Leftover Oatmeal Muffins

So awhile back, I made a bunch of Steel Cut Oatmeal in my Instant Pot, looking for just the right combination of time & ingredients to get my Best Instant Pot Oatmeal. And I love oatmeal and ate a lot, but still had some leftover! So I made a few things with it. Some cookies that were a total fail, a little experiment with a copycat Taco Bell meat recipe (yuck!) and these Leftover Oatmeal Muffins. Well, the third time was a charm.

Leftover Oatmeal Muffins
Leftover Oatmeal Muffins


I like these muffins a lot. I can’t say I loved them; they weren’t my perfect and gorgeous Big, Beautiful Muffins by any means, but Leftover Oatmeal Muffins are easy, tasty (and frugal) and pretty healthy and taste a bit like Snickerdoodles. That’s the Cinnamon Sugar on top, for sure, doing its thing, and I do love me some snickerdoodles!

About Leftover Oatmeal Muffins:

It’s been a while since I made that Best Instant Pot Steel Cut Oatmeal and started on my series of experiments. That oatmeal seemed to go on forever! And then I’ve been agonizing over whether or not to post these muffins, and here’s why. I thought the oatmeal might act a little like applesauce in the muffins, which would mean they’d be moist, but still have a lighter texture.

Instead, the oatmeal made the muffins a little heavy & denser and even with a whopping 4 teaspoons of baking soda, they were still a little “squat” as you can see in the pics. I’d call them honest, plain eating. Being a food blogger, sometimes that concept passes me right by these days; I tend to look for the “best” and most over the top recipes I can find or make up! It just seems more fun, lol! I kind of felt the same way about my Healthier Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Muffin recipe I posted last month, too.

The bottom line, though, on my site as to whether or not I’ll post something I make is, “Will I make them/it again?” And the answer to that is yes. But I’m going to make these when I have leftover oatmeal. I’m not going out of my way to make oatmeal just so I can make these muffins if you get the drift. Think of these as everyday muffins, not necessarily the ones you are going to make for overnight company or say a brunch party.

Leftover Oatmeal Muffins
Leftover Oatmeal Muffins
Making Leftover Oatmeal Muffins:

The Leftover Oatmeal Muffins are surprisingly simple to make. Just stir the ingredients together by hand and pop them in the muffin tins. Now there is a bit of a judgment call in making these muffins and because the oatmeal you use is always going to be a variable in terms of the qualities it brings to the muffins. Your oatmeal might be made from Instant, Rolled or Steel Cut Oatmeal and might be made with water, milk, or whatever you’ve used. And how thick or dense that oatmeal is before it goes into the muffins is another variable.

What you’re looking for is a pretty thick, scoopable batter. It won’t be pourable. But it also has to have enough liquid in it so that the dry ingredients work in easily; don’t use too much milk or the muffins will be very wet when they’re done. Thinking on it, now, I wish would have taken a photo of one the batches I tried, but with all that moist oatmeal, it’s really hard to go wrong. I’d say the batter should lightly mound in your muffin tins.

As far as “add-ins” use pretty much whatever you’d like. I chose pecans and dates for these muffins. Any dry fruit or nut or something like a chocolate chip will be great. I’d think you’d want to stay away from fresh or frozen fruit, though. The muffins are pale so the Cinnamon Sugar Topping really increased the attractiveness! Streusel would be good, too. If you’d like to see a lot of ideas on what can be added into or onto a muffin, see my post on Big, Beautiful Muffins.

Leftover Oatmeal Muffins
Leftover Oatmeal Muffins
Saving Money on Leftover Oatmeal Muffins:

These Leftover Oatmeal Muffins are extremely frugal, and not only because they use up leftover oatmeal, but all the ingredients in the muffins are just basic, common kitchen stuff that you probably have on hand. And even those simple ingredients are used in small amounts. Just the one egg, a little oil instead of butter, a small amount (about half that of most muffin recipes) of sugar and just one egg.

These should be named something like Old Mother Hubbard Muffins because even if you haven’t been shopping for a while and your cupboard is bare, you can probably scare most of these ingredients up.

These muffins were adapted from Epicurious. That recipe was adapted from an old Fannie Farmer recipe, originally published in 1918. Gotta love that!

Leftover Oatmeal Muffins
Leftover Oatmeal Muffins

Leftover Oatmeal Muffins

  • Servings: 12
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup white or brown sugar
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 scant teaspoon salt
  • up to cup add-ins (such as nuts, dried fruit, chopped chocolate, coconut flakes, fruit, etc.)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup cooked oatmeal, preferably steel-cut
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • about 1/3 to 1/2 cup whole milk
  • Cinnamon Sugar for topping, optional

Preheat the oven to 400°F, and grease a 12-cup muffin tin.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and any add-ins. In a small bowl, lightly beat the egg. Add the oatmeal to the egg, and mash with a fork to break up any clumps. Add the oil, then 1/3 cup milk. Whisk to combine.

Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture, and stir briefly to just combine. If batter is too thick, add a little more milk as needed to thin. Mixture should be quite thick but not so thick that it is difficult to stir in the dry ingredients.

