Zero Waste Instant Oatmeal


Instant oatmeal might have a bad rap among the hippie set, but like Oreos, a lot of us still eat it.  And unlike Oreos, instant oatmeal is just as nutritious as its more-time consuming siblings.*  But for our purposes, what we really care about here is Waste and Cost.

Waste is pretty easy.  This bag:

But I can find quick oats in bulk.  So let’s look at cost, in ascending order, starting with the cheapest:





So bulk is more expensive than your big container of store-brand quick oats, but is still cheaper than the packets.

I had the girls open up a pack of instant to find out how much oatmeal we were dealing with:



And we came up just shy of half a cup.  But that doesn’t mean anything.  Not all instant oatmeal packets are the same and you’re just gonna eyeball the water amount at your desk anyway.

To make it portable, you could use an old spreadable butter container.  Or you could buy some backpack insurance by using a rubber band or a container with lockable sides.


Make it like you would instant and you’ve got a quick, Zero Waste breakfast.

*The nutritional makeup is the same, but instant and quick oats have higher glycemic indexes since they are more processed than rolled or steel-cut oats.  So they get in your system faster but don’t keep you feeling full as long.  As a bonus, the quick oats you find in bulk have a slightly lower GI than instant but cook just as fast.


April 19, 2016

About Me

About Me

I’ve been passionate about combatting blind consumerism since 2008 and joined the Zero Waste movement by starting this blog in 2013, soon after my second child was born. I think it might have been trying to unwrap a toy or someone’s attempt to sell me a butt-wipe warmer that put me over the edge… read more



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