Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal | Slow Cooker or Instant Pot

Apple cinnamon oatmeal made with steel cut oats and filled with soft apple chunks. You can make this apple cinnamon oatmeal in your slow cooker or an instant pot!

Tuesday, October 29 is National Oatmeal Day! Needless to say, this a holiday I’m happy to celebrate because I love oatmeal and have a ton of healthy oatmeal recipes to prove it. On Tuesday night I made a big batch of steel cut apple cinnamon oatmeal in my slow cooker. I’ve made overnight steel-cut oats on the stove top before, but never cooked them in my slow cooker so I was apprehensive about how it would turn out.

Healthy apple cinnamon oatmeal in bowl topped with apple chunks and cinnamon.

Bowl of healthy apple cinnamon oatmeal topped with chunks of apples, cinnamon, and peanut butter. Slices of apple and a stick of cinnamon are around the bowl.

I put the ingredients for the apple cinnamon oatmeal together and started the slow cooker around 10PM, went to bed and upon waking up at 6AM, our house smelled like baked apples and my oats were perfectly cooked and waiting for me to dig in — quite a lovely circumstance to wake up to if you ask me. The only thing I needed to whip up was a pot of coffee.

Bowl of healthy apple cinnamon oatmeal made with steel cut oats and topped with cinnamon and chunks of apple, and a dollop of peanut butter.

These apple cinnamon steel cut oats are oh so creamy and I love the chunks of cooked apples and warm cinnamon spiciness. The recipe makes four servings of oatmeal so you can share with others (this would be great for a holiday brunch) or use it as a meal prep recipe and save the leftover oatmeal for a quick breakfast throughout the week — just let the leftover oatmeal cool and place in the refrigerator for up to one week. Simply reheat the oatmeal on the stove top or in the microwave. Just add a little water or milk when reheating if it’s too thick.

Spatula stirring a crock pot of healthy apple cinnamon oatmeal made with steel cut oats and apple chunks.

Instant Pot Instructions

The best part? I’ve tested this apple cinnamon oatmeal recipe in the slow cooker and the Instant Pot so I’m giving instructions for both within the recipe!

I note this in the recipe, but the big difference between cooking the apple cinnamon oatmeal in the slow cooker and the Instant Pot is the amount of liquid. For the slow cooker you need 4 cups of liquid and for the Instant Pot you only need 2 cups. It can be water or almond milk, whichever you prefer. Almond milk will make for creamier oatmeal.

As always, if you try this apple cinnamon oatmeal recipe please be sure to leave a comment letting me know how it turned out. Your feedback is so helpful for the EBF team and other readers!

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Bowl of healthy apple cinnamon oatmeal made with steel cut oats and topped with cinnamon and chunks of apple, and a dollop of peanut butter.

Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal

  • Author: Brittany Mullins
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 6 hours
  • Total Time: 6 hours
  • Yield: 4
  • Diet: Vegetarian


Apple cinnamon oatmeal made with steel cut oats and filled with soft apple chunks. You can make this apple cinnamon oatmeal in your slow cooker or an instant pot!


  • cooking spray, butter or coconut oil
  • 1 cup steel cut oats
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups Almond Breeze unsweetened vanilla almond milk*
  • 1 cup chopped apple pieces
  • 1 Tablespoon maple syrup + 5 drops of liquid stevia (or other sweetener of choice)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • toppings: chopped nuts, nut butter, extra maple syrup, coconut sugar


  1. For the slow cooker: Coat slow cooker with cooking spray, butter or coconut oil. Add all the ingredients besides the toppings into slow cooker and mix well. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. Place in a bowl to serve and sprinkle on toppings of choice.
  2. For the Instant Pot: Add all ingredients except the toppings to your Instant Pot, but be sure to only use 2 cups of liquid (water or almond milk) instead of 4 cups. Cover with the lid and turn the vent to “sealing.” Press the manual button and set time to 4 minutes on high pressure. The Instant Pot will automatically start. Once done cooking, allow the pressure to naturally release. Once all the pressure has released carefully remove the lid and stir the oatmeal and serve.
  3. For leftovers: Let the oatmeal cool and place in a sealed container in the fridge for up to a week. You can reheat the oatmeal on the stovetop or microwave. Just add a little additional milk to loosen the oatmeal, if needed.


