Oatmeal Packet Mug Muffin

By Ann Fulton

You choose the flavor in these healthy, protein-rich, single-serve muffins that can be made with just four easy ingredients!
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You choose the flavor in these healthy, protein-rich, single-serve muffins that can be made with just four easy ingredients!


In our latest Fountain Avenue Kids video, sisters Grace and Evie are back to demonstrate the ease and versatility of an oatmeal packet mug muffin. These wholesome muffins are endlessly versatile, easy for kids to make on their own, and adults are sure to love them too!


I’ve long made these microwaveable muffins for a quick breakfast or snack for my family. I’ve personally started countless days with one of the filling muffins (a single muffin contains the protein of a whole egg and fiber-rich oats) and have taught the speedy recipe in countless kids cooking classes over the years.

The feedback is consistently glowing – and often tinged with disbelief that something so simple can magically transform into something so good.

Many kids do begin as skeptics, stating that they don’t like oatmeal. I always say it’s ok if they don’t care for the muffin, but they may like to try because the result is much different than a bowl of mushy oatmeal. Making it right in the mug is fun too.

People report loving the ease, flavor, and flexibility. Occasionally, cooking class participants have reported stopping by the grocery store on the way home from class to purchase instant oatmeal to enjoy the next day!

The flavor of the muffin is dictated by the oatmeal packet. Apples and cinnamon, brown sugar maple, and cinnamon raisin are longtime classics, but newer options abound, with low sugar and certified gluten-free options for those who need them.


When my nieces, Evie and Grace, were 4 and 7 (they are 9 and 12 now), we made Homemade Instant Oatmeal Packets. Sure, the packets are easy to buy, but it’s another fun project that allows kids to play an active role in their meal preparation. 

The girls had also requested a strawberries and cream flavor, which at that point wasn’t commercially available. I figured it out (freeze-dried strawberries and vanilla powder!), although Bakery on Main now offers that flavor, and it’s always popular in my cooking classes. 

Recently, we discovered sea salt chocolate oatmeal packets, which offer a wholesome way to make a quick chocolate chip muffin. The oat packets don’t contain chocolate chips (they’d melt) but a dozen or so added to the muffin provides just enough to satisfy most kids and adults. 

Note that when adding chocolate chips, I recommend stirring them in after the 10-minute rest (which, as the recipe mentions, ensures the mixture doesn’t bubble up and overflow from the mug while cooking). The batter thickens during this time, so it’s thick enough to prevent the chips from sinking to the bottom of the mug. For a hint of decadence with minimal added sugar, I’ve found that kids are typically satisfied with eight to ten chips dotted on top of the muffin, where they can readily see and taste them.  

You choose the flavor in these healthy, protein-rich, single-serve muffins that can be made with just four easy ingredients!

The ingredients are simple, wholesome, and readily available: an instant oatmeal packet, an egg, applesauce, mashed banana or another fruit purée, and baking powder. The mug it cooks in serves as the mixing bowl – and it doesn’t even need to be greased!

You choose the flavor in these healthy, protein-rich, single-serve muffins that can be made with just four easy ingredients!

 🧑🏻‍🍳       👨‍🍳       👩🏾‍🍳

You choose the flavor in these healthy, protein-rich, single-serve muffins that can be made with just four easy ingredients!

The easy recipe can be used to create a range of flavor profiles, from a warmly spiced muffin (below) to a fruity one – even a whole-grain chocolate chip muffin.  

Oatmeal Packet Mug Muffin - You choose the flavor in these healthy, protein-rich, single-serve muffins that can be made with just four easy ingredients!

For those who may forever think of oatmeal as mushy and unappealing, the following microwaveable muffin offers a novel, grab-and-go alternative. Oatmeal for the win! 👊

  • Quick
  • Easy
  • Kid-friendly
  • 4 basic ingredients 
  • Customizable
  • Whole grain
  • Gluten-free (choose certified gluten-free oats, if needed)
  • Dairy-free
  • Protein of one whole egg
  • Fun!
Homemade Instant Oatmeal Packets  ~  Mix and match an extensive list of options to create healthy and economical alternatives to the store-bought packets.  Kid- and adult-friendly!

