.
We’ll also let you in on how you can be a part of The Soulfull Project’s unique community efforts to supply servings of our hot cereal to food banks in your area.
How Much Oatmeal Should I Eat A Day?
We recommend eating one serving of oatmeal every day, but the specific answer to the question “How much oatmeal should I eat a day?” ultimately comes down to the type of oats you choose.
Steel cut oats, rolled oats, and instant oats are all pretty much the same nutritionally, but, as you’ll see below, there are benefits to eating oats that are closer to the original oat groat (the kernel right off the stalk).
How Much Oatmeal Should I Eat A Day: Steel Cut Oats
Steel cut oats (or Irish oatmeal) are oat groats right off the stalk that have been chopped into small pieces with a steel blade.
Because they’re basically raw grain, they’re denser and thicker than other types of oats and take longer to prepare (from 15 to 30 minutes) — unless you choose The Soulfull Project’s Quick Cook Irish Oatmeal Hot Cereal, which is ready in as little as three minutes.
Steel cut oats are heartier, chewier, and nuttier than other types of oatmeal, which makes them ideal as a healthy breakfast, lunch, dinner, or snack.
How much steel cut oatmeal should you eat a day? Here’s a simple, single-serving recipe you can make any time to help you eat the right amount of steel cut oatmeal:
- In a pan, mix ¾ cup of hot water, milk, or broth with ¼ cup of dry steel cut oats
- Bring liquid to a boil
- Reduce heat
- Simmer for 20 minutes or until oats reach desired texture
- Remove from heat and enjoy
If you’re short on time in the morning, mix up a batch of steel cut oats the night before so you can grab a healthy breakfast before starting your busy day.
How Much Oatmeal Should I Eat A Day: Rolled Oats
Rolled oats are similar to steel cut oats, except that rolled oats are steamed and flattened instead of chopped.
Rolled oats are partially cooked because of the steam, so they take much less time to prepare (two to five minutes) and have a milder flavor and softer texture than typical steel cut oats.
How much of this type of oatmeal should you eat a day? Try this easy recipe for a single serving:
- In a pan, mix 1 cup of water, milk, or broth with ½ cup of dry rolled oats
- Bring liquid to a boil
- Reduce heat
- Simmer for four minutes or until oats reach desired texture
- Remove from heat and enjoy
Can’t spare five minutes for a healthy breakfast? Rolled oats are the ideal base for easy-bake oatmeal bars — a simple way to embrace the day, refuel during a homeschooling break, or power up before a meeting.
How Much Oatmeal Should I Eat A Day: Instant Oats
Instant oats are similar to rolled oats in that they’ve been steamed and flattened. Instant oats, however, go through much more preparation than other oats before they reach consumers.
This extra effort results in a very mild flavor, soft texture, and extremely short cook times (one to two minutes).
How much instant oats oatmeal should you eat a day? This recipe explains:
- In a pan, mix 1 cup of water, milk, or broth with ½ cup of dry instant oats
- Bring liquid to a boil
- Reduce heat
- Simmer for two minutes or until oats reach desired texture
- Remove from heat and enjoy
Instant oats are also great as the base for your overnight oatmeal or oatmeal bars when you don’t have any steel cut or rolled oats on hand. The end result might not be as flavorful, but it will still be a quick, nutritious, and delicious treat when you’re short on time!
The Benefits Of Eating Oatmeal Every Day
Keeps Your Ticker On Time
Eating a heart-healthy balanced diet — including oatmeal — is a great way to keep your ticker on time and beating strong.
Fiber reduces both total circulating cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) in your bloodstream. At the same time, that fiber prevents the remaining LDL from oxidizing (solidifying) when it comes in contact with the free radicals in your body (more on that below).
Oatmeal is packed with fiber! That’s why we recommend heart-healthy oatmeal for breakfast, lunch, or dinner as part of a balanced diet.
It’s also why we dedicate our time and energy to providing healthy food to those who often go without by donating our hot cereal to regional food banks.
Oats are naturally gluten-free, so go ahead and mix up a bowl of oatmeal for breakfast today.
If you suffer from celiac disease or even a mild sensitivity to gluten, look for the gluten-free label on the packaging before you buy for an extra bit of protection.
The gluten-free label ensures that your oatmeal contains as little gluten as possible (19 parts per million or less) to help you avoid the irritation, inflammation, and discomfort that gluten can cause.
