7 Ways to Make Leftover Oatmeal a Lot More Exciting

January 11, 2016

You resolved to eat more whole grains (and to eat breakfast). So you went out and bought the oats, reminded yourself of the proportion of water to grains, and made a huge batch of oatmeal to last you through the week. But now you've got a pot full of oats, and you're already a little tired of mush. Don't let them go to waste—instead, put your cold, cooked oatmeal to good use:

Photo by James Ransom
  • Fry them into little oatcakes! If needed, add a bit of flour to thicken—and any other add-ins you'd like (Sam1148 suggests scallions)—form into patties, and pan-fry.
  • Or add a couple of scoops of the cooked oatmeal to baked goods, like muffins, quick breads, rolls, or even pancakes or waffles.
  • Use cooked oats to add heft to a burger, meatloaf, or meatballs.
  • Add a spoonful or two to a smoothie! They'll add a little staying power (and the fact that they're already cooked means they won't feel dusty or grainy).
  • If it's sweet oatmeal that you're tired of, simply turn it savory, risotto-style. Add cooked vegetables or meat, miso, a fried egg, a little hot sauce, cheese...
  • Add cooked oats to a soup, just as you would rice.
  • Bake it! It will transform into something more like cake, and less like oatmeal (and you can still eat it for breakfast).

How do you use up a few spoonfuls—or a few bowlfuls—of leftover oats? Share your wisdom in the comments.

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • clayshapes
  • LisaMarie Artino Schultz
    LisaMarie Artino Schultz
  • GsR
  • Caroline Lange
    Caroline Lange
Writing and cooking in Brooklyn.


clayshapes January 11, 2016
I use oatmeal instead of breadcrumbs in meatloafs - chicken or beef - and convince myself it's much more nutritious this way! Also - adds a wonderful soft texture and help things stick together.
LisaMarie A. January 11, 2016
Steel Cut, cooked al dente. I treat it like I would a rice bowl or bibimbap. My favorite is chorizo with fried egg, cheese, avocado and hot sauce.
GsR January 11, 2016
Any way to turn them into cookies?
Caroline L. January 11, 2016
i'm sure! you may need to decrease the amount of liquid in your favorite cookie recipe, but it's worth experimenting! here's a recipe that uses leftover oats: http://www.cooks.com/recipe/x04bv9cz/leftover-oatmeal-cookies.html