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Ris-oat-o: Think Oatmeal, but Savory

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Every so often, we scour the site for cool recipes from our community that we then test, photograph, and feature—this one comes from longtime Food52er wssmom.

“Oatmeal—it’s what’s for dinner! Shed of its customary cloying mantle of sugar, honey, maple syrup, agave nectar, or what have you, oatmeal stands proudly alongside the great grains of the world,” says wssmom. She’s showing us how to turn a breakfast staple into a savory supper by treating it like risotto (hence the name ris-oat-o—eh? eh?).

Welcome to the savory side of oatmeal.
Welcome to the savory side of oatmeal. Photo by James Ransom

Savory oatmeal might already be a part of your regular routine, but letting the oats slowly absorb stock as they cook gives you a more flavorful final result. Add in a couple of umami-packed ingredients and you’ve got a satisfying, belly-warming meal that is relatively simple to prepare.

But don’t just take our word for it—Food52er Bevi was won over when she tested it, too, saying:

This dish was a great spin on traditional rice risotto, and the ease of preparation was fabulous. I used about 3 1/4 cups of organic chicken stock for simmering and added two glugs of pinot gris to finish. The sautéed scallions and mushrooms added savoriness, and the Parmesan cheese introduced just enough saltiness. Texturally, our ris-oat-o emerged creamy, silky, and perfectly done. I was extremely pleased with this exploration of oats—they’re not just for breakfast!


As Bevi says, the Parmesan might add just enough saltiness for you, but if you’re using a low- or no-sodium stock (or just have a salt tooth), taste the final dish and adjust the seasoning as needed.

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Serves 4 as a side dish
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 4 to 6 scallions, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup cremini mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup steel-cut oats (I used Bob's Red Mill)
  • 3 cups chicken or vegetable stock (preferably homemade), plus more as needed
  • White wine, to taste
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan
  • Chopped flat-leaf parsley, for garnish
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Tags: oatmeal, oats