How to Make Perfect Oatmeal – Add In Ideas!

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Kick your breakfast up a notch with these delicious oatmeal add in ideas! How to make the perfect oatmeal for a healthy breakfast and 15 delicious ways to bring some variety to it.

Kick your breakfast up a notch with these delicious oatmeal add in ideas! 15 delicious ways to bring some variety to a healthy breakfast. #oatmeal #oatmealaddin #mixins #breakfast #variety #healthy

How to Make Perfect Oatmeal

We love enjoying a warm bowl of oatmeal in the morning for breakfast, especially on these cold winter mornings! It’s inexpensive and can be made quickly.

Our basic oatmeal recipe is quite simple; 1/2 cup milk + 1/2 cup water + 1/2 cup old fashioned oats is how to make perfect oatmeal!

Basic oatmeal can get boring pretty fast though so here is a little inspiration on some oatmeal add ins to add some new variety to your morning bowl!

What to Add to Oatmeal

Here are some of our favorite oatmeal add-in ideas.

Blueberries & Cream: Substitute half the cooking liquid with whipping cream or half and half and add ¼ cup fresh or frozen blueberries with 1 teaspoon sugar per serving.

Cinnamon Raisin: Mix in 1 Tablespoon Raisins, 1 teaspoon Cinnamon Sugar and 1 teaspoon butter.

Peanut Butter & Jelly: Mix in 1 Teaspoon Peanut Butter when cooking oatmeal. You can mix in or drizzle the top of oatmeal with your preferred jelly or marmalade.

Apple Cinnamon: Peel and chop a Granny Smith apple and place in microwave safe bowl with 1 teaspoon butter and ½ teaspoon cinnamon. Microwave for 1 minute on medium heat or until tender. Mix into cooked oatmeal. May top with a dollop of whipped cream for a “dessert” feel.

Honey Nut: Mix in 1 Teaspoon organic honey and 1 Tablespoon toasted chopped pecans/walnuts or almonds.

Banana Walnut: Mash ½ ripe banana and mix into cooked oatmeal along with 2 teaspoons chopped walnuts.

White Chocolate Cranberry: Mix in 1 teaspoon mini white chocolate chips and 2 teaspoons dried cranberries along with 1 teaspoon sugar and 1 teaspoon butter.

–We love these Chewy Oatmeal Raisin Granola Bars for a snack!

How to Make Perfect Oatmeal

–Love oatmeal? Here’s a delicious Oatmeal Cookie Recipe to try!

Chocolate Chip: Mix in 1 teaspoon mini chocolate chips, 1 teaspoon sugar and 1 teaspoon butter. For added flavor you may wish to drizzle the top with chocolate syrup.

Nutella: Mix in 2 teaspoons Nutella or your favorite hazelnut chocolate spread.

Bacon & Cheese: Crumble 1 Piece Fried Bacon and 2 Teaspoons Cheese into oatmeal. Salt and pepper to taste. Can also mix in fried onions as desired.

Maple Syrup & Prunes: Mix in 2 Teaspoons Maple Syrup and 3 chopped Prunes.

White Chocolate Macadamia Nut: Mix in 1 teaspoon mini white chocolate chips and 2 teaspoons chopped Macadamia nuts.

Pecan Pie: Mix in 2 Teaspoons Molasses and 1 Teaspoon chopped pecans.

Hot Cocoa: Mix in 1 packet hot cocoa mix (no marshmallows and cook using milk or ½ water and ½ whipping cream. You could also add in Homemade Hot Chocolate Mix.

Chocolate Peanut Butter: Mix in 1 Teaspoon Peanut Butter and 1 Teaspoon mini chocolate chips.

If you love oatmeal, here are some more recipes you will enjoy:

Homemade Oatmeal Raisin Granola Bars Recipe

Homemade Instant Oatmeal Packets

No Nut Oatmeal Bites Recipe for Kids (Plus Free Printable!)

Oatmeal Bar Cookie Recipe

Oatmeal Cream Pie Recipe

Rice Crispy Oatmeal Cookies Recipe

Oatmeal Lace Cookies Recipe

Oatmeal Goodies (Easy Cookie Recipes For Kids)

Here are 20 actual Oatmeal Breakfast recipes for even more inspiration!


