Instant Oats Vs. Rolled Oats: Which Is Better?

Oatmeal is an extremely versatile modern day breakfast option. Consider this: you can either cook oats with scrumptious mashed bananas, a spoonful of creamy peanut butter and nuts, or you can add unsweetened chocolate powder for a tasty treat. You can even come up with an innovative overnight oats recipe and wake up to a wholesome breakfast of oats with fresh fruit. 

As illustrated by Self, oats help you feel full for longer periods, making them the perfect option for breakfast at the start of a long day. They also have a range of health benefits such as regulating your cholesterol levels and thus reducing your risk of heart disease. Additionally, they help control your gut bacteria and keep your health in check. However, certain kinds of oats are better than their counterparts. You have several options to choose from when you're looking to buy a packet of oatmeal at the supermarket like old-fashion or rolled oats, instant oats, and steel-cut oats. Here's what you should choose.

Rolled oats may be healthier

Steel-cut oats, as explained by Healthline are the closest to oats in their original, unprocessed form and are famously known to take longer to cook. You're looking at 15 to 30 minutes. They taste slightly different too and are chewier than other kinds of oats. When you're cooking with rolled oats, you'll find that they're not as intense as steel-cut oats in terms of flavor and have already been cooked a little bit beforehand. Total cooking time? Not more than five minutes. You can also opt for quick oats that are similar to rolled oats but take even less time to prepare. All you have to do is add in your favorite mix-ins.

Lastly, instant, packaged oats are often to have additional ingredients like skimmed milk powder, copious amounts of sugar, and flavoring, as Healthline suggests. According to Cooking Light, oats are essentially a healthy choice to opt for, no matter what kind you choose. What you should be really looking out for are the hidden ingredients often found in packaged instant oats that aren't quite as nutritious, like sugar, artificial flavorings, sodium, and more. Ultimately, pay close attention to the packaging and nutritional information. You want to buy the packet that lists just one primary ingredient: whole-grain oats. However, when in doubt, you can't go wrong with rolled oats.