What is the best way to make oats with milk when there is no microwave available?
I am not sure how I can warm it up without either burning the milk or making it taste bad.

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    Do you not have a stove, either? When you say "warm it up" are you talking about already cooked oats that are cold or starting from oats and water/milk and making them into oatmeal? – Catija Mar 7 '16 at 19:45
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    Also, I just noticed that your second sentence makes it sound like you want your oatmeal to taste bad (I am not sure how I can warm it up without making it taste good). – Catija Mar 7 '16 at 20:45
  • @Catija:Right, start from oats and water/milk – Jim Mar 9 '16 at 20:02

A stove would be the traditional method for making oats and it doesn't require a microwave. It takes longer than the microwave but it works just fine, if not better (but this will vary by personal preference).

Add milk to a small pot, bring it to simmer, add oats to the pot, cook for recommended amount of time depending on the type of oats you're using (see package for times) or until they reach your preferred level of doneness. Some recipes have you add the oats and liquid at the same time and bring to a simmer together... either option works.

Make certain to keep the temperature low enough to not burn and stir occasionally to move them around. Milk is mostly water (about 87% in whole milk, higher in lower fat milks), so as long as you're not using extremely high heat and leaving it unattended for long periods of time, you should be fine.

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  • Is there a combination of water/milk so that I am sure the milk will not be burned? – Jim Mar 9 '16 at 20:03
  • @Jim You would need a recipe for that... But, honestly, I see recipes that use milk only, it's simply a matter of not ignoring the pot for 20 minutes. Like I said, milk is already mostly water to start with. For more info, you can see this related question. – Catija Mar 9 '16 at 20:50
  • @jim you are overly worried about burning the milk. Just heat it on medium and stir it more or less constantly: the latter both prevents it catching and gives the mixture a creamy texture. – ElendilTheTall Mar 9 '16 at 21:01
  • Yup, this is how I do it. Medium heat, lots of stirring, works like a charm. Just don't go off and leave it alone! – Matthew Walton Mar 10 '16 at 14:09

Contrary to what most people believe, it is not necessary to cook oats.

There is a type of oatmeal called "overnight oats" in which the oats are stored with milk and other fruits and spices for at least 8 hours and up to 2-3 days in the fridge.

The oats will soften overnight and have a nice texture the next morning. The main difference would be the fact that the oatmeal is cold rather than hot. Check out this site for more details and some ideas.

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I regularly eat steel-cut oats for breakfast, but I don't nuke them. Instead, I dry toast the oats in a saute pan and eat them either in cold milk or over Greek yogurt (sometimes with honey and frozen fruit + a teensy pinch of salt).


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  • dry toast means no oil, butter etc right? How do you dry toast them? – Jim Mar 9 '16 at 22:18
  • @Jim, you are correct, sir. There's nothing wrong with melting a little bit of butter in the pan before adding the oats (it adds a wonderful nuttiness to the oats), but I skip the calories and just cook to oats in a hot steel skillet until they brown. – HandsomeGorilla Mar 10 '16 at 14:33
  • I am interested in that, but how? What temperature? Do you preheat the pan? – Jim Mar 11 '16 at 19:42
  • I don't usually measure the actual temperature in the pan, but I do use my largest burner on the highest setting and add about 1/4 cup of dry oats. I shake the oats out into an even layer and let them sit for about 20 seconds, then give a toss and a shake. I repeat this process until the oats are slightly burned, but you may toast them for less time depending on your taste. Heat output varies from one range to the next, so you'll have to learn by trial and error. Fortunately, oats are fairly cheap :) – HandsomeGorilla Mar 11 '16 at 19:48

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