What are some of your favorite oatmeal mix ins? Share your ideas in the comments on how to make perfect oatmeal!


This post with Oatmeal Add Ins was originally published on Little House Living in January 2014. It has been updated as of January 2020.

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  1. I like mine with sliced bananas or I do half a chopped raw apple with some dried fruit. Trader Joes has a dried fruit mix with blueberries, cherries and raisins that is wonderful and their plain raisins are the best I have ever had. I use raw sugar on my oatmeal and it really makes it good.

  2. We LOVE oatmeal!!! I prefer to use oat groats. Before we go to sleep at night I cook them in the slow cooker. It is so wonderful to wake up in the morning to something so warm and wonderful. When we wake up we just put a little real maple syrup and a bit of milk and love every bite!!!! If I did not plan for this and we still want it then I just mill the oat groats and boil them. They take only a moment to prepare and taste so great! Love your blog!!! Thank you for all your hard work and great ideas!!! God bless you:)

  3. Hello Merissa, I have been following you for the last few months on and off on Facebook and came to your site a few times. I felt it was time I express how much I enjoy reading what you post. I am grateful for all of the work you do in maintaining the site and love to your family.
    Some of the add in ideas for oatmeal are just amazing I would never have thought a few of the ideas I would never have thought of bacon and cheese. I have have shrimp and hot sauce with grits, I would have never thought of would you could do besides fruits with oatmeal. thank you

  4. My kids love Pumpkin Pie oatmeal- I add canned or pureed pumpkin and flavor with maple syrup, cinnamon, nutmeg, wheat germ and pecans. It is so good!

  5. I add peanut butter, raisins and almond milk. Like a peanut butter oatmeal cookie. Need more? Add bananas instead of raisins and you have Elvis oatmeal.

  6. Just today I added roasted unsalted sunflower seeds to my usual bowl of oatmeal with dried cranberries, a splash of milk & drizzled with local honey. It was wonderful with just the right amount of crunch. Thanks for all of the great ideas. Love your blog!

  7. Oh… I know this may sound crazy to some… But give savory oatmeal a try!
    Add in expanded exponentially!
    My favorite:
    Cheddar cheese, green onion, sauteed mushroom(a poached or soft boiled egg on that is fantastic but not required).
    Anything savory! Oatmeal does not just have to be sweet. I heard about it and thought it was weird at first, being the American raised on sweet oatmeal like everyone else. But I tried it and it was great! Oatmeal is a blank slate like any other grain. It makes sense.
    And if you have gluten issues(not me but many) you can bring oatmeal to dinner and not have to have it sweet.

  8. I make a double batch using a little extra oats to make it thicker. I pour into a greased glass rectangle dish. When cool refrigerate overnight. The next morning I slide a sharp knife around the edges and put a plate over the dish, and turn upside down to remove the oatmeal. Slice thin and fry in a skillet with butter. When crispy, remove and sprinkle sugar and eat… So yummy!

  9. Have you ever tried steel cut oatmeal? It is delicious. It is kind of chewy and has a slight nutty flavor. Steel cut oatmeal (sometimes called Irish oats) is my favorite type of oatmeal.

  10. We make our oatmeal in the crockpot daily, add the fruit, dried or fresh when we get up, return to the crockpot on high until we are ready to eat, add the milk and enjoy. We often put Apple Crisp on the top of the Oatmeal.

  11. Hi, and thank you for all of your great ideas. Here in ireland we call oatmeal porridge and traditionally it is eaten just with a little sugar and milk, or salt. I like bircher muesli for my breakfast every morning. I just soak some oats in orange juice. Overnight is great, but if you forget, 10 mins or as long as it takes you to have a shower, put some laundry on, empty the dishwasher or hang up some laundry is enough. I give it a little mix and add a dollop of greek yogurt and fresh or dried fruit, a spoonful of seed mix and I’m good to go.

    I’m looking forward to trying some of your hot porridge ideas though.

  12. My kids love it with unsweetened appleasuace and a little cinnamon sugar. I like mine with craisins and walnuts with no sugar added.