  • The big difference between cooking the apple cinnamon oatmeal in the slow cooker and the Instant Pot is the amount of liquid. For the slow cooker you need 4 cups of liquid and for the Instant Pot you only need 2 cups. It can be water or almond milk, whichever you prefer. Almond milk will make for creamier oatmeal.
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Slow Cooker
  • Cuisine: American


  • Serving Size: 1/4 of recipe without toppings
  • Calories: 158
  • Sugar: 3g
  • Fat: 4g
  • Carbohydrates: 26g
  • Fiber: 4g
  • Protein: 5g

Keywords: apple cinnamon oatmeal, slow cooker apple cinnamon oatmeal, Instant Pot apple cinnamon oatmeal

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Recipe rating

    1. Lija Wills
      March 2, 2021 AT 12:00 pm

      Haven’t tried this yet, but I’m wondering, if I only have rolled oats, what would be the timing for the Instapot? I’ve never liked steel cut oats.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        March 2, 2021 AT 11:36 pm

        Hey Lija – I haven’t tried rolled oats in the instant pot, so I’m not too sure. Here’s an instant pot recipe that maybe you could use as a reference! Let me know if you try it and how it turns out.

    2. Patricia Helms
      February 28, 2021 AT 9:48 am

      I love recipes that are effortless but healthy and tasty. I made this recipe before in my crock pot and what a treat. The leftovers were as delicious as the first dish. I’m about to make another batch – love not having to always think about what’s for breakfast when I wake up. Also want to give kudos to Blue Diamond Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk. Use it all the time.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        February 28, 2021 AT 11:32 pm

        Ahh yay!! So glad you loved this recipe, Patricia! Thanks for the review. I so appreciate it!

    3. Kevin
      January 3, 2021 AT 10:00 pm

      Thanks for the recipe can’t wait to try I’ll let you know how it turns out , love steel cut oats

    4. Kaitlyn Reilly
      October 14, 2020 AT 11:19 am

      What other liquid sweeteners s would work? Could I use honey? How much would you recommend, or just use more maple syrup?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        October 14, 2020 AT 11:31 am

        Yes, you can use honey or agave or any liquid sweetener of your choice and it can be subbed 1:1 with the maple syrup!

    5. Sarah Williams
      October 9, 2020 AT 11:06 am

      Sounds amazing and can’t wait to try this. What do you think about replacing some or all of the water with apple cider or apple juice? Think it would work?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        October 9, 2020 AT 2:44 pm

        Definitely! It will just add more sugar, but I bet it’d be delicious!

    6. Missi
      October 2, 2020 AT 9:57 am

      Can I substitute GF oats instead of steel cut? And if so would I need to adjust the liquid for slow cooker? I have fresh picked apples I’d love to use for this for a warm yummy fall treat! Thanks!

      1. Angela Schweda
        December 6, 2020 AT 8:00 pm

        If you don’t have almond milk on hand wpuld oat milk work?

        1. Brittany Mullins
          December 6, 2020 AT 8:59 pm

          Totally. Actually any milk you have on hand will work. 🙂

      2. Brittany Mullins
        October 3, 2020 AT 10:08 pm

        Hey Missi, If you’re looking for an apple oatmeal recipe to make with rolled oats, I would make this apple baked oatmeal. I don’t think the recipe would work with rolled oats since they cook much faster than steel cut oats.

