This Low Sugar Oatmeal recipe with bacon, onions, and maple syrup is a game changer. It’s a delicious and easy recipe that might surprise you!
I have to preface this recipe post by letting you know I never would have thought of this low sugar oatmeal recipe combination on my own. Most people eat oatmeal with things like fresh fruit, brown sugar, peanut butter, and chocolate chips. I’ve heard of savory oatmeal recipes, but onion and bacon? In oatmeal? Wait…what?! It just wouldn’t have occurred to me.
Then my dad came to stay with us for a month when he had total knee replacement surgery. He told me about this oatmeal he often ate at home, so I recreated it for him. And I was hooked! The sweetness from the maple syrup combined with the bacon and caramelized onions is so flavorful. The oats act as the base that add both texture and nutrients. I definitely surprised myself with this one.
Have all the doubts you want, but you’ve got to try this healthy breakfast recipe!
I remember eating those oatmeal packets as a kid. The oats came in these small brown paper bags with different colored wording depending on the flavor. If I remember correctly, the green was an apple cinnamon flavor, red was strawberry, and brown was brown sugar. You would pour the oats in your bowl, cover them with water, pop your oatmeal bowl in the microwave, and there’s breakfast! Anyone else? They definitely had more sugar than anything else. It’s safe to say I’ve come a long way since then!
As I’ve come along my food blogging journey, I’ve made a lot of oat recipes….A LOT! They range from overnight oat recipes like my Lemon Raspberry Overnight Oats with Chia Seeds, to Coconut Chocolate Chip Baked Oatmeal, and to Blueberry Baked Oatmeal Cups. Never had I even considered the idea of making a savory oatmeal recipe. If you’ve never tried a recipe like this, you just have to go into it with an open mind. Trying new things is always fun, and it might open the door to a whole new world for your tastebuds to experience!
You’re going to love not only how this recipe tastes, but also the nutritional stats! It’s a low sugar oatmeal recipe, with only 2 grams of sugar per serving. If you want it to be totally savory, you can leave out the maple syrup all together! I just really love the flavor of bacon, onions, and maple syrup. It’s incredible.
In addition to this being a low sugar oatmeal recipe, it also is really balanced in macros. There’s 31 grams of carbs, 9 grams of protein, and 11 grams of fat. It will keep you full and satisfied!
After making this recipe, I can confidently say it’s on my list of favorite healthy oatmeal recipes. I hope you try it, and it becomes one of yours too.
If I still haven’t convinced you, I challenge you to overcome all the doubts and fear you have, and just try something new! You could even make a single serving by cutting this recipe in half in case you decide it’s not your favorite (even though I think you’ll be surprised😉).
- If you prefer your oatmeal to have a thinner consistency, you can add about another 1/2 cup water, or however much it takes to get to your desired consistency. This oatmeal has a thicker consistency which I thought was perfect for this recipe, but make it however you like it!
- For a creamier oatmeal, I recommend adding some oat or coconut milk which will add creaminess and healthy fats. You can either add the milk in with the water when you cook the oats, or pour it over the oatmeal when you serve it.
- If you are going to use a different kind of oats such as steel cut oats or quick cooking oats, be mindful of the cooking time. Different kinds of oats require longer/shorter cooking times. Quick oats can be done in just one minute while steel cut oats are going to take closer to 20 minutes.
- If you would like to use your instant pot instead of the stove top, you can totally do that! Cook the onion and bacon using the sauté feature, then add the oats and water and cook on high pressure for 3 minutes. Allow the pressure to release naturally and breakfast is served.
- Don’t drain the bacon grease from the pan after you cook your bacon! Bacon grease has lots of flavor, so when you cook your onions in that same pan with the leftover grease, the onions are able to retain that delicious flavor.
The ingredient list for this low sugar oatmeal recipe is short and simple!
- Bacon– Who doesn’t love bacon? It makes everything taste better…who’s with me?! Not only does bacon add the best flavor, but it also adds fat to keep you full! The leftover grease from the cooked bacon gives the onion a super delicious flavor which brings this recipe to the next level. I always use uncured bacon to avoid nitrates.
- Yellow Onion– The combination of the onion and bacon is unbeatable! It adds fiber, and they have antioxidant affects which help reduce the risk of cancer, aid in lowering blood sugar levels, and improve bone health. If you don’t have yellow onions on hand, you could use white or red onions. Just keep in mind that it will alter the flavor a bit.
- Old Fashioned Oats– Old fashioned oats are just oat groats that are steamed and rolled into flakes while quick oats are cut into more pieces which cause them to cook faster. You can substitute instant oats or steel cut oats if you have those on hand. Keep in mind, steel cut oats will take much longer to cook while rolled oats will be done quicker. Oats are a nutritious food that contain lots of whole grains. They are filled with fiber, protein, and vitamins.
- Salt– Just a little bit adds the perfect amount of flavor. It also helps bring out the flavors in the other ingredients.
- Maple Syrup– Maple syrup adds the perfect amount of sweetness that combines so well with the savory ingredients. It’s also a delicious plant-based sweetener. You can try using honey or agave if you would like, but I personally think maple syrup would be best.
