Spiced Pumpkin & Apple Oatmeal – Cooking with Kids Recipe

Fall colors = pumpkin everything.  Pumpkin coffee, pumpkin shakes, pumpkin pie, pumpkin bread, and so on.  Luckily, I love pumpkin and I love baking with it. But it’s unfortunately associated with a lot of high-sugar (and high-calorie) desserts and drinks.

So what can we make with pumpkin that’s not a dessert but the kids will eat!?  Oatmeal!  A classic breakfast favorite and pumpkin is a perfect match.

Pumpkin is an excellent source of Vitamin A and oatmeal is a good source of magnesium and phosphorus, and loaded with soluble fiber. The combination is a nutrient-rich morning meal powerhouse.  #mostimportantmealoftheday

This recipe is fun because you can make it as complicated or easy as you’d like.  I tend to make it more complicated by baking a full pumpkin to get the pumpkin puree.  But don’t feel like you have to do this.  You can easily purchase pumpkin puree in any grocery store.  Don’t mistake it for pumpkin pie filling though, you want only pumpkin puree.

Mason adding the oats

To get started, here is a list of supplies you will need:

  • Medium saucepan
  • Spatula or spoon
  • Measuring spoons and cups
  • Plastic knife or kid-safe knife
  • Cutting board

Mason stirring the milk and oats together

Mason chopping the apple


Every child’s ability varies depending on maturity or cognitive and physical ability.  Parents need to use their own discretion when assigning tasks.  These are general guidelines for the Spiced Pumpkin and Apple Oatmeal.

18 months – 3 years old:

  • Name and count ingredients with child
  • Add ingredients into bowl
  • Stir oatmeal and milk together before cooking
  • Sprinkle garnish on top

3 – 5 years old

  • All of tasks from younger than 3 years old
  • Measure and count ingredients
  • Chop apple into small bite-size pieces using a kid safe knife
  • Mash pumpkin with fork, if needed

6 – 7 years old

  • All of the younger tasks
  • Use peeler to remove skin on apples, if desired

8 – 9 years old

  • All of the younger tasks
  • Use can opener, if you purchase pumpkin puree

10 – 12 years old

  • Should be able to complete all tasks to this recipe with adult supervision



  • Wash everyone’s hands!
  • Clean all work surfaces before starting.
  • Leave tasting until the end. Your child(ren) might not understand the difference between a ready-to-eat ingredient and a raw unsafe ingredient.
  • It is okay for your kitchen to get a little messy.
  • Keep in mind that your child is learning, so patience is key!

Spiced Pumpkin and Apple Oatmeal

This recipe is satisfy any fall craving!
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time20 mins
Servings: 4
Calories: 209kcal
Author: Stacey Weichelt, RDN, CD


  • 1 1/3 cups rolled oats
  • 2 cups milk
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 large apple chopped
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon pecans chopped


  • Combine rolled oats and milk into saucepan. Bring to a boil. Cook for approximately 5 minutes or until it reaches desired consistency.
  • Chop apples into bite size pieces.
  • Add pumpkin puree, apples, vanilla extract and spices to oatmeal. Cook for another additional 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in maple syrup.
  • Garnish with pecans and cinnamon and serve immediately.


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