    7. Lena
      June 15, 2020 AT 12:10 am

      For the instapot option, are you suggesting only 2 cups water or to choose between 2 cups water or 2 cups almond milk? Thank you! I love your oatmeal recipe options!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        June 17, 2020 AT 5:50 pm

        For the instapot, you only need 2 cups of liquid total – so either 2 cups of water, 2 cups of milk or 1 of each. 🙂

        1. hope
          October 27, 2020 AT 1:26 pm

          If you only use milk in the instant pot do you wait to add it or add it with everything?

          1. Brittany Mullins
            October 27, 2020 AT 4:22 pm

            For the instant pot you only need 2 cups of liquid total, it can be water or almond milk, whichever you prefer and you’d want to add it in with everything else.

            1. Lisa
              January 3, 2021 AT 10:05 pm

              Instant Pot directions say “add all ingredients except almond milk”??

              1. Brittany Mullins
                January 4, 2021 AT 9:57 am

                Hi Lisa! I can see where that’s confusing. It was instructed like that because you only need 2 cups of liquid instead of 4 cups. I’ve updated the instructions so it’s more clear!

    8. Allie
      June 6, 2020 AT 9:10 am

      Just made this in the crockpot for the first time and it was a huge hit with myself and two young kids! Healthy, delicious, and so convenient! I love how simple it is and that it’s already ready for breakfast the next morning. Will definitely add this to my weekly breakfast meal planning list! Thank you!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        June 8, 2020 AT 12:02 pm

        Ahh that makes me so happy to hear, Allie. I’m so glad this oatmeal was a hit. Thanks for making it and for coming back to leave a comment + star rating. I really appreciate it. 🙂

    9. Terry Cannon
      November 25, 2019 AT 9:37 am

      My new Instapot mini arrived yesterday and I broke it in making a soup. But I’ve been wanting to try this recipe in the slow cooker so I set it up as a slow cooker for 8 hours and it turned out perfect.

      I used 4 cups of water since I don’t keep any non-dairy milk around. I also used two tablespoons of maple syrup.

      I was delighted with the results. It couldn’t have turned out any better! This breakfast will become a staple for me.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        December 2, 2019 AT 4:02 pm

        Woo-hoo! Thanks for trying this recipe, Terry. I’m so glad you enjoyed it. 🙂 And thank you for taking the time to come back and leave a comment + star rating. The reviews are super helpful to other readers, so I appreciate it!

    10. Alyson
      June 17, 2019 AT 7:50 pm

      I tried making this in my 8qt instant pot but halved the recipe. I got a burn notice so added another cup of water and tried again and still got burn notice ;-(

    11. Melissa
      November 12, 2018 AT 8:03 am

      I enjoyed this today with a red pear instead of apple. And I didn’t have stevia so I added an extra half tablespoon of maple syrup instead and that resulted in the right level of sweetness for me. Also because the last time I made steel cut oats in the Instant Pot I thought they were too hard, I added an extra half cup of liquid and the texture was more to my liking. Thanks for another great recipe!

    12. Julie
      February 16, 2015 AT 4:33 pm

      if you would post nutrition values, that would also be a big help. Thank you.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        February 16, 2015 AT 5:21 pm

        Just updated the nutrition info for you, Julie. If you ever see a recipe that doesn’t have it, you can always use the recipe importer function on MyFitnessPal as well. That’s what I use and it’s pretty awesome! 🙂

    13. Karen
      February 8, 2015 AT 10:34 am

      My doctor said I needed to quit eating my highly processed, heavily sugared maple brown sugar oatmeal, so I gave this a try. As I ate a bowl his morning, I went from “well, it’s okay” to “steel cut oatmeal, where have you been all my life?” Thanks for posting the recipe!

    14. Jan
      September 7, 2014 AT 12:23 am

      I just finished making this recipe. Can barely wait to taste in the morning. Have recently changes my diet to include healthier food. This seems healthy and filling! Will let you know the outcome. Thanks!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        September 7, 2014 AT 3:53 pm

        Yay! I hope it made your Sunday morning extra delicious.

