Savory oatmeal, Yay or No Thank You? I used to be on the side of the later, but that was history. Since I had my first Savory Garlic Oatmeal, I got hooked to it. Yes, I cannot believe I am saying this, but I really liked it. That’s probably an understatement, I love it! At first I thought it’s going to be weird, but it was actually not. It reminded me a lot of a porridge which I used to eat in the Philippines. It’s basically a seasoned boiled rice, served with hard boiled egg or steamed chicken. It’s a breakfast item that is great for cold rainy days. This savory oatmeal it almost like that. Instead of rice, we are using oats.
This is the 5th savory oatmeal that I posted and I think I will be posting more savory oatmeal now that Fall season is here. Cold rainy weather perfect for this kind of breakfast.
We’re going to try something different today. If you’ve been following my blog, you’ve probably seen some or all of my sweet oatmeal variations. 2019, I started my oatmeal series and shared 12 sweet oatmeal variations, I cannot believe that was already 2 years ago! I guess that’s what happened when you enjoy what you are doing. Don’t worry, If you missed it, you cab still catch up and get the recipe HERE.
We shall continue exploring more oatmeal variations together, but we are crossing world of Savory oatmeal. Yes, you heard me right, savory oatmeal. Don’t worry, I will still share sweet variations because the my world is not the same without the sweet variations.
Basic Savory Oatmeal
In this post, we’re going to start to learn how to make the base for a Savory oatmeal which we will use for most of the other Savory variations that I have already lineup for the year. Let’s talk about the basic ingredients
Types of Oatmeal
Steel Cut Oats (Irish Oats) – This type of oats has a finer texture but is chewier than traditional oats, they are digested more slowly and it makes you feel full easily. This type is perfect for breakfast cereals as they make you feel full longer.
Rolled Oats (Old Fashioned) – This type of oats are flat, thin and have bigger pieces than Steel Cut Oats. It cooks faster, about 10 minutes for 1/3 cup (depending on how chewy you like it). Although filling, it is not as filling as using Steel Cut Oats, but if your recipe requires minimal cooking time or you do not have much time on hand, this is the perfect type of oats to use. I find that this type is also the one perfect for baking cookies, bars, bread or pancakes.
Quick Oats – This type of oats have flat, light and even thinner pieces as compared to Rolled Oats. This cooks in about 1-2 minutes and are perfect for recipes that calls for a very minimal cooking time. Although it is also a good option for breakfast, it is not as filling as using Steel Cut Oats and Rolled Oats.
Instant Oats – This type of oatmeal has been pre-cooked and dried, because of this, it require no cooking time at all. You just need to add boiling water and let sit for few minutes to soften. This type of oatmeal doesn’t have chewiness and texture and can get mushy at times. This if perfect option when you are traveling and you need something on the go. Simply add hot water and you have an instant breakfast with you.
How Does Savory Oatmeal Taste Like?
I don’t blame you if you think that savory oatmeal is weird, because I was in the same as you before I tried one. The thing with savory oatmeal is that you have to find the one that works for you, and the ingredients that work with savory oatmeal. Think of it as polenta or grits which are basically boiled cornmeal and served like a porridge, although savory oatmeal have is not as smooth and it have more texture. If want to try savory oatmeal, start with something that have the ingredients that you like, and ingredients that works well together according to your taste buds. Savory oatmeal taste like porridge when served slightly loose, but it can also be served as thick when you cook it longer. At first you might find it weird especially if you are used to sweet oatmeal. You will look for that sweet taste, but once you set your mind in the idea that you are eating a savory oatmeal you will probably like it. I say probably because this could be case to case basis depending on personal taste and preference. The important thing to remember in making savory oatmeal is to season it well. The worst thing is to eat a bland oatmeal, that is a guaranteed way for you to hate savory oatmeal.
What are the Ingredients for Basic Savory Oatmeal
- Rolled Oats – Cooking time will vary depending on the type of oats you choose. All my oatmeal recipes uses rolled oats. Do not use quick cooking oatmeal as it tends to be too mushy with less texture once cooked
- Garlic – I’ve tried making the oatmeal using just salt and pepper and I find it flat lacking in flavor. Adding toasted garlic definitely boost the flavor of the oatmeal, it made a huge difference in taste.
- Broth – you can use homemade or store-bought just watch out for the sodium level when you use store bought and gradually add salt in small amount to control it. Both helped enhance the flavor of the oatmeal, although water will work but it will not give much flavor and taste to the oatmeal, in fact the oatmeal could turn out bland even with salt and pepper
- Salt and Peppers – Very important to avoid the oatmeal being bland. Add salt gradually to adjust it to your preference
- Red Chili Flakes – for me this is a must, it gave the oatmeal a nice slight kick of heat. If you don’t like it spicy, you can skip it
- Green Onion – this is optional, but if you have some use it. This adds flavor. With Savory oatmeal, it all about flavor, so feel free to add more spices that you like. There’s no right or wrong with this Savory oatmeal. It is quite flexible.!
