Easy Overnight Oats

Learn how to make the perfect batch of overnight oats! It’s one of the easiest, no-cook breakfast options that will leave you with healthy grab-and-go breakfasts to enjoy throughout the week. Bonus – it’s endlessly customizable!

Overnight oats in a few jars with fruits on a table.

If you love healthy breakfast ideas but don’t want to do a whole lot of work in the morning, overnight oats were made for you. Honestly, it’s as easy as stirring together a couple of ingredients in a jar, placing it in the fridge, and enjoying the next morning. That’s it! There’s no cooking, baking, and you don’t even get any extra dishes dirty. It’s a total winner all around.

The beauty of overnight oats is that you can make them as simple or creative as you’d like. The base recipe is delicious, and filling all on its own. But if you’d like to spruce it up, you can add a variety of toppings and mix-ins, including fresh fruit, nuts, seeds, spices, jams, and more. I’ll share a few ideas with you today, but as always, feel free to share your overnight oats creativity in the comments below!

A jar with ingredients to make overnight oats.

Base Overnight Oats Ingredients

While technically you only need rolled oats and milk to make overnight oats, I always add chia seeds, yogurt, and a smidge of maple syrup in my base recipe. That’s what makes them ultra creamy and tasty!

  • Rolled oats: Make sure to use old fashioned rolled oats for the best texture. And remember to look for certified gluten-free oats if you’re gluten-sensitive or celiac.
  • Milk: You can use dairy or dairy-free milk (like almond milk, oat milk, or cashew milk), and yes, even water works. It just depends how creamy you’d like it.
  • Yogurt: A simple Greek yogurt or dairy-free yogurt makes provides extra creaminess, protein, and that perfect touch of tangy flavor.
  • Chia Seeds: These magical little seeds will gel up in the oats to make it creamy and thick. Plus, they’re loaded with health benefits and give a nutrient boost.
  • Maple Syrup: Natural sweeteners like maple syrup or honey blend in beautifully. You can always add as little or as much as you’d like.

Find the printable recipe with measurements below.

Health Benefits Of Overnight Oats

A warm bowl of oatmeal is pretty high up there when it comes to healthy breakfast options. But I’ll let you in on a secret – overnight oats does wonders for your gut health specifically. Hello resistant starches and prebiotics! Here’s a few key reasons why you should to whip up this recipe today…

  • It’s a nutritional powerhouse! Aside from being rich in fiber, protein, and antioxidants, oats contain a wide range of vitamins and minerals that promote a happy and healthy gut.
  • Have digestion problems? No problem. Soaking your oats overnight helps to break the starches down and reduce phytic acid. That means it’s easier to digest and to absorb the oats’ nutrients more efficiently. Perfect for those of us with gluten sensitivities!
  • Contains a higher dose of resistant starch. Resistant starch is a natural carb that helps with things like digestion, weight loss, and increasing feelings of fullness. Luckily, cooled starchy foods (like overnight oats) have a higher amount of resistant starch compared to cooked ones.
  • Time and money savers. Oats are one of the best ingredients when you’re looking to eat healthy on a budget. Best of all, prepping overnight oats takes less than 5 minutes!

How To Make Easy Overnight Oats

For a single serving. It’s super easy to make overnight oats in a jar!

  • Stir it all together. In a small jar, stir together the oats, milk, yogurt, chia seeds, and maple syrup.
  • It’s soaking time. Place the jar in the fridge to let the oats soak for at least 2 hours, though overnight is best.
  • Add toppings and serve. The next morning, add your favorite toppings and enjoy! Alternatively, you can scoop the oats out into a bowl and add toppings from there.

Mixing overnight oats ingredients in a jar.

If you’re looking to make a bigger batch, just double, triple or quadruple the recipe. It’s as easy as that!

  • Stir together. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the oats, milk, yogurt, chia seeds, and maple syrup.
  • Cover and soak. Cover the bowl with a lid or plastic wrap and let it soak overnight in the fridge.
  • Serve individually. Scoop out a portion (1-cup) from the bowl into a serving glass or bowl. Then add your favorite toppings!

Mixing overnight oats ingredients in a bowl.

Ways To Make Overnight Oats Exciting

Now here comes the fun part – toppings and mix-ins! From fruits to seeds to yogurt, there’s no right or wrong way to make overnight oats. Creativity is the name of the game here. So whatever your heart desires, go for it. But if you need some inspiration, see below for my favorite flavor combinations!

