Carrots are stealing the show this week. This recipe features the same flavors as morning glory muffins—shredded carrots, raisins, orange zest, coconut and walnuts—in oatmeal form. I came across it in Megan Gordon’s new cookbook, Whole-Grain Mornings.
In the headnote, Megan calls the oatmeal “porridge,” which always brings Goldilocks and her three bears to mind. I prefer to call it oatmeal, which sounds ever-so-slightly more sexy than porridge, but it’s still just fancied up peasant food. Not that I have anything against peasant food. Those royals weren’t doing themselves any favors with their fine white flour and refined sugar. I’d take hearty whole grains over that stuff any day (am I showing my peasant roots?).
Anyway, back to Megan. She runs a granola business, posts recipes and stories on her blog, contributes to The Kitchn and, somehow, in between all of that, produced a stellar cookbook. The book is brimming with breakfast/brunch recipes, organized seasonally, that incorporate whole grains. When Megan asked me if I’d like a review copy, I said yes (because Megan knows how to make a great breakfast) while kicking myself for not coming up with such a terrific concept.
This recipe called to me from the winter section. It’s just sweet enough to taste like a treat, but hearty enough to hold me over until lunch. I’d almost forgotten about the steel-cut oats in the back of my pantry before I made this. Steel-cut oats are what rolled oats are made out of—they’re the oats you grew up eating, before they were rolled flat. They take a little longer to cook than old-fashioned oats, but they are so creamy that they are worth the wait.
I prefer to make big batches of oatmeal at once like this. Then I can warm the oats in the morning while I make my coffee, which takes less time and effort than it would to heat up one of those sad packets of instant oatmeal. I usually swirl in some plain yogurt for protein and creaminess. (Bonus: yogurt cools down the oatmeal, which is nice when you’re an over-eager breakfast eater like me.) I’m looking forward to another bowl tomorrow morning.
Once I’m out of this batch, I want to try Megan’s technique for cooking “the very best oatmeal,” which you can find at The Fauxmartha and A Couple Cooks. That’s about as sexy as oatmeal ever looks, folks. Then I’ll probably have to try Laura’s spin on the farro bowl and prepare some saucy tomato poached eggs for brunch once I’m settled into my new house. I. Can’t. Wait!
Morning Glory Oatmeal
- Prep Time: 10 mins
- Cook Time: 30 mins
- Total Time: 40 minutes
- Yield: 4 1x
- Category: Breakfast
Creamy, wholesome steel-cut oats cooked with carrots, coconut milk and spices. Serve with yogurt for a breakfast that sticks with you until lunch time. (This recipe is gluten free and easily vegan.)
- 3 cups water
- 1 cup light coconut milk (or milk of choice or another cup of water)
- 1 cup steel-cut oats
- 1 cup grated carrots (about 2 large carrots)
- ⅔ cup seedless raisins (I used golden raisins)
- ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ cup unsweetened coconut flakes (I used a mix of unsweetened shredded coconut and large flakes since that’s what I had)
- 1 ½ tablespoon grated orange zest (this took 1 ½ oranges for me)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 or more tablespoons maple syrup (or honey or agave nectar or brown sugar)
- ½ cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional but recommended)
- In a saucepan, bring the water and milk to a boil. Stir in the oats, carrots, raisins, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and salt. Bring the mixture back to boil, then decrease the heat to low and partially cover the pot.
- Cook the porridge, without stirring, until it begins to thicken and the oats are soft yet chewy. Check the oat’s texture by stirring them after 25 minutes of cooking (it might need a few more minutes of cooking).
- Remove from heat and stir in the coconut flakes, orange zest and vanilla. Add maple syrup (or other sweetener), to taste. Cover and let the oatmeal rest for 5 minutes before serving.
- Toast the walnut pieces in a pan over medium-low, tossing frequently, until the edges are golden and the walnuts smell nice and toasty.
- Serve the oatmeal with a sprinkling of walnuts and a splash of milk or a swirl of plain yogurt.
