Need some easy and healthy breakfasts to meal prep? These meal prep oatmeal recipes are PERFECT for busy mornings!
Oatmeal can be a CRAZY healthy breakfast and can be made in so many ways that you’ll never get bored.
In fact, when I lost my 20 pounds of baby weight, I ate oatmeal a few times a week. In many different ways. I’ve become a HUGE oatmeal fan now.
If you need an easy make-ahead breakfast and have been wanting to try meal prep- you’ve come to the right place! Keep scrolling to find meal prep oatmeal ideas to last you weeks and weeks.
Why eat oats?
Oats are a super healthy food, and oatmeal is such a nutritious breakfast. It has a lot of good things going for it:
- Fiber: Oats are a whole grain, which has been shown to help reduce the risk of heart disease and other heart-related issues. The recommended daily intake of fiber is 25-45 grams; and a half cup of oats has 4 grams of fiber!
- Protein: Oats are a pretty good source of plant-based protein. A half cup has about 5 grams.
- Easy to cook: A simple bowl of oatmeal can take only a couple minutes in the microwave and you can add any of your favorite toppings.
- Cheap: A big 40-oz container at Aldi is about $2.50 in my area, and that has a TON of servings.
- Simple to meal prep: You can easily prepare a week’s worth of oatmeal in less than an hour.
As you’ll see below, you won’t want to eat plain oats because that won’t keep you full longest. You’ll want to add some healthy fats, extra protein, and maybe some fruit for more staying power.
What are the differences between rolled oats, quick oats, and steel cut oats?
All kinds of oats come from the same whole grain, but then they’re all processed differently. Here are the differences:
To make rolled oats, the oats are steamed and pressed flat with rollers. This helps to lessen the cooking time. And from here, they’re divided even further into 3 different types:
- Old-fashioned oats: Typically has the most texture of the 3. They’re pressed flat and then flaked.
- Quick-cook oats: These are cooked and then dried, then cut and rolled even thinner to lessen cooking time.
- Instant oats: These are cooked and dried, then cut and rolled thinner than the quick-cook oats. This is what you’ll find in the instant oatmeal packets, and usually have added sugar and are mushy in texture.
Steel-cut oats are simply cut and not rolled. They have a chewy texture, more-so than rolled oats; and take longer to cook. This is the type of oat you’ll want to use in the slow cooker, as it won’t get super mushy like the other kinds.
Can you meal prep oatmeal for the whole week?
Yes, for sure! Oats stay fresh in the fridge for 5-ish days, which is perfect for the workweek.
If your morning routine involves running out the door in a rush and have no time for breakfast, you NEED to meal prep.
There are many different ways to prepare oats, as you’ll see below.
Ingredients to keep in your pantry for oatmeal
A lot of ingredients for oatmeal may be ones you typically keep in the house at all times. Here are ones you’ll always find in my pantry:
- Peanut butter or almond butter
- Nuts (Walnuts, pecans, peanuts)
- Milk (Dairy milk or almond milk, but other milks like soy milk work fine too)
- Frozen berries (Blueberries are amazing in oatmeal)
- Fresh fruit (Bananas, apples, strawberries)
- Honey and maple syrup
- Rolled oats
- Chia seeds
- Flax seeds
- Chocolate chips (Yes, I said it. Such a nice treat!)
- Protein powder (Some powders don’t mix well, so you’ll have to experiment)
- Vanilla extract
Can oatmeal help you lose weight?
Oats are lower in calories and high in fiber. Diets that contain a lot of fiber can help keep you full longer, so you end up eating less and can lose weight.
If you like to add a lot of things to your oatmeal, just pay attention to how much you put in. Some ingredients, like nuts, are very calorie-dense. And even though these are healthy ingredients, it’ll be hard to lose weight if you’re eating more calories than you burn.
Meal Prep Oatmeal Recipes
For those busy mornings where you don’t have much time to cook, a simple bowl of oatmeal is great. Here’s my basic recipe:
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 1 cup of milk or water
I microwave that for up to 2 minutes until the bowl almost overflows. Then I add my toppings, like fresh apples, sliced bananas, peanuts, and honey.
Overnight oatmeal is one of the best inventions ever. You mix ingredients in a mason jar (or a small airtight container if you don’t have mason jars) and let it sit in the fridge overnight. The next morning, everything is all mixed together and deliciously smooth. And there’s something about eating cold oatmeal that’s so refreshing on a hot summer morning.
You can try so many different flavors, too. In less than 10 minutes, you can prep a few jars for the week!
Here are some of my favorites:
- Chocolate Peanut Butter Overnight Oats
- Cocoa Banana Overnight Oats
- French Toast Overnight Oats
- Blueberry Pie Protein Overnight Oats
- Cinnamon Roll Overnight Oats
- Pumpkin Pie Overnight Oats
Baked oatmeal can take a little more work, but this is a great meal to prep on a Sunday afternoon. This breakfast is almost cake-like in consistency and SO delicious. It’s also a great way to get in all sorts of nutrition, because you can add so much to it.
These are my favorite ways to make baked oatmeal:
- Blueberry Baked Oatmeal
- Banana Bread Baked Oatmeal
- 4-Ingredient Baked Oatmeal Cups
- Pumpkin Oatmeal Bars
- Chunky Monkey Banana Baked Oatmeal
Slow cooker oatmeal
This is one recipe where steel-cut oats really shine. They take a long time to cook and don’t usually get mushy like rolled oats or quick oats.
You can put all the ingredients in your slow cooker at night and have breakfast ready the next day!
Here are some easy recipes:
I can’t stress enough how amazing oatmeal is. The best part is, many of my Nutrition Coaching clients have started eating more oatmeal and reported having much more energy and longer-lasting fullness.
What type of healthy oatmeal recipes do you like best? Leave a comment and give us new ideas!
Jaime is a Nutrition Coach and professional writer. She enjoys cooking easy meals, running, and learning more about food.
Jaime specializes in helping women with ADHD learn to meal plan and cook healthier meals without getting overwhelmed.