I’m a life-long lover of oatmeal, but it wasn’t until recently that I tried the steel-cut version, thanks to the ultra-tasty recipe below that came to me from Joy Schiller, M.S., CHES, DMU’s wellness program director. This whole grain is a good source of soluble fiber, as well as chewier, denser and, in my opinion, more satisfying than its rolled-oats sister.
Old-fashioned rolled oats are steamed, rolled and dried before packaging, a process that makes them cook and digest faster. Joy advises that although rolled oats are good for you, steel-cut oats are even better. They are whole oats that have been chopped into pieces — no other processing at all. It takes a bit longer for them to cook, but because it takes longer to digest them, they make you feel full longer. They also have a lower glycemic index.
One more bonus: You can make a big enough batch of this oatmeal to last you several days, because unlike gluey rolled-oat oatmeal, steel-cut oatmeal is delicious reheated.
Oats are a high-fiber, complex carbohydrate that can reduce cholesterol and blood pressure and help prevent heart disease. Studies have shown that eating oats regularly can reduce the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. So pull out your slow-cooker and enjoy this tasty concoction for breakfast (and/or lunch and dinner) on these fine, brisk fall days.
Slow-cooker steel-cut oatmeal
- 1 cup steel-cut oats
- 4 cups liquids (3 cups water and 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk, or light soy milk or skim milk)
- ½-1 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
- 1 apple, chopped
- 1/4 cup raisins (chopped apricots or Craisins work well, too; use a combination of your favorite dried fruit)
- Sweetener to taste – stevia, brown sugar or maple syrup all work well
Add apples, dried fruit, cinnamon, steel-cut oats and liquids to slow-cooker. Stir and set cooker to low setting for 7 hours. Other great toppings to add include toasted wheat germ, walnuts and/or pecans, yogurt and unsweetened applesauce.
Nutritional info per 3/4 cup serving: 149 calories, 3.6g fat, 27.3g carbs, 3.9g fiber, 4.9g protein