Banana Bread Steel-cut Oatmeal in an Instant Pot® pressure cooker. – Instantly Delicious

Banana Bread Steel-cut Oatmeal is warm, comforting, and the flavors remind me of a freshly baked slice of banana bread.  Cooking steel-cut oats in an Instant Pot® pressure cooker is an easy way to enjoy a hearty, whole-grain breakfast in minutes.  There are so many flavor combinations and nutritious add-ins for your oatmeal, that you could enjoy oatmeal every day of the week in a different way.  I make a big batch at least once a week, changing up the flavors depending on ingredients I have on hand. Banana Bread Steel-cut Oatmeal is always a favorite.

I have an older model Instant Pot® than some of my readers. Because of this, I was hearing a lot of feedback that this was causing the burn indicator to go off in newer models.  Because of this, I am giving two updated methods for making this recipe. The first method requires you to spray the inner pot with cooking spray and then making sure the bananas are placed on top of the oats and water.  The second method is the pot-in-pot method, which I will describe below.
Banana Bread Steel-cut Oatmeal
Serves 8 (or 4 generous portions)

​2 cups steel-cut oatmeal
​3 1/3 cups water
​2 mashed ripe bananas
​1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
​1 teaspoon cinnamon
​1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 cup honey
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

​Directions (directly in the pot):

​1. Using a fork or potato masher, mash the bananas in a bowl.  Stir in vanilla, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Spray Instant Pot® with non-stick spray. Add steel-cut oats and water to the Instant Pot®.  Cover with banana mixture, but do not stir.***

​2. Set the Instant Pot® to porridge for 10 minutes, making sure the valve is set to sealing.  When finished, allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes.  You can then switch the valve to venting to release the rest of the pressure.

​3. Stir in honey and walnuts.  Serve immediately.

Directions (pot-in-pot)

​1. Using a fork or potato masher, mash the bananas in a heat-proof glass bowl.  Add steel-cut oats and water to the bowl.  Stir in vanilla, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  

2. Add 1 cup of water to the Instant Pot® and place trivet on the bottom.  Place glass bowl with oatmeal mixture uncovered on trivet. Lock the lid, making sure the valve is in the sealing position.

​2. Set the Instant Pot® to manual high-pressure for 12 minutes. When finished, allow the pressure to release naturally.

​3. Stir in honey and walnuts.  Serve immediately.

​Enjoy, Julie


5/9/2016 09:26:06 pm

Just got my IP and looking forward to trying this recipe! I love steel cut oats but they take too long on a weekday.


5/10/2016 10:31:09 am

Thanks Catherine. I agree! The IP is a great way to speed up the process a bit. I also have a recipe for rolled oats, which are even faster.


11/3/2017 04:36:13 pm

I’m looking for a recipe for rolled oats porridge for the IP I just got. Please post it or message me. Thanks!


7/13/2016 11:40:49 pm

Hi, Would you use a heat-proof bowl to make the oatmeal, sort of like pot-in-pot. Put the oatmeal in the bowl and then put the bowl in the Instant Pot and the let the oatmeal cook that way. I just bought an IP but I have been reading a few recipes that say you should do pot-in-pot method, so now I’m a bit confused. Thanks!!


7/14/2016 06:37:50 am

I made the oatmeal directly in the instant pot. I haven’t tried the pot-in-pot method, so I can’t speak to the results. Let me know if you try it that way.


9/9/2016 07:11:28 pm

Would this still work when substituting the water for almond milk?


9/9/2016 08:46:19 pm

I bet it would work well.


1/17/2017 04:53:34 pm

When using milk you should use true pot in pot method as the milk will scald. The pot in pot method also makes it easier to eat and cleanup.


10/23/2016 05:12:57 pm

Do these reheat well or is it best to eat immediately ?


10/23/2016 08:14:05 pm

Hi Michelle,

It is best to serve right away, but I have reheated other steel cut oat recipes with success. I usually just add a little more milk and butter.

Let me know if it works.



3/4/2019 08:41:58 pm

I have reheated this recipe with great results. I add a splash of almond milk before microwaving. Also, the cooking spray and extra water (suggested in a comment) work for me and I’ve never had a burn issue.

1/9/2017 12:46:45 pm

Do you have a recipe for old fashioned oats in the pressure cooker


1/9/2017 01:32:23 pm

This recipe uses rolled oats. You can take the proportions and timing, if you just want plain oatmeal.


1/22/2017 10:41:09 pm

Could this be halved and still work?


2/5/2017 07:10:35 am

I just tried it! Worked great.


6/23/2017 10:09:03 am

Thank you – was hoping someone would have tried to halve it!

3/26/2017 09:56:12 am

Could you do this with quick cooking steel cut oats?


3/26/2017 10:29:01 am

Hi Stephanie,

I have never used quick cooking steel cut oats before. I am sure it will work, but not sure how the timing should be adjusted. Let me know if you try it.