Last year I shared my collection of 12 sweet oatmeal variations. I enjoyed every one of them, and this year I am going to make more but I am extending it to Savory oatmeal. I had been carefully working on the recipes and I am really excited to share more Savory oatmeal recipe with you. It is also something new to my taste, but I am starting to actually love it. In fact, lately I had been making more Savory oatmeal than sweet oatmeal. Let me tell you what we are making today.
Flavor of the Month: Savory Italian Sausage Oatmeal
This month we are having a Savory Italian Sausage Oatmeal. Does it sound weird to you? I know quite a lot of people are not used to having savory oatmeal and it is totally understandable. It’s a drastic change when you are used to sweet oatmeal , definitely a huge adjustment. This savory version uses my Garlic Oatmeal as the base oatmeal and the I added some sautéed sausage, onion and bell peppers. You can use any sausage that you like, I prefer this Smokey sausage as it has a really nice flavor. I am thinking if you do not have sausage, cold cuts like ham or turkey will work as well just cut them into small pieces. I like the combination of bell peppers, onion and sausage but you can also use other veggies of your choice. I had this several times already and sometimes I have this with poach or sunny side up egg on top. That soft yolk that ooze when poked add creaminess to the oatmeal. It’s so good l, really.
Tips in Making Savory Oatmeal
- Season it Well: As I said, the worst thing is a bland oatmeal, and this is a common issue of people hating savory oatmeal. Be generous with spices, play with what works for you. Salt and pepper are the basic but do not be afraid to try other spices, the likes of turmeric, cumin, garlic, chili flakes, dried herbs.
- Choose the Ingredients that Works Together: Unlike sweet oatmeal where you can just sprinkle any toppings without much thinking, making savory oatmeal is different. You have to use ingredients that work well together with a savory oatmeal. For me, mushroom, onion, garlic, are the basic one that work, plus egg for some reason always makes it better. You can also add meat, ground meat, shredded chicken, cold cuts especially sausage work well with savory oatmeal. It all depend to your preference, choose what works for you.
- Use Broth (Homemade or Store-Bought) NOT Water: To avoid oatmeal being bland, use broth instead of plain water. This adds taste in the oatmeal on top of the herbs and spices.
Some Like it Thick, Some Like it Thin
Which team are you? Team thick or team thin? Regardless which you prefer, I have tested this for both thick or thin consistency. All you need to do is to add or reduce water and cook for the same duration of time.
- For thick oatmeal, use 1 cup of broth
- For thin oatmeal – use 1 1/2 cup broth
Another option is to adjust the cooking time without changing the amount of water. For thin oatmeal, cook less time about 7 minutes instead of 10 minutes. Adjust time cooking time and stop as soon as you get the consistency that you like.
- 1 teaspoon Olive Oil
- 2 cloves Garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon Salt
- 1/8 teaspoon Black Pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon Red Chili Flakes
- 1 1/2 cup Vegetable Broth
- 1 Fried or Poached Egg
- 1 Sausage – sliced
- 1/2 Red Bell Pepper(or any other color)
- 1/4 cup Yellow Onion – chopped
- Green Onion (optional) – for garnishing
- Add oil on a heated pan. Sauté garlic, onion for 1 minute. Add salt, black pepper and cook for 2 minutes.
- In the same pan, add broth and rolled oats. Bring to a boil for 10 minutes in medium heat. Feel free to reduce the cooking time if you prefer a slightly whole rolled oats or add more liquid for a thinner consistency. Stir in red chili flakes.
- Transfer in a serving bowl. Garnish with green onion, serve with egg (cook to you liking) and canned beans. You can use any ready to serve canned beans or if you have time, you can also make your own beans stew. I prefer using the canned one for this to make the process faster and easier.
One tip when reheating it, add few spoonful of water to thin out the consistency. The oatmeal will thicken as it cools, even more when refrigerated. So to bring it back to nice consistency, you need to add a little bit of liquid. For single serving, add 1-2 tbsp of liquid and stir then simply pop it in the microwave for 1 minute. Take it out and stir again, adding more liquid as necessary to achieve the consistency that you like. Easy breezy! Enjoy
I am using quite a lot of liquid here because I like my Oatmeal consistency to be not too thick and also because I like to cook it longer for a smoother creamier texture. You can easily adjust the cooking time to achieve your preferred texture.
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