Recipe adapted from Megan Gordan’s cookbook, Whole-Grain Mornings.
Change it up: This recipe is wide open to adaptation. Feel free to sub other dried fruit for the raisins, change up the nuts, etc.
Make it gluten free: Buy certified gluten-free steel-cut oats if you are avoiding gluten.
Make it nut free: Skip the nuts. You can substitute pepitas (pumpkin) or sunflower seeds if desired.
Speaking of sexy—those pics. I must give the porridge a go (after I’ve worn myself out on oats which may be awhile. I’m a redundant queen.)
Sneaky vegetables are the best, especially for breakfast. These are exactly the kind of recipes I encourage for my nutrition clients. Beautiful photos on this one and well done Megan! I need to get this book.
Caroline @Pink Basil
For some reason I am only just now catching on to adding nuts to oatmeal, and it is a total game-changer! No more boring, mushy lumps ;) Love this recipe, the carrot addition looks delicious!
I agree with Melissa! Holy gorgeous photos … mine never looks this lovely. Thank you so much for the kind words about the book; I’m so glad you’re enjoying it! This recipe hasn’t made it’s way into our kitchen since I was testing the book, actually, and your post has me craving it big-time. Happiest of weekends!
Heather @ The Soulfu
This is a fantastic recipe! Thanks for sharing! I love oatmeal, and I’m with you on the peasant food outlook! Oatmeal is just so hearty, how can it not be considered anything less than delish?:) Thanks for sharing!!
Thank you for the nice recipes.
Katrina @ WVS
These are full of some serious goodness. LOVE!
Helen @ Scrummy Lane
I’m not a big breakfast eater, so I find that hot oatmeal (usually with nuts, seeds and a few squares of chocolate!!) is the easiest thing for me to force down to keep me going. And of course it’s so GOOD for you! This really looks amazing (great photos!) – I would never ever have thought of making oatmeal with some of these ingredients, like coconut milk, and it’s a fantastic idea to make it ahead and re-heat. Thanks, Kate!
This is all of my favourite things tossed together in a bowl! I wonder how it would be if I combined it with your baked banana blueberry oatmeal recipe. Morning glory baked oatmeal? Don’t mind if I do.
Katie, sorry for the super slow response, just had to say that your baked carrot cake oatmeal idea sounds awesome. Please let me know if you try it!
that does look yummy. however, I have to say to my ears “porridge” is sexier though in a down to earth way than “oatmeal” does.
Oatmeal definitely sounds better than porridge to me…but more than anything, I’m loving the carrots mixed in here! I feel like i could convince myself this was actually carrot cake. Mmm.
Laura (Tutti Dolci)
Love this oatmeal, so perfect for when I’m looking for a warming and hearty breakfast!
I’m thinking I’ll leave the cinnamon out. It makes everything along these lines taste the same. Just season with ginger, nutmeg, orange zest, vanilla, salt …Yum!
I love starting my day with a good warm bowl of oatmeal. This looks delicious! Love all the flavours :)
I love Morning Glory Muffins! I’m going to have to try this…love the idea of using coconut milk to make oatmeal. That would definitely give it more flavor than usual!
i love the idea of adding shredded carrot to a oatmeal. I love morning glory muffins, it only makes sense! And with the coconut – yum!
This looks incredible… (your pictures are beautiful!) I will make it this week for sure.
I’m definitely considering the cookbook too! Who doesn’t like the sounds of 65 breakfasty recipes!? I’m all in!
This looks great, and I can’t wait to try! Since breakfast is my favorite meal, I think this book is definitely on my wishlist! Beautiful pictures!
I made the Morning Glory oatmeal this morning and it was amazing! Super tasty with just the right balance of spices and sweetness. This recipe is definitely a keeper!
Thank you, Susan! Glad you loved the oatmeal!
That sounds ridiculously delicious, so much better than the other carrot cake oatmeal style dishes that are circulating at the moment. Love the warming spices, the gorgeous coconut flakes, nuts and the fragrant orange. It’s not really oatmeal weather here at the moment but I adore the sound of this anyway. As soon as a coolish morning arrives, I’m cranking up my cooking pot! xx
I know so many people who would just love this, will have to keep it up my sleeve!