Using a 1/3 cup scoop, divide the batter evenly between the wells of the prepared muffin tin. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar on top of muffins if desired.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of one of the muffins comes out clean. The muffins won’t brown much on top and might even look a little anemic if the cinnamon sugar isn’t used.

Note: It’s always going to be just a bit of a guess as to how much milk these muffins need and that depends how thick the oatmeal you use happens to be.


I’ll be sharing my Leftover Oatmeal Muffins at Fiesta Friday #247, hosted this week by Antonia @ and Laurena @ Life Diet Health. There’s lots of fun fall dishes & Halloween Party food already linked up there! Stop by and check it out.

Leftover Oatmeal Muffins; a good, honest everyday muffin. Easy, fast, healthy & cheap, they're a great way to use up any cooked oatmeal. #LeftoverOatmealMuffins

40 Comments on “Leftover Oatmeal Muffins

  1. These muffins sound and look good to me, Mollie. These would be perfect to make a night before and take to work the next day – yum! There is also one thing that caught my attention – your serving plate – it is beautiful! 😀 Happy Fiesta Friday & thanks for sharing! x

    • Thanks Jhuls! I have gotten in the habit of looking at old antique stores and second hand shops for things I think look cool, and this is one of my finds!

        • I have one or two of everything and hardly any full sets on anything which makes it weird. After I die, my daughter is going to kill me as she cleans out the house, lol!!

          • I don’t get full sets, too. I prefer getting few of everything. 😀 Hahahaha, my family would feel the same thing!!

  2. I adore this recipe, Mollie! I enjoy oatmeal as granola and in baked goods, but not as regular oatmeal. Who knows why…. This is right up my alley. Everyone is going to enjoy these over at Fiesta Friday! Thank you for sharing!

    • Hi Antonia, and thanks for hosting for us! They’re very simple but quite tasty! I have heard ppl say that about oatmeal…Usually ppl get turned off by the texture, I think.

  3. Good way to get me to eat my oatmeal Mollie!! And I sympathize– I’ve had more than my share of cookie baking failures!! Favorite photo is the one with them in the muffin tin– great colors together. They look so appealing! Made your carne asada tacos for a test run this week before we make a big batch for guests!! Super delicious!! with fresh Pico de Gallo and avocado. That’s why I love your blog! xox

    • Hi Rhonda! I hafta say I love my old muffin tins, although there was a time I was slightly ashamed of them, lol!! I’m glad you liked the Carne! Hope your party is great!! I know it will be. And that’s why I love your blog!!

      • Hey Mollie– Yep, I have some newish clean muffin tins, but I used the old trusty rusty ones that were my grandma’s– just because I like to think of her baking with them! Happy weekend?? Any plans?? Good recipes to try out?? hugs hugs!

        • Oh, Rhonda, Dad’s in the hospital. He”s fine now at this point and they just want to keep him, partially, I think because of all the Medicare rules. But it been exhausting and lots of family updating.

          • Oh gosh, Mollie. Thankful he’s OK. I know it’s hard to be long distance when your parent’s not well. We did that with my Dad– lots of fun calls and not knowing if you should come. Hope he’s settled back with your Mom soon. You’re such a good daughter. hugs hugs!

            • He came home, then went back and is home safe and sound now! Thanks Rhonda!!

              • So glad to hear it– you do so much for them Mollie. I’m sure they adore you. Happy weekend! We’re having friends in tomorrow for your carne asada!! You have plans this weekend/? hugs hugs!

  4. Not being an oatmeal lover, but being forced to eat it by Management, I’m really diggin’ this. It’s a good way to switch up the left overs. Sometimes I’ll blend some oats to make oat flour and toss it in with my left over oats to form patties and pan fry them. Stuff a piece of chicken breakfast sausage link in the middle of these muffins before baking…might take the mind off of the denseness, change the texture up. My vote is for “Old Mother Hubbard Muffins”!

    • I like the idea of your oaty sausage stuffed concoction. I’d call it a “crumpet”!

    • Hi Dianna, thanks! It’s a nice changeup for any leftover oatmeal. 🙂

  5. Boy will the Chloe dog be happy, she won’t be getting my leftover oatmeal anymore. Those muffins look so good. I think I might just toss in a big pinch of cardamom though. It’s a Swedish thing.

    • I was shocked the first time I had Cardamom in something other than like a curry. I still remember it was a cake I made. It took me back, but then I started to really like it!

  6. I’ve never made a recipe with leftover oatmeal! Love these muffins, the cinnamon sugar looks gorgeous sprinkled on top:)

    • I have to admit, the cinnamon sugar kind of “made” the muffins!

  7. Pingback: Leftover Oatmeal Muffins — Frugal Hausfrau | My Meals are on Wheels

    • I usually buy the old fashioned, unless it’s kind of a special treat, then the steel cut. But i love making my old fashioned in the microwave – the great equalizer! Three minutes. 🙂

    • Pancakes are a great idea, too! 🙂 Pumpkin oatmeal…or maybe I just have pumpkin on the mind!

    • I’m so sorry, I thought I replied already, and yes, any oatmeal will work. 🙂

      • I don’t think I’ve ever given my Chance oatmeal, and I know it would be a good treat for him – Next time.

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