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A Comparison of Steel Cut Oats, Old-Fashioned Oats, and Quick Oats

Are Steel Cut Oats That Much Healthier Than Rolled Oats?

Rolled oats sound healthier for you than quick oats because they're less-processed, right? So if steel-cut oats are even less-processed than rolled oats, they're the healthiest of them all, right? If you're not even sure what the different types of oats are, the explanation below should clear things up.

To shed some light about which oats are better for you, check out the chart comparison below.

Steel cut oats Old-fashioned (rolled) oats Quick oats
Description Also called Irish or Scotch oats, these are cut, not rolled. They look like chopped up rice, take the longest to cook, and have a slightly chewy consistency. Sometimes called rolled oats, these look like flat little ovals. When processing these oats, the kernels are steamed first, and then rolled to flatten them. They take longer to cook than quick oats, but are quicker than steel cut oats. Also called instant oats, these oats are pre-cooked, dried, and then rolled. They cook in a few minutes when added to hot water, and have a mushy texture.

Want to know how they compare nutritionally?

Steel cut oats (1/4 cup) Old-fashioned oats (1/2 cup) Quick oats (1/2 cup)
Calories 150 150 150
Total Fat 2.5 g 3 g 3 g
Saturated Fat .5 g .5 g .5 g
Cholesterol 0 mg 0 mg 0 mg
Sodium 0 mg 0 mg 0 mg
Carbs 27 g 27 g 27 g
Fiber 4 g 4 g 4 g
Sugars .5 g 1 g .1 g
Protein 5 g 5 g 5 g
Calcium 20 mg 0 mg 0 mg

Surprised? It looks like they're pretty much exactly the same, except for the calcium found in the steel cut oats. So if you're in a rush, don't be ashamed of grabbing quick oats — you'll get just as much fiber as if you spent 40 minutes cooking up steel cut oats. And if you're obsessed with this grain, here are some fun tips and recipes to help you enjoy it even more.

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