The Soulfull Project, for example, puts the gluten-free label front and center on all packaging so you can rest easy and enjoy a hearty bowl of oatmeal or hot cereal without the struggles that gluten often brings.
No More Searching For Macros
For a healthy, balanced diet, you need to consume carbohydrates (the good kind!), protein, and healthy fat every day. These components of your food are so important that doctors and scientists call them essential macronutrients.
Most foods offer one or two macronutrients, but oatmeal contains all three!
You’d have to eat a slice of meat, a veggie, and some nuts to get the same combination of macronutrients as a single serving of oatmeal or hot cereal provides.
No need to search for your macros anymore — just eat a bowl of oatmeal every day as part of a balanced diet.
Vitamins And Minerals In One Place
Inside those essential macronutrients are micronutrients that your body needs to function at its best. What are micronutrients? They’re vitamins and minerals such as:
- Vitamin D
- Vitamin K
- Vitamin B
- And many others…
Most foods contain a few vitamins and minerals — which is why we have to eat a varied, balanced diet to get them all — but some foods contain a larger variety than others.
Oatmeal is one of those foods and offers plenty of vitamins and minerals in one place! For example, The Soulfull Project’s Brown Sugar Pecan Multigrain Hot Cereal contains vitamin C, calcium, iron, potassium, magnesium, zinc, and manganese.
Add in your favorite extras — including fruits, vegetables, and nuts — to get even more micronutrients in a single serving of oatmeal or hot cereal.
Customize Your Oatmeal Experience
There are many ways to customize your oatmeal experience in order to answer the question, “How much oatmeal should I eat every day?” The simplest being to vary how much — the quantity — you make at one time.
Here’s a simple recipe for several servings of delicious steel-cut oatmeal cooked in an Instant Pot (so it’s fast and easy).
Steel-Cut Instant Pot Oatmeal
- 2 cups of water
- 1 cup of almond (or other non-dairy) milk
- 1 cup of steel-cut oats
- 1 cinnamon stick (optional)
- 1 generous pinch of kosher salt (optional)
- Measure ingredients directly into your Instant Pot
- Press the manual setting and set the cooking time for three minutes on high
- After those three minutes, allow the oatmeal to sit in the Instant Pot (with the lid on) to “natural release” the pressurized steam for 20 minutes
- Press the release valve with the end of a wooden spoon to vent any residual steam
- Remove the lid (always angle the top of the lid toward your face to prevent steam from burning your skin)
- Scoop oatmeal into a serving bowl
- Add toppings of your choice with additional milk to taste
If you want to double this recipe, steel-cut oats need a three-to-one liquid-to-oats ratio.
If you only need enough for one person, here’s an easy set-it-and-forget-it recipe for a single serving of oatmeal any time.
Single-Serving Instant Pot Oatmeal
Instead of mixing all of the ingredients directly in the Instant Pot pot, you’re going to use a trivet.
A trivet is a stand that raises whatever it is you’re cooking out of whatever liquid you add to the bottom of the pot. Most Instant Pots include this tool when you buy them new.
The trivet makes the pressure cooker perfect for steaming potatoes or, in this case, cooking something in another bowl inside the Instant Pot pot.
Now, let’s talk about that other bowl. For this recipe, you’ll need a pressure- and heat-safe bowl in which to cook your Instant Pot oatmeal.
Many recipes recommend a Pyrex bowl or measuring cup, but the company has recently stated that their products are not safe to use in the Instant Pot.
Instead, mix and cook your oatmeal in a stainless steel bowl to avoid potential problems with glass containers.
- ½ cup of your favorite oats
- ½ cup of non-dairy milk
- ¼ cup of water
- 1 tablespoon of flaxseed (optional)
- 1 cup of water (for under the trivet in the Instant Pot)
- Insert the trivet into the Instant Pot
- Pour 1 cup of cold water directly inside the inner pot of your three or six-quart Instant Pot (1.5 cups of cold water for an eight-quart Instant Pot)
- In the stainless steel bowl, mix the oats, water, milk, and flaxseed
- Place the bowl on top of the trivet and put the lid on the Instant Pot
- Set the valve to "Sealed" and set manual time to three minutes on high pressure
- After the three minutes, allow the Instant Pot to naturally release for 10 minutes before using a wooden spoon to release any additional steam out of the pot
- Caution! Stainless steel bowl and oatmeal will be hot
- With oven mitts or a towel, remove the bowl carefully from the pressure cooker
- Allow to cool
- Serve with your favorite toppings
Quantity isn’t the only way to customize your dining experience and help you answer the question, “How much oatmeal should I eat?” Toppings play a big role in that as well.