- Water– While water isn’t technically an ingredient, the amount you use will affect the texture of the oatmeal. I think this oatmeal recipe is better thicker, but that’s ultimately up to you and your tastebuds! Some people prefer a runnier texture. If that’s the case, add more water until it’s the consistency you like.
How to make this Oatmeal Recipe
- In a medium saucepan, cook your bacon over medium heat until it’s done to your desired crispiness. Remove the bacon and place it on a towel-lined plate. This will help retain some of the grease.
- Add your onion to the same pan and cook until its soft, about 5-7 minutes.
- Add the oats, salt, and water to the pan and bring to a simmer. Simmer until the oats are soft and the water is absorbed, about 7 minutes. Stir in the bacon.
- Serve and top each serving with 1 tablespoon of maple syrup (or more if you like). Enjoy!
Low Sugar Oatmeal Recipe FAQs
Can I substitute a different type of oats?
Yes! You can use any kind of oats, but the cook time will vary depending on what kind you use. If you use quick oats, the cook time will be much quicker, while steel-cut oats will take longer. If you’re not sure, it will usually say on the bag they come in.
How should I store leftover oatmeal?
You can store any leftover oatmeal in an airtight container in the fridge for 4-6 days. You can reheat it in the microwave or the stovetop which usually wont take long. If the consistency is still thicker than you would like, you could add a little bit of water or milk.
Is oatmeal a good meal for dinner?
Of course! Who doesn’t love a low sugar oatmeal recipe for dinner? You can have oatmeal for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Usually I associate sweeter oatmeal (fruit or coconut sugar oatmeal recipes) to be eaten as breakfast, and savory oatmeal as a breakfast or dinner meal. Of course, it’s up to you! Some times I feel like something sweet for dinner while other times I want something savory.
Can I substitute turkey bacon?
I would not recommend substituting a different kind of bacon in this recipe. When you cook bacon, it leaves behind grease that adds great flavor to other ingredients. In this case, the onions. Cooking the onions in the same pan as the bacon with the leftover grease gives it a delicious flavor! Of course, if you really want to use a different type of bacon, you could always try it.
Can I add other toppings in this recipe?
Absolutely! I don’t think anything like fruit, nuts, or cocoa powder would taste great since this is a savory oatmeal recipe, but veggies such as bell peppers would be a great addition!
Is oatmeal healthy?
Oatmeal has so many health benefits, and can even aid in weight loss. It contains lots of fiber and protein which helps keep you full. They contain so many minerals and vitamins that can help lower blood sugar levels and reduce your risk of heart disease. Of course, the “healthiness” of oatmeal depends more on what you put in it. If you load it with sugar, it wouldn’t have as much nutritional value as adding healthy fats, protein, and natural sugars. This low sugar oatmeal recipe is healthier than many out there!
Can I use a different kind of sweetener?
I think the maple syrup is the best sweetener to use in this recipe. If you don’t have any on hand, or aren’t a huge fan, I would recommend using coconut sugar. Honey wouldn’t give the same flavor, but it would work. For no added sugar at all, just leave it out!
Can I cook the oats in my instant pot instead of the stovetop?
Using your instant pot of slow cooker is such an easy way to cook oats. I do it all the time! If you’re unsure how to do this, check out my Instant Pot Banana Walnut Oatmeal recipe where you’ll find instructions on how I cook oatmeal in my instant pot. If you would like to do this, you can just add in your cooked bacon and onion after the oats are done cooking.
How can I make this oatmeal a thinner consistency?
If you prefer your oatmeal to have a thinner consistency, you could always add more water. You could also add some type of milk such as oat milk or coconut milk. If you decide to add in milk, you can either add it in with the water as you cook the oats, or pour it over top when you serve it. This will not only make the oatmeal creamier, but is also a great way to add healthy fats.
What’s the difference between steel cut, rolled, and quick oats?
Each of these kinds of oats contain just about the same amount of calories, protein, fiber, fat, carbs, and sugar. The main difference is the cooking time and the texture. Steel cut oats are much firmer, so they take way longer to cook. Even when they are fully cooked, they have a chewier and firmer texture. Rolled oats have a less firm texture that’s more consistent. Quick oats have the least chewy texture of the three. While each type of oat will keep you full, steel-cut oats take the longest to digest which may help curve hunger.
Looking for more delicious oatmeal recipes? Try my Baked Peanut Butter Oatmeal, Triple Berry Baked Oatmeal, Apple Cinnamon Baked Oatmeal Cups, and Peach Overnight Oats. You can find all of my favorite oatmeal recipes right here!
I hope you enjoy this Low Sugar Oatmeal Recipe and all my healthy recipes! If you try it or any other recipe, please leave a star rating below! It’s so helpful for other readers to see which recipes are tried and true!
I’d also love to see it–share your photo of this dish and tag me on Instagram, and I’ll feature you! Let me know if this one gets added to your favorite recipes list. It’s on mine!Print