Granola Vs. Oatmeal 

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Looking for quick and easy grab-to-go breakfast options? Need a pre or post-workout snack? Or do you need something low-effort yet healthy to munch on between meals? If you check any of the above boxes, you have come to the right place. 

Let us introduce you to your new best friends, oatmeal and granola. These super healthy options are great breakfast foods which need little to no effort. What’s more? They are very filling because of their high fiber content, and will keep you going until lunch without any hunger pangs. 

Read on to find out more about these high impact, low effort foods, their nutritional benefits, and which one wins out of the two. 

Are Oatmeal & Granola The Same Thing?

No, they are not, but they are not very different from each other. Let us explain. 

What is Oatmeal?

Oatmeal is preparation of oats, a whole grain food. Oats cannot be consumed in their original form as they are hard to cook, so they are typically rolled, crushed, or steel-cut. There are many types of oats namely old fashioned oats, quick oats, and instant oats, all of which cook at different speeds. Oatmeal, also called porridge, is made by boiling oats in water or milk. 

What is Granola?

Granola is an oat-based mixture which is made with rolled oats, nuts, seeds, honey or other natural sweeteners like brown sugar. This mixture is baked until toasty, crumbly and golden brown. Granola can be customized according to one’s personal preferences by adding ingredients like dried fruit, and chocolate chunks for extra flavour and nutrition. It can also made into granola bars and cubes.

Oats Vs. Granola

Both oatmeal and granola are great breakfast cereals as they keep you energized, are easy to make, gut friendly, and high in nutritional value. However, there are some key differences which set them apart, some of which are here as follows: 

1. Calories: Granola is much higher in calories and fat than oatmeal. This is because oats are whole grains with no added sugar or oil. 

2. Texture: Another difference between the two is the texture; oatmeal tends to be soft and mushy, whereas granola is crunchier and has varied textures because of all the nuts, seeds, and dried fruit.

3. Preparation: Oats have to be cooked or refrigerated overnight (in milk or water) to make oatmeal. On the other hand, granola is typically baked beforehand and can be enjoyed directly as a crunchy snack, in bar form, or as a regular bowl of cereal with milk. Both options are naturally vegan, so that’s an added bonus. 

4. Lasting Energy: Out of the two, granola is the better breakfast option as it is more filling and provides you with lasting energy because of the added ingredients. However, oatmeal is customizable which allows you to add fruits, nuts, and seeds and even savoury ingredients to make it more nutritious and filling. Both these foods do wonders for appetite control as they keep you feeling full for longer. 

5. Sweeteners: Although granola is incredibly nutritious, some brands include added sugars and artificial sweeteners which diminish the nutritional value. So, we suggest that you go for trusted brands who use natural sweeteners like dates and honey, or you can make your own granola at home (it’s easier than you think!). 

Similarly, in the case of oatmeal, switch out white sugar for honey or maple syrup to reap the full benefits of your breakfast. 

6. Gluten: Oats are naturally gluten free, but some granola brands include wheat and other gluten containing ingredients, so always check the label before buying.

7. Storage: Unopened dry oatmeal should be stored in a cool, dry place. Opened oatmeal can be refrigerated up to six months if stored in resealable bags or airtight containers. To store granola, seal it in an airtight container and store it in a cool, dry place, or freeze it to maximize freshness. 

Nutritional Content


Here is the nutritional content in one cup of oatmeal with water:

  • Calories – 339
  • Protein – 26.35 g
  • Fat – 10.76 g
  • Carbs – 103.38 g
  • Energy – 606.84 kcal
  • Fiber – 16.54 g


Here is the nutritional content in one cup of homemade granola:

  • Calories – 471
  • Protein – 18.14 g
  • Fat – 29.72 g
  • Carbs – 64.6 g
  • Energy – 597.8 kcal
  • Fiber – 10.49 g
  • Sugars – 24.52

As shown by the above data, oats do seem like the healthier choice as they have a higher content of fiber and protein. On the other hand, granola has a much higher energy and calorie content which will keep you energized and full for longer. Additionally, opt for oatmeal or homemade/sugar free granola brands if you are conscious of your sugar intake. 

Health Benefits 

Nutritionally speaking, both oatmeal and granola are great additions to incorporate into your daily diet, especially if you are on a weight loss journey. They are packed with fiber, protein and provide a multitude of benefits like regulating blood sugar levels and promoting digestion. 

Benefits Of Oatmeal

Oats are excellent sources of protein, fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Here are some of the benefits of oats and oatmeal:

  • Oats contain avenanthramides, a group of antioxidants solely found in oats. This antioxidant helps lower blood pressure, improves blood flow, and has anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Oats are also rich in beta-glucan, a powerful soluble fiber which helps regulate type 2 diabetes and increases the growth of good bacteria in the digestive tract.
  • Reaseach shows that early introduction of oatmeal helps reduce the risk of asthma in children.
  • Studies show that the beta-glucan fiber helps reduce the risk of heart disease by lowering LDL (bad) cholesterol levels. 

Benefits Of Granola

Granola is a high fiber food which has a myriad health benefits as they are packed with the goodness of grains, seeds, nuts, fruits and other nutrient rich ingredients. Some of the benefits it provides are as follows:

  • Ingredients like coconut, Brazil nuts, and sunflower seeds are a great source of antioxidants such as gallic acid, selenium, vitamin E, and quercetin which help prevent inflamation.
  • The seeds, whole grains, and dried fruits present in your granola can help reduce blood sugar levels, especially in people who are prediabetic.
  • Compared to other sugary cereals, granola helps promote healthy bacteria in the digestive system, resulting in a healthy, happy gut. 
  • The oats present in granola are an excellent source of the beta-glucan fiber which helps reduce LDL (bad) cholesterol levels. 

Breakfast Recipes 


Oats can be enjoyed in a number of ways but the most popular of those is oatmeal or porridge. Here is what you need to make oatmeal:

  • Rolled oats – ½ cup
  • Milk or water – 1 cup or 250 ml
  • Salt – just a pinch

Combine all ingredients into a pot and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to a simmer and stir occasionally until the oats are soft and cooked. 

Your oatmeal is a blank slate, meaning that you can add just about anything your heart desires. Make it sweet with a pinch of cinnamon, a drizzle of honey, cut fruits, berries and Greek yoghurt. Or, add toppings like eggs, avocados, cheddar cheese, and some greens for a savoury twist. 

Check: Banana Brown Sugar Oatmeal Recipe

Granola Parfait

Granola is incredibly easy to make and versatile. You can have it as a cereal, in a fancy acai bowl, or just as it is. Here is a super quick, super delicious recipe just for you. The ingredients needed are:

  • Granola – ½ cup
  • Greek yoghurt – 2 cups
  • Fruits (of your choice) – ½ cup
  • Honey (optional)

Place yogurt in bottom of glass. Add a layer of granola, then berries and repeat until you are done. Drizzle a layer of honey on top or in between layers for extra sweetness. 

Final Thoughts

Although oats are naturally gluten-free, they may be contaminated at the time of production and distribution, so we suggest that you look for the gluten-free label on any store-bought oats or granola. 

The best breakfast out of granola and oatmeal is the one you enjoy and fits into your lifestyle. If you don’t mind the extra calories and sugar in granola, go for it. Oats may be the better option if you want to focus on weight loss or sugar intake. Either way, both are a great way to start your day and are so easy to make that you just can’t go wrong with them. Enjoy! 

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