Love your yummy photos! follow you from Argentina
dishing up the dirt
We are twins this week! I just made morning glory oatmeal too. So stinking good. I’ve had it 4 mornings in a row. Your version looks fantastic as well.
I am loving the spices, orange, vanilla and maple together here! Sounds so bright and cheery for any morning! You really did photograph this so beautifully…. I am not usually super excited about oatmeal, but suddenly it’s all I can think about. Delicious!
Are you moving really soon? Good luck, and here’s to lots of friends with pickup trucks that might want to pitch in :)
I love to eat vegetables for breakfast, so I am very happy to meet another proponent of that concept. I am going to make this for a weekend brunch and serve it in acorn-squash halves as bowls. Thanks for the recipe!
I hope you enjoyed the oatmeal, Christine! Your acorn squash bowls is a fun idea, I never would have thought to do that for breakfast!
Wow. Just discovered this site and I’m so glad I did. Gorgeous photos, amazing recipes. I’ll be spending a lot of time here!
Thank you, Teresa! Hope you enjoy the recipes!
Made it. Loved it. Basically carrot cake for breakfast. NEW HOUSE? Guilty for not reading back further… investigating this now. So fun!
Yep just ate this and it does taste like carrot cake or carrot bread. Yum! I was actually kind of worried about the carrots but its good!
This recipe inspired me finally to try steel-cut oats.
It was sooo delicious !!! I skipped maple syrup though , it was sweet enough for my taste without it.
Thank you very muchly Kate for beautiful breakfast!!! Indeed it was Morning Glory!
Anna, I’m so glad you enjoyed the oatmeal! Thank you for commenting!
I’ve never seen oatmeal look so beautiful. Morning glory indeed!
Peasants? What? Pishaw…bear! You must be part bear…as long as it tastes juuuuust right!
This looks fantastic! I have been looking for a great steel cut oats recipe:)
I just finished gobbling this up for my breakfast! So tasty, so filling! Thanks Kate!
Yay! I’m happy to hear that you loved the morning glory oatmeal, Emma. Thank you for letting me know. :)
This looks so delicious. I just made myself some warm oatmeal this morning in the D.C. snow! Thank you so much for this recipe!
Im soo excited to try this! How do I store leftovers for future use?
and can I use quick oats instead of steel cut?
Hey Christine, you can store the leftovers in the fridge, covered. If you use quick-cooking oats, you might need to adjust the amount of liquid in the recipe, and you’ll definitely need to reduce the cooking time. You can figure that out by looking at the cooking directions for the quick cooking oats. I recommend using steel cut!
Hi! this looks wonderful! I have a question though: how much orange zest is needed? The instructions say 1 1/2 tablespoon. Is that correct? Seems like you would get a lot more from 1 1/2 oranges? Thanks!!
Hey Laura, you only need 1 1/2 tablespoons of orange zest. I needed the zest of 1 1/2 oranges to get that much zest—I provided that detail so readers could know about how many oranges they would need to obtain 1 1/2 tablespoons zest.
2 recipes in just one day! That´s how much I am loving your blog :)
This tasted amazing and the apple oat muffins were perfect for my afternoon tea. Keep up the good work!
That’s awesome! Glad you’re loving the recipes, Mariana. :)
This recipe is so delicious, I’ve been making it for months! I add an additional cup of shredded zucchini (drained) during the last 10 minutes of cooking. It’s especially good, cold, atop yogurt for a quick on the go breakfast during these awfully hot summer months.
Edie, your zucchini version sounds amazing! I hope to give it a try soon. Thank you for sharing!
These steel cut oats have been sitting “untouched” in my cabinet for months. So I decided to try this method and save the leftovers for quick breakfasts. I wasn’t sure how I would feel about this whole thing, so I stopped adding ingredients to the pot after the salt and only added the rest to my one bowl. Good thing, because the orange zest got me. I didn’t like it the one time I added to a smoothie and didn’t like it in my oatmeal either. I think I will experiment with each bowl, because other than the zest, and maybe the coconut, I really enjoyed the rest. My next thing is to try the Strawberry Cake.
