Baked Oatmeal

101 Cookbooks, the gorgeous blog started by Heidi Swanson in 2003, is one of the sites that inspired me to launch Lottie + Doof. That may surprise you if you were to compare the nutritional qualities of the two sites, but I really related to Heidi’s sense of design and to her relationship to food. It is one of the places on the web that continues to inspire me to cook. Heidi also writes some lovely cookbooks and I was pleased as punch that she sent me a copy of her newest, Super Natural Every Day: Well-Loved Recipes from My Natural Foods Kitchen.

It is incredibly beautiful and from the moment I picked it up, had a hard time putting it down. It is easy on the eyes, a good read and full of recipes that had me itching to cook. It is rare that a book can do all three things, but when it does, you know it is a keeper. I kept annoying Bryan by making him look at photos and recipes that I liked—my excitement could not be contained.

Currently, the book is filled with scraps of paper marking the recipes I plan on trying. There are many scraps of paper, but I decided to start with this recipe for baked oatmeal.

I know baked oatmeal is a thing, but it is a thing I had never tried. I have no idea why. I like oatmeal, I like baking—seems like a no-brainer. Bryan’s sister (hi Heather!) was staying with us last weekend and the three of us couldn’t get enough of this recipe. I will be making it again and again, it is fantastic. It is easily adapted as fruits come in and out of season. I can even imagine a version with jam in the depths of winter. Bryan was impressed with the leftovers, he heated this up the next day and loved it. The blueberries had turned everything a little grey by then, but close your eyes and you’ll be happy.

Thanks, Heidi, for creating such a beautiful book and for inviting all of us into your kitchen.

Of course, we couldn’t leave well enough alone and poured a tiny bit of cream on ours. Milk would be a good compromise. Either way, this is straight-up delicious.

  • 2 cups / 7 oz / 200 g rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup / 2 oz / 60 g walnut pieces, toasted (see page 219) and chopped
  • 1/3 cup / 2 oz / 60 g natural cane sugar or maple syrup, plus more for serving
  • 1 teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
  • 11/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • Scant 1/2 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt
  • 2 cups / 475 ml milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 ripe bananas, cut into 1/2-inch / 1cm pieces
  • 11/2 cups / 6.5 oz / 185 g huckleberries, blueberries, or mixed berries

Preheat the oven to 375F / 190C with a rack in the top third of the oven. Generously butter the inside of an 8-inch / 20cm square baking dish.

In a bowl, mix together the oats, half the walnuts, the sugar, if using, the baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.

In another bowl, whisk together the maple syrup, if using, the milk, egg, half of the butter, and the vanilla.

Arrange the bananas in a single layer in the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle two-thirds of the berries over the top. Cover the fruit with the oat mixture. Slowly drizzle the milk mixture over the oats. Gently give the baking dish a couple thwacks on the countertop to make sure the milk moves through the oats. Scatter the remaining berries and remaining walnuts across the top.

Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, until the top is nicely golden and the oat mixture has set. Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes. Drizzle the remaining melted butter on the top and serve. Sprinkle with a bit more sugar or drizzle with maple syrup if you want it a bit sweeter.

serves 6 generously, or 12 as part of a larger brunch spread

***Recipe reprinted with permission from Super Natural Every Day: Well-Loved Recipes from My Natural Foods Kitchen by Heidi Swanson, copyright © 2011. Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House, Inc.

Thanks, Heidi and Ten Speed!

94 comments to “Baked Oatmeal”

  1. This was so good! thank you for sharing – the “no new cookbooks” ban has been lifted in our house thanks to this recipe. heading to amazon right now to buy super natural!

  2. Heidi’s blog was the first I ever read, and also was the main inspiration for me to start my own! I love the design, her very humble and minimal writing, the uniquely ‘her’ photos. This recipe looks like a perfect breakfast – healthy, but still luxurious. Can’t wait to try it.

