Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal
Updated: Mar 18
I can't think of a better way to start off a cool fall morning than with a hot bowl of hearty oatmeal filled with warm spices, sweet maple syrup, and crunchy earthy pecans. I love adding fresh pumpkin purée to this oatmeal as it truly tastes like a slice of pumpkin spice heaven! The next time you have a few minutes to enjoy a hearty and hot breakfast, give this a try and you will not be disappointed.
If you are anything like me, fall is pumpkin season, period. Yeah, there are other things like apples and such but for some reason when the leaves start turning and there's a crispness to the air, I become obsessed with pumpkin. If you haven't ever made your own pumpkin purée, you are missing out! Fresh, homemade pumpkin purée is a total game changer and it's so easy to do! Check out my easy homemade pumpkin purée recipe HERE and make all your pumpkin treats this season next level!
Why Oatmeal is So Good For You!
First, let's dive into the nutrition of oatmeal, the benefits from adding this gluten free grain to your diet, and the different types of oatmeal and my personal recommendation as a nutritionist.
Nutriton in Oatmeal
Oatmeal is a gluten free grain that is a great source of macronutrients, B vitamins, minerals, and fiber! Although oatmeal is high in carbohydrates, it contains a fair amount of fat, protein and fiber that helps to slow the absorption of the carbohydrates making this a low-medium glycemic food . And when prepared with other nutrient dense foods like pure pumpkin purée and whole milk or plant milk, you have a super nutritious food that supports health blood sugars.
Vitamin B1 (thiamine): A water soluble vitamin that is essential in glucose metabolism and supports health heart and nervous system function.
Vitamin B3 (niacin): Essential in supporting metabolic pathways.
Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid): Essential in metabolic pathways, production of red blood cells, and in supporting the adrenals.
Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine): Essential in supporting a healthy and strong immune system
Vitamin B9 (folate): Essential in metabolic pathways, in the production of red and white blood cells, and is essential in pregnancy in the development of the neural tube.
Calcium: Supports healthy bones and teeth and is essential in nervous system health, heart health, and muscle movement.
Copper: Essential mineral in the formation of red blood cells and in supporting cardiovascular health and immune function .
Iron: Necessary in the formation of hemoglobin and maintaining proper body temperature.
Magnesium: The fourth most abundant mineral in the body, it support healthy nerve functions, healthy blood pressure, and detoxification.
Manganese: Essential mineral in supporting blood sugar regulation, glucose metabolism, and supporting healthy brain and nerve function .
Phosphorus: Supports healthy teeth and bones, muscle recovery after working out, and detoxification.
Zinc: Essential in digestion, thyroid health, and a healthy immune system.
There are two primary types of fiber found in whole grains and the other plants we eat, insoluble and soluble. Insoluble fiber helps to keep our digestive tracts healthy and helps with detoxification. Soluble fiber is beneficial and feeds the good microbes in our gut. Oatmeal is loaded with both of these amazing fibers and another fiber called beta-glucan. This fiber has been found to support cardiovascular health by lowering cholesterol and is a super food that supports overall health and wellbeing 
Which Oatmeal Should I Choose?
With so many types of oatmeal out there, which ones are the healthiest and most nutrient dense? One thing you want to think about is looking for the most "whole" version of the grain, this is going to be the least processed, and if you can find sprouted, even better!! Sprouting increases the nutrient density of the grain and the bioavailability of it by reducing the phytates, which are anti-nutrients that reduce absorption of nutrients.
Types of Oatmeal
Oat Groats : These are the most whole food and intact version of oats you can find. The hull of the grain has been removed, but it has not been processed any further. These oats take the longest to cook (around 40-minutes) but are nutty and delicious!
Steel Cut Oats: These oats are also called Irish oats and are basically whole oat groats that have been cut into 2-4 pieces with a steel blade. They still take a bit of time to cook (around 30-minutes), but they have a chewy texture and are a great whole food option!
Old Fashioned/Rolled Oats: These oats are the whole oat groat that has been steamed and rolled. These are my favorite oats as they are still the whole grain and only take about 10-minutes to cook!
Instant/Quick Oats: These oats are not my favorite oat when I want a bowl of oatmeal since they are processed more heavily and rolled even thinner than the rolled oats. They do not have the same chewy texture, but only take a few minutes (less than 5-minutes) to cook. These oats are my preferred oats when making homemade granola bars, breads or oatmeal cookies.
Should I Buy Organic Oats?
Yes, yes, yes!! Every single type of oat and oat product that you buy should be organic if possible. Conventional oats are often genetically modified (GMO) and one of the most heavily treated foods American's eat. Oats are treated with a toxic herbicide called glyphosphate  (which is basically RoundUp) and in 2015, was shown to be carcinogenic to humans . What is concerning is that conventional oats (treated with glyphosphate) are in so many cereals, snack bars, and oat based foods that many households have and children eat.
So grab some organic oats and let's get cooking!
Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal Ingredients
1/2 cup Organic Gluten-Free Rolled Oats
1 1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp Unsweetened Almond Milk, or Whole Milk
1-2 Tbsp Pure Maple Syrup (to your sweetness preference)
1 Tbsp Pumpkin purée
1 Tbsp Ground Flax Meal
1/4 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
1/2 tsp Pumpkin Spice
1/4 tsp Fine Sea Salt
1 Tbsp Raw Pecans, chopped (opt)
1 Tbsp Raw Pumpkin Seeds (opt)
How to Make Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal
1. In a small pot add the almond milk, maple syrup, pumpkin puree, vanilla, pumpkin spice, sea salt, and flax meal, stir to combine.
2. Stir in the oats and heat the pot over low-medium heat.
3. Cook for 5-10 minutes (per package instructions) stirring frequently until the oats are tender and cooked to your preference.
4. Transfer the oatmeal to a bowl and top with raw pumpkin seeds, chopped pecans and a small drizzle of maple syrup.
Q: How do I make my oatmeal soft and tender?
A: Add a bit more water and cook for a few minutes longer.
Q: I like a creamier oatmeal, how do I do this?
A: You can add more milk to the recipe and reduce some of the water.
Q: How do I make a chewier and less mushy oatmeal?
A: Add a little less liquid and cook for a minute or two less.
Q: Can I make this ahead of time?
A: Yes! I would make it per the recipe and the next morning re-heat with a little milk.
If you like this recipe, check these out!
Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Bread: Sweet apples and warm cinnamon wrapped in a whole food bread you and your family will love!
Lucas's Gluten-free Banana Muffins: My son loves to be in the kitchen and he developed this recipe and I think it's a keeper! It's like a portable bowl of hearty banana oatmeal!
Aronia & Blueberry Chia Jam: The perfect fruit topping for a hot bowl of creamy oatmeal! I love the beautiful combination of sweet blueberries and earthy aronia berries!
I hope you enjoy this as much as my family does. - Amy