This homemade Maple Brown Sugar Oatmeal recipe is ready in under 10 minutes. Old-fashioned oats are simmered with simple ingredients such as pure maple syrup, brown sugar, a little cinnamon and vanilla to make this healthy breakfast recipe. You’ll never go back to the Quaker Oats packets!

A spoon stirs butter into a bowl of oatmeal.

Easy Maple Brown Sugar Oatmeal Recipe

Growing up, I would eat the Quaker Maple Brown Sugar oatmeal packets almost every morning for breakfast. They were full of hearty oats, super filling, and tasted oh-so good!

Even as an adult I still crave that same bowl of oatmeal almost weekly—but now I make it entirely from scratch using this Maple Brown Sugar Oatmeal recipe. Believe it or not, it’s actually so incredibly simple to do!

I’ve mastered the right balance of sweet to savory (Yes! A little salt and butter gets mixed in) and the correct ratio of liquid to oats (A mix of water and milk does the trick!).

Plus, no artificial flavors!

If you want an easy meal prep version, try these Maple Brown Sugar Overnight Oats. These Blueberry Overnight Oats and Peach Overnight Oats are also delicious!

Oatmeal, maple syrup, brown sugar, milk, salt, and cinnamon are the ingredients for this recipe.

Ingredients

  • Oats. Old-fashioned rolled oats are the best option. These give you a creamy texture while still getting a chewy bite. Quick-cooking oats can also be used and are very similar to the texture you’d get from the Quaker packets. However, quick oats do tend to need less liquid so adjust according to your preference. This recipe will not work for steel-cut oats.
  • Liquid. Use water or milk (regular low-fat or whole milk or a plant-based version such as oat milk, almond milk, or cashew milk.) I prefer to use a mix of half water and half milk, so you get the creaminess from the milk without making the oatmeal too thick, but it’s up to your personal preference.
  • Maple Syrup. Pure maple syrup is key. Avoid the pancake syrup kind since these are made with artificial ingredients and don’t give you that authentic maple flavor.
  • Brown Sugar. Light or dark can be used. If you’re trying to recreate the Quaker Oats packages, use light brown sugar. Regular sugar or coconut sugar can also be subbed in.
  • Cinnamon. A little cinnamon goes a long way. Add, taste, and then adjust to get the perfect flavor.
  • Butter. Salted or unsalted, or a vegan butter alternative can be used.
  • Salt. Don’t leave this out! It really helps to balance out the sweeteners. (It’s my secret ingredient to making my oatmeal so yummy!)
  • Vanilla. Adds a special depth of flavor (and is another secret ingredient of mine!)
5 Secrets to Healthier Family Dinners
Tips & recipes for getting yummy — and healthy — meals on the table.

How to Make Maple Brown Sugar Oatmeal

Please see the recipe card below for ingredient amounts and more detailed instructions.

1. Combine Ingredients

Grab a small or medium saucepan with a heavy bottom that will disperse the heat evenly.

Add the oats, ¾-cup of the liquid (either milk, water, or a combination), maple syrup, brown sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt to the pan. 

Place on medium-high heat and stir until everything is combined.

Oats, milk, and syrup, and cinnamon are added to a saucepan.

2. Cook the Oats

Allow the oatmeal mixture to heat for about 2 minutes, until bubbles start to form. Stir well, then reduce the heat to medium-low.

Continue cooking the oatmeal while stirring occasionally for another 2 to 3 minutes, just until most of the liquid has absorbed.

If you would like the oatmeal a little thinner, add the rest of the liquid. 

Please note, the oatmeal WILL thicken more as it cools, so it’s okay if it’s a bit runnier in the pot.

A metal spoon stirs oatmeal in a pot.

3. Serve the Oatmeal

When you’re ready to enjoy, add some to a bowl and top with a little butter for extra creaminess along with toasted pecans and cinnamon, if desired.

For extra flavor, bump it up a notch with some peanut butter, almond butter, or even chocolate chips!

A spoon stirs butter into a bowl of oatmeal.

What is a good water to oatmeal ratio?

For the best results, stick with close to a 1:1 ratio of water to oatmeal for quick-cooking oats and a 1.5:1 ratio for old-fashioned. You can always add extra liquid after cooking to thin the oatmeal out.

Is maple and brown sugar oatmeal healthy? 

Oatmeal in general is a healthy breakfast. When a small amount of sugar and maple syrup is added, this variety is still a great way to start your day.

How do you make homemade oatmeal taste better? 