  3. Egg question — one of us has an egg allergy over here. For this dish, what would you suggest for a substitution? I often use 1tsp baking powder combined with 1 1/2 Tbsp oil and 1 1/2 Tbsp water (whisked together, makes an foamy/eggy kind of thing). Would something else do the job better?

  4. Hi Andrea- Hopefully someone else can help…I don’t know anything about egg substitutes.

  5. I made this for a Mother’s Day brunch and my family loved it. I also tried an apple version, with sliced apples on the bottom instead of bananas, and chopped apple pieces throughout. I also substituted brown sugar for the maple syrup/cane sugar and it was delicious! I think this recipe is a great base, you can pretty much use any combination of fruit, nuts and sweetener and it will come out great! Thanks for sharing, I’m giving your Mac and Cheese recipe a try tonight!

  6. Update: made it with egg replacer. It was amazing!

  7. Thanks for the update, Andrea! Glad to know it worked.

  8. Thank you for posting this recipe. Baked oatmeal has been on my list to try for awhile now, and I finally made it this morning. It surpassed my expectations.

  9. Jennifer says:

    June 3rd, 2011 at 9:12 am

    Hello. This looks so good I want to try it for a weekend breakfast. One question: My son’s school is having a bake sale tomorrow to raise money for rebuilding a Kindergarten in Japan. We are supposed to drop everything off today. Is this any good the next day, served at room temp? Thanks!

  10. Hey Jennifer- No, not good enough for bake sale. We still enjoy the leftovers the next day, but they are definitely of diminished quality and are not great at room temperature.

  11. This was very good especially with warm milk and honey!

  12. The temperature this morning in the Eastern Townships of QC was a frigid 7 Celcius! This called for hot breakfast. Can’t remember how I ended up on your blog, but this recipe hit the spot for me and my family. Will be coming back for more! (I will also be trying apples on the bottom. Loved the bananas ;-) but am curious…)

  13. i just got her cookbook a few days ago and can’t wait to dive in and start cooking. the baked oatmeal is already on my list!

  14. This was so amazing! I made it with nectarines, banana, and a mixture of raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries, and it was so wonderful. We reheated it in the oven and agree, it was of diminished quality (although not bad at all!). Thank you!

  15. I’ve been following your blog for months, but this is my first comment…made this with strawberries and rhubarb and it turned out deliciously, served with fresh cream. Definitely one to add to my breakfast/brunch repertoire. Thanks!

  16. Eleonore, thanks for the sweet comment! I am so glad to hear you tried this with strawberries and rhubarb- I haven’t had a chance yet. But I can’t wait!

  17. Can’t wait to try this sounds delicious! Thanks for sharing

  18. I halved this and used cherries–delicious! I can’t wait till I’m back in the US so I can buy Heidi Swanson’s new books!

  19. OMS!! Oh. my. science! I 1/4 the recipe, made w NO EGG, and used soy milk. It was amazing and I am already dreaming up another combination for more….bananas, figs, and blueberries! Thank you for this recipe (and all others you provide….I dream of making your jellies someday)!!

  20. How long does this stay good? I’d like to make one batch at the beginning of the week and have my husband reheat servings of it for breakfast

  21. If this recipe can’t convince my boyfriend to like oatmeal, I don’t know what will. I’ve had this bookmarked for months; it’s high time to make it. I think it will be perfect for this upcoming chilly fall weekend! Thanks for sharing.

  22. This is amazing. I’ve already made it twice – once on Christmas morning and again at the request of my husband. Delicious!! Perfect for chilly winter mornings in bed, and it makes your house smell amazing. :-)

  23. This is ridiculously good. I am not even an oatmeal fan and I can’t stop eating it – thanks!

  24. Do you think this could be prepped the night before, refrigerated overnight, and baked in the morning?

  25. Hi Mara, I don’t know. I havent tried that. It only takes a few minutes to make, so I haven’t felt a need. if you try, let us know what happens.

  26. My mom makes this as a savory breakfast with mix-ins like mushrooms and onion, etc. Try it!

  27. Beautiful photographs with a simple recipe. I’m going to try to make this (minus the bananas) Hopefully all goes well.