I cannot wait to try this recipe! But I do have a quick question… a lot of your recipes call for coconut milk. Do you use it from a can or buy the kind in a carton? Thanks for any suggestion!
Hi Courtney! I always use canned coconut milk, in part because I never need to use much at once but also because it’s thicker.
I made this for the 2nd time this evening! I think its simple and delicious. I keep a container of it in my fridge so I have a healthy breakfast to take to work. I make sure to add a step and toast my coconut. MM MM mmmm!! Thank you for jazzing up my breakfast.
Thanks, Kelly! So glad you’re enjoying the oatmeal.
Hi Kate! Thanks for posting this recipe and your comments on it. I made it this morning (plus extra to keep me warm for the next few snowy mornings!) and it was scrumptious! It has all the ingredients of the carrot cake I have for my birthday each year (except of course the oats) and the dash of Greek yogurt gave it the same tang you get from cream cheese frosting. Good call! Is it okay if I link to your page on my blog? Thanks again!
Jane, so glad you enjoyed the oatmeal! Yes, you’re welcome to link to my blog! Thank you!
Love this recipe! I’ve made it countless times, it’s the perfect breakfast! I like to use vanilla coconut almond milk when making it, and I skip the raisins and maple syrup (I’m not a fan of super-sweet things…I know, I’m weird), and I like to stir in a good dollop of natural almond butter towards the end of the cooking process. I top the oatmeal off with pecans and walnuts toasted in coconut oil, some pepitas, and some coconut cream. So delicious! Thank you for this great recipe!
Thank you, Jenna! Your version sounds so fantastic.
It’s funny, “discovering” a recipe more than a year after it was originally posted… I feel like I’ve been missing out for more than a year! We are literally daily steel cut eaters and this recipe just blew me away. The orange rind is really what makes it so special, I’m convinced.
I toasted up the oats with coconut oil for a bit before adding all the other ingredients to give it more of a coconut flavor.
Love love loved this recipe!
Well, I’m glad you found the recipe! Thank you, Dorothy. Delighted to hear that you’re enjoying it so much. I will try toasting my steel-cut oats in coconut oil next time!
A great addition steel-cut oatmeal recipe repertoire. Several tweaks: toast both the coconut flakes and walnuts in the oven for enhanced flavor and texture.
Thanks, Deborah! Great tips!
I just found your website yesterday and i just made this recipe in the morning.
Something was always missing from my carrot cake oatmeal… It was good but somehow too soggy or i dont know.
First i toasted the rolled oats for some minutue. I didn’t have nutmeg (still have no idea where can i get that) so i used almond extract and 2tsp organic almondbutter instead. The fresh ginger was amazing too!
I never cooked my oatmeal without stirring and with a lid on. Probably this is the key as my oatmeal got soooo perfectly creamy with your measurements of liquid (i never measure it just pour by my heart).
So thank you very much, and keep up! I love your website, i wish i could make your recipes every 3rd hour! :)))
Hi Rikka, so happy to hear it! So glad this oatmeal turned out great for you! :)
I’ve never thought to use carrots in my morning oatmeal before – what a great idea! I have a little toddler who seriously refuses to eat any vegetable, but he just LOVES oatmeal – I think he might go for some carrots in his oatmeal. I will give it a whirl tomorrow morning! Thanks :)
Thank you, Jolene! I hope he appreciates carrots in oatmeal form!
Made this for breakfast this morning and it was so so so sweet! I served it with Greek yogurt which helped cut the sweetness a bit. I think I may reduce the raisins and cinnamon next time around – the spices and orange exacerbated the sweetness. Made my house smell amazing though!
I’m sorry to hear that, Deepthi! I’m not sure why it turned out so sweet when there’s only one tablespoon maple syrup in there. Bummer!
