• Top 10 Best Healthy Instant Oatmeals in 2020 (Bob's Red Mill, Nature's Path, and More) 1
  • Top 10 Best Healthy Instant Oatmeals in 2020 (Bob's Red Mill, Nature's Path, and More) 2
  • Top 10 Best Healthy Instant Oatmeals in 2020 (Bob's Red Mill, Nature's Path, and More) 3
  • Top 10 Best Healthy Instant Oatmeals in 2020 (Bob's Red Mill, Nature's Path, and More) 4
  • Top 10 Best Healthy Instant Oatmeals in 2020 (Bob's Red Mill, Nature's Path, and More) 5

Top 10 Best Healthy Instant Oatmeals in 2020 (Bob's Red Mill, Nature's Path, and More)

Instant oatmeals are quick and easy to prepare, making them a popular breakfast choice for many people. But although they come with many flavor options, many are laden with sugar, sodium, and other harmful additives. Yikes! If you want to know how to choose healthy instant oatmeals, don't miss this article where we've provided you with all the tips and suggestions you need to make choices that are better for your body and your mind. 


We picked the Classic Oatmeal with Flax and Chia from Bob's Red Mill as our number one product! It's gluten-free, low in sugar, and comes with only four natural ingredients. Don't forget to check other suggested products in our top 10 list, too! 

  • Last updated: 09-15-2020
  • 48 views
Table of Contents

Top 10 Best Healthy Instant Oatmeals

We've picked the most popular healthy instant oatmeals that we think you shouldn't miss! We've included a range of different products that come in various types of packaging for you to choose from.

1

Bob's Red MillClassic Oatmeal With Flax and Chia

Unflavored, 12 pack

$26.48

Amount12 cups
Sugar per serving1 g
Other ingredientsChia seeds, flax seeds, sea salt
HighlightsGluten-free
2

Nature’s PathHomestyle Instant Oatmeal

Unflavored, 6 pack

$18.87

Amount8 packets per box
Sugar per serving0 g
Other ingredientsNone
HighlightsOrganic, gluten-free, non-GMO
3

QuakerOriginal Instant Oatmeal

Unflavored, 6 pack

$17.94

Amount8 packets per box
Sugar per serving0 g
Other ingredientsNone
HighlightsOrganic, non-GMO
4

Better Oats100 Calories

Maple and brown sugar, 6 pack

$16.74

Amount10 packets per box
Sugar per serving1 g
Other ingredientsFlax seeds, sucralose, maple syrup
Highlights-
5

Arrowhead MillsInstant Quinoa and Oat Hot Cereal

Unflavored

$5.99

Amount8 packets
Sugar per serving1 g
Other ingredientsQuinoa flakes
HighlightsGluten-free, non-GMO
6

think! Protein + Fiber Instant Oatmeal

Madagascar vanilla, 6 pack

$28.37

Amount6 packets per box
Sugar per serving9 g
Other ingredientsQuinoa, soy protein isolate, chicory root fiber, vanilla powder, almonds, pecans
HighlightsNon-GMO, vegan-friendly
7

RXBARRX A.M. Oats

Flavor variety, 9 pack

$26.99

Amount9 cups
Sugar per serving8 to 9 g
Other ingredientsDates, egg whites, almonds, chocolate, maple sugar, apples, cinnamon
HighlightsGluten-free
8

Earnest EatsSuperfood Oatmeal

Mayan Blend

$39.70

Amount12 cups
Sugar per serving10 g
Other ingredientsQuinoa, puffed amaranth, pepitas, sunflower seeds, natural cocoa
HighlightsGluten-free, non-GMO
9

Nature's PathQi'a Superfood

Creamy Coconut, 6 pack

$31.58

Amount6 packets per box
Sugar per serving1 g
Other ingredientsDried coconut, buckwheat groats, chia seeds, hemp seeds
HighlightsOrganic, gluten-free, non-GMO, vegan-friendly
10

365 Everyday Value by Whole FoodsOrganic Instant Oatmeal

Flavor variety

$3.69

Amount8 packets
Sugar per serving10 to 13 g
Other ingredientsCane sugar, apples, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, flax seeds
HighlightsOrganic, vegan-friendly

Compare the Best Healthy Instant Oatmeals

Image
1
Bob's Red Mill Classic Oatmeal With Flax and Chia 1

Bob's Red Mill

2
Nature’s Path Homestyle Instant Oatmeal 1

Nature’s Path

3
Quaker Original Instant Oatmeal 1

Quaker

4
Better Oats 100 Calories 1

Better Oats

5
Arrowhead Mills Instant Quinoa and Oat Hot Cereal 1

Arrowhead Mills

6
think!  Protein + Fiber Instant Oatmeal 1

think!