  28. Barbara E. says:

    July 3rd, 2012 at 9:33 am

    I made baked oatmeal the other day, did not add egg, used almond milk. Put bananas and blueberries in it. It was so good, but even better the next day COLD, with cold almond milk in it. I hate the texture of cooked oatmeal, so this is a great way to get the benefits of rolled oats into my diet. LOVE IT!!!

  29. I made this tonight. My kids thought it was dessert and are very excited that I told them they could have ‘dessert’ for breakfast tomorrow ;) I love Heidi.

  30. I don’t normally comment on recipes but – this is amazing. I have 2 little ones – 3 yrs old and 19 months – they LOVE it. I am currently making it weekly and made it on vacation with extended family … received rave reviews. You are making me look like a better cook than I am – and I appreciate it! :)

  31. This was delicious. I didn’t have any nuts but think I will put almonds in next time and maybe cut back some on the sugar. Can’t wait to warm it up tomorrow and see how nummy is is as leftovers

  32. I think this looks great. Recipe says 8×8 pan, but picture is 9×13 I believe. Does this matter? Also, how much syrup to use?
    I don’t see it in the ingredient list. Can’t wait to make this!

  33. Hi Mel- the pan I used is the equivalent of 8×8 (it is not 9×13). It does matter. Syrup quantity is in ingredients list, with sugar. You can use either sweetener, and then follow directions accordingly.

  34. I made this for breakfast on Christmas morning and it was absolutely delicious. The leftovers were fab too. I will definitely be making this again. Thank you so much for posting it and bring delicious warmth to our Christmas morning. Much appreciated.

  35. Brilliant. Delicious. but feeds 4 in my house! :-)

  36. I finally made it this morning and loved it. I think I will be full up well beyond lunchtime! As someone who really doesn’t like porridge, I was pleased to find that I loved this with a few dollops of natural yogurt and lots of maple syrup drizzled over the top. Thank you to both you and Heidi!

  37. Patty Martin says:

    February 3rd, 2013 at 6:26 pm

    Made your Baked Oatmeal for Sunday morning breakfast. Wow! A very skeptical husband thought he wouldn’t like it. Well, he ate it for breakfast, lunch, and I quote “this tastes so good you could eat it for dessert”, and he did! Needless to say this will be a “go to” recipe for my family. Thanks!

  38. wow, this looks great :) i am going to turn this into muffins for a on the go breakfast !

    Thanks alot

  39. I don’t like the gluey texture of porridge so was looking for alternative oaty recipes, and this one is the bee’s knees! Good enough for dessert nevermind breakfast. I replaced bananas with thinly-sliced apples, added sultanas & dried cranberries, substituted most of the milk with oat milk & boosted the cinnamon. It was so sweet with the extra fruit that I think I can safely halve the sugar next time. Many thanks!

  40. Can steel cut oats be used in this instead of the rolled oats? Would the amount of milk need to be increased and also the baking time?

  41. Hi Sue- I’ve never tried, so I have no idea. But it doesnt seem like it would work, the cooking time would need to be way too long. But if you give it a try, let us know.

  42. Just gave this a try with steel cut oats and it was quite successful. Cut the oats back to 1 cup and threw in some extra nuts to make up for the missing volume. Cooking time was about 50 minutes.

  43. Kirsti Alnes says:

    April 19th, 2015 at 4:46 am

    Thank you for this recipe. We love this! We have skipped using butter and sugar, it tastes great anyway. Today I grated apples instead of using apple sauce :-)

  44. hi tim! I have made this many times but do you think I could replace the milk with kefir? I know it wouldn’t be as rich but I started making kefir and have a TON of it, so I want to try to use it up. alternatively, do you think I could make it with water instead of milk? I know it wouldn’t be as rich but I’m coming to the sad conclusion that my body isn’t too fond of straight milk. thanks! (also, to make this recipe even better, I’ve grated orange zest in it — SO good. fresh cranberries on top are killer, also.)