    15. teresa
      July 19, 2014 AT 5:25 am

      i luv this & have it every morning i top it with chia & hemp seeds then mixed berries its a bowl full of nutrition & sustained energy

    16. Elizabeth
      June 22, 2014 AT 6:39 pm

      Hi! This looks fantastic! We have a slow cooker that I need to use more often and am going to give this a whirl today – I’m just wondering: My family recipe for apple oatmeal includes shredding the apple and throwing it in the pot – do you think I could do that here or would it release too much of the apple juice? The recipe we use (I think??) cuts down on the milk to allow for the apples to cook more in their own juice but I’d really like to not screw this up! I don’t have a basis for “normal” liquid ratios in steel cut oats so I’m wondering if you think I could get away with shredding the apple.

      1. Brittany Mullins
        June 22, 2014 AT 7:29 pm

        Hi Elizabeth. The recipe calls for 1 cup of apple pieces. I think it would be fine if you used shredded apple instead! I hope it turns out well for you!

        1. Elizabeth
          June 22, 2014 AT 7:41 pm

          Thank you, I will let you know!

    17. Denise
      June 1, 2014 AT 10:52 pm

      How big is a serving size?

      1. Brittany Mullins
        June 1, 2014 AT 11:26 pm

        About 3/4-1 cup.

    18. kelly
      April 5, 2014 AT 5:11 pm

      Do you peel the apples? I like to include skins when I can (for nutrition) but I’m not sure if it will work well in this recipe.

      1. kelly
        April 7, 2014 AT 9:00 am

        As an update I did not peel the apples and it was great. The skin just gave it a little crunch. I also used sweetened almond milk (it was all I had in the fridge) and skipped the sweetener and maple syrup and it still came out really tastey. I would rate the recipe 5 stars but my phone is being silly about it.

        1. Brittany Mullins
          April 7, 2014 AT 9:42 am

          Hi Kelly. I’m so sorry I missed your first comment. I didn’t peel the apples either. I like the extra crunch too. So glad you enjoyed the recipe.

    19. Joan
      March 9, 2014 AT 11:07 pm

      Anyone have nutritional info. for this recipe (as prepared above, minus any toppings)? Need it to convert to WW Plus points.
      Making it tonight – can’t wait for morning! 😛

    20. Lauri
      March 1, 2014 AT 2:09 pm

      I’m not a good guesser when it comes to what size crock pot a recipe was cooked in. Could you please post that? I’m thinking 2qt but I’ve been wrong before. Thank you. It looks delicious!

      1. Brittany Mullins
        March 2, 2014 AT 5:50 pm

        Hi Lauri, I cooked this in a 6 qt crockpot.

    21. Alison
      February 10, 2014 AT 2:30 pm

      I made this last week, and I’m making it again tonight. So delicious and easy!! Thank you so much for this recipe!

    22. Sheronna
      February 1, 2014 AT 5:11 pm

      Found this page through Google. U tried it last night & it must have been good because there was no more when i got up. My daughter ate two servings. I did use less water by 1/2 cup and I added craisins before starting the cooker. Thanks for the recipe.

      1. Eating Bird Food
        February 1, 2014 AT 10:43 pm

        Oh wow! I’m so glad your daughter liked it. You’ll have to make another batch. 🙂

    23. stephanie
      January 29, 2014 AT 11:50 am

      Hi. I just made this and it was great! I have lots of leftovers. I know I can freeze them but j was wondering if anyone knew a way to.use them in something such as cookies or muffins.

    24. Kristen
      January 27, 2014 AT 10:29 pm

      Just put this in the crockpot for the morning, I can’t wait to see how it turns out. Thanks!

    25. Stephhanie
      January 23, 2014 AT 10:19 am

      Hi there, this recipe sounds great! I am going to give it a try tonight and double it up. Do you think it would freeze well?

      1. Eating Bird Food
        January 23, 2014 AT 10:51 am

        Awesome. I’ve never frozen oatmeal so I’m not 100% sure but let me know how it goes if you try it! 🙂

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