7
RXBAR RX A.M. Oats 1

RXBAR

8
Earnest Eats Superfood Oatmeal 1

Earnest Eats

9
Nature's Path Qi'a Superfood 1

Nature's Path

10
365 Everyday Value by Whole Foods Organic Instant Oatmeal 1

365 Everyday Value by Whole Foods

Name

Classic Oatmeal With Flax and Chia

Homestyle Instant Oatmeal

Original Instant Oatmeal

100 Calories

Instant Quinoa and Oat Hot Cereal

Protein + Fiber Instant Oatmeal

RX A.M. Oats

Superfood Oatmeal

Qi'a Superfood

Organic Instant Oatmeal

Features

Nutrient-Dense Oatmeal in a Convenient Cup

100% Natural Whole Grain Oats Free from Gluten

Additive-Free, Pure Whole Grain Rolled Oats

Fat-Free, Low Calorie Oatmeal

Boost Your Day With This 2-in-1 Superfood Mix!

Protein-Filled Oatmeal With Nuts and Vanilla

Cups of High-Protein Oatmeal in 3 Flavors

High-Fiber, Chocolate-Flavored Oatmeal

A Blend of Superfoods With No Added Salt

Low-Sodium Oatmeal With All-Natural Ingredients

Price$26.48$18.87$17.94$16.74$5.99$28.37$26.99$39.70$31.58$3.69
Amount12 cups8 packets per box8 packets per box10 packets per box8 packets6 packets per box9 cups12 cups6 packets per box8 packets
Sugar per serving1 g0 g0 g1 g1 g9 g8 to 9 g10 g1 g10 to 13 g
Other ingredientsChia seeds, flax seeds, sea saltNoneNoneFlax seeds, sucralose, maple syrupQuinoa flakesQuinoa, soy protein isolate, chicory root fiber, vanilla powder, almonds, pecans Dates, egg whites, almonds, chocolate, maple sugar, apples, cinnamonQuinoa, puffed amaranth, pepitas, sunflower seeds, natural cocoaDried coconut, buckwheat groats, chia seeds, hemp seedsCane sugar, apples, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, flax seeds
HighlightsGluten-freeOrganic, gluten-free, non-GMOOrganic, non-GMO-Gluten-free, non-GMONon-GMO, vegan-friendlyGluten-freeGluten-free, non-GMOOrganic, gluten-free, non-GMO, vegan-friendlyOrganic, vegan-friendly
Link

How to Choose a Healthy Instant Oatmeal - Buying Guide

These helpful tips and suggestions will help you choose the right instant oatmeal that suits your taste and health concerns.

Choose an Oatmeal Flavor That You'll Like

Choose an Oatmeal Flavor That You'll Like
No matter how healthy something is, you probably won't eat it consistently if you don't like it. Sweet flavors are a good option to satisfy your sweet tooth while still getting healthy nutrients. Some of the popular sweet flavors are maple and brown sugar, apples and cinnamon, raisins and spice, blueberry, peanut butter, and vanilla almond.

You can easily find instant oatmeals in sweet options. On the other hand, savory flavors make it taste more like real food, which may satisfy your appetite more than sweet flavors. Try getting plain oatmeal and adding your own flavors! Some of the popular savory flavors are ham, egg and cheese, tomato basil, curry, and chili.


Eating the same taste over and over again can be boring! It’s a good idea to try a variety of flavors. Some brands like Quaker and Oats Overnight offer four different flavors that come in individual packets.

Pay Attention to Added Sugar and Salt

Plain instant oatmeals are considered to be healthy and provide many health benefits. However, most brands come with loads of added sugar and salt. 

Consider Unflavored Instant Oatmeals

Consider Unflavored Instant Oatmeals

If you're concerned about healthy eating, we suggest you pick plain, unflavored instant oatmeals that contain no added sugar. Don't forget to check the amount of sodium, too! Plain oatmeals are sodium-free; however, many brands have added salt to enhance the flavor. 


If like a sweet taste, you can add your favorite type of sweetener into your plain oatmeal, too! The good thing about unflavored oatmeals is it allows you to adjust the sweetness levels based on your preferences. Since there are many types of sweeteners, make sure you choose one that suits your taste and health condition.


It’s a good idea to choose a brand that contains no more than six grams of sugar and 250 milligrams of sodium per serving. The sugar content may be hard to avoid; in that case, read our section on sweeteners below.

