There are two different kinds of rolled oats. Thick versions have bigger, whole flakes often used to make old-fashioned oatmeal and as an ingredient in sweets like oatmeal raisin cookies and granola. Thin versions are made of smaller flakes that have been broken into smaller pieces, and they are great for making baby food and instant oatmeal. The thinner rolled oats can also be ground into a powder and used to make thick soups or stews.
Rolled oats look like flat, irregularly round, slightly bumpy discs. They are also called “old-fashioned” or “whole” oats. When oats are processed, the whole grains are steamed to make them soft and pliable and then pressed to flatten them. Rolled oats cook faster than steel-cut oats, soak up more liquid, and keep most of their shape while cooking. Rolled oats are often used in granola bars, cookies, muffins, and other baked goods. They can also be heated and put in a bowl for a warm breakfast. You can use instant oats instead of rolled oats, but it will take much less time to cook, and the dish won’t have as much texture.
What are Rolled Oats?
For people who prefer the taste and texture of old-fashioned oats for their morning oatmeal, rolled oats are the only obvious choice. They are made from the oat groats extracted from the oat grain. Oat grains have a tougher outer hull that is removed, allowing the interior of the grain to be steam treated to soften the grain further. Once the oat grains are steamed properly, the grain is run through an oat roller, creating the flat oats used as a hot breakfast cereal or in some different recipes.
People often say that this cereal is a great choice for eating healthy. In general, it is thought that oatmeal made with rolled oats can help lower the amount of bad cholesterol in the blood. This cereal is a much better choice than most processed cereals for people with Type 2 diabetes or on the verge of getting it. Rolled oats tend to help control blood sugar because they have a lot of beta-glucan, making it less likely that the glucose level in the body will spike.
Many people also like this food because it is healthy in other ways. Rolled oats can be a big part of a healthy diet because they are a good source of fiber, iron, and thiamine; you only need a small amount to get the benefits. They also have something called avenanthramides, an antioxidant that helps get rid of toxins built up in the body over time.
Rolled oats are a whole-grain food that hasn’t changed much. They are traditionally made from de-husked, steamed oat groats rolled into flat flakes with heavy rollers and then lightly toasted to make them stable. The flakes of thick-rolled oats are big and whole, while those of thin-rolled oats are small and broken. Rolled whole oats that haven’t been broken up can be cooked into a porridge and eaten as “old-fashioned” or “Scottish” oats.
However, rolled oats that have been broken up and processed more make it easier for them to absorb water and cook faster, sometimes called “quick” or “instant” oats. Most of the time, granola and muesli is made with rolled oats as the main ingredient. They can be made into a coarse powder that, when cooked, turns into a thick liquid that tastes like broth. As baby food, the fine oatmeal powder is often used.
Are Rolled Oats Healthy?
Rolled Oats Versus Scottish Oats
Scottish oats are unprocessed whole oat groats, like steel-cut or Irish oats. However, instead of being cut into pieces with blades, they are milled between stones or steel burrs to make uneven, smashed pieces. The upside is that they cook a little bit faster, but they won’t be as chewy as steel-cut oats. Scottish oats don’t work in recipes like steel-cut oats don’t, so they pretty much eat porridge all the time. They still have the enzymes that make food go bad, so eat them quickly and don’t buy too many.
How to Cook Rolled Oats?
Rolled oats are the most useful of all processed oats because they can be used to make cookies, muffins, bread, porridge, granola, smoothies, and more.
Here are the steps for making a bowl of oatmeal.
Measure 1 cup of water or milk per person into a pot and heat until it boils.
Pour 1/2 cup of rolled oats and a pinch of salt per person into the boiling water.
Cook, stirring every so often, for about 5 minutes, or until the mixture is creamy and the liquid is gone. All done. If you forget what to do, don’t worry: unless you buy in bulk, the recipe will be on every package you get.
Rolled Oats Versus Quick Oats
When oats are rolled in the way described above, the rollers are a certain distance apart, just enough to flatten the oat, which speeds up the cooking process. For quick oats, the grain soaks in the water a little longer before rolling, and the rollers are closer together, so the pieces are thinner. The thinner pieces are also cut up a bit, so they have more surface area and cook faster. Most recipes for baking or smoothies can use either rolled oats or quick oats. When making a bowl of hot oatmeal, rolled oats take about 6 minutes to cook in a saucepan on the stove. In 2 minutes, the quick oats will be ready.
What are the Substitute for Rolled Oats?
If you want to use quick oats instead of rolled oats in a recipe where you add them to a batter, like for muffins or cookies, you can. When switching to quick oats, we like to add a few extra tablespoons of the liquid the recipe calls for. This is because the quick oats will soak up more liquid while the batter or dough rests or cooks, making the cookie or muffin drier.
If you want to eat something other than oatmeal, there are a lot of whole grains you can cook into porridge. Try brown rice, polenta, buckwheat, quinoa, spelled, faro, or any other whole grain you like. There’s no rule about what can or can’t be served hot and a little soupy in a bowl with brown sugar, raisins, or maple syrup.
Rolled Oats Versus Steel-Cut or Irish Oats
Steel cutouts, also called “Irish oats,” are whole oat groats that have not been steamed, rolled, or dried like rolled oats. Instead, they are cut into three pieces with very sharp blades. Most baking recipes can’t use steel-cut oats because they don’t soften when added to a batter or dough. Because steel-cut oats aren’t processed, they need more water and take much longer to cook than other oats. Stovetop cooking in water, milk or a mixture of the two takes up to 40 minutes, and you must stir it often. The easiest way to make oatmeal is to let it cook in a slow cooker overnight, but if you want the chewiest oatmeal, the stovetop method is your best bet.
It’s best only to buy as much of these oats as you’ll use in a month. This is why. Since steel-cut oats aren’t heated, the enzyme that makes them go bad quickly isn’t turned off. If you let these oats sit in your cupboard for too long, they will start to smell and taste like rancid fats.
What are the Best Oats for Oatmeal?
To cook oatmeal, you don’t need all that many things. Oats. Liquid. Salt. That’s it. But there are different kinds of oats to choose from: rolled oats, old-fashioned oats, quick or instant oats, steel-cut oats, and quick steel-cut oats. But don’t think too much about it. Most oatmeal recipes call for rolled oats, also called “old-fashioned” oats. They only take about six minutes to cook and have a nice soft texture that isn’t mushy. When cooked, quick oats are softer and mushier than rolled oats because they are processed more. They’re great for little kids and camping, but when we think of a bowl of hot oatmeal on a cold morning, we think of rolled oats.
Are Large Flake Oats Rolled Oats?
Old-fashioned oats have been steamed and then rolled out flat. They are sometimes called “large flake oats” or “rolled oats.” They give baked goods a chewy texture. People often use old-fashioned oats in fruit crumbles because they add more texture, make the crumbles bigger, and give the dish a more nutty taste.
In grocery stores, large flake oats may be labeled as rolled oats or old-fashioned oats. Oat groats are steamed, flattened, and then cut into large flakes to make large flake oats. These are thicker than quick oats and take longer to cook (about 10 min).
The only difference is how thick the flake is. Both are made from whole oats that have been steamed and rolled flat. The longer it takes to cook, the bigger the flake (but not much). The difference would be in the texture of what you’re cooking with thick and regular oats.