This easy Applesauce Oatmeal is an excellent way to use extra applesauce to upgrade a bland bowl of oatmeal with a sweet, crisp apple flavor and a big boost of fiber. The best part is this stove-top oatmeal comes together nearly as quickly as instant!
Suppose you’re growing bored with your everyday oatmeal. In that case, there’s an unsuspecting ingredient you may already have in your kitchen to add some excitement to your oatmeal routine and extra nutrients – and that ingredient is applesauce!
These rolled oats are delicately sweetened with natural applesauce, pure maple syrup, cinnamon, and allspice, so they are reminiscent of warm and comforting apple pie, without the sugar crash and with all of the feel-good, cozy flavor.
This old-fashioned oatmeal recipe doesn’t take much longer to make than packets of flavored oatmeal – plus, it leaves you in control of every ingredient.
Dairy-free? You can make an insanely rich and creamy bowl of vegan applesauce oatmeal with coconut milk.
Not big on sweets? Adjust the maple syrup or omit it entirely.
Craving something more? Use this applesauce and oatmeal as a canvas for nuts, fresh fruit, fruit spreads, whipped cream, and more!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- It’s made with whole grain oats, unsweetened applesauce, and NO refined sugar, yet it tastes like a delicious treat.
- These easy applesauce oats make a perfect healthy breakfast for busy mornings.
- The extra fiber from the applesauce is a great way to power up the day.
- The customization and topping possibilities are endless. Keep reading for tasty and healthy ideas.
Ingredients You’ll Need
- Milk – You can use any cow’s milk or dairy-free milk, but if it’s extra rich and creamy oats you’re after, use whole milk or full-fat almond, coconut, oat, or soy milk.
- Unsweetened applesauce – Making homemade applesauce is an option, but any store-bought unsweetened applesauce works. Many store-bought brands are made with nothing more than apples and water plus ascorbic acid.
- Rolled oats – AKA old-fashioned oats are steamed and flattened oat groats, so they’re much softer than steel-cut oats and don’t take as long to cook.
- Maple syrup – My favorite all-natural sweetener! It adds a festive touch you can’t get from other unrefined sweeteners. That’s not to say you shouldn’t sweeten oatmeal with other sweeteners – honey, date syrup, and agave nectar add their own distinct naturally sweet flavor.
- Cinnamon + allspice – Or any warming spices (nutmeg, cardamom, ginger). Apple pie spice is excellent in this oatmeal if you have it.
- Salt – You will need just a pinch to round the flavors.
How to Make Applesauce Oatmeal
- Combine the ingredients: In a small saucepan, combine rolled oats with milk, applesauce, maple syrup, cinnamon, and a pinch each of allspice and salt.
- Cook the rolled oats: Bring the mixture to a low boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally, and cook until the oatmeal has thickened.
- Let stand: Remove the pot from the heat, cover, and let it stand for a few minutes.
- Add toppings and serve: Add thickened oatmeal to a bowl, and serve with your favorite toppings. Keep reading for delicious (and nutritious!) topping and customizing ideas.
It’s best to cook rolled oats over medium-low heat without letting the mixture reach a full bubbling boil. Instead, gently simmer to thicken the ingredients into a satisfying serving of creamy applesauce oats.
If you’re unsure about the maple syrup, you can decide whether you want to use it once you’ve given the finished oatmeal a taste. You’ll be pleasantly surprised at how sweet oatmeal is with just applesauce and no added sweeteners.
Feel free to make a larger batch. It’s a nutritious and delicious money-saving meal everyone will enjoy. Cook in a large, heavy-bottomed pot or Dutch oven, and be sure the milk doesn’t get too hot and foam over the sides.
- Add apples – Simmer the oats and applesauce with chopped apples if you prefer chunks of tender fruit throughout your oatmeal. Granny Smith, Braeburn, Honeycrisp, and Golden Delicious are good options. Baked apples and other winter fruits make a fantastic topping.
- Fruit and nut spreads – Swirl in a spoonful of peanut, almond, or hazelnut butter, or try adding a spoonful of leftover cranberry sauce, blueberry sauce, or mango puree.
- Crunchy toppings – You can’t go wrong sprinkling chopped nuts and/or seeds (almonds, walnuts, pecans, sunflower seeds, chia seeds, etc.), sugar-free granola, or toasted unsweetened coconut on top of a bowl of warm and creamy oatmeal.
- Creamy toppings – To make a truly heavenly bowl of homemade apple and cinnamon oatmeal, top with a scoop of Greek yogurt, freshly whipped cream, or coconut cream.
Storing and Reheating
Store leftover oatmeal in an airtight container in the fridge for 2-3 days. Do not freeze leftovers.
Reheat leftover oatmeal in the microwave in 30-second intervals, stirring in between, or in a saucepan over medium-low heat. Add a splash of milk to help the oatmeal bounce back to its original rich and creamy consistency, if needed.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I add applesauce to steel-cut oatmeal?
Yes! You can swap rolled oats for steel cut oats in this recipe – but remember, steel-cut oats can absorb more moisture, so you may need to add more milk to the pot if it becomes too thick. They’ll also need more time to simmer, so check the package instructions for the suggested cook time.
Can I make overnight oats with applesauce?
Absolutely. In fact, you can make this stovetop oatmeal recipe into an overnight oats recipe by combining the uncooked oats and the remaining ingredients in a mason jar with a tight-fitting lid. Refrigerate overnight, and the following morning your oats will be perfect.
More Apple Recipes You’ll Love
- Apple Crisp without Flour
- Healthy Apple Cake
- Apple Cinnamon Quinoa Breakfast Bowl
- Baked Apples with Ricotta Cheese
- Hot Apple Cider
- 1 1/3 cup cow's milk or your favorite non-dairy milk
- 3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 2/3 cup regular rolled oats
- 1/2 Tbsp maple syrup
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- 1 pinch allspice
- pinch of salt
- In a small pot, combine the milk, apple sauce, oats, maple syrup, cinnamon, allspice, and salt.
- Over medium heat, bring the mixture to a boil, stirring occasionally, and cook until the oatmeal has thickened.
- Take off the heat, cover, and let it stand for 2 to 3 minutes. Serve with your favorite toppings.
The nutrition information was calculated for applesauce oatmeal made with 2% dairy milk without any toppings.
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Nutrition InformationYield 2 Serving Size 1/2 of recipe
Amount Per Serving Calories 237Total Fat 5gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 2gCholesterol 13mgSodium 146mgCarbohydrates 40gFiber 4gSugar 20gProtein 9g
Nutrition facts provided on this website are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a qualified health care provider for personalized diet advice and make sure that each of the ingredients is allowed in your diet.