Natural, Sugar-Free Sweeteners are Healthy Sugar Alternatives

Natural, Sugar-Free Sweeteners are Healthy Sugar Alternatives

If you're on a diet or have diabetes, it's a good idea to avoid white sugar, brown sugar, and maple syrup. White and brown sugar can increase blood sugar levels, whereas maple syrup is high in calories, sugars, and carbohydrates. Instead, we suggest you choose healthy sweeteners like stevia and monk fruit.


Both stevia and monk fruit have zero calories, sugars, and carbohydrates, which make them healthier sugar alternatives. One thing to be concerned about with stevia is the bitter aftertaste that some people don’t like. 


On the other hand, monk fruit is high in antioxidants, which helps to promote weight-loss. Although monk fruit can cause side effects in some people like bloating, gas, and nausea, it doesn’t raise blood sugar levels!

Look for Extra Nutrient-Dense Ingredients

Look for Extra Nutrient-Dense Ingredients

Some brands come with the single ingredient of 100% oats, whereas other brands have added other nutrient-rich ingredients, too! 


If you want to add texture, flavor, and more nutrients to your oatmeal, we suggest you consider instant oatmeals that come with flax seeds, chia seeds, quinoa, almonds, walnuts, or dried fruits. These ingredients are considered to be superfoods, which are rich in antioxidants, fiber, and many other vitamins and minerals. 

Look for Extra Nutrient-Dense Ingredients

Oatmeals are a good source of soluble fiber, which helps to promote a healthy digestive system. Good instant oatmeals should have at least three grams of fiber per serving; however, some brands offer up to 10 grams! If you want to increase fiber content in your oatmeal, we suggest you look for extra ingredients like chicory root extract. 


You may want to consider a high-protein instant oatmeal, too. Many brands have added whey protein or soy protein into the product. Regular instant oatmeals may offer four grams of protein per serving; however, some brands that have added protein powder may offer up to 16 grams of protein per serving! 

Organic Oats Can be a Safe Option

Organic Oats Can be a Safe Option

Some research has found that many oat products contain glyphosate, a low-cost herbicide that is widely used in agriculture. It's considered to be safe for most people if consumed in a small amount.


According to the Environment Working Group, glyphosate is considered to be safe if it’s below 160 parts per billion (ppb). However, a test result conducted in 2018 showed that 31 of the 45 oat samples contained more than 160 ppb of glyphosate


Bob’s Red Mill had the best ranking with only 10 ppb, whereas Quaker had the worst ranking with up to 1300 ppb!

Organic Oats Can be a Safe Option

If you’re wary of chemical pesticides or fertilizers, it’s a good idea to switch from non-organic to organic oats since glyphosate is banned in organic farming. Luckily, many brands also offer organic options (like Quaker)!


According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, organic oats are free from most harmful chemicals. Instead, they use natural pest control, green manure, and crop rotation. 

Pick the Packaging That is Convenient for You

Pick the Packaging That is Convenient for You

Instant oatmeals come with different types of packaging including cups, packets, bulk bags and jars and cartons. Bags and jars can be a great option when you want to buy in a bigger size. A resealable bag makes it quick and easy to store the leftovers.


Boxes usually contain small packets inside, in which each packet is a single serving. This type of packaging is convenient to use, and easy for portion control. Like packets, cups are also single-serving. Since they're portable and don't require a separate bowl, they're also a good option when you're on the move.

Note That Flavored Oatmeals Have a Shorter Shelf Life

Note That Flavored Oatmeals Have a Shorter Shelf Life

In general, the shelf life of an unopened, natural instant oatmeal is between one to two years after the printed date. However, a flavored instant oatmeal has a shorter shelf life, which is approximately six to nine months after the printed date. The reason is because they contain ingredients like fruits, milk, cream, and seasonings.


Improper storage conditions may shorten the shelf life of the product, too! After it's opened, we suggest you store it in a tightly sealed container in a cool and dry place to maintain its best quality and extend the shelf life. 

Looking for Oatmeal Topping Ideas?

Looking for Oatmeal Topping Ideas?

The simple way to make your oatmeal tastes less bland is to add toppings. Below are our suggestions for healthy ingredients that you can add to your bowl. Dark chocolate is rich in antioxidants, whereas peanut butter contains high amounts of healthy fats. Additionally, natural sweeteners are healthier sugar substitutes.

Summary

Although instant oats are more processed than rolled oats or steel-cut oats, they're the most convenient breakfast and snack option. This is because they're easy to prepare and don't require much time to cook. In addition to your favorite flavor, make sure you also check the nutrition facts table and ingredient list, too! 


Types of packaging are also important, and we recommend you choose one that is most convenient for you. Also, keep in mind organic oats if you are concerned about chemicals in oat products. We hope this article will be useful for you to find healthy instant oatmeals that you're looking for. Good luck with your search!


Author: Apinya Masuda


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