Overnight oats are the best healthy make-ahead breakfast! Here are 4 easy, delicious recipe variations to keep you from getting stuck in a breakfast rut.
Overnight oats are the perfect breakfast if you love eating oatmeal in the morning but don’t have time to cook before you head out the door. My base recipe consists of whole rolled oats soaked in almond milk overnight with a dash of maple syrup. In the morning, the oats are soft and easy to digest, and the mixture has a thick, porridge-like consistency that’s satisfying to eat.
I absolutely love overnight oats – they’re an easy, grab-able, dairy-free, healthy breakfast – but I have a tendency to get stuck in an oat rut, reaching for the same ‘ol toppings every time. If you feel the same way, here are 4 overnight oats recipe variations that will hopefully spice up your breakfast routine!
How to Make Overnight Oats
If you’re new to overnight oats, making them is easy! Here’s how:
- On the night before you plan to enjoy your oats, mix together 1/2 cup whole rolled oats and 1/2 cup milk. I typically use coconut or almond milk, but oat milk, soy milk, or cow’s milk would also work here. Then, add 1/2 teaspoon maple syrup and a dash of salt. Stir to combine!
- Refrigerate the mixture overnight in an airtight container.
- In the morning, they’ll be ready to eat! Transfer them to a bowl before topping and devouring them, or top and take them on the go.
These are the toppings I started with to create these 4 overnight oats combinations – how pretty are all of these healthy ingredients?!
Best Overnight Oats Recipe Tips
- Know your oats. Different types of oats will yield different final consistencies. Steel-cut oats will be chewier, while quick oats will be softer. I prefer a texture in between the two, so I use old-fashioned rolled oats in my recipe.
- Leave your oats plain while they refrigerate overnight, and add toppings in the morning! That way, dried fruit will stay chewy, and any nuts and seeds will be crunchy, not gummy.
- Or use a Mason jar to take them on the go. If you’re someone who likes to grab your breakfast and head out the door on busy mornings, try making your overnight oats in a Mason jar. The lid seals tightly, the jar isn’t too big or bulky, and its narrow shape keeps most of the toppings separate from the oats until you’re ready to eat, so you’ll have better results if you top them ahead of time.
- Prep a big batch ahead for the whole week! Scale this recipe up to get ahead on breakfast all week long! Store individual servings in Mason jars and use different toppings each day.
Overnight Oats Recipe Variations
In the recipe below, you’ll find my go-to overnight oatmeal base. Use it as a starting point to make one (or more!) of these fun variations, or top it with your favorite nut butters, fresh or dried fruits, seeds, and more! You could also stir cocoa powder or spices into the milk and oat mixture. Feel free to get creative!
Cherry Berry with Chia & Yogurt
A classic antioxidant-filled combo. Since it’s wintertime, I used frozen fruit (tart cherries and blueberries) in my bowls. Then, I topped them with Greek yogurt, chia seeds, and a drizzle of maple syrup.
An unexpected breakfast bowl filled with anti-inflammatory spices! Make the base recipe with coconut milk, and stir in a heaping 1/8 teaspoon ground turmeric and 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon. In the morning, dress it up with mango, dried currants, hemp seeds, and coconut flakes.
Sweet Sesame Tahini
I love tahini so much that now I’m eating it for breakfast! This pretty bowl is topped with a big scoop of tahini, pomegranate arils, chopped dried apricots, sesame seeds, and crushed pistachios. To make it sweeter, add a drizzle of maple syrup or honey.
Chocolate Chip Cookie
If you’re trying to get your kids (or husband) to eat oats, this one is for you :). Add 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract to the base recipe the night before, and in the morning, top it with almond butter or peanut butter, chocolate chips, and chopped almonds for crunch.
More Healthy Breakfast Ideas
If you love this overnight oats recipe, try this baked oatmeal, stovetop oatmeal, or this whole oat porridge next! Then, find more healthy breakfast ideas here, and check out this link for more healthy meal prep inspiration.
Overnight Oats Recipe
- ½ cup whole rolled oats
- ½ cup almond milk or light coconut milk, more as needed
- ½ teaspoon maple syrup
- Pinch of sea salt
- Desired toppings from above
- In a small jar, combine the oats, almond or coconut milk, maple syrup, and salt. Stir and chill overnight.
- In the morning, scoop the oats into a bowl, stir in more almond or coconut milk, if desired, for consistency. Top with desired toppings.
- Alternatively, for a grab-and-go breakfast, you can assemble the overnight oats in jars with the toppings the night before.
Note: If you’re gluten free, be sure to use Certified Gluten Free Oats.