Butterscotch Oatmeal

Lately I’ve been starting to feel guilty eating in front of Charlotte. It’s like she can somehow tell that my bright red strawberry pie is better than her brown wheat bread. I don’t get it. She stared at me while I licked my plate, and I actually cast my eyes down in shame. I guess that’s how you know when to start eating treats during naptime. (If the most notable part of the previous statement is the fact that I lick my plate after I eat pie, then I’m sorry, we are not friends.)

Charlotte has been on a genuine food strike lately. Yet she hasn’t figured out how to spit out food that she doesn’t want to swallow. The other day I was feeding her oatmeal and she refused to swallow the food in her mouth, so it was just sitting there. I figured she would swallow it eventually, and stopped worrying about it. A good 20 minutes later I took her over to my friend Nancy’s house to be babysat. I was explaining the bedtime routine when suddenly Charlotte sneezed. Spraying Nancy’s carpet with 20-minute old saliva-y oatmeal.

But don’t worry, you will not be spraying anyone with this Butterscotch Oatmeal. It is seriously incredible. It looks like regular oatmeal, but can I just tell you that I have made it at least 10 times in the last month? No joke. It is that good. The egg makes it rich and creamy, and the brown sugar really does morph into a butterscotch flavor as it cooks. Eric grew up eating this stuff and now my kids will too, because I am completely addicted. They will eat it, even if they choose to spray.

Butterscotch Oatmeal


  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup quick oats
  • 2 teaspoons butter, optional


  1. In a small saucepan, whisk together the milk, egg, brown sugar, and salt.
  2. Turn the heat on to medium, and don't go higher than that the whole time you are cooking otherwise it will turn out grainy.
  3. Mix in the oats. Stir occasionally. When the oatmeal begins to bubble, cook and stir until thick.
  4. When it has reached the consistency you like, remove from heat, and stir in butter until melted.
  5. I usually let it sit off the heat with a lid on for a couple minutes so that it gets nice and thick. Serve with milk and fruit!

Source: my mother-in-law Kris






  1. Kris says

    Karen, it’s 6:30 am and I’m trying not to laugh out loud. Seriously. You crack me up! Is Charlotte really staring at you when you eat better food than her or is guilt making you imagine this? Also, does she really not spit out the food? That is too, too funny! I love that kid! She is awesome! I cannot wait until she is a teenager! Also, why does your butterscotch oatmeal look so much more delicious than mine ever did? I don’t get it. I want to dive into the picture and eat that whole bowl. I think I will make it for breakfast, but I don’t think mine will look like yours!

    • says

      No, I swear, Charlotte already knows how to give the evil eye, I am not imagining it. And yes, she really does refuse to swallow. The other day she was sitting directly in front of the TV watching March Madness basketball, clutching her sippy cup, with her cheeks stuffed chipmunk-full of peas and carrots that she refused to swallow from lunch, which had ended 20 minutes before. She is a little couch potato!! And Kris I promise, if you put your Butterscotch Oatmeal in a pretty bowl and surround it with colorful fruit, yours will look just like mine :)

  2. says

    I love your stories, your recipes, AND that you lick your plate! I also think your mother-in-law should make a cookbook! I would buy it! =D

  3. says

    I think if you didn’t lick your plate I wouldn’t take you seriously. Who wants to waste delicious food? This recipe looks lovely and I’ve been searching for ways to use up my 10 year supply of oatmeal.

  4. Nellie says

    Karen, the oatmeal sounds delicious. It was so nice to meet you last Sat, it was a great dinner with lots of old friends to visit with!

    • says

      It was so good to see you Nellie! It’s been years! And I’m glad you like the looks of the oatmeal. I still make this for my kids (with significantly less sugar!) nearly every day. They love it. Let me know if you try it out :)


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