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Breakfast/ Recipes/ Tips & Hints/ Vegan Recipes/ Vegetarian Recipes

DIY Instant Oatmeal Packets + 8 Flavor Combinations You’ll Love

DIY Instant Oatmeal Packets

DIY Instant Oatmeal Packets
Oatmeal is the breakfast of choice most days at my house. It’s nice to cook up a warm, comforting bowl to start the day. But sometimes plain oatmeal can get boring, so it’s fun to change things up and try new flavor combinations. Making DIY instant oatmeal packets is so much fun — and it’s nice to have everything contained so all I have to do is add water and pop it into the microwave for a few minutes. They’re also perfect for storing in your desk drawer for those days when you don’t have time to eat breakfast before work.

DIY Instant Oatmeal Packets
For every one-serving packet, you’ll need:

DIY Oatmeal Packet Flavor Ideas
Let’s talk about the add-ins! You can use any kind of dried fruits and nuts you like, but these are some of my favorite flavor combinations:

Strawberries and Cream:
2 tablespoons freeze-dried or dried strawberries
2 teaspoons powdered milk

Blueberry Almond:
2 tablespoons freeze-dried or dried blueberries
1 tablespoon sliced almonds

Maple Pecan:
1 tablespoon chopped pecans
2 teaspoons maple sugar

Ginger Apple:
2 tablespoons freeze-dried apples
2 teaspoons diced crystallized ginger

Apricot Hazelnut:
2 tablespoons diced dried apricots
1 tablespoon chopped hazelnuts

Banana Walnut:
2 tablespoons dried bananas
1 tablespoon chopped walnuts
Pinch of nutmeg

Cranberry Pistachio:
2 tablespoons dried cranberries
1 tablespoon chopped raw or roasted pistachios

Caramel Cashew:
1 tablespoon chopped dates
1 tablespoon cashew pieces

DIY Instant Oatmeal Packets

Place all of the ingredients into a small resealable bag or container, then store in a cool, dry place until you’re ready to use them.

DIY Instant Oatmeal
To cook, pour the contents into a bowl and add 3/4 cup water. Stir to combine, then microwave on high for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes, taking care to ensure the contents don’t boil over. Let stand for a few minutes to allow the oatmeal to thicken. The chia seeds and dried fruit will absorb some of the water, so if it’s too thick for your liking, you may want to add more liquid.

So simple, right? Making your own oatmeal packets is cheaper than buying them and they’re great if you want to avoid the artificial flavors and excess sugar in many store-bought brands. And a healthy breakfast in minutes is always a win in my book!

This post was originally published on October 21, 2014.

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  • Reply
    October 21, 2014 at 4:10 pm

    This is such a convenient idea! I love the combinations too

    Yasmeen xx

  • Reply
    October 21, 2014 at 4:16 pm

    Great idea Lindsey! These flavors sound delicious and I love that I could avoid the questionable ingredients from store bought oatmeal packets by making them myself. Pinning now so I can make a few to stock my desk drawer.

  • Reply
    sue/the view from great island
    October 21, 2014 at 4:23 pm

    I LOVE this idea, I crave oatmeal in the morning, but hate to go to the effort, and your flavor pairing chart is brilliant!

  • Reply
    Liz @ Floating Kitchen
    October 21, 2014 at 6:35 pm

    Oh my gosh, I love this idea. Brilliant! Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Reply
    October 21, 2014 at 9:12 pm

    Instead of putting them in ziplocs, I just spoon the oatmeal into a microwave-safe container (I like those pyrex bowls with lid, but a heat resistant paper cup works too) and heat it up at work.

    Love the mix-in options!

  • Reply
    October 21, 2014 at 9:57 pm

    I love this idea! Is there a vegan replacement I could use instead of dried milk?

    • Reply
      Lindsey Johnson
      October 22, 2014 at 11:03 am

      Hi Niki! You can definitely use powdered soy milk instead of the instant milk.

    • Reply
      October 22, 2014 at 5:44 pm

      Niki, You can use powdered coconut milk too, that’s what I do… just be sure to check the ingredients as some brands include dairy derivative to prevent clumping.

    • Reply
      January 28, 2016 at 11:49 am

      You could also leave out the milk entirely. I started preparing oatmeal only with water because of lactose intolerance; it tasted odd the first time, but by the third day it felt normal!

    • Reply
      Cynthia Coletti
      November 24, 2016 at 9:11 am

      Non-dairy creamer has a longer shelf life than powdered milk.

  • Reply
    Liz @ Tip Top Shape
    October 22, 2014 at 8:15 am

    This is such a great post! I love flavored oatmeal but always sort of force myself not to think of all the added sugar, etc. in it. This way is so much healthier!

