Steel cut oats are not as soft as other oat varieties; however, like many large grains, they benefit from a long cooking process. We recommend getting your oatmeal ready the night before so you can wake up to a delicious, hot bowl on a crisp fall morning. Make the topping mixture ahead too so it is ready to spoon on or stir into the slow cooker to also warm through. Be sure to top your bowl with any of your favourite toppings or a big spoonful of Ontario yogurt if you prefer.
Slow Cooker Maple Bacon Oatmeal Bowls
Spray inside of slow cooker with cooking spray. Stir together milk, water, oats and salt in the slow cooker; cover with lid. Cook on Low for 7 to 8 hours.
Meanwhile, in a skillet, cook bacon over medium-high heat until crispy. Remove bacon and drain all but 1 tbsp (15ml) of the bacon fat.
Return skillet to medium heat; add apples and cinnamon and cook for about 5 minutes or until golden and softened. Return bacon to skillet with maple syrup and toss well to coat. (Make-ahead: Can be covered and refrigerated for up to 3 days. Reheat if desired before using.)
Ladle oatmeal into bowls and top with bacon and apple mixture and finish with a generous spoonful of yogurt to serve, if desired.
Dried Fruit Options: Add a variety of dried fruits like chopped apricots or dates, dried blueberries or cherries. Mini chocolate chips sprinkled on top add a touch of indulgence.