These savoury steel-cut oats are fermented overnight for an almost creamy mouthfeel, a quicker cooking time, and easier digestibility. Learn how to make this easy breakfast bowl and how to tweak it for endless variations.
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SAVOURY STEEL-CUT OATS RECIPE VIDEO
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SAVOURY STEEL-CUT OATS FOR BREAKFAST
Savoury steel-cut oats first appeared on my radar a few years ago. In full transparency, I was a major skeptic and didn’t buy into them at first. They sounded too weird to even comprehend! Can you blame me? I grew up with steaming pots of cinnamon raisin oatmeal, or oats with dried cranberries, pepitas and maple syrup. Oatmeal was always sweetened, so I closed myself off to experimenting with a savoury alternative.
Something happened, though. I switched from rolled oats to steel-cut oats for their nutritional content. This simple alteration to one of my favourite breakfast meals meant I was open enough to test the waters with savoury oats, and that’s exactly what I did. My favourite part about this breakfast dish is that it’s a vessel for what I would normally serve with toast. Most of us know that oats are more filling than bread, but with oats, you can go even crazier than just the typical bacon and eggs accompaniment.
FERMENTING STEEL-CUT OATS
Fermenting can be a scary word if you’ve never done it before. Apart from making milk kefir, oats were the first thing I tried my hand at fermenting, which isn’t nearly as impressive as it sounds. It’s just a matter of putting them in a bowl with three times more water than oats. Add a couple of tablespoons of milk kefir or yogurt and leave them to soak overnight. The longer they sit out, the tangier they will get. There have been a couple of times where I forgot all about them, which is totally fine as long as they don’t ferment longer than three days.
While oats are full of fibre, they are also full of phytic acid in their raw state. Phytic acid is an anti-nutrient in that it has a negative impact on mineral absorption. Soaking the oats helps to reduce the phytic acid, so your body can get in on all of those nutrients that oatmeal boasts. Additionally, overnight fermentation breaks down some of the starches in the oats. This not only makes them more digestible, but it makes them creamier, too.
COOKING THE OATS
Steel-cut oats are trendy these days. Not too long ago, I saw a major brand selling three-minute steel-cut oats. If anyone tries telling you steel-cut oats will be ready in three minutes, they’re not selling you the real deal. Similar to brown rice, real steel-cut oats take around 35-minutes to cook, which is a drag. This is where the soak comes in handy because it cuts that time in half and gives you the added benefits mentioned above.
When you’re ready to cook the oats, dump the contents of the bowl into a pot. Bring it to a boil and then simmer, stirring frequently until it thickens to your desired consistency. At this point, you might change your mind and decide you want something sweet for breakfast, in which case check out this recipe for fermented maple walnut steel-cut oats. Otherwise, it’s time to move on to the fun part.
ASSEMBLING THE BREAKFAST BOWL
This whole concept of an oatmeal breakfast bowl comes from my love of buddha bowls. It’s a terrific way to use up what you have in the fridge, whether that’s leftover broccoli, roasted carrots or that last piece of white fish that no one wanted to eat at dinner. Here are the basic elements that I like to include in each bowl:
How is it that vegetables (that aren’t potatoes) don’t make more of an appearance at the breakfast table? I feel like we’re missing out on an opportunity, here! Try sauteing up some leafy greens, mushrooms, or frozen vegetables to grace your steel-cut oats or massage kale with lemon and salt for a zesty bowl. I love adding a handful of peppery arugula or fresh spinach at the bottom of the bowl and letting it wilt under the oatmeal’s heat. Dice up a tomato, shred some beets, slice up an avocado, or steam some baby bok choy. Try to include at least one vegetable and build up from there.
Whether it’s one egg or two, decide how you want to serve them up in your bowl of savoury steel-cut oats. Scramble them, poach them, fry them, or hard boil them. Normally I’m an over-easy kind of gal, but sunnyside up is my go-to for breakfast oats because the yolk gets everywhere.