The best way to ensure homemade oatmeal tastes better is to add salt when cooking to balance out the sweeter ingredients.

Should I make my oatmeal with milk or water? 

You can make your oatmeal with either milk or water, depending on your desired flavor and thickness. Or, go with a combination for the best of both worlds.

Recipe Tips

  • Pay attention. The kind of oats are important. Old-fashioned and quick-cooking oats require different amounts of liquid.
  • You choose. Light or dark brown sugar or a sub, like coconut sugar, all work.
  • Go halfsies. Use half water, half milk for the best results.
  • Double up. Make a large batch for an easy morning to feed the whole family.
  • Plus it up. Top this oatmeal off with nuts, seeds, or even chocolate chips.
Maple brown sugar oatmeal is served in a white bowl.

What to Serve with Maple Cinnamon Oatmeal

Oatmeal is super healthy on its own or combined with any of these delicious recipes for the perfect breakfast.

Add some protein with Sheet Pan Breakfast HashEgg White BitesChicken Sausage, or Air Fryer Bacon.

Or, stick with something sweet like Chocolate Banana MuffinsLemon Poppy Muffins, or Blueberry Muffins.

More Oatmeal Recipes

If you are a lover of all things oatmeal, try any of these recipes next:

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5 from 5 votes

Maple Brown Sugar Oatmeal Recipe

This homemade Maple Brown Sugar Oatmeal recipe is ready in under 10 minutes. Old-fashioned oats are simmered with simple ingredients such as pure maple syrup, brown sugar, a little cinnamon and vanilla to make this healthy breakfast recipe.
Oatmeal is cooked in a pot and flavored with maple syrup and brown sugar.
Yield 1 serving
Prep 2 minutes
Cook 8 minutes
Total 10 minutes
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Ingredients 

  • ½ cup oats old-fashioned
  • ¾-1 cup milk or water or a mix
  • 1 Tbsp. pure maple syrup
  • 1 Tbsp. brown sugar
  • ½ tsp. vanilla
  • ¼-½ tsp. cinnamon to taste
  • ⅛-¼ tsp. salt to taste
  • 1 Tbsp. butter optional
  • Toasted pecans optional

Instructions 

  • Combine the Ingredients: Add the oats, ¾-cup of the milk and/or water, maple syrup, brown sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt to a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Mix until combined.
    ½ cup oats, ¾-1 cup milk or water, 1 Tbsp. pure maple syrup, 1 Tbsp. brown sugar, ½ tsp. vanilla, ¼-½ tsp. cinnamon, ⅛-¼ tsp. salt
  • Cook the Oats: After roughly 2 minutes the liquid should start to bubble. Give everything a good stir and reduce the heat to medium-low. Continue cooking and stirring occasionally for an additional 2-3 minutes, or until the oats have absorbed most of the liquid and thickened to your desired consistency.
  • Thin it Out: If you would like them to be a little thinner, add the remaining liquid. (Remember, the oats continue to thicken as they cool, so err on the side of them being a little more runny in the pot.)
  • Serve the oats with butter, toasted pecans, and additional cinnamon, if desired.*
    1 Tbsp. butter, Toasted pecans
Last step! If you make this, please leave a review letting us know how it was!

Tap stars to rate!

5 from 5 votes

Video

Notes

*Nutritional information is calculated without butter or additional toppings.
Prep-Ahead Instructions:
You can toast the pecans in advance.
Storage Directions:
Keep leftover oatmeal in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 to 5 days. Warm the oatmeal back up in a pot, adding extra liquid as needed.
To freeze, cover the oatmeal tightly in a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 5 to 6 months. Allow it to thaw in the fridge, then reheat it on the stove, stirring in additional milk or water to get desired consistency.
Recipe Tips
  • Pay attention. The kind of oats are important. Old-fashioned and quick-cooking oats require different amounts of liquid.
  • You choose. Light or dark brown sugar or a sub, like coconut sugar, all work.
  • Go halfsies. Use half water, half milk for the best results.
  • Double up. Make a large batch for an easy morning to feed the whole family.
  • Plus it up. Top this oatmeal off with nuts, seeds, or even chocolate chips.

Nutrition

Calories: 286kcal, Carbohydrates: 54g, Protein: 6g, Fat: 5g, Saturated Fat: 0.5g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Sodium: 491mg, Potassium: 209mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 24g, Vitamin A: 4IU, Vitamin C: 0.1mg, Calcium: 287mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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5 Secrets to Healthier Family Dinners
Tips & recipes for getting yummy — and healthy — meals on the table.

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