Hacking the Instant Oatmeal Packet, Part II

Read Part I here.

Hi friends!

Recently, I was traveling home for my brother’s wedding. The hotel did not offer a free continental breakfast (what is that nonsense??), so I decided to pack some oatmeal. I knew I would have minimal resources at my disposal, and I didn’t want to eat flavorless porridge, so I packed my Matcha Marketplace oatmeal packets (the blueberry coconut flavor).

It was the perfect solution. Cooked with nothing but water, it created a delicious oatmeal and I didn’t feel like I was “settling.” This ignited an unusual interest in flavored oatmeal packets, and I started thinking about ways to enhance the typical packet experience.

Here’s my first: Maple & Brown Sugar Oatmeal + Pumpkin puree. That’s it!

#Oatmeal hack: add pumpkin to a Maple & Brown Sugar packet. ?

A photo posted by Lauren Smith (@oatmealartist) on

I have added banana before, but I think pumpkin works even better because the banana adds sweetness to an already sweet oatmeal. Pumpkin solves this problem because it is bitter and earthy, and it needs the sweetness from the oatmeal packet.

Prepare the oatmeal as directed, and stir in 1/3 cup pumpkin puree. I topped mine with PB&Co Cinnamon Raisin Peanut Butter, coconut, and pecans. ?

More ideas for Maple & Brown Sugar:

  • Stir in mashed sweet potato
  • Stir in unsweetened applesauce (it takes on a kind of apple pie taste)
  • Stir in unsweetened chestnut puree
  • Add instant coffee granules
  • Cook 1-2 servings of quinoa porridge and add the Maple & Brown Sugar packet in the last five minutes (it will create a multigrain porridge, with a more mild maple & brown sugar flavor)

Do you have any oatmeal packet hacks? Or do you have ideas for more hacks I can try?

About Lauren Smith

Lauren is a herbivore, Slytherin, and connoisseur of oats. She is a former teacher who is currently studying to earn a master's degree in curriculum development. You can follow her on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and Facebook.

4 Responses to Hacking the Instant Oatmeal Packet, Part II

  1. Heidi says:

    This is absolutely genius! Never thought about adding to my instant oatmeal packets. I usually just make my own instant oatmeal packets using quick cooking oats, salt, and dried fruit. Love how we can be so creative with oatmeal!

  2. My mom and I once had to finish off the instant packs of EnviroKids Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal. They were good because they use wholesome ingredients, but they weren’t as fun to work with. But that didn’t stop me from topping it with the usual standbys of chocolate and sunflower butter or making a rainbow colored post. If another apple cinnamon instant pack of oatmeal sneaks into the pantry again, I’ll try adding more cinnamon, raisins and/or craisins, caramel, nuts or seeds, pumpkin or sweet potato, pears, berries, honey, dates, brussel sprouts, or the usual standbys.

  3. Christine says:

    I loved your post last year about how to spruce up pre-flavored oatmeal! I still buy the pre-flavored packets on occasion because they’re convenient, but now I always add my own ingredients because it makes them taste more like a bowl of homemade oatmeal. Here are some of my favorite combinations:

    – Giant Food’s Limoncello oatmeal with mashed overripe banana, topped with slivered almonds and plain Greek yogurt

    – Whole Foods’ Gingerbread oatmeal with mashed overripe banana, 1/4 tsp vanilla extract, and a dash of allspice, topped with pecans and plain Greek yogurt

    – Quaker Protein Banana Nut oatmeal with pureed zucchini, 1/4 tsp vanilla extract, and a dash of cinnamon, topped with plain Greek yogurt

    I’ve also tried a recipe I found on Pinterest where you use a packet of instant oatmeal to make a single serving pancake.

    Another tip is that if you have the regular flavor of oatmeal packets, you can use them to make any of the Oatmeal Artist’s stovetop recipes, but in the microwave. I used a packet of regular instant oatmeal to make Basic Banana Oatmeal, topped with Butter Pecan PB2.

  4. Ohohoho, free continental breakfasts and free breakfast buffets are my FAVORITE features of hotels. If there isn’t one, I ain’t stayin’, just sayin’. 😉

    Anyways, I rarely ever use instant oatmeal packets, but whenever I do, I just go crazy with toppings! Fruits, nuts, seeds, peanut butter, jam, granola and so much more! Adding in sweet potato, however, is a GENIUS idea!

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