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Embrace the spirit of summer at any time of the year with this delightful coconut oatmeal. Simmered to perfection in rich, velvety coconut milk and then topped with a crown of fresh fruits, it's a light and summery way to begin your day. It's quick, wholesome, nutritious, and bursting with tropical flavors – like a piña colada in oatmeal form!
Creamy, warm oatmeal is the best way to start the day! Try this peanut butter oatmeal next.
This dish confirms it – oatmeal is for every season! The thing about oatmeal is it's only as exciting as what you put in it. Simmering oats in creamy coconut milk gives them a luscious texture and a tropical flavor. It strikes the ideal balance between hearty oats, indulgent coconut, and fresh fruits, satisfying you for hours to come.
This coconut oatmeal is made from these simple, wholesome ingredients:
- Rolled oats: Also referred to as old-fashioned oats, they're filling and nutritious.
- Coconut milk: Infuses a rich and creamy texture alongside its delightful coconut flavor. Use full fat for a richer, creamier oatmeal with a deeper coconut flavor, or light to skimp some of the calories.
- Water: Helps to cook the oats and get the consistency perfect.
- Fruit trio: Add orange, mango, and banana for fresh sweetness and a tropical flair!
- Optional toppings: Shredded coconut, extra coconut milk, coconut, or brown sugar.
How to make coconut oatmeal
Making this coconut milk oatmeal is easier than planning a beach holiday – but they're kind of the same thing! It's a one-pot stovetop recipe. Here are the instructions:
- Cook the oatmeal: Add oats, coconut milk, and water into the pot and bring it to a boil. Give it a good stir and then let it gently simmer for around 15 minutes, until they are soft.
- Prepare fruits: Slice your fruits while the oatmeal simmers.
- Serve and enjoy: Divide it into bowls and top with the fruits, then let your taste buds enjoy their tropical vacation!
Tips for cooking coconut oatmeal
Here are some tips for cooking your oats in creamy coconut milk:
- Type of coconut milk: You will find either full-fat coconut milk or lighter versions. Full-fat will produce a richer, creamier oatmeal, while light coconut milk offers a milder coconut taste with fewer calories.
- Oat selection: The finest oatmeal is achieved when the oats retain their texture for a satisfying bite. Old-fashioned rolled oats hold their shape well so if you prefer a heartier oatmeal, avoid quick oats.
- Liquid ratios: Tailor the coconut milk-to-water ratio to achieve your preferred consistency. Water thins it out, while coconut milk enhances creaminess.
- Temperature: Coconut milk can separate or curdle when boiled, so keep your eye on the heat and let it simmer gently.
- Cook time: Texture is a personal preference. A longer cooking time results in a thicker porridge. If you prefer it thicker, let it cook longer. But for a thinner texture you can either take it off the heat sooner or thin it out with an extra dash of coconut milk.
- Top it off: Mix up the toppings according to the season – the suggested toppings are perfect in the summer! In the fall, stewed berries, warming spices, or crunchy nuts are a cozy addition.
The tropical vibes of this coconut oatmeal make this warming dish a summer delight, but you can play with the toppings to suit any season! Here are our suggestions:
- Chopped nuts: Add crunch with a handful of slivered almonds, or some chopped hazelnuts, walnuts, or pecans.
- Other fresh fruits: Any fresh fruits taste great in this oatmeal! Blueberries and peaches are at the top of our list, or stewed berries in the fall.
- Dried fruits: Raisins, dried apricots, cranberries, or dates taste great.
- Sweeteners: Mix in some chocolate chips, vanilla extract, or brown sugar for an extra dash of sweetness. Chocolate works great with the banana! Or, drizzle some maple syrup or honey.
- Chia seed: Boost nutrition with high-fiber and omega-3 rich chia seeds. They also absorb water, so adding them will result in a pudding like texture.
- Spices: Enhance the warmth by adding a sprinkle of cinnamon, nutmeg, or cardamom for an aromatic touch.
- Nut butter: A spoonful of almond or peanut butter adds creaminess and a nutty undertone.
- Coconut cream: Swap out the can of coconut milk for coconut cream for a thicker, extra rich, and indulgent texture. Use water as needed to balance the consistency.
- Protein powder: add a spoonful of your favorite protein powder for an extra boost to start your day.
Can I make this coconut milk oatmeal gluten-free, dairy-free, or vegan?
It already is! Just be sure to get certified gluten-free oats and to check the product labels for any additives.
Can I use another type of oats?
You can, however, it is important to note that the cooking time and texture will vary. We like rolled oats as they maintain their texture. Steel-cut oats require a longer cooking time, around 20-30 minutes. Instant oats cook rapidly and won't soak up the flavors as well.
Can I make this oatmeal ahead of time?
Sure! You can make it ahead and warm it up when you're ready. Or try these overnight oats.
Can I store leftover oatmeal?
Yes, when storing leftovers, place them in an air-tight container and leave them in the fridge for 3-5 days. When reheating, add a splash of liquid (milk, water, coconut milk) and heat over a gentle simmer.
- 1 cup rolled oats (gluten-free, if needed)
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1 cup water
- 1 orange
- 1 mango (diced)
- 1 banana (sliced)
- Optional toppings: shredded coconut, extra coconut milk, coconut or brown sugar
- Add the oats, coconut milk, and water to a small pot over high heat. Bring the pot to a boil, stir, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes, or until the oats are soft.1 cup rolled oats, 1 cup coconut milk, 1 cup water
- While the coconut oatmeal is cooking, slice the top and the bottom off the orange. Place the orange on your cutting board and cut off the rind then slice it into circles.1 orange
- Divide the coconut oatmeal between two bowls and then top with the orange slices, mango, banana, and any or all of the optional toppings.1 mango, 1 banana, Optional toppings: shredded coconut, extra coconut milk, coconut or brown sugar
We have thoroughly tested this recipe for accuracy. However, individual results may vary. See our full recipe disclosure here.