Inside: Learn how to make these easy make-ahead Mini Banana Oatmeal Cups, perfect for baby-led weaning and toddlers. Little ones will love these fun mini (nutritious) bites of oatmeal.
Oatmeal is this whole thing in our house.
We don’t just do a plain bowl of oatmeal and call it a day.
There’s a process – there are toppings, toppings, and more toppings.
Like any good parenting moment, it all started one very busy preschool morning when I was trying to get breakfast ready ASAP.
My toddler would just not.be.put.down. She needed to be held by mommy. And my 4 year old needed to get to pre-k on time. And the kids needed to eat.
In a moment of desperation, I pulled up the girls’ step stools to the kitchen counter, got out all of our silicone cups and practically emptied an entire pantry shelf.
“Everyone fill up the cups with your favorite ingredients and then we’ll top our oatmeal when it’s ready!”
This bought me enough time to finish cooking, get the lunchboxes ready, and finish my (by now) lukewarm coffee.
And so, Decorate-Your-Own-Oatmeal was born. Of course, this is the total opposite of what I want happening on a school morning. The last thing I need when we’re running late is the kids making a mess in the kitchen while I cook something over a hot stove.
So this oatmeal extravaganza has become a weekend affair, which eventually led me to making baked oatmeal in advance.
How do you make baked oatmeal cups?
Preparing baked oatmeal cups is actually as easy as making regular oatmeal. The best part is you can make these in advance, freeze them and reheat in the microwave.
It’s as simple as mixing basic pantry ingredients like: oats, coconut oil, almond milk, eggs, maple syrup, and mashed banana. As a bonus these are also gluten-free and dairy-free, and can be made nut-free by swapping out the milk.
Since my kids love all things in “mini” size, I thought it would be super fun to make these in a mini muffin tin (see recipe below for my preferred mini muffin pan)
And if you prep these on a Sunday, you can have the kids help add toppings before you pop them in the oven.
Can I serve baked oatmeal to babies?
In my experience, yes! However, please remember, if you have specific questions regarding what your baby should or shouldn’t eat, always consult your pediatrician.
When my girls were babies, I used to make this baked oatmeal in a standard-size muffin tin and then cut up in quarters after it cooled. This is the perfect baby-led weaning food for babies to practice self-feeding.
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More Foods for Baby-Led Weaning:
- Easy Cheesy 4 Ingredient Broccoli Bites
- First Foods for Self-Feeding
- Best Gluten-Free Recipes for Babies
Mini Banana Oatmeal Cups Recipe
Yield: 48 mini oatmeal cups
- 3 cups rolled oats, divided
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt (omit for babies under 1)
- 2 ripe bananas, mashed
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup almond milk (or milk of choice)
- 1/4 cup real maple syrup (omit for babies under 1)
- 1/4 cup refined coconut oil, melted
- mini chocolate chips (optional for toddlers & kids)
- 24 Count Silicone Mini Muffin Pan – this is the exact one I have and I absolutely love it. I also use it to make mini egg cups.
How to Make Mini Baked Banana Oatmeal Cups
- Preheat oven to 350F
- Pulse 1 cup of the rolled oats in the food processor until it resembles flour
- In a large bowl, combine the 1 cup pulsed rolled oats, remaining 2 cups rolled oats, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt
- In a separate medium bowl, whisk mashed bananas, eggs, almond milk, maple syrup and coconut oil
- Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl of dry ingredients and mix with a rubber spatula until it comes together (the mixture may look wet, but the oats will absorb the moisture)
- Scoop the mixture into the mini muffin pan, filling each cavity to the top
- For toddlers and kids, add a few mini chocolate chips to the top of each cup before baking
- Bake for 15-17 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center of a mini oat cup comes out clean
- Let cool in the pan for a few minutes and then turn out onto a cooling rack. Best served warm, but can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for about a week.
How To Freeze:
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper
- Once mini oatmeal cups are cooled, line them up on the parchment-lined baking sheet
- Transfer to the freezer to “flash freeze” – this will prevent them from sticking together in the bag
- Once frozen (after a few hours), transfer the oatmeal cups to a freezer-safe zip-top bag.
- Will keep well in the freezer for a few months
If you make these mini oatmeal cups, be sure to tag me on Instagram! I’d love to see!
- This makes A LOT of batter. Unless you have 2 – 24 count muffin tins, you’ll have to bake in batches.
- You can also make regular size oatmeal cups in a standard muffin tin – just adjust baking time to 25 minutes.
- If you don’t have a silicone muffin tin (highly recommend!), you’ll need to grease the tin with coconut oil or butter before adding the batter.
- My favorite brand of mini chocolate chips is Enjoy Life (as a bonus, they’re dairy-free!)
- You can replace the almond milk for any milk of choice. However, for babies under 1, it’s best to avoid cow’s milk.
- To make baby-friendly, omit the salt & maple syrup. The bananas will provide plenty of sweetness for a baby.
- Baby-Led Weaning: How you serve these oat cups depends on your baby’s ability to grasp, pick up, and eat food. By 8+ months, most babies should be able to pick up one of these oat cups and sort of “gum” it. You can also try cutting it in half, or pre-mashing it with your hand.
- Recipe inspired by Baby FoodE
More Toddler Meal Ideas:
- What My 2 Year Old Eats in a Day
- Healthy Toddler Breakfasts
- How I Plan My Toddler’s Meals
- Quick 2 Year Old Breakfast Ideas