  • Reply
    October 22, 2014 at 12:46 pm

    Where do you find powdered soy milk and powdered milk? These sound great!

    • Reply
      Lindsey Johnson
      October 22, 2014 at 4:26 pm

      Hey Amber! Sometimes you can find powdered soy milk in grocery stores – check the bulk section or health foods section. Whole Foods might have it. I know you can find it online on Amazon too. Just search for “powdered soy milk” and it should pop right up. Powdered (dairy) milk will usually be in the grocery store near the canned milks – typically in the baking aisle.

  • Reply
    Regina @ Leelalicious
    October 23, 2014 at 1:17 am

    These are fantastic ideas! I LOVE oatmeal for breakfast

  • Reply
    October 24, 2014 at 8:26 am

    What would be a good replacement for chia seeds? I just don’t like their taste.

    • Reply
      Lindsey Johnson
      October 24, 2014 at 9:10 am

      Hi Beth – you can just leave them out. If you really want to add a substitution though, you could add a small spoonful of ground flax seed.

  • Reply
    Thalia @ butter and brioche
    October 25, 2014 at 12:00 am

    I am obsessed with instant oatmeal but have only ever store bought it before. This is seriously such a good idea to make your own! Definitely will be trying out a few of these combos.. thanks for the great idea!

  • Reply
    October 31, 2014 at 5:01 pm

    For the “add ins”, is the sweetener in addition to what’s in the base recipe, or in replacement of?

    • Reply
      Lindsey Johnson
      October 31, 2014 at 7:23 pm

      Hi Liza! That’s a great question, and I’m sorry I didn’t clarify that in the post. It is instead of the sweetener in the basic recipe. So regardless of using granulated or brown, maple, or any of the other sugars available, each bag gets 1 teaspoon total.

  • Reply
    Kammie | Sensual Appeal Blog
    November 3, 2014 at 5:19 pm

    Simplifying my life. I love this. Always great 🙂

  • Reply
    December 19, 2014 at 10:41 am

    love it! thank you for sharing 🙂

  • Reply
    December 20, 2014 at 7:52 pm

    is powdered milk the same as dried milk? you refer to both… (strawberries & cream add-in and base recipe, respectively)

    • Reply
      Lindsey Johnson
      December 20, 2014 at 8:02 pm

      Great question, Erin! I’m referring to them interchangeably. I did, however, use instant dried/powdered milk that dissolves more readily. But the non-instant kind works too.

  • Reply
    Kelly @ Nosh and Nourish
    January 25, 2015 at 10:02 am

    Lindsey, this is AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Love love love it. Sharing asap.

  • Reply
    May 3, 2015 at 8:06 pm

    Wow. These look absolutely fantastic. Especially seeing as I’m such an oatmeal freak!

  • Reply
    August 1, 2015 at 11:10 pm

    Can you just skip the powdered milk? I always make our oatmeal with almond milk instead of water to add calories for my small kiddos. So I’m wondering if that powdered milk is needed?

  • Reply
    Millie | Add A Little
    October 4, 2015 at 2:39 pm

    I love this idea! It’s so fun and so easy in the morning!

  • Reply
    October 12, 2015 at 5:25 pm

    I’ve been researching recipes for the homemade instant oatmeal, but what I can’t figure out is why Chia Seeds? Or any seeds?
    So far, your combination list is the best!


    • Reply
      July 4, 2017 at 8:19 pm

      I know this is an old comment, but I add flax and chia because they are thickeners, add protein and fat, and fill up my pre-teens and teens nicely.

  • Reply
    October 13, 2015 at 9:26 pm

    I’m so excited to try this! Just made a couple of bags to bring on my work trip. I have to get up so early in the mornings and do not have time to go down for a “proper” breakfast. I often just grab a Danish, which is usually gross. But, this is perfect! I always have a coffee maker and sometimes a microwave in my hotel room!

  • Reply
    February 15, 2016 at 5:24 pm

    After the ingredients are combined, what amount equals a portion? Thank you for your time. JH

  • Reply
    August 30, 2016 at 10:07 pm

    Found this on pinterest and LOVING it. Made the maple pecan and could barely finish 1 serving – I think the chia seeds and pecans really really held me. Thanks for posting these awesome flavor combinations. Not having great luck with the maple sugar and may throw a squirt of maple syrup on my way to work.

  • Reply
    April 18, 2017 at 9:54 am

    Can the milk be omitted? I’m dairy free. If not, do you know what I could use instead?

    • Reply
      April 19, 2017 at 9:02 am

      There are a few non-dairy milks available that you could substitute. Better Thank Milk is one brand I’ve seen around, but I haven’t tried it. Otherwise, you could just leave it out. If you have some soy or almond milk on hand you could add a slash when it’s time to serve the oatmeal, but it should be fine without it too. 🙂

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