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Oatmeal and pumpkin are two of the greatest things about fall – and this recipe uses both of them! This pumpkin oatmeal recipe is healthy, easy, and quick – you can whip it up in the time it takes your coffee to brew!
Oatmeal can get a bad rap for being bland, boring, and mushy. Not THIS bowl of oatmeal: this has pumpkin pie flavor (not bland), soft bites of apple (not boring), and the best part is the sweet and crunchy maple pecan crumble (not mushy!)
Breakfast doesn't get cozier than this warming pumpkin porridge – it will coax you out of bed on even the chilliest mornings. It's the perfect answer to, ‘What do I do with my leftover pumpkin puree?' It's full of nutrition all while being low in salt and calories. Plus, the taste will make anyone become a morning person!
This oatmeal tastes like homemade pumpkin pie, but is still a healthy breakfast! Here is what you need:
- Pecans – For a rich, buttery, nut flavor.
- Maple syrup – To sweeten up the crunch.
- Butter – Brings it all together.
- Sea salt – Just a pinch of salt!
- Water – For cooking the oats.
- Rolled oats – The warm, hearty base. Get certified gluten-free if needed.
- Apple – Any apple works great, but grannysmith, fuji, or honeycrisp would be our top picks as they're firmer so they hold their shape.
- Pureed pumpkin – The star of the show, straight from a can.
- Pumpkin pie spice blend – Adds fall flavors and warmth. We have an easy recipe using spice rack staples.
What is in pumpkin pie spice?
It's a warm autumnal spice blend made from common pantry spices to add an incredible fall flavor to all your seasonal cooking. It's made from ground cinnamon, nutmeg, ground ginger, allspice, and cloves. The blend is called pumpkin pie spice because it's all the spices used in pumpkin pie. You can find it at your grocery store or make your own pumpkin pie spice using our recipe!
How to make pumpkin oatmeal
This stovetop recipe is a simple and wholesome start to your day. Here are the steps:
- Make the maple pecans: Add pecans, maple syrup, butter, and salt in a small frying pan. Once the maple syrup boils, stir until the contents of the pan dry up. Then transfer them onto a piece of parchment paper and let them cool.
- Make the oatmeal: Add water, old-fashioned oats, and diced apple to a small pot and heat until it reaches a boil. Reduce to a simmer for five minutes before stirring in the pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice blend.
- Top it off: Say good morning to your pumpkin oatmeal topped with maple pecans!
What is the secret to the best oatmeal?
Good oatmeal is truly a revelation. No mushy bowls of oatmeal around here! Have a look at these quick tips for making delicious oatmeal, every time:
- Use the right oats: The best oatmeal happens when the oats maintain their texture. Old-fashioned rolled oats hold their shape, providing a satisfying bite. If you prefer a heartier oatmeal, avoid quick oats.
- Balance the liquids: A combination of water and milk can make for a creamy yet not too dense consistency. This recipe uses pumpkin puree to moisten without becoming mushy.
- Remember to salt: A pinch of salt enhances the flavor. Its a subtle addition but it changes the game.
- Add flavor early: Add any spice powder or flavorings early on so the oats can soak up the flavor.
- Top it off: We believe the toppings make the dish! See our list of variations for more topping suggestions.
More pumpkin recipes
More oatmeal toppings
The maple pecans are so great with this recipe – we'd recommend making a big batch and keeping them on hand to throw into salads or similar! If you want to customize your oatmeal, here are some other suggested toppings:
- Crunch time: Add pumpkin seeds or chia seeds, other chopped nuts, or crunchy granola clusters for contrast in texture.
- Fresh or dried fruits: Almonds, banana slices, berries, raisins, or cranberries work well.
- Sweet things: Drizzle with pure maple syrup, honey, or agave syrup for extra sweetness, or a splash of vanilla extract enhances the overall flavor profile. If you're feeling indulgent, throw in some chocolate chips or sprinkle on some brown sugar or coconut sugar!
- Milk alternatives: Use cashew or almond milk instead of water for a slightly creamier oatmeal.
Can I use quick oats?
You can. This recipe calls for old-fashioned oats, also referred to as rolled oats, as they provide the best texture. If you decide to use another type of oats, like quick oats to save time or steel-cut oats, be sure to check the cooking instructions on the label and adjust the cooking time accordingly.
How do I make this dairy-free, vegan, or gluten-free?
Substitute the butter for your favorite dairy-free version to make this oatmeal dairy-free and vegan! When it comes to gluten, just be sure to check the oats you are using are certified gluten-free.
Can you store cooked oatmeal in the refrigerator?
While oatmeal is best when it's warm and freshly cooked, you can store it in the fridge. Let the cooked oatmeal cool down to room temperature, then put it in an airtight container, and keep it in the fridge for 3-4 days. Add a splash of liquid when reheating.
- ¼ cup pecans
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon butter (dairy-free if needed)
- 1 pinch sea salt
- 2 cups water
- 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats (gluten-free if needed)
- 1 small apple (diced)
- ½ cup pureed pumpkin
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- Mix the pecans, maple syrup, butter, and salt in a small frying pan over medium-high heat. When the maple syrup starts to boil stir the pan until it is dry.¼ cup pecans, 1 tablespoon maple syrup, ½ teaspoon butter, 1 pinch sea salt
- Transfer the maple pecans to a piece of parchment paper and let them cool.
- Add the water, oats, and diced apple to a small pot over medium-high heat. Bring the pot to a boil then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring a few times.1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats, 1 small apple, ½ cup pureed pumpkin, 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, 2 cups water
- Add the pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice and stir it into the oatmeal.
- Serve the pumpkin oatmeal topped with the maple pecans.
We have thoroughly tested this recipe for accuracy. However, individual results may vary. See our full recipe disclosure here.