The first time I bought oats I’ll admit that I didn’t have a clue what to do with them. As part of a health kick, I made a half-hearted attempt to make porridge, didn’t like it and then fed the rest of the bag to the ducks!
However, I’ve since realised two things…
- Plain porridge is boring, but there are so many tasty things to add to it
- These are millions of things you can make with oats besides porridge!
I’ve collaborated with some of the top vegan-friendly food bloggers to bring you this list of the best vegan oat recipes. Because it really is amazing what you can do with a bag of oats and a bit of imagination.
What are oats, anyway?
Oats can be confusing little things, with so many different names. The common oat is a type of cereal grain that is grown for its seed. Oats are one of the healthiest grains on earth, loaded with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
The different kinds of oats:
- Whole grain oats – These whole oat groats are the highest in nutrients
- Irish oats – Also known as steel-cut oats, these are chopped oat groats
- Scottish oats – These stone-ground oats turn into porridge when cooked
- Rolled oats – Also known as old-fashioned oats, these have been flattened into flakes
- Instant oats – These quick-cooking oats are thinner than rolled oats
- Oat flour – This finely-ground flour can be used for baking
In your local supermarket, you’ll find many different brands of oats. I prefer Mornflake, but if you don’t live in the UK then any brand will do really.
What to do with lots of oats?
Oats generally come in quite large bags, so rather than sticking to one recipe, it’s a good idea to experiment with making different things.
Read on for a list of vegan recipes using rolled oats, instant oats, oat flour and more…
1. Blueberry oatmeal muffins
Made with rolled oats, these gluten-free blueberry muffins are much healthier than they look. A great source of protein and fibre, they’re delicious to eat for breakfast, as a snack or even as a healthy dessert. They’re easy to make in around half an hour using just one bowl.
2. Vegan meatballs
Who knew that you could make vegan meatballs from oats? This recipe uses quick-cooking oats, green lentils and onion to create delicious vegan meatballs that taste amazing on top of spaghetti. Loaded with protein, these vegan meatballs are much healthier than the traditional meaty variety.
3. Mushroom oat burgers
The best veggie burgers are homemade and these vegan oat burgers are no exception. This recipe uses instant oats as well as mushrooms and onion to give that meaty texture. Packed full of herbs and spices, these burgers are a taste sensation that you simply must try.
4. Chocolate chip banana bread
Banana bread is the perfect way to use up overripe bananas and this vegan version also includes half a cup of oats. You can use steel-cut or rolled oats as well as oat flour, although whole wheat flour would also do the trick if that’s what you have at home.
5. Maple oat bread
This deliciously chewy bread is made with flour, yeast, vegan margarine, maple syrup and old-fashioned rolled oats – that’s the big, flaky ones. Perfect for sandwiches, the maple syrup adds a touch of sweetness. Yummy!
6. Oatmeal raisin cookies
Chewy, delicious and easy to make – these are about to become your new favourite cookies. Did I mention they’re also healthy(ish), allergy-friendly and vegan? I just can’t get enough of these oatmeal raisin cookies which are made with rolled oats and oat flour.
7. Blueberry crisp
Blueberry crisp is a simple vegan dessert to make with oats in less than ten minutes. Regular or quick oats work equally well for this recipe which you can top with vegan whipped cream or ice cream.
8. Cinnamon, apple and oat ice cream
Did you know that you can make ice cream with rolled oats? Neither did I until I came across this vegan ice cream recipe. Flavoured with apple and cinnamon, this ice cream tastes a little bit like porridge, but so much better!
9. Peach smoothie
Adding oats to a breakfast smoothie is a great way to make it more substantial so that it will keep you full all morning. So easy to make, you just throw peaches, a banana, almond milk, rolled oats, maple syrup and vanilla extract into a blender and whizz it up.
10. Granola bars
Homemade vegan granola bars are the perfect healthy snack to carry with you when you’re out and about. They’re so easy to make and you don’t even need to bake them! This recipe uses vegan chocolate chips and cranberries, but you could use raisins, cherries, goji berries or whatever you fancy.
11. Vanilla almond balls
These vanilla almond balls are a fantastic healthy snack to stave off mid-afternoon cravings. They’re so easy to make with just five ingredients – old-fashioned rolled oats, almond butter, crushed almonds, dates and vanilla extract.
12. Banana oatmeal pancakes
How amazing do these vegan pancakes look? And can you believe that they’re made with just three ingredients? All you need is a cup of rolled or quick oats, a banana and your choice of plant milk. They’re so quick and easy to make, gluten-free and you can even freeze them for later. If you can manage not to scoff them all at once, that is!
13. Crackers with quinoa and tahini
These healthy vegan oat crackers are great to serve with dips, soups, stews, vegan cheese, or whatever you fancy. If you’ve never made your own crackers, this recipe is an easy one to start with as you’ll need just seven ingredients.
14. Oat milk
Oat milk is my favourite plant-based milk but at £1.80 for a carton of Oatly, it can be pretty expensive. Making your own oat milk is much cheaper and much easier than you might think. All you really need is rolled oats and water, although you can add salt, maple syrup and vanilla to taste if you wish.
15. Chocolate oat milk with cashews
Once you’ve got the hang of making oat milk, why not take it a step further with this incredible chocolate-flavoured milk? It’s made with rolled oats, cashews, dates and cocoa powder for a healthy yet deliciously tasty drink that kids will love.
16. Cherry overnight oats
Overnight oats are the king of breakfast meal prep. Take five minutes to prepare these the night before and you’ll be thanking yourself come morning when they’re ready to eat.
This recipe uses rolled oats, vanilla almond milk and fresh cherries but you can make different flavours depending on the ingredients you have to hand. You could also add a scoop of vegan protein powder for an added boost before your morning workout.
17. Apple cinnamon oatmeal
Oatmeal is the obvious meal to make with oats, but morning porridge certainly doesn’t have to be boring! I love this apple and cinnamon oatmeal which is easy to make with boiled apples. Scrummy!
Oats are one of the most nutrient-dense foods that you can eat. And they’re also incredibly versatile! Vegan and gluten-free, these tiny powerhouses can be used to make healthy breakfasts, lunches, dinners and snacks.
So, if you thought that oats were only for oatmeal, it’s time to think again. Have a go at some of these vegan oats recipes and your body will thank you, as will your tastebuds.