Made this this morning with oatmeal instead of steel cut oats because it’s what I had, and it was DELICIOUS. So rich and decadent. AND healthy, who knew. Love it!
Hooray! Thanks, Taylor.
I LOVE this oatmeal! I will try it with a bit less orange zest next time, a bit more cinnamon and more raisins (everyone has their tastes, after all!). This is the first time I’ve found steel cut oats delicious and I think I’m a convert. It’s really all about the 1 cup of milk and 3 cups of water ratio! Can’t wait to try the cranberry orange steel cut oats next! Oh, I posted a photo to Instagram too, of the last spoonful of my breakfast! I served mine with a big dollop of Greek yogurt. SO so good!!
Thank you, Julia! So glad you enjoyed it.
Made your Morming Glory Oats this morning! Absolutely delicious!
I love your site! Fabulous healthy recipes! I needed this inspiration as I meal plan for the week. Thank you
I’m going to cut the recipe way down in size and cook in my Little Dipper crockpot heater thing overnight. Perfect size for me and maybe hubby. I might add some pumpkin.
Where is the nutritional info? Those of us with health issues really need it. Tx
Do not add me to your email list!
Hi Nina, I would never add you to my email list without my permission. I don’t have nutrition info for my recipes yet (I wouldn’t keep it from you if I did, but it’s actually quite complicated to accurately calculate, especially when I have over 500 recipes on this site). I am working on a solution and hope to implement it within the next couple of months.
Thanks Kate for your prompt response. I thought maybe the nutritional info was there and I was missing it. Glad to know it is coming as it will be very helpful to me and others. I added the request re email as I have often had folks add me to their lists even though I was asking a question or providing input and not agreeing to be on their list. Glad you don’t do that. I love your site and look forward to checking out your recipes. Thanks
this was great! oatmeal isnt my favorite but i was surprised at how good it was! i didnt have coconut milk and used almond milk and dried cranberries instead of raisins. awesome!
I make this recipe often and love it, (but without the coconut because I don’t like the taste). I cannot seem to find how many calories are allocated to a serving. Can you advise?
Hi, Jan. Unfortunately, I don’t have nutritional info available for my recipes just yet. I’m looking for a solution, and will update about it once I find one. Thanks!
Hi there – Your blog is beautiful. Would this work in a slow cooker overnight? Thanks so much. Amy
Hi Amy, I think it could be adjusted for a slow cooker. I’m just not sure if anything would need to be changed to make it work—you might cross-reference it with a steel-cut oatmeal slow cooker recipe to be sure.
Can this be frozen as is? Beautiful!
I think so! I have never tried freezing steel-cut oatmeal, though. You might need to add a little more moisture once reheated.
Kate, even though I’ve been eating oatmeal in different forms for every.single.breakfast for the past eight years – my other meals are way more versatile ;) – I’ve been suspicious of making a large batch instead of cooking it every morning or preparing individual servings of overnight oats. And here I am, finishing the fourth bowl of the Morning Glory cooked last week. It’s absolutely delicious, and I love the taste with a dollop of vanilla almond milk yogurt as it’s both sweet and tart. I also used almond milk to cook the oats. The combination of textures is wonderful, with the chewy but still slightly crunchy oats, plump cooked raisins, and the crunch of nuts. Thanks for sharing Megan’s recipe and offering additional advice!
You’re welcome! I’m happy you found it helpful and added some variety ideas :) I really appreciate the star review, Barbara.
I adapted this recipe to the Instant Pot within the last 2 weeks. I used the same ingredients in the same proportions (I have the 6 quart Instant Pot), but left out the orange zest. I didn’t have any, but the next time I make this – which will be very soon! – I will add it. I also added a stick of cinnamon. I set the Instant Pot to 4 minutes on manual (high pressure) and let it naturally release pressure (NPR) for about 30 minutes. The amount made enough for 4 8-ounce jars (which I froze for later) and 3 additional servings. The oatmeal was great! I was a bit skeptical about liking the carrots (even though I love carrots for lunch and dinner and snacks), but this is really good oatmeal. Thank you Kate!
