Savory Oatmeal

This savory oatmeal recipe is just as good for breakfast as it is for dinner or lunch. Eggs, avocado, and garlicky greens top creamy steel-cut oats.

Savory Oatmeal

If you’re used to topping your morning oats with nut butter and fresh fruit, the concept of savory oatmeal might sound strange. But give it a chance, and I think you’ll be surprised. Oats (which, after all, are a whole grain like farro, brown rice, wheat berries, or any other) pair perfectly with savory fixings like avocado, sautéed greens, and soft boiled eggs. These hearty toppings make this savory oatmeal recipe a satisfying and nutritious breakfast, and they also carry oats beyond the breakfast zone, transforming them into a delicious option for a quick dinner or lunch.

So even if you’re skeptical, I hope you’ll try this savory oatmeal recipe. It’s easy, healthy, and endlessly customizable (share your favorite toppings in the comments!). I think you’re going to love it!

Savory oatmeal recipe ingredients

How to Make Savory Oatmeal

My #1 tip for this savory oatmeal recipe? Use steel-cut oats! Their creamy, chewy texture is almost like that of a risotto, which makes them a natural companion for toppings like veggies and eggs. Quick-cooking oats and even whole rolled oats are too soft and mushy to use in this recipe.

To infuse the oats with savory, umami depth of flavor, I cook them with shallots and garlic. I start by sautéing some finely chopped shallot in olive oil in medium saucepan.

Steel-cut oats in saucepan with wooden spoon

Then, I stir in the oats and garlic and add water and salt. I bring the water to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the oats are thick and creamy but still have a slight bite, 15 to 20 minutes.

While the oats cook, I prep the toppings. Find my favorites below!

Savory oatmeal in saucepan with wooden spoon

Savory Oatmeal Recipe Serving Suggestions

I love to top my savory oatmeal with soft boiled eggs, sautéed spinach, and avocado, with a sprinkle of scallions for oniony bite and microgreens for a fresh finishing touch. But the topping options don’t end there! Feel free to customize your savory oatmeal to your liking. Here are a few topping ideas to get you started:

Serve with hot sauce or pesto!

Savory oatmeal can be a bit time-consuming to make on busy mornings, but if you like, you can prep it ahead. Cook the oats in advance, portion them into meal prep containers, and store them in the fridge for up to 3 days. Reheat on the stove or in the microwave, and top with your desired toppings just before you eat.

Savory oatmeal recipe

More Favorite Oats Recipes

If you love these savory oats, try one of these delicious oats recipes next:

Or, for more healthy breakfast ideas, check out this post!

Get This Recipe In Your Inbox
Share your email, and we'll send it straight to your inbox. Plus, enjoy daily doses of recipe inspiration as a bonus!

Savory Oatmeal

rate this recipe:
5 from 5 votes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Serves 2 to 3
This easy savory oatmeal recipe is a healthy, delicious option for any meal of the day--breakfast, lunch, or dinner! We love the toppings listed here, but feel free to experiment with them. Find more suggestions in the post above!


  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup finely chopped shallot, about 1 small
  • ¾ cup steel-cut oats
  • 1 garlic clove, grated
  • cups water
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper



  • Heat the olive oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the shallot and cook until softened, about 2 minutes. Add the oats and garlic and stir to coat in the oil, then add the water and salt and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the oats are thick and creamy but still have a slight bite. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Remove from the heat and portion into bowls. Top with the sautéed vegetables, eggs, scallions, avocado, and microgreens. Serve with drizzles of hot sauce and a squeeze of lemon juice.


Leave a comment:

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Rate this recipe (after making it)

  1. Mayra

    5 stars
    This recipe was exactly what I’ve been looking for lately. It came out delicious! The toppings I chose were avocado, a fried egg, chives, wilted spinach and some sriracha and soy sauce on top! It was exactly what I’ve been thinking of trying! I’ve been wanting to try a savory oatmeal for weeks but didn’t know how to start. Thank you for sharing this recipe!

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)

      Oh yum! Those toppings sound great! I’m glad the recipe got you started making your own savory oatmeal.

  2. Cillian

    5 stars
    This recipe might just be my new obsession, it’s SO good although I did mince up a few extra garlic cloves because I’m incapable of not measuring garlic with my heart. Topped mine with some roasted butternut squash, garlicky wilted greens and gorgonzola crumbles. I’m really looking forward to trying some other flavor combinations with the leftovers I prepped for the rest of the week.

    • Jeanine Donofrio

      I’m so glad you’ve been loving it!

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.