Brûléed Banana Steel Cut Oats

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Want to fancy up your steel cut oats for a fun brunch? This recipe takes just a few extra minutes, but is so worth it! 

When I still lived in Salt Lake City, one of my favorite weekend activities was going to Eggs in the City, a great breakfast spot in the middle of one of my favorite neighborhoods, Sugarhouse.

The first time I ever had steel cut oats was at Eggs in the City, which is probably part of the reason why I like them so much. That place just warms my heart. I have lots of good memories there: post-race brunches, relaxing weekend mornings, fun lunches with family. Sometimes I miss Utah so much. I would always ordered the steel cut oats that had a caramelized layer of sugar on top. Brûléed oatmeal? Yes, please and thank you.

If you’re new to steel cut oats, in general, head over to this post all about steel cut oats where I tell you exactly what they are and how to make them.)

Torch

After I moved to NC from Utah, I made it my mission to recreate the bruleed steel cut oats I loved so much. And I’m still making them 12 years later!

Ingredients

1/4 cup of dry steel cut oats, rinsed
3/4 cup of water (or almond milk if you prefer)
1/2 of one ripe banana, thinly sliced
2 T chopped walnuts (or more/less to your taste)
1 T brown sugar (or more if feeling particularly indulgent and/or you want a thicker sugar “crust”)

Bruleed Banana Cut Oats

How to Make Brûléed Banana Steel Cut Oats

Prepare the steel cut oats

I like rinsing my steel cut oats as I do with most of my dry ingredients like beans, rice, split peas, lentils, etc. but it’s not necessary. (Unless the brand you purchased instructs to!) After I rinse my steel-cut oats, I put them onto a skillet and toast them over low heat until they smell nutty. Toasting steel cut oats really enhances that nutty flavor, which I love.

You then cook the oats like usual (1/4 cup oats with 3/4 cup water). You can find the exact instructions here, but, ultimately, you want them cooking for about 20-30 minutes on low to medium heat. I prefer mine slightly chewy but just test them as they cook until they’re done to your liking! If you prefer your oats with almond milk instead of water, go for it!

Prepare the walnuts

While your oats are cooking (remember, you’ve got 20-30 minutes), start toasting some of your chopped walnuts. You don’t need long. Put the walnuts on a sheet pan, into an oven preheated to 375 and let toast for about 5-7 minutes until fragrant and the texture has changed slightly. You can also toast them in a dry skillet over medium heat until fragrant. Keep a close eye on them since they can burn easily!

I love the combo of walnuts in recipes with bananas, but any nuts will work! Pecans would be another nice option.

Prepare the bananas

Start slicing your ripe banana very thinly. Oh, and try not to dry heave at the smell. I hate the smell of ripe bananas but you gotta go ripe with this recipe. I use bananas in this recipe because they have a sweet, custard flavor which goes really well with the burned sugar. Trust me on this one. But, you could also try strawberries!

Putting it all together

When the steel cut oats are done cooking (they should be semi-soft to soft and will have absorbed all the water in the pot), put them in a heat-proof bowl.

Start layering your sliced bananas on top of the oats.

This is where things get fun. Sprinkle brown sugar over the top. I never add sugar to my oats so this was a pretty sweet breakfast for me (pun intended).

Next, pull out your kitchen torch. (Or if you are a sad soul without one, you can use your oven broiler.)

Slowly and evenly move the flame over the bowl and watch it melt the sugar, creating little bubbling pools of sweetness. Or, place it under the oven broiler set to high until the sugar melts and darkens just a little.

Next, you need to let it sit until the sugar hardens, a la crème brûlée.

Sprinkle your walnuts on top and devour.

Banana Steel Cut Oats

Instructions
Step 1

Toast the steel cut oats over medium heat until you smell a nutty aroma.

Step 2

Combine the toasted steel cut oats with the water in a small saucepan.

Step 3

Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer about 20 minutes (or until water is absorbed).

Step 4

While the oats cook, place the walnuts in a skillet over low heat. Toast until you once again smell a nutty aroma.

Step 5

When the oats are finished cooking, place in a heat-proof bowl (i.e. glass or ceramic, not plastic). Layer the sliced bananas on top.

Step 6

Evenly sprinkle the brown sugar on top and using a kitchen torch, melt the sugar, holding the torch about 6 inches away from the surface. Look for the sugar to melt, then slightly bubble. (If you don’t have a kitchen torch, place a rack in the top of your oven and use your broiler to melt the sugar. Keep an eye on it so it doesn’t burn.)

Step 7

Let the bowl sit for about a minute until the sugar cools and hardens, then sprinkle the walnuts on top.

Step 8

Enjoy! Handle carefully since the bowl might be hot!

Banana Steel Cut Oats

I hope you enjoy these Brûlée Banana Steel Cut Oats as much as I do! They certainly aren’t an everyday indulgence given the extra time they take, but they are perfect for impressing the family or a group of friends for weekend brunch. If you want a more tame version of steel cut oats, try out this basic recipe.

Let me know what you think of the recipe in the comments below!

 

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Ingredients

  • 1/4 dry steel cut oats, rinsed
  • 3/4 c water
  • 1/2 ripe banana, thinly sliced
  • 2 T chopped walnuts (or more/less to your taste)
  • 1 T brown sugar (or more if feeling particularly indulgent and/or you want a thicker sugar “crust”)

  1. Toast the steel cut oats over medium heat until you smell a nutty aroma.
  2. Combine the toasted steel cut oats with the water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer about 20 minutes (or until water is absorbed).
  3. While the oats cook, place the walnuts in a skillet over low heat. Toast until you once again smell a nutty aroma.
  4. When the oats are finished cooking, place in a heat-proof bowl (i.e. glass or ceramic, not plastic). Layer the sliced bananas on top.
  5. Evenly sprinkle the brown sugar on top and using a kitchen torch, melt the sugar, holding the torch about 6 inches away from the surface. Look for the sugar to melt, then slightly bubble. [If you don’t have a kitchen torch, place a rack in the top of your oven and use your broiler to melt the sugar.]
  6. Let the bowl sit for about a minute until the sugar cools and hardens, then sprinkle the walnuts on top.
  7. Enjoy! [Handle carefully since the bowl might be hot!]

Shop the Post

 

This post was first published almost exactly 10 years ago on my blog on June 15, 2010 and was one of the first recipes I ever shared after launching this blog. I finally updated the photos for the recipe! Here are two of the original photos for nostalgia’s sake. 🙂

 



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