3/29/2017 09:13:39 am

The flavor of this was amazing! Unfortunately the texture didn’t come out just right when I tried it. Any idea what I might have done wrong? I followed the recipe closely but I think it was undercooked or something. Thanks!


3/29/2017 03:43:05 pm

Hmmm. I do not know. I wonder if perhaps it is just a difference in texture preference. Were they chewy or hard? If you want to try adding a couple of minutes, that might help.


12/13/2017 06:14:11 am

I halved the recipe but got BURN half way through the process of cooking. I had PORRIDGE – reduced time to 10mins. Used 1 cup of steel cut oats and 1 1/4 cups of water.

Where could have I gone wrong?


12/13/2017 01:20:27 pm

I am not sure what happened. I am sorry your oatmeal burned. Maybe try using the pot-in-pot method mentioned above. Mix the ingredients in a heatproof bowl. Place on trivet with one cup of water at the bottom of the instant pot. I’d increase the cooking time by 2 minutes.


2/6/2018 09:06:02 am

To keep the proportions in the original recipe you should have added 1 3/4 cups water.


12/16/2017 09:02:29 am

This was a fail for me. I followed the directions very closely and twice was given a burn reading. I finally scraped out all the ingredients and placed them in the two pot method. I hope it works! However, it’s unfortunate because I’ve spent nearly an hour trying to figure this recipe out. :-/


12/18/2017 05:01:14 pm

Sorry Jennifer. What model are you using (probably one fancier than mine). I don’t have a burn indicator. I have never had it burn, but the comment above you mentioned the same. I might amend with a pot in pot revision.


12/31/2017 11:36:28 am

I have a fix to avoid the BURN.

Spray or cover the pot, bottom and sides, with oil.

Dump oats in pot.

Increase water to 5 cups and add to pot.

Mash bananas and cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and vanilla together I. A separate bowl and then dump in on top of oats and water.

Porridge setting for 10 minutes. Let pressure down on it’s own for 15 minutes. Release remaining pressure manually.

Stir, any excess water will absorb.

Stir in honey and nuts.


1/9/2018 09:46:57 am

Thanks for this great tip. People with newer models that my pot are having “burn” problems with my recipes that caramelize (bbq sauce, too). I have been experimenting with pot in pot for this recipe, and I don’t like the final result. I appreciate the feedback.


1/8/2018 10:16:34 pm

This was delicous it smelled up my whole house! The only thing I did was I mash of the bananas because I don’t particularly like bananas whole and added all the ingredients to the bananas and then I added a teaspoon of banana extract along with the teaspoon of vanilla and then I added a little bit of Splenda brown sugar to the top when I drizzled the organic local honey on it it after it was done is awesome !


1/9/2018 09:48:12 am

So glad you liked this! I mash the bananas too, I just added slices to the top to make the photo a bit more appealing (oatmeal isn’t very beautiful. 😉 )


LESA McGuire
11/17/2018 11:10:17 pm

I have made steel cut oats in my crock pot (CP) but they cook for 4 hours, so I’m looking forward to trying them in the IP. When I cooked them in the CP I used apples instead of bananas (not a fan of bananas in cereal). The apples come out firm but cooked and very tasty and smell great.

1/17/2018 07:26:43 am

I should have read all comments first as I just burnt mine too. Ugh. Is there a way to edit your blog post so people should be aware if they have a newer model?


2/10/2018 09:00:10 am

On all of my steel cut oat recipes there is a 4:1 water to steel cut oat ratio. Also all of the direct heat methods call for a fat( butter, coconut oil or margarine). I increased the water to 6 cups, added a Tbsp coconut oil and cooked on porridge setting for 12 minutes. No burn and the flavor of coconut was awesome.


3/4/2018 01:31:56 pm

I am going to try this, this evening! Uping the water to 6 cups and coconut oil. I made the pumpkin oats, per recipe, and they came out a little burnt and dry.


8/1/2018 06:16:15 am

Followed your new directions, water and oats first then bananas on top. I still got a burn notice.


10/15/2018 09:49:45 pm

Sorry that happened. This happens with pots that are newer than the one I use. There is a recommendation in the comments above. Another thing to try is to contact the instant pot company for advice. It is unfortunate that this is happening, because recipes that should work no longer do.


Catherine A Holland
11/16/2018 02:30:31 pm

My Instant Pot came with a recipe book as well as a user manual. In the recipe book is a recipe for 3-minute steel cut oats. I follow the recipe, using 1 c almond milk, 2 cups water, 1 c oats, etc and I have never had a failure, nor sticking nor burning. I put them directly in the liner. I love them that way!!


1/12/2019 01:23:05 pm

I also received the burn message twice while making this. I added more water the second time, my instant pot is a pretty new one so I,m not sure what happened either


1/24/2019 02:07:52 pm

Unfortunately, since I am still using my older Instant Pot, I am not qualified to give advice for the burn notice. One thing you can try is to adapt the recipe to the pot-in-pot method or cook it in jars like I do here:

I am sorry you got the burn message. It is so frustrating that this is happening to my recipes that have been tested on the older unit.


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