A delicious, budget-friendly, allergy-free breakfast that you can make-ahead and use what you have on hand! Real food and simple to make.
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We eat a lot of oats. They’re tasty, versatile, and naturally gluten-free. I use them to make oatmeal, cookies, muffins, and I grind them in a food processor, coffee grinder, or Nutribullet (dry blade) to make oat flour for gluten-free baking. They are one whole grain that almost anyone in the United States (heard of food deserts?) has access to.
We usually make your classic oatmeal (and toasted oatmeal!), with a little tweak: instead of brown sugar, we use maple syrup as a more natural alternative. However, making that every day is a pain, and I like easy, nutritious breakfasts you can make ahead of time. Enter Simple (Allergy-Free) Baked Oatmeal.
Simple Baked Oatmeal
This recipe is:
- Easily adaptable to food allergies (nuts, dairy, eggs, gluten, etc.)
- Frugal – No expensive or weird ingredients
- Tasty – Oatmeal is not generally my favorite, so this recipe had to be really delicious
- Freezer-friendly – If I’m in the kitchen dirtying dishes, I like to maximize my time and make several batches
Get the recipe below (I won’t make you scroll through paragraphs of backstory you don’t care about). But check below it for nutrition information, tips, and ways this recipe helps us save money and eat healthy!
If you try this recipe, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it, and tag a photo #cheapskatecook and @cheapskatecook on Instagram.
- 1 cup milk, (cow, goat, almond, rice, and coconut work great)
- 2 cups rolled oats
- 1/4 cup maple syrup or honey
- 2 tbsp pumpkin puree, (sweet potato, butternut, banana, and applesauce also work)
- 2 eggs, (flax or chia eggs for egg-free*)
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp salt
Optional Overnight Step:
- Stir together the oats and milk in a container with a lid.
- Cover and refrigerate until the next morning (can refrigerate for several days if needed).
The Next Day:
- Remove oats and milk from the refrigerator. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and stir thoroughly to combine.
- Grease one 8x8-inch baking dish and pour batter into pan.
- Bake at 350 F for 30 minutes.
- Remove from oven, cool, then cut into squares.
- Top with butter, maple syrup, milk, or vanilla yogurt (see Notes for recipe variations). Refrigerate leftovers.
*To Make 1 flax or chia egg:
- 1 tbsp ground* flax or chia seeds**
- 3 tbsp hot water
Stir together quickly in a small bowl and set aside. Allow it to rest for 5 minutes then use it in recipe.
*A coffee grinder works great for this
**I know this pushes the “weird ingredient” line, but chia and flax are pretty easy to find and one of the simplest and healthiest egg replacements in my experience.
- Oats - I have used quick oats and it still worked great.
- To make a quick almond milk for baking - Blend 1 tablespoon almonds with a cup of water. Super frugal, and any nut fragments become part of the texture of the baked oatmeal.
- If using a dry sweetener, like sugar or coconut sugar, use 1/2 cup.
- Sweetener - I usually substitute some of the honey or maple syrup with molasses, because molasses is way cheaper.
- Fruit Variation - Place diced seasonal fruit (berries, apples, pears, etc.) in the bottom of the pan, pour the batter on top, and you have a sweet, jammy, fruit layer after baking!
- Muffin Variation - Divide the batter into a lined muffin tin and top as desired! (chocolate chips, nuts, chopped fruit, raisins, etc.)
- Freeze - After cooling, cut baked oatmeal into squares, wrap in foil or plastic wrap, seal in freezer bags, and label. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months.
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Nutrition InformationYield 9 Serving Size 1 square
Amount Per Serving Calories 132Total Fat 3gSaturated Fat 1gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 2gCholesterol 44mgSodium 243mgCarbohydrates 22gFiber 2gSugar 8gProtein 5g
Please note: The actual calories and nutrition of this dish depend on what ingredients you use.
Recipe Video Here!
If you prefer watching to reading, here’s how we make it – plus tips to make it more budget-friendly and use what you have.
