This easy and incredibly delicious apple oatmeal bake will quickly become your new favorite breakfast recipe. With just ten minutes of prep time and a handful of familiar ingredients, you will have breakfast set for days. Oh, and cranberries are optional but highly recommended!
I have been making baked oatmeal for years. It's not a dish that I grew up with but one that quickly won me over when I was introduced to it as a young adult. It's nutrient dense, easy to make, leftovers can easily be re-heated (hello easy breakfasts and school lunches!), and it's so good!
But now that we are hooked on this apple baked oatmeal, I often double this recipe so that I have enough left over for my kids to reheat themselves before school. I do the same when I make pancakes and pumpkin waffles. It's such a time saver!
I actually started making baked oatmeal for my kids as soon as they could eat it. I would freeze leftovers in ice cube trays (okay, I was actually re-purposing my breastmilk freezer trays, lol) and send it to daycare with them.
But now that I have three kids with big appetites, I store leftovers in the fridge so my kids can reheat it the next morning for a quick breakfast. So easy!
Oh, and if you love cranberries as much as we do, you've got to make my cranberry sauce!
Why You'll Love This Recipe
Let your kids cozy up with this comforting Fall-inspired baked oatmeal.
- Breakfast recipe that kids love.
- Simple ingredients.
- Easy recipe.
- High in fiber so your kids can feel full longer.
- One bowl for mixing, so clean up is a breeze.
- Leftovers can easily be re-heated for a quick and easy breakfast the next morning or to be sent in a thermos for a hot school lunch.
- Apple High in fiber (both soluble and insoluble), contain vitamin C, and are rich in the antioxidant quercetin. You can use any apple to make this recipe. I've used Gala, Cortland, and Pink Lady apples. For more of an apple pie flavor, try using granny smith apples.
- Cranberries Beautiful in color, have a tart flavor, and contain a variety of vitamins and antioxidants.
- Applesauce Use unsweetened applesauce. Applesauce adds natural sweetness and helps smooth out the consistency of baked oatmeal.
- Oats Use Old Fashioned Rolled Oats. Whole oats are a whole grain. They provide a source of soluble fiber, which is good for the heart and will help your kids feel full longer. The American Heart Association recommends that at least half of your grains come from whole grains.
- Milk Good source of protein and calcium. I use skim milk but use what you have.
- Oil I use extra-virgin olive oil because it contains heart-healthy fats. If you don't have olive oil, a neutral flavored oil can be used instead.
- Eggs High in protein. Eggs help bind the recipe together.
Photo Credit: amazon.com
Here's a quick overview of the steps to make this kid-favorite baked oatmeal. For the full list of ingredients and specific instructions, scroll down to the recipe.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Spread diced apples and cranberries (if using) over the bottom of a prepared baking dish (use one 8x8 or 9x9 baking dish coated with cooking spray or a light coating of oil).
- Whisk all other dry and wet ingredients together in a medium mixing bowl.
- Pour the oatmeal mixture over the apples and cranberries. Spread the mixture out evenly.
- Bake in the oven for 35 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown.
- Remove from oven and let sit for five minutes before serving.
- Serve 'as is' or with a splash of milk. My kids prefer it with a splash of milk.
Thank you, apple baked oatmeal! This recipe is one that all three of my kids love and that they can easily heat up themselves (leftovers, that is).
Let your kids experiment with how they like it served. Some might choose to eat it as is, while others will like it served with a splash of milk which cools and softens the oatmeal.
Some might like the flavor of dried cranberries instead of fresh, while others might prefer it with just apple (no cranberries). For me, when fresh cranberries are in season, I add them. Otherwise, I make this with just apple.
And, aside from a splash of milk, your kid might enjoy adding a dollop of Greek yogurt, a handful of chopped walnuts, or a drizzle of maple syrup to their serving.
- Use a good quality kitchen knife to cut apples into pieces.
- Do not peel the apples. This saves time and helps to optimize the fiber content.
- If you choose to double this recipe, use a 9x11 or 9x13 baking dish.
- For single-serve individual portions, pour mixture into a greased muffin tin and bake for about 25 minutes.
- Do not shorten the baking time unless you are using a muffin tin instead of a baking dish. Kids do not want to bite into a cranberry that has not softened.
- When heated to just the right temperature, cranberries pop. If they haven't popped on their own, kids can pop them by pressing down on a cranberry with a fork or spoon.
- Store leftovers in an airtight food-storage container. Refrigerate and use within three to four days.
- Leftovers can easily be reheated in the microwave.
- To make this dairy free for kids with an allergy to cow's milk, use a milk alternative (examples: oat milk or almond milk).
Yes! Freeze leftovers in a freezer-safe food container. Use within three to six months.
Yes! I freeze cranberries every year. Simply place them in a freezer safe freezer bag before freezing.
Yes! To do this using this recipe, simply pour the mixture into a greased muffin tin and reduce the baking time to about 22 minutes. Let cool and then refrigerate or freeze into single-serve portions. For reference, my youngest child eats the equivalent of one and my oldest eats the equivalent of three muffin sized portions.
More Easy Breakfast Recipes
Did your kids love this apple oatmeal bake? Be sure to comment below to share your feedback, and don't forget to snap a pic of this delicious baked oatmeal and tag @carrots.and.cookies on Instagram. Enjoy!
Apple Oatmeal Bake
- Preheat oven to 375° Fahrenheit
- Core and chop the apple into small pieces. Leave the peel on.
- Spread apple pieces and fresh cranberries to cover the bottom of an 8x8 or 9x9 greased baking dish.
- Mix all other ingredients together in a medium mixing bowl.
- Pour oat mixture evenly out over apples and cranberries.
- Bake at 375° for 35 minutes.
- Remove from oven. If serving immediately, cool the baked oatmeal down by adding a splash of milk before giving it to your kids. Enjoy!