This is optional, but it’s my favourite way to sneak in more fermented foods into my diet. I almost always reach for my jar of homemade sauerkraut, but I expect that will change when I start experimenting with kimchi. If you didn’t know, fermented foods are brimming with vitamins and probiotics. They aid with digestion, boost the immune system, and are good for gut health. If you’re new to the world of fermented vegetables, I highly recommend this book.
The number one cheese for savoury oats is feta! Since I don’t add salt to the oats, I rely on the toppings to do the seasoning for me. Since feta cheese is stored in brine, it’s perfect! With that being said, I do so love a sharp cheddar or a bit of goat cheese. I wouldn’t be opposed to adding a bit of garlic and herb Boursin cheese, either! When it comes to cheese, there are no right or wrong answers unless it’s bocconcini, which tastes like nothing.
What you use for a condiment really ties the bowl together. Since I’m a fan of spicy food, sriracha is always on stand-by. Try squeezing a few cloves of roasted garlic into your savoury steel-cut oats. Go Tex-Mex and add salsa or drizzle it with vinaigrette. Garnish the oatmeal with fresh herbs like chives, parsley, coriander or dill. What will you be reaching for?
THANKS FOR POPPING BY THE KITCHEN!
The bottom line is that you really can’t go wrong with what you mix into your bowl of oats. If you don’t know where to begin, you’ll find a sample recipe below, but I really encourage you to dress this up however you want. Use what you have on hand and if that includes a bit of leftover BBQ pulled duck or tequila lime marinated chicken? So be it. But now I want to hear from you! Have you had savoury steel-cut oats before? What will you be dressing yours with? I hope you’ll let me know in the comments below!
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Fermented Vegetables by Kirstin and Christopher Shockey
WANT MORE BREAKFAST RECIPES? CHECK OUT THESE POSTS
SAVOURY STEEL-CUT OATS INGREDIENTS
1 cup steel-cut oats
3 cups of water
2 tbsp milk kefir or yogurt
3 handfuls of spinach
1 cup sauerkraut
1/2 cup cheese (feta, cheddar, etc).
salt & pepper to taste
hot sauce (optional)
SAVOURY STEEL-CUT OATS INSTRUCTIONS
Pour the oats, water, and kefir into a bowl. Mix it up and cover it with a plate or a beeswax wrap.
Allow the oats to ferment overnight. In the morning, dump the contents into a medium saucepan.
Bring the oats to a boil, then turn down to a simmer, stirring frequently.
When the oats have reached the desired consistency, remove from the heat and divide into three bowls over a handful of spinach.
Prepare the eggs by frying, scrambling, poaching, or boiling, seasoning them with salt and pepper as desired.
Add the remaining ingredients: the sauerkraut, cheese, hot sauce, and additional seasonings.
PRINTABLE SAVOURY STEEL-CUT OATS RECIPE CARD
Savoury Steel-Cut Oat Breakfast Bowls
- 1 cup steel-cut oats
- 3 cups of water
- 2 tbsp milk kefir or yogurt
- 3 eggs
- 3 handfuls of spinach
- 1 cup sauerkraut
- 1/2 cup cheese feta, cheddar, etc.
- salt & pepper to taste
- hot sauce optional
- Pour the oats, water, and kefir into a bowl. Mix it up and cover it with a plate or a beeswax wrap.
- Allow the oats to ferment overnight. In the morning, dump the contents into a medium saucepan.
- Bring the oats to a boil, then turn down to a simmer, stirring frequently.
- When the oats have reached the desired consistency, remove from the heat and divide into three bowls over a handful of spinach.
- Prepare the eggs by frying, scrambling, poaching, or boiling, seasoning them with salt and pepper as desired.
- Add the remaining ingredients: the sauerkraut, cheese, hot sauce, and additional seasonings.
PIN IT FOR LATER
Love and gratitude,