Ris-oat-o: Think Oatmeal, but Savory

February  1, 2018

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. 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.

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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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A New Way to Dinner, co-authored by Food52's founders Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs, is an indispensable playbook for stress-free meal-planning (hint: cook foundational dishes on the weekend and mix and match ‘em through the week).

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See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Bevi
  • Shannon Rene
    Shannon Rene
I like esoteric facts about vegetables. Author of the IACP Award-nominated cookbook, Cooking with Scraps.


Bevi February 1, 2018
I remember this! wssmom was ahead of our time in the savory oats department! It's a great pantry dish.
Shannon R. March 3, 2019
I’m in my 40’s and my mom used to do something similar to this for breakfast with the leftover rice from dinner; sort of a hot cream of rice cereal. It was really good!