Is Oatmeal Vegan? Vegan Oatmeal Recipes & Brands

Oatmeal is a popular breakfast item that is packed with nutrition. Quaker oatmeal is eaten with its natural flavor, so it should be vegan right? Let’s find out.

Is Oatmeal Vegan?

Yes, oatmeal is vegan because it originates from an oat plant. Oats remain vegan as long as there is no non-vegan ingredient added to the meal. Quaker oats are considered vegan as well.

Other than that, quick oatmeal brands may contain non-vegan ingredients such as Quaker instant oatmeal flavors.

So, as long as you keep the non-vegan ingredients away, oatmeal is vegan.

In its natural form, oatmeal is considered vegan, but instant oats in general are not. For example, you can mix Quaker oats with vegan cream or soy milk for a vegan diet. However, adding animal-based milk will turn it into a non-vegan diet.

If you are buying overnight oats, make sure to read the ingredients because most manufacturers add non-vegan contents to the oatmeal.

What are different kinds of oatmeal

Here are 4 common types of oatmeal.

1. Instant Oats

Instant oats are quick-cook rolled oats that have a thin texture to allow for faster cooking. They are already steamed and pressed into thin shapes.

These are made from an oat plant so they are considered vegan as long as there are no additives such as dairy or sugar. Quaker oatmeal is also vegan in its natural flavor.

2. Rolled Oats

Rolled oats are flattened with a large rolling pin without cracking the oats. These are thin and large in size giving more surface which reduces the cooking time.

These are not processed much as compared to instant oats so they are in their natural flavor and are considered vegan.

3. Steel-cut Oats

Steel-cut or pinhead oatmeal is also called Irish oats. These are cut into small pieces using large steel blades. Pinhead oatmeal is the most vegan option out there as it does not require any processing.

4. Quick-Cooked Rolled Oats

In this type, steel-cut oats are processed through steaming, to reduce the cooking time. However, the end result is mushier oatmeal that is soft and often cooked with water.


Non-Vegan Ingredients in Oatmeal

Not all oatmeal brands are vegan. Now that we have established that, here are some common non-vegan contents that are found in oatmeal.

1. Milk

The non-vegan diet uses normal dairy milk in oatmeal. You will also find powdered milk in some brands.

There are plenty of vegan alternatives to milk that can be used such as soy milk, almond milk, and coconut milk to name a few.

2. Honey

Honey is used as a sweetener in non-vegan oatmeal. Vegans stay away from honey because of harmful farming practices associated with the extraction of honey.

Instead, there are plenty of vegan alternatives to honey such as:

  • Maple syrup
  • Brown rice syrup
  • Date syrup
  • Blackstrap molasses

3. Sugar

While some vegans are okay with sugar consumption, most tend to avoid it because it contains bone char. Therefore, make sure the vegan oatmeal is using organic sugar.

4. Butter

Instead of butter, you can use plant-based oils such as palm oil, avocado oil, coconut oil, or kernel oils. Peanut butter is also a great substitute that adds extra flavor to the oatmeal.

Popular Vegan Oatmeal Brands

Here are some popular vegan oatmeal brands that are fully vegan.

1. Dr. McDougall’s Right Foods

Dr. McDougall’s Right Foods oatmeal comes in different flavors such as Chia Berry, Fruit Flax, Nuts, Cranberry Almond, Hemp Peach, and Organic. Their oatmeal cups are very big in size, great for a full breakfast.

2. Vigilant Eats

Vigilant Eats offers certified organic, gluten-free oatmeal. If you get an oatmeal cup, you just need to add water or vegan milk and leave it overnight. It’s my favorite because of its unique flavors such as Banana crunch, Coconut Maple Vanilla, and Espresso Maca Mulberry.

3. Bob’s Red Mill

Bob’s Red Mill offers gluten-free, 100% vegan oatmeal cups with special fruit-flavored cups such as Pineapple coconut, blueberry and hazelnut, and more.

4. Love Grown

If you are into classic oats that are simple in flavor, Love Grown is the brand to get. Some of its popular vegan oatmeal flavors include Apple cinnamon, strawberry raspberry, banana walnut, and peach vanilla. They also have vegan granola for keto.

5. Modern Oats

Modern Oats are 100% gluten-free, vegan, and non-GMO verified. They operate on a small farm in the upper Midwest and offer the best flavors such as Chocolate Cherry, Mango Blueberry, and more. Its oatmeal cups only include oats and no artificial sweeteners or flavors.

Homemade Vegan Oatmeal Recipes

If you are a fan of homemade oatmeal, there are plenty of vegan recipes you can try at home. For example, you can make oatmeal muffins, cookies, or overnight oats.

Classic Vegan Overnight Oats Recipe



  • 2/3 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup (sweet syrup of choice)
  • 2 tsp chia seeds
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • roasted nuts and banana (or any fruit) optional


  1. Take a small mason jar, and mix all the ingredients.
  2. Cover the jar with a tight lid and shake everything together.
  3. Place in the refrigerator overnight.
  4. Before serving add in your favorite fresh fruit (banana) sliced into small pieces or more almond milk as desired. Enjoy!

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