Steel Cut Oatmeal, or, the Nacho Panacea

You can’t eat Nacho Man’s nachos on a weekly basis without incorporating some healthful choices into the routine. Well, you could, but it’s probably best not to go there. Steel Cut Oats have become my morning-after repair…or my justification for the next bowl of nachos.

Fixings for Steel Cut Oats

Steel Cut Oats are also my excuse for using lots of Saigon Cinnamon.

There’s something about Saigon Cinnamon that makes an exotic spice like Cinnamon seem boring by comparison. It’s richer, more intense, absolutely amazing. And it’s readily available–you can find it at Costco, which is where my bottle came from.

I’m learning that food tastes better when you layer on the flavors–Saigon Cinnamon in a bowl of slightly crunchy oatmeal and fruit, pickled jalapenos on nachos, and, the ultimate example, the myriad spices and flavors that go into a bowl of pho (that recipe will be coming).

Steel Cut Oats are super easy to prepare. Just give yourself a little extra time. It’s worth it. My favorite Steel Cut Oats are actually quick-cooking ones from Trader Joe’s. Not only are they quick, but they’re affordable–these oats can get spendy. But I’ve also found good ones in the bulk foods aisle at our local Fred Meyer. They take about ten minutes to cook, as opposed to several minutes for the Trader Joe’s brand. Regardless of which route you go, just follow with the cooking instructions on the container.

And you may notice that I don’t list measurements for fruits, nuts, and spices. As my mother says, “Just add until it tastes right.” She’s a big proponent of cooking by feeling. It’s maddening if you’re trying to get a recipe out of her, but brilliant if you want to get in touch with your own preferences.


Steel Cut Oats

Cinnamon to taste (Saigon Cinnamon if you can get it)

Brown Sugar to taste

Dried fruit: raisins, apricots, figs, and cranberries are all great

Chopped walnuts or almonds (optional)

Milk (optional)


1. Boil oats according to container directions.

2. Spoon into serving dish.

3. Add milk.

4. Top with brown sugar, cinnamon, dried fruits, and nuts.

How to Wake Up Without Regrets After Friday Night Nachos

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