Instant Oatmeal for Pennies


I don’t know about your kids but my boys LOVE instant oatmeal. My youngest will eat it every day for breakfast if we have it. There’s one problem with store bought instant oatmeal though, it comes in those single serve packets and one just doesn’t do it for my kids. They eat 2 – 3 packets at a time. You can see that breakfast quickly starts to add up when each box only contains 10 packages and costs $3 to $4. It was time to find a budget friendly alternative.

The best tasting recipe I found was from Jessica (AKA FishMama) over at Life As Mom. However her recipe is for individual servings. That was too much work and still limited the boys to specific portion sizes. After some math, adjustments and taste tests we are now happily gobbling down instant oatmeal for under $.60 per batch. Each batch makes about 6-7 servings the way my boys eat it, or $.10 per serving vs. $.67 per serving. I’d say an 85% savings is worth it.

Homemade Instant Oatmeal

2 1/2 cups Quick Oats
3 Tbsp + 1 tsp Milk Powder
1 1/4 tsp Salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Mix all ingredients in a bowl. Use your hands to make sure you break up the brown sugar and evenly distribute it. Store in Tupperware or a mason jar.

To serve: Measure desired amount of oat mixture (we use a 1/3 cup measuring scoop), mix with hot water to desired consistency and enjoy.

For additional flavor (or just to get the kids to eat some fruit) stir in dried or fresh fruit. Our family likes apple cinnamon so you’ll notice the bag of dried apples. I simply chop up a bunch, put them in a plastic bag and add them along with the water as I’m fixing a bowl.


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