Instant Pot Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal

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For years, we thought that slow cooker oatmeal was the greatest thing since sliced bread. It was true, too. Talk about a great way to make from-scratch steel cut oats without spending all day laboring over the stovetop. Well, now we have the Instant Pot, and I can officially say the slow cooker version is out. This Instant Pot apple cinnamon oatmeal is in – and it’s one of my new favorite breakfast recipes.

This recipe is filled with whole, natural ingredients that are easily stocked in your pantry. That means that you can whip up a batch of this 6-minute oatmeal at a moment’s notice! But, before we get to the recipe, we want to talk about the different types of oats. This recipe won’t turn out the same if you use instant oats – and you’ll see why in a minute!

What Exactly Are Steel Cut Oats?

You may have heard a few terms thrown around when it comes to oatmeal. Steel cut oats, rolled oats, and instant oats all come from the same base ingredient – oat groats –  but they’re all vastly different. Let’s take a peek into the difference so you know which one is best for you.

Steel cut oats (which we use in this recipe) are chopped whole oat groats. Because they’re not rolled or crushed, they look very similar to a grain of rice. They take the longest to cook, but they have the chewiest texture of the three types.

To make rolled oats (sometimes called old-fashioned oats), the groats are first steamed before they’re flattened by a large rolling machine. After being rolled, they look like flat discs instead of grains of rice. They cook faster than steel-cut oats and absorb more liquid, giving them a softer texture.

Instant oats (or quick oats) are fully processed. They’re pre-cooked, dried, and then rolled on the thinnest setting possible. As their name indicates, they cook the fastest of the three types of oats. Since they are well processed, they’re also the mushiest form of oatmeal.

Since steel-cut oats have most toothsome texture, which is why we think they’re the best choice for this Instant Pot apple cinnamon oatmeal. They’ll be slightly chewy, but fully flavored. This is the perfect introduction to steel cut oats if it’s your first time!

We’d love to know about  your experience with the different type of oats and what you think about our choice of using steel-cut oats in this recipe.

Instant Pot Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 6 minutes

Total Time: 11 minutes

cinnamon oatmeal

Yield: 3 Servings | Serving Size: 1/2 cup | Calories: 132 | Total Fat: 2 g | Saturated Fat: 0 g | Trans Fat: 0 g | Carbohydrates: 27 g | Fiber: 4 g | Sugar: 7 g | Protein: 4 g | Cholesterol: 0 mg | Sodium: 9 mg | SmartPoints (Freestyle): 3


  • 1 cup steel cut oats
  • 2 1/2 cups water (3 cups for a more loose oatmeal)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 apple, peeled, core removed and chopped
  • Honey to sweeten (optional)


  1. Add the oats, water, cinnamon, and apple to the Instant Pot and stir. Place the lid on the pot and ensure the valve is sealed.
  2. Press the Manual button and set to high pressure. Set the timer for 6 minutes. The Instant Pot will begin cooking and once the pressure in the pot is achieved the timer will start.
  3. After the time is up, manually release the steam and remove the lid. Stir and spoon into serving bowls. Drizzle with honey (if using). Serve hot and enjoy!

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18 Comments on "Instant Pot Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal"

  1. Todd  November 24, 2018

    Do you do a quick release or a natural release for this recipe?

    • Nichole Furlong  November 24, 2018

      Quick release, thanks for catching that, Todd!

  2. Joann  February 18, 2019

    How do you calculate 3 freestyle points? When I put this in, it comes out to 6 points.

    • Nichole Furlong  February 23, 2019

      Hi Joann, apples are a zero point ingredient. I double checked and the three points is correct.

  3. Keisha Plebanski  March 3, 2019

    What do you do if you don’t have an instant pot can you still make this some other way?

    • Gale Compton  March 4, 2019

      Keisha, You can easily make this recipe on the stovetop. 🙂

  4. Monique  June 7, 2019

    I can’t find steel cut oats with that low points. All steel cut oats I’ve found have 4 points per 1/4 cup dry… I come up with 6 points per serving too…

    • Nichole Furlong  June 7, 2019

      Hi Monique I have double checked this recipe and 3 points per serving is correct. Apples are a zero point item. Honey is optional and therefor not included in the nutritional information.

      • Kelly  August 1, 2019

        Can you say what brand of oats you use. I get 6 points as well.

  5. Michelle crass  August 18, 2019

    I’m confused about how you’re getting this as 3 points? I scanned Quaker steel cut oats and it’s 6 points a serving. I see that you used red mill steel cut oats so I looked that up and it’s 5 points. Can you explain how you’re getting this as 3 points?

    • Nichole Furlong  August 24, 2019

      Hi Michelle, this recipe is for three servings and the info also includes honey.

  6. Walter  September 14, 2019

    Which type of apple? Do you have to peel the apple? And is the recipe altered at all if you don’t have the apple?

    • Nichole Furlong  September 18, 2019

      Any type of apple will work (I personally use Granny Smith). Peeling is up to you and your preferences.

  7. Christine  December 5, 2019

    Have you tried doubling this recipe? Wondering how long to cook if so.

    • Nichole Furlong  December 12, 2019

      Even when doubled the cook time should remain about the same.

  8. Peggy  July 9, 2020

    I doubled the recipe and followed the directions exactly and got my first ever burn notice on my IP. Any suggestions on what I possibly did wrong??

    • Nichole Furlong  July 12, 2020

      You most likely need to add a little more liquid.


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