Thanks for sharing!
I followed the instant pot instructions and it turned out great. I put everything in the pot except for the nuts and then sprinkled the nuts over the top of the bowls of oatmeal. It worked perfectly. Thanks for the recipe and the instant pot adaptation.
Very good and easy morning meal! I wonder if one could use pumpkin pie spice to save a bit, and perhaps top with pumpkin puree? The hubs and I loved it. Sunflower seeds have a nice crunch
You could, if you like. Let me know what you think of the puree! Thanks for your review.
is there a way to make this in a crock pot??
Could you say what brand maple syrup you use?
Hi Liz! I typically use an organic when I can. Not brand specific, necessarily. Whole Foods has great options!
Love this recipe! I make it very often in the wintertime – a double batch will last me for a week (but I eat a large breakfast). I ended up with lots of naked oranges in the fridge after zesting, so I’ve started subbing orange extract instead. Not quite as good but works well. I skip toasting the walnuts for expediency. Thank you!
You’re welcome, Hannah!
I made this last night and traded out the raisins for dried pineapple chunks. No nuts, no maple syrup on top… it was DELIGHTFUL this morning.
I’ve made this before with variations, and knew I wanted to try pineapple. I made sure to put (non-essential, I know) dried pineapple on the grocery list this week for our curb-side order. It was a burst of sunshine in my “lockdown.”
I’m glad you loved it, Amey! Thanks for sharing.
Quite good. I loved the Morning Glory muffin idea! I cut down the orange zest a tad. I did not have walnuts, so I quickly toasted my raw sunflower seeds on a cast iron skillet. Wow, was that perfect.
So much delicious flavor! Thank you for this amazing recipe.. I am impressed and happy that I had all ingredients and spices on hand.
Delicious! I was looking for a carrot and oatmeal recipe. This hit the spot and was warm, delicious, so hearty, and just enough sweet. Since my husband can’t eat oats, I was worried about keeping oatmeal for the week so I appreciate you sharing you make it in bulk and eat it throughout the week!
Delicious! I’ve made this twice and love having leftovers to snack on or enjoy for another breakfast.
Made this today and it’s delicious! Followed the recipe exactly and it tasted like a muffin in oatmeal form!
I made this and it was so good! My two year old son loved it too. I used one tablespoon of maple syrup and probably could’ve used less or done without. It was a bit sweet for first thing in the morning so idk if I’m going to make it again for breakfast. Maybe dessert! That’s personal preference since I prefer savory for breakfast. This was a nice treat though!
This is by far the best oatmeal I’ve ever tasted! It’s got so much flavor that it hardly needs the extra sweetener at all. The only thing I changed up is I added some craisins to complement the orange zest. Next time I make this I’m making a double batch to last me a few more days!
This is my go to oatmeal recipe. I also add apples. I find that apples and carrots go well together. Sometimes I mix up the spices. E.g. add cardamom instead of cinnamon.
Has anyone tried to do in the slow cooker? Made on the stove before, love the results. Just was time consuming so I’m hoping to do in slow cooker.
I was so excited to amp up my morning oats with some new flavors. I picked the wrong recipe! Too much raw spice flavor. Overall it tastes very harsh and bitter. I can barely eat it.
Hi Kristen, I’m sorry to hear you didn’t enjoy this recipe. I appreciate your feedback.
Porridge – or “parritch”, as Jamie says it in “Outlander, by Diana Gabaldon. A verra sexy word! And very traditional Scottish.
““dressers in the Scottish Highlands may have a “porridge drawer” — a tin lined drawer into which freshly made porridge was emptied and left to cool. When cold, slices of the porridge could be cut out and taken out of the house for later consumption. [Just wrapped in a piece of paper] (wikipedia on Welsh Dressers).”
I was raised on oatmeal the Dad made every morning before school. (Mom worked the pm shift)
I made up a large pot of this recepe. Toasting the oats completely changed the taste. Delicious! Thank you!