  13. I love oatmeal and usually add the same things every time, whether it’s old fashioned rolled oats or steel cut: 1 tbsp brown sugar, dried cranberries or cherries, butter and pecans or walnuts. It’s just so yummy that way, I never want anything else.

  14. We eat LOTS of oatmeal in my house and I bake with oatmeal as well. If you want to make oat bran just whirl some oatmeal in your blender. I use oat bran to make bread or in place of bread crumbs in my meatloaf or meatballs and I use them for muffins as well. The list is endless on how to use oat bran!

  15. it is just hubby and I,so sometimes we have oatmeal for supper. These additions will make evening oatmeal a little tastier

  16. I am having a hard time with this. My muesli is boring because I don’t like dried fruit ( the taste and the fact that they are so concentrated with sugar), though I do have cranberries, coconut, almonds and sunflower seeds, with yogurt. But chocolate chips, cream etc??? Surely that is not a good way to start the day… Is Bircher muesli healthy and cheap, and easy to make?

  17. We eat ours with a variety of dried fruits & nuts, but our favorite way is with raisins, walnuts, coconut, ground flax, oat bran, wheat germ, maple syrup & milk – kind of like warm granola.

  18. Marissa,
    Love your blog and I’ve been following you and your recipes a few months Here are my favorites for oatmeal I love dried apricots, and crazins or dried cranberries, any dried fruit, really and nuts, always cinnamon, a little honey or sometimes sugar, it is wonderful and I’ll be trying some of your suggestions too. Thanks for sharing your blog with us.

  19. Was reading your oat meal post, we sometimes bake ours and add cinn. apples, van. little salt little maple syrup or brown sugar. Comes out awesome different texture reminds me of apple crisp flavor, my kids love it six of them.

  20. Fresh or dried fruit (blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, apples, pomegranate seeds, raisins, cranberries, cherries or bananas), and cream (heavy, 1/2&1/2, whipping, evap, condensed, or whole milk), spices/sweeteners (cinnamon, honey, brown sugar, or maple syrup) and nuts (almonds, pecans, walnuts, or pistachios).

  21. Thanks for all the cool ideas. I especially want to try the white chocolate/cranberry! Sounds yummy. Dropping in from Titus 2sday.

  22. Great ideas! My husband loves oatmeal, and I’m working on it! 🙂 Thanks for posting so many options.

  23. My son and I could eat oatmeal every morning! Thank you for sharing these recipes and linking up with us at #WWDParty. Have a wonderful weekend.

  24. What a great collection of awesome Oatmeal recipes. Thanks so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday and have a great weekend!
    Miz Helen

  25. Hi I really enjoy your posts. I really want to figure out the “spice” in the Cinnamon and Spice Quaker oatmeal. I have looked on line for the “secret recipes” but can’t find a recipe to know for sure what is in it. I have an idea but some of yours sound just as delicious.

    1. For that recipe you’ll need to add 1/2 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon Pumpkin Pie Spice, 1/8 teaspoon Ground Nutmeg, and 1/8 teaspoon Ground Allspice to each cup of oatmeal you make. 🙂

  26. My friend told me about his favorite way to make oatmeal, and now I’m hooked. He shreds raw carrots into it just after he turns the heat off, and adds cinnamon, walnuts, maple syrup, and raisins. Carrot cake oatmeal!

    My favorite way to make savory oatmeal (because my body doesn’t like it when I eat sugar first thing in the morning) is by adding miso, a little soy sauce, ground flax seeds, black pepper, a nice big dollop of butter, and a drizzle of tahini.

  27. What a bunch of great ideas to make oatmeal more palatable. Thank you!

    I hope this is to be found on your recipes page via email!

    Best wishes!

  28. !/2 C Milk, 1/2 C Water, 1/2 C oats. So, I’ve never made it. Do I microwave it? For how long? Do I boil and then add oats?

  29. This isn’t a flavor option, but I usually mix in an egg really fast as soon as I take the oatmeal off the heat to boost protein and nutrition (especially good for growing littles and nursing mamas). The hot oats cook the egg and it doesn’t affect the flavor too much, though if you use homegrown eggs your oatmeal may turn yellow!