Slow Cooker Favorite: Overnight Apple Cinnamon Steel Cut Oats

steelcut_oats-impIt is no secret I am a big fan of rolled oats and there isn’t much I bake without adding a cup or two of oats to boost the fibre content of cookies, breads and muffins. These Zucchini Oatmeal cookies, this Banana Bread, these Granola Bars and these Chocolate Power Balls are all nutritional super snacks because of the oatmeal . . . the fruit and vegetables help too, but the oatmeal makes it all work.

Oatmeal is a super star all on its own for breakfast. These instant Oatmeal Packs are perfect for quick breakfast on the go, but if you have 5 minute at night before you go to bed you can throw together this Overnight Steel Cut Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal.

Perfect for cold winter mornings, steel cut oats use the whole grain of the oat so they take longer to cook than traditional rolled oats. It also means that you so you get the health benefit of the higher fibre and vitamin content and the extra protein keeps you feeling full all morning.

I use a small 5 cup slow cooker and it works perfectly – even if the oats are cooking for 9 hours. Larger crock pots may burn if left on too long over night so maybe make this the first time during the day when you can monitor it.

Overnight Apple Cinnamon Steel Cut Oats

Ingredients
Cooking oil spray
2 apples cored, chopped and peeled if you want
1 ½ cups milk
1 ½  cups water
1 cup uncooked steel-cut oats
2 tbsp maple syrup or brown sugar
1 tbsp butter or margarine
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp ground flax seed (optional)
1 tbsp chia seeds (optional)

Directions
Important first step – coat inside of slow cooker with cooking spray – do not forget this step or you will have a hard time scrapping out the oats.

Add all ingredients to slow cooker. The flax and chia are not required, but will add healthy fibre and omega’s to your oats so if you have them on hand do include them. Stir, cover, and cook on low for 7 hours-9 hours.

Spoon oatmeal into bowls and add more milk or top with yogurt and additional toppings such as raisons or berries. Store leftovers in refrigerator for another morning. Also freezes well.