I DID IT! (Foolproof Overnight Crockpot Steel Cut Oatmeal)
This has been bugging me for ages–the idea of waking up to a lovely hot crockpot-cooked breakfast is something I’ve dreamt of for ages, but between recipes that first of all only call for 6-7 hours on low “overnight,” and crockpots that cook significantly hotter than their counterparts when most of the recipes were created (or the crockpots still owned by the people creating the recipes, who probably still have their older ones), it’s eluded me. Till now.
But I finally figured out, at least with oatmeal, how to make it work.
The catch: you need a crockpot with a “warm” setting, and if your pot is not one of the annoying newer ones that tend to overcook everything you make or reduce the recipe time by 2+ hours, this might not work for you. Be grateful.
And, you have to start with steel-cut oatmeal–the kind that tastes so lovely but takes half an hour or more to cook on the stove. It’s also sometimes called “Irish Oatmeal.” (It’s fairly easy to find these days–McCann’s makes a popular brand, but I get mine from Trader Joe’s.) Other methods of cooking it suggest (and this was my inspiration for this method) putting it in the pot, bringing the water and oats to a boil for a minute or two, covering the pot tightly, turning off the heat, and letting it sit till morning. Then it suggests boiling them for just 5-10 minutes in the morning before eating.
So here’s what I did to shift that method to the crockpot:
Foolproof Overnight Crockpot Steel Cut Oatmeal (for people with newer and hotter crockpots)
At least an hour before bedtime, into your crockpot, put the following–feel free to adjust amounts based on the size of your crockpot; this is a lot of oatmeal:
- 8 cups hot-to-boiling water
- 2 cups steel cut oats
- 1/2-1 tsp salt
Cover crockpot and cook on HIGH for about an hour, until the contents have come to a (stinky annoying “a slow cooker shouldn’t boil the food”) simmering boil. Give the contents a quick stir, without having the lid off any longer than you need to. Replace the lid for a few minutes (not really necessary). Turn down to warm and go to bed.
In the morning, the oats should be perfectly cooked! Dish some out and do whatever you usually do to them, adding fruit or brown sugar or spices, or whatever you like. Delicious. I’ll post some of the other things I try in future posts; now that I’ve hit on this, I may be making it a lot.