Homemade Instant Oatmeal Packets are a fun project and can be customized in countless ways, but store-bought instant oatmeal packets work quite well for these muffins too.

I’ve included lots of options so you can experiment with this speedy recipe and customize to taste. The muffins may be prepared the night before for a truly grab-and-go breakfast.

Oatmeal Packet Mug Muffin
Prep Time: 5 minutes (+10 minute rest)
Cook Time: 1 minute
Total Time: 6 minutes (+10 minute rest)
Yield: 1 muffin
You choose the flavor in these healthy, protein-rich, single-serve muffins that can be made with just four easy ingredients!
  • 1 single-serve instant oatmeal packet, flavor of choice*
  • 1 medium or large egg
  • ¼ cup (60 grams) mashed very ripe banana, applesauce, apple butter, or pumpkin butter
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • Optional mix-ins: 1 tablespoon chocolate chips**(semi-sweet, dark, white, mini, etc.) shredded coconut, raisins or other dried fruit bits, or nuts. A pinch of oats offers an optional but pretty garnish.

Mix all the ingredients together. You can do this directly in the microwave-safe mug (or large ramekin or small bowl) in which you will cook the muffin, just make sure to stir down to the bottom to fully incorporate the ingredients. Tip: There’s no need to grease the mug. Do use something with a capacity of approximately twice the size of the amount of batter. The muffin will rise a lot while cooking, and you don’t want it to overflow.

Wipe the rim of the mug if it got a little messy while mixing. If you wish, sprinkle the top of the uncooked muffin with a pinch or two of oats, some shredded coconut, etc. — this is primarily for a pretty look.  Let sit on the counter for at least 10 minutes or up to 2 hours. You may also cover and store in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. The rest time gives the oats time to plump up and allows for more even cooking.

Microwave on full power for 60 to 90 seconds (adding 15-20 seconds when cold from the fridge) or until the muffin is no longer moist on top and the center is just cooked through. (There’s no need to stir again prior to cooking, even when refrigerated overnight. Until you know how long it will take to cook the muffin in your microwave, check it a little early and add additional cooking time in 15-second intervals, as needed. If you want to be certain the muffin is cooked through, use a quick read thermometer; the internal temperature should read between 200 and 205 degrees F.  In my microwave, the muffins take one minute when cooked in a flatter, wider ramekin and 15-20 seconds more when cooked in a narrower, deeper mug.)

Gently pry the muffin out of the cup with a butter knife. Be careful; it will be very hot. The edges will be very moist at first from the steam in the mug, but this will quickly evaporate as the muffin cools for a minute or two. Optionally, allow the muffin to cool completely, cover, and store in the refrigerator.

Possible flavor combinations:

  • Blueberry oatmeal/mashed banana/shredded coconut
  • Brown sugar-maple oatmeal/pumpkin butter/pecans/dried cranberries
  • Apples and cinnamon oatmeal/applesauce or apple butter/walnuts/raisins

*To make the muffins gluten-free, use certified gluten-free oatmeal packets.  Bakery on Main makes a healthy, certified gluten-free, lower-sugar option with some fun flavors.  I like their “maple multigrain muffin” variety and then use applesauce or pumpkin butter in the recipe.  I’ve also made a version with mashed banana and a tablespoon of PB2.  Feel free to mix and match and be creative.

**If using chocolate chips, I recommend stirring them in after the 10 minute rest, as they will be less likely to sink while cooking. I also find that 8-10 chips, dotted on top of the muffin – where you can readily see and taste them – offer a hint of decadence with minimal added sugar.

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Recipe first posted March 14, 2014


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  1. Billie Parrott

    I made this today with Quaker low sugar instant oatmeal. I started Weight Watchers a month ago and this will be my new go-to breakfast. I used banana this morning but plan to use unsweetened applesauce in the future because it’s easier to have on hand at all times. I now plan to create my own instant oatmeal packets as shown in your post. Thank you so much for this fantastic alternative to oatmeal, which I actually like a lot. I’m a huge bread lover, and this will really satisfy that craving. And I love the fact that it is portable and a great grab and go breakfast or snack. Again, thanks so much for sharing this.