Toppings are the essence of creating the perfect bowl of oatmeal goodness. The extra ingredients you add can transform your oatmeal into a sweet treat, a savory delicacy, or anything in-between.
All it takes is a little imagination and we’re sure you’ll find ways to customize your oatmeal to satisfy the flavors you’re craving.
To get you started, here are some of our favorite toppings:
- Hemp seed
- Dried cranberries
- Protein powder
- Nut butter
- Maple syrup
- Brown sugar
Any of those extra ingredients — in combination or by themselves — make a regular bowl of oatmeal taste divine.
If you’re feeling a little adventurous, try sprinkling your favorite dry cereal into a serving of hot oatmeal. It’s a great way to add a dash of excitement to your morning meal, and there are so many options available that you could try a new concoction every day.
It’s also a great way to get young ones to eat a bit healthier in the morning (a spoonful of sugar really does help the medicine go down).
If you want to keep things healthy, choose a simple flake cereal (e.g., Wheaties) or high-fiber variety with dried fruit (e.g., Mueslix).
Or relive your childhood with your favorite sweet and colorful cereals, such as:
- Frosted Flakes
- Froot Loops
- Cap’n Crunch
- Fruity Pebbles
- Honey Smacks
- Cinnamon Toast Crunch
The sky’s the limit on the flavor and color combinations you can try, so don’t be afraid to get a little wild!
Some people like thick oatmeal, while others prefer thin oatmeal. Fortunately, it’s super easy to modify the liquid-to-oats ratio to achieve whatever consistency you desire.
We’ve given you several ratios in this article that you can experiment with, but you can also try these to see if they work better for you:
- Quick-cook or rolled oats: 1 cup liquid to ½ cup oats
- Steel-cut oats: 1 cup liquid to ¼ cup oats
Don’t be afraid to adjust even further for your own particular taste. The perfect bowl of oatmeal awaits!
Toppings play a big role in changing the flavor of your oatmeal, but it’s not the only way to add a little something different to your meal. Instead of relying solely on extra ingredients, try toasting your oats before you cook them.
Melt a dash of butter or coconut oil in a frying pan, add your oats, and toast for about five minutes or until the oats are golden brown. Then cook the toasted oats just as you would un-toasted oats.
Toasting your oats before cooking intensifies the flavors for a stronger, more savory meal.
When you ask, “How much oatmeal should I eat?” you’re probably thinking about hot oatmeal, right? But oatmeal is also a great meal when it’s cold or mixed into other recipes.
Case in point: overnight oatmeal.
Overnight oatmeal is super easy to make — just mix the ingredients together and store your creation in the refrigerator overnight — and tastes great to boot.
Keen to try this tasty treat for yourself? Check out these articles from The Soulful Project blog for detailed instructions and flavor combinations that are out of this world:
- How To Make Overnight Oatmeal In 10 Easy Steps
- Overnight Oats: Nutritional Benefits And 5 Delicious Recipes
Other Grains, Even More Benefits
While you’re customizing your oatmeal with all of those extras, add some extra grains into the mix for even more benefits and make a hot cereal in the process.
Not sure which grains to add? The Soulfull Project can help. No matter which of our hot cereals you choose, you’ll get hearty grains and seeds, including:
These extras add a tasty and vitamin-packed kick to your morning routine that will help you power through to lunch and beyond.
And by varying the flavor of the hot cereal you use — such as The Soulfull Project’s Apple Cinnamon, Blueberry Almond, Brown Sugar Pecan, Toasted Coconut, or Cinnamon Spice — you can whip up a batch of oatmeal that even the pickiest eater among you will love.
If you’re looking for even more healthy, food-allergy-friendly ways to make a meal, try Don’t Go Nuts’ many flavors of soy spreads (peanut-free peanut butter) and organic, non-GMO, gluten-free, nut-free, peanut-free chewy granola bars. They’re the best!
And if you want a bit more crunch in your breakfast bowl, try The Soulfull Project Crispy Granola (on top of your oatmeal or all by itself), which comes in three delicious flavors: Toasted Coconut, Maple Pecan, and Dark Chocolate Cherry.
To get more information on the serving-for-serving program and check out all of our delicious oatmeal and hot cereal flavors, visit TheSoulfullProject.com today.