Quick and Healthy Breakfast Ideas. DIY Instant Oats.

By: admin   On: 5 July 2024 

Quick and Healthy Breakfast Ideas. DIY Instant Oats. Quick and Healthy Breakfast Ideas. DIY Instant Oats.

5 minutes of porridge-making is sometimes 4 minutes too many. The obvious answer is instant oats, but have you thought of making your own? Porridge for Winter Mornings.

When it comes to breakfast on a busy morning, sometimes five minutes of making porridge is just four minutes too many. The obvious answer is instant oats, but have you ever thought of making your own version of this supermarket staple? Us neither...until now.

What's the Difference Between Instant Porridge and Regular Porridge?

Instant porridge is the kind that simply requires you to pour over boiling water (or hot milk) and wait.

Instant porridge is pre-cooked and dried, then rolled even thinner than the regular kind. This extra processing step means they can soak up hot water or milk super quickly. Often sold as a convenience food, these are the single-serve pots that you find at a premium price in the cereal aisle, or that you buy ready-prepared from large chain coffee shops. They tend to come with added milk powder, sweeteners, and flavourings.

Regular porridge oats, which are either rolled or steel-cut, require a bit more time on the stovetop or in the microwave to soften up and become all creamy and delicious. These just come in a bag, without any adulterations.

While both types have their perks, it's the time-saving convenience of instant oats that often wins the morning rush hour. But, as with most convenience foods, that premium really does come at a price.

Are instant oats and quick oats the same?

Quick oats undergo more processing than traditional rolled oats, making them quicker to cook. They're rolled thinner than regular oats but not as thin as instant oats. This means they soften up and cook faster than rolled oats, but they still retain a bit more of their texture and nuttiness compared to their instant counterparts.

Like regular oats, quick oats usually just come in a bag. They are designed for preparing your own porridge; just a bit more quickly.

Are Instant Oats Healthy?

Whilst there is nothing wrong with instant oats per se there are a few pitfalls to watch out for. Sometimes, but not always, they may have had some of their bran content removed so can contain less insoluble fibre. As processed convenience foods, they may also contain any number of additives, so it is always wise to check the label.

It is not the instantness which can make them unhealthy, it is more a case of what else goes in it.

Why Choose DIY Instant Oats?

Instant oats may be super convenient, but that is about where the benefits end. DIY instant oats, on the other hand, are a complete game changer. Frankly, we don't know why we didn't think of it sooner.

Cost-effective compared to store-bought options

With most instant oats you are paying for the pot. Compared to the price of a bag of oats, these things are crazy expensive. Even with the extra superfood additions, DIY instant oats provide far greater value for money.

Customizable to suit personal taste preferences

When you make your own, you are free to do as you please. Instant oats are pretty standard in their flavour options; none of them particularly enticing and nearly all of them super sweet. Golden syrup anyone?

Free from added preservatives and artificial flavours

And of course, you have full control over what you add. Think natural ingredients like dates, chia, and flax rather than sugar and flavourings.

The Basic DIY Instant Oats Recipe

Whilst you could, theoretically, prepare these with a large chopping knife, you will get far better results with a food processor. Not only will it be quicker and easier, but the resulting oats will be quicker to make and creamier to eat. The point is to make up a big batch so that you have a jar of instant oats ready in the cupboard.

As all the ingredients are dry, you don't have to worry about shelf-life.

Key Ingredients


Unsurprisingly, oats are the main ingredient in our DIY instant oats. Feel free to use either standard rolled oats (or Jumbo) or quick cook oats. We don't use overly processed oats. Instead, we break them down in the food processor to make them finer.

Milk Powder

Full-fat milk powder is ideal, but you could also choose a plant-based powder too. A whey-based protein powder would also work. You could add plant-based protein powder but it may not bring that creamy aspect you are looking for. Failing that, you can just leave it out.

Chia Seeds

Chia seeds are the magic ingredient in DIY instant oats. They are responsible for the thick creamy texture that happens so quickly.

Flax Powder

Flax also helps to create the porridge texture, by helping to speed up the process.


We use dates to add sweetness rather than sugar.

Dried Fruit

Dried fruit also brings sweetness, as well as textural contrast. You can choose whatever you like depending on your desired flavour profile.


Adding sweet spices to the mix brings the final flourish of flavour, as well as another element of sweetness. Cinnamon, cardamom, and vanilla powder all work especially well.

Recipe for DIY Instant Oats

This recipe is for our nutty apple and cinnamon porridge. You can switch out the fruit, nuts and spices as you wish.

Makes roughly 10 x 60g portions

2 cups oats

1 cup milk powder

1 cup chopped dates

1 cup dried apple slices

1/2 cup walnuts

1/2 cup almonds

1/4 cup chia seeds

1/2 cup ground flaxseed or LSA powder

1 tbsp cinnamon powder

1/4 tsp cardamom powder

1 tsp vanilla powder

  1. Place everything in a food processor and blitz until the oats are coarsely powdered.
  2. You will have a coarse powder, with larger pieces of nuts, fruit and dates.
  3. Store in an airtight jar and use as required.

To make your porridge, add 60g (roughly 4 tablespoons) of mix to a bowl. Pour enough boiling water over to cover. Leave to stand for 1 minute, or blast in the microwave for 30 seconds.

There's no end to the variations you could make on this basic recipe. Experiment with different dried fruits, or even fruit powders, or maybe switch up the seeds you use.

Have you discovered our range of healthy cereals yet? Find out more about the benefits of a healthy breakfast.