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What's for Breakfast? Overnight Oats

by Original Author: Kris Boulton, Saline County | Adapted for Blog: Torrie Smith, Carroll County

Are you looking for a quick and healthy breakfast option for those busy mornings? We have some great recipes that save time by preparing breakfast the night before. Overnight Oats don’t require cooking and are a great way to incorporate plenty of nutrients.

You can personalize every serving to your own taste preferences or allergy restrictions. With a base of just oats and milk, Overnight Oats are a cost-efficient meal as well. Using the Overnight Oats Base Recipe below, you can make your own healthy breakfast in just a few simple steps.

Including a serving of fruit in your overnight oats can help you achieve the MyPlate recommended fruit intake of 2 cups each day. Fruits contain fiber to aid in healthy digestion. Changing up which fruits you add to your overnight oats can help ensure that you consume a variety of vitamins and minerals every day!


  1. Contain more protein than many grains (5g per serving) 
  2. Rich in of fiber, which helps you feel fuller longer (4g per serving)
  3. High in antioxidants which may help lower blood pressure levels.
  4. Can help with weight management by making you feel more full and slowing down the emptying of your stomach.

Overnight Oats only require 2 ingredients: oats and liquid.

There are so many variations to the base recipe. Your taste preference is the main limiting factor. Here are some ingredients that can be added to enhance flavor:

  1. Oats: This is really the only ingredient that’s non-negotiable. Make sure to use plain old-fashioned oats and not quick oats because the consistency is best with rolled oats.
  2. Milk: For the liquid needed but you can use water if you are out of milk.
  3. Chia Seeds (optional): These seeds are packed with tons of nutrition, and they help give the oats a pudding-like texture. An added benefit is healthy omega 3 fatty acids that can be easily in your body.
  4. Greek yogurt (optional): This gives the oats a tangy flavor, creamy texture that boosts the protein.
  5. Vanilla (optional): enhances all the flavors
  6. Sweetener (optional): Use honey or maple syrup to sweeten the mixture
  7. Toppings (optional): fresh fruit, dried fruit, nut butters, nuts, seeds, cinnamon, nutmeg or cardamom

Base Recipe

1/2 cup rolled old fashioned oats

1/2 cup milk of choice

1/4 cup non-fat Greek yogurt

1 Tablespoon chia seeds, optional

1 Tablespoon sweetener of choice honey or maple syrup

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract




Peanut Butter & Jelly

1 Tablespoon strawberry jam

2 Tablespoon peanut butter

1/4 cup diced strawberries


Apple Pie

1/4 cup diced apples

1-2 Tablespoon pecans, chopped

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon


Almond Joy

2 Tablespoons shredded coconut

1-2 Tablespoon almonds chopped

1 Tablespoon chocolate chips

Place all ingredients into a large glass container and mix until combined.

Cover the glass container with a lid or plastic wrap. Place in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours or overnight. Toppings can be added the night before or immediately before serving. Uncover and enjoy from the glass container the next day.

Servings 1: Nutrition facts are only for the base recipe

Calories 268 | Total Fat 3g | Saturated Fat .7g |Cholesterol 2mg | Sodium 69mg | Total Carbohydrates 51g | Dietary Fiber 4g | Total Sugar 24g | Protein 10g | Vitamin D 49mcg | Calcium 182mg | Iron 2mg | Potassium 371mg

For more information, contact your local Family and Consumer Sciences Agent at your County Extension Office. 

Adapted from: