Steel-cut Oats with Nuts

Steel-cut oats are a less-refined, more-satiating version of oatmeal. Making them from scratch at home helps you to avoid the high levels of added sugars that come in many pre-packaged oats. These keep well in the fridge, so batch cook if you enjoy eating oats on a regular basis. In class, these oats will be served aside an array of topping options; some examples are given in the recipe, but your imagination is the limit!


3 cups (720 ml) water
1 cup (160 g) steel-cut oats
A pinch of salt, optional

Optional Toppings:

Fresh or dried fruit, nuts, flaxseeds, pepitas, chia seeds, cinnamon, ground ginger, dates, honey, maple syrup, unsweetened shredded or flaked coconut, non-dairy milk of choice, cocoa nibs, cocoa or carob powder, chopped herbs and scallion, sautéed or roasted vegetables, etc.


  1. Bring water to a boil in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Stir in oats and salt (optional). As soon as it comes to a boil again, turn down to a simmer, covered, and cook until water is absorbed and oats are tender but firm, about 40 minutes. Stir frequently.
  2. Divide oats between 4 bowls, add any toppings of your choice, and enjoy!


  • Makes 4 servings.

This recipe is from the American College of Lifestyle Medicine's Culinary Medicine Curriculum. It was designed by Michelle Hauser, MD, MS, MPA, FACP, FACLM, DipABLM, Chef.