Allergy-Free Baked Oatmeal
For many years, with food allergies over here, so it took me a long time to find a recipe that fit all of our needs.
Oats are naturally gluten-free, and this baked oatmeal recipe doesn’t use any other flour or grain.
Oats are prone to cross-contamination, so if you are celiac or especially sensitive to gluten, you might need to find oats that are certified gluten-free.
You can use any kind of milk in this recipe – cow, goat, almond, cashew, coconut, oat, rice, etc.
Flax eggs and chia eggs work great in this baked oatmeal. Instructions are included in the recipe. You can also use your favorite egg-replacer!
Easy Make-Ahead Breakfast
This recipe is a perfect real food make-ahead breakfast.
Sunday Meal Prep
Mix the milk and oats on your meal prep day, then let them sit in the fridge for several days until you’re ready to finish the baked oatmeal. I usually do this when I only have a little bit of time for meal prep, and I just need to start something so I’ll actually finish it.
After mixing everything together, pour the baked oatmeal batter into a disposable baking dish, wrap it in plastic wrap, and pop it into the freezer. When you’re ready to bake, let it thaw overnight (or up to 2 days) in the fridge then bake it the next morning.
If you would rather freeze after baking, let the oatmeal cool completely, then cut it into squares, wrap in foil or plastic wrap, seal in freezer bags, and label. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months. The muffin variation freezes well too!
Cook Once, Eat Twice
Usually, I make several batches of baked oatmeal at once, and then we eat it for breakfast for 3-4 days. Use the fruit variations in the recipe to make different kinds if your people will get bored. It also works great in lunch boxes!
This Baked Oatmeal Recipe is:
- Real food
- No weird ingredients! (unless flax seed is weird to you – I get it.)
- Make-Ahead friendly
- Great for serving guests!
- Flexible (pour over chopped fruit, stir in chocolate chips or blueberries, etc.)
Go Green & Budget-Friendly Tips
I don’t like to use plastic wrap – it’s disposable, costs extra money, and isn’t very good for the environment. However, this baked oatmeal recipe calls for the oats and milk to sit covered overnight in the fridge. And we like to make several batches ahead of time, so leftovers sit in the fridge for days.
In order to make this recipe more earth-friendly and sustainable, I have these glass Pyrex mixing bowls with lids. I use them for everything in the kitchen – mixing, storing leftovers, serving, and transporting meals. They’re pretty enough to serve at dinner, and because they are glass, they are perfect for sourdough and other recipes that need non-reactive bowls (like this non-crumbly whole wheat sandwich bread).
For baking the oatmeal, I use baking pans with lids (and this 9×13 pan)*. The lids make it easy to store leftovers without dirtying extra dishes. And I can reheat it easily in the pan the next morning or transport it when we bring casseroles to friends.
*(For the photos, I used a round pie plate because it was prettier.)
Obviously, you can make do with whatever you have (for years, I just mixed the milk and oats in a plastic tupperware (I always bought the disposable ones and reused them, then recycled when they broke) and used that lid, then poured it into a mixing bowl the next day.
I also discovered that a dishtowel and cutting board make a great lid for a baking dish in the fridge. Use what you have! But these bowls with lids and baking dishes with lids went on my wish list and they’ve worked for years and years.
How this Baked Oatmeal Helps Us Save Money & Eat Healthy
Real food, budget-friendly, allergy-friendly breakfast recipes are hard to come by. We have loved this baked oatmeal for years and years. Making it ahead of time helps keep our breakfasts healthy, simple, and inexpensive.
More Make-Ahead Breakfasts:
- 5-Minute Egg & Cheese Muffins
- Instant Pot Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal
- Sneaky Veggie Baked Oatmeal
- Budget-Friendly No-Bake Energy Bars
What About You?
On a scale of 1-10, how much do you like oatmeal?
1 = you hate it; 10 = you could eat it every day. I’m a 5. I can eat it regularly, but hot buttered toast is my breakfast jam.
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