Desayuno de Avena (Oatmeal Breakfast)

Desayuno de avena (Oatmeal breakfast)

Today I am going to commit a sacrilegious act. One no Dominican child is ever allowed to do. I am going to criticize my mother’s cooking, may the cooking goddess have mercy on my soul.

I hated my mom’s Desayuno de Avena (Oatmeal Breakfast) when I was a child. There was something about that bland, slimy concoction that turned my stomach. It wasn’t all my mother’s fault really, she just cooked it the way she herself had eaten it as a child, I assume, and the same way countless other children did. But to me there was nothing redeeming about that dish.

Desayuno de avena (Oatmeal breakfast)Desayuno de avena (Oatmeal breakfast)

Then I bore a child of my own. Truth be told oatmeal is all that is cracked up to be. Mom was right, it was really good for me.

My sweet spawn loves oatmeal, but that is because both mommy and daddy cook different versions, my husband serves it to her made in the traditional Danish way, and I have come up with a modified version of the one my mom served. And not to appear immodest, but my oatmeal will rock your socks off.

Aunt Clara
Desayuno de Avena (Oatmeal Breakfast)
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Forget about boring instant oatmeal. Crunchy textures, delicious fruit and a touch of sweetness makes this the perfect Desayuno de Avena (Oatmeal Breakfast).
Serves: 6 servings
  • 4 cups of rolled oats (not instant)
  • A pinch of salt
  • ¼ cup of coarse brown sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 9 cups of milk (use substitute if you wish)
  • 1 cup of fruit of your choice, sliced (bananas, strawberries, plums, etc)
  • ½ cup of sliced almonds or nut of your choice
  • 1 teaspoon of powdered cinnamon
  1. Mix oatmeal, salt, half the sugar, cinnamon stick and milk in a heavy saucepan and let it rest for 5 mins.
  2. Bring this mixture to a boil over medium heat. Start stirring to prevent it from sticking to the bottom.
  3. When the milk has been absorbed and you obtain a soft porridge remove from the heat.
  4. Serve in individual bowls, and garnish with the fruit and nuts, sprinkle with the remaining sugar and the cinnamon powder.

To make this according to the original Dominican recipe just skip the almonds and fruits. The original Dominican oatmeal is very simple (but with more sugar)
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{ 14 comments… add one }

  • isadora May 14, 2011, 11:47 PM

    my abuela made the bomb oatmeal with coconut milk,sugar,cinnamon,milk and it was a creamy bowl of goodness. i tried your recipe too and was so good with strawberries. thank you for all you recipes. i crack open your recipe book every time i have guest coming and they always want to know how i do it…but i show them the book and my sister and i just love your pastelon recipe becuase i tried two times before i bought your book and it was terrible the plantains were hard and the meat was bland but thanks to you im a better cook!

  • isadora May 14, 2011, 11:41 PM

    my abuela made the bomb oatmeal with coconut milk,sugar,cinnamon,milk and it was a creamy bowl of goodness.

  • Tonia April 25, 2011, 8:41 AM

    I love it. Funny, YOU should say that… my boyfriend and I had a whole conversation about that yesterday. Like who really decides what is the perfect portion? And, why? And, why do we follow? It seems to me that the "recommended" serving on the back of a box or recipe cannot suit all. How can a very large person be satisfied with a tiny portion, and vice versa, how can a very little person eat a huge portion… or some people have little appetites, while some have large, regardless of their size.

    I just adjust your recipes to fit my needs. I was a little surprised one of the first times I made one of the rice recipes… I was cooking for three and I had sooooo much left, I think we ate rice for a week. Hahaha. But hey, on the bright side, I only had to cook one day. :-) Thanks for the awesome recipes!

  • Aunt Clara April 25, 2011, 7:41 AM

    Funny you should say that. Over the years I have received complains over my portions being "too big", "too small", that my recipes had to account for bigger families (more portions), smaller families (less portions). At this point I am sure I will never get it right.

    Basically I go for less servings, bigger portions. In other words: pleasing nobody. :)

  • Tonia April 25, 2011, 7:35 AM

    I meant this recipe as is makes a LOT.

  • Tonia April 25, 2011, 7:35 AM

    Aunt Clara, one question… [not a complaint because I'm a lover of large portions… :-) ] I often find that your recipes make WAY more than the listed servings. Typically, a single serving of oats is a half cup uncooked. This makes a LOT of oatmeal. Not that I'm complaining, but then… I ended up eating more than I should because it is so delicious!!!

  • Tonia April 25, 2011, 7:31 AM

    I just LOVE LOVE this recipe. I had to come back and re-comment. I make it very regularly. If I make it one day, I always end up making it the next day as well, because the yummy taste is still fresh in my mind. I really like putting the cinnamon stick in there. The two layers of cinnamon are fabulous. :-)

  • Aunt Clara March 9, 2011, 5:31 PM

    Oh, I know about living in outposts.

    Anyway, the problem with using instant oatmeal is that if you follow my recipe you will end up with a potful of industrial glue. If you can only find instant oatmeal, then skip the soaking time and halve the amount of milk, as instant oatmeal cooks rather fast.

    And thanks for the nice words. :)

  • Ileana March 9, 2011, 4:18 PM

    first let me say, aunt Clara, you are HILARIOUS! I laugh so much just reading the things you say and your picture is too funny!

    now, I love aotmeal but my mom never really taught me how to cook it and when I ask family and friends they all have their own recipes and they all sound intimidating. I'm gonna try this one and I hope it comes out good. Now, you say not to use instant oatmeal. what would be the circumstances if I do? I live in a very small town , where like we dominicans would say " no hay na' ". Thank you aunt clara for your super adorable humor and providing this website for the me.

  • Aunt Clara March 3, 2011, 4:01 AM

    Oh, Claire, I am sorry to hear that. I hope all is well with you now. And I am glad you liked the oatmeal this way.

  • Claire March 1, 2011, 9:04 AM

    I finally made this today. I've been in the hospital and have been eating a lot of cold toast when what I really wanted was a lovely bowl of oatmeal! I tended to use the instant stuff before but never again now I can make it properly! Thanks.

    Oh and my 2 year old ate all of his and asked for some more!

  • Aunt Clara February 25, 2011, 1:09 PM

    Keith, you are right, each home and culture has its own taste. I am glad Oneida's oatmeal was better than my mom's (sorry Mom, don't hit me).

  • Tonia February 23, 2011, 9:46 AM

    I was about to eat some toast for breakfast and then I saw this. I just had to have it. YUM!!! What a way to start off the day.

  • Keith R February 23, 2011, 9:05 AM

    Clara, I also hated my mom's oatmeal (Mom, please forgive me) because as a result of following packaging directions it was, as you put it, a "bland slimy concoction." So when Oneida first offered to make oatmeal, I said no thanks, I don't like the stuff. "That's because you've never had mine," she responded. Turns out she was right. She made her oatmeal thick, with chocolate and cinnamon sticks. [She also put the mixture through a blender, I think.] I loved it, and the kids grew up loving it. Same thing happens with cream of wheat, which I had grown up liking even less than oatmeal (sorry Mom). But Oneida makes it with cinnamon, sweet cloves and I dunno what else, but it's great and the kids never turn it away. Lesson learned: not everyone or every culture makes the same dish the same way, and whether or not it appeals often has much to do with the flavoring and preparation as anything else.