Homemade Oatmeal Packets

3 Jan

I love breakfast. LOVE it. If I could eat it for every meal, every day, I would die happy. But, most people aren’t morning people and don’t enjoy getting up extra early to eat a wholesome healthy breakfast before starting their day which often leads to grabbing something at a coffee shop or skipping breakfast all together. Since mornings in our home often start early (think 4am!) and it’s crucial that my boyfriend gets in to work shortly thereafter I had to come up with a way that I could make our standard breakfast (orange juice, milk/soy milk, coffee, oatmeal, eggs, bananas and peanut butter toast) quickly, keep it healthy and have it set up in a way that he could make it himself should I “over sleep” 😉

The eggs were easy – hard boil enough of them on Sunday to last through the week. The hard part was the oatmeal! He used to just love the Quaker Oats Maple and Brown Sugar, but I was not in love with the price, or the high amount of sugar that was in such a small packet – and he was eating two a morning! So, with a little bit of research, I discovered that I could make my own oatmeal packets at about 1/4 the cost of store bought, and with much less sugar! I was sold.

First, 1 packet of store bought oatmeal is the equivalent of 1/4 cup plain oatmeal so place 1/4 cup plain oats into a snack sized ziploc bag and add any dry mix ins that you like (dried cranberries, walnuts, brown sugar, cinnamon, dry coffee creamer if you like the fruit and cream varieties – the possibilities are endless!). Seal the bag and voila! Just pour into a bowl, add water and heat in the morning and oatmeal is done. If you want to add anything wet to your oatmeal (I often add pumpkin puree and top it with some brown sugar for pumpkin pie oats!) just add it before you put it in the microwave.

Second, the costs may vary per bag but it is definitely cheaper than buying the premade packets at the store. I can typically get a pound of oatmeal for $1.29 at Whole Foods in the bulk section. There are roughly 5 cups of rolled oats in a pound, so you will get approximately 20 oatmeal packets from one pound of oatmeal – that’s $0.0645 a packet! Then the cost of mix-ins – we use primarily brown sugar, so at $1.29 for 2 pounds (64 tbsp), and using 1 tbsp at a time, that adds an additional $0.02 to each serving for a grand total of $0.08 a packet! That is about 1/4 of what you’d pay for the Quaker packs – even if they are on sale for $2.50 a box, you’re still paying $0.31 a pack! It may require some up front costs (the cost of the snack bags, oatmeal, mix ins, etc.) but if you eat oatmeal a lot like we do, this will surely put money back into your pockets – especially if you keep the snack bags and reuse them!

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