  • Fresh fruit: Make the most of seasonal fruits, including blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, bananas, peaches, pears, and apples. You can also blend them into a puree or make a chia seed jam to stir in.
  • Dried fruit: Raisins, cranberries, goji berries, and chopped dates lend a chewy texture and fruity flavors.
  • Nuts and Seeds: Sliced almonds, chopped pecans or walnuts, hemp seeds, sunflower seeds, pepitas, and toasted sesame seeds add a subtle crunchy texture.
  • Extra Flavor: Sprinkle on coconut flakes or cacao nibs. They’ll taste amazing with banana, strawberry, or tropical flavors.
  • Spices: Stir in cinnamon, nutmeg, turmeric, cardamom, or ginger to spice things up a bit!
  • Yogurt: Mix in any type of yogurt for extra creaminess. Plus, it’ll add extra protein and a probiotic boost.
  • Nut Butter: Choose your favorite nut butter (I always love almond butter), and stir it in or drizzle it on top. It too will provide a protein boost.
  • Protein Powder: Still want an even bigger protein boost? Feel free to add protein powder or collagen powder.

Jars of overnight oats on the table.

The Best Jars to Use

While many photos show overnight oats filled to the brim with toppings overflowing, that’s just not realistic in terms of mixing. You want a jar that’s large enough to stir everything together without making a mess. So with that in mind, I recommend a 16-ounce jar if you plan to add toppings. And a 12-ounce jar works for the base recipe with a small amount of mix-ins.

  • Mason Jars: Traditional mason jars are perfect for overnights oats. The pint-sized jars are 16-ounces, and the screw top lid is secure and super easy. You can also get 16-ounce wide mouth jars if you prefer.
  • Weck Jars: While I normally love Weck Jars for so many things (like chia pudding), if you plan to “grab and go” with your overnight oats, you might lose the clips. But if you’re careful, the 1/4 liter mold jar is the perfect size for the base recipe at 12.5-ounces.

How To Store And Meal Prep

Whether you’re making a single serving or 5 days worth of breakfast, overnight oats is a meal prep savior.

  • To Store: Overnight oats will keep for up to 4 days in the fridge. If you have fruit toppings or fruit mix-ins, I recommend no more than 3 days, as the fruit is likely to go bad first.
  • For Freezing: Yes, you can freeze overnight oats! Similar to my meal prep chia pudding, overnight oats will stay good for several months in the freezer.

Overnight oats with different flavors in jars on a table.

Overnight Oats Questions Answered

  • Can you use quick cooking oats? Yes, you can. But the texture will end up more mushy, like porridge.
  • Do you have to use yogurt? No, you don’t have to. But I find that it lends a rich, creamy texture if that’s what you’re looking for!
  • Can you eat overnight oats warm? Yes! Overnight oats don’t have to be eaten cold. Just warm them up in a bowl on the stovetop or microwave the next morning.
  • Will oats expand as they soak? Yes, they’ll expand a little (about 10-15%). So don’t fill the jar to the brim.
  • Can you eat overnight oats for dinner? Absolutely! As I always say… food can be eaten any time of any day!

More Easy, Make-Ahead Breakfast Ideas

When you need a break from overnight oats, give these recipes a try! They’re easy, flavorful and perfect for meal prepping.

  • Loaded Breakfast Casserole: Bake, slice into squares, and store in the fridge or freezer.
  • Chia Seed Pudding: Did you know you can also freeze chia pudding?
  • Breakfast Egg Muffins: These bites are customizable and can be stored in the fridge or freezer.
  • Sweet Potato Toast: Prep slices for the week for a veggie-heavy breakfast! It will keep in the fridge for 5 days.
  • Paleo Pancakes: And when you’re feeling for good ol’ pancakes, these ones store well in the fridge and freezer!

Overnight Oats Recipe Video

You too can master overnight oats. Watch the video below for an easy, step-by-step guide and get inspired by all the topping variations!

If you make this recipe, let me know how it turned out! I’d love to hear what you think in the comments below.

Six jars of overnight oats.

Easy Overnight Oats (6 Amazing Flavors)

4.98 from 81 votes
Prep Time: 5 mins
Chill Time: 8 hrs
Total Time: 8 hrs 5 mins
Servings: 1 serving
Author: Lisa Bryan
Learn how to make the perfect batch of overnight oats! It's easy, healthy, customizable, and great for a grab-and-go breakfast. Watch the video above!

Ingredients

Base Overnight Oats

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup milk, dairy or dairy-free
  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt, or dairy-free yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup

Banana Bread

  • 1/2 banana, mashed
  • 2 tablespoon chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • pinch of ground flaxseed

Spiced Pear

  • 1/2 pear, diced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped pecans
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • pinch of nutmeg

PB&J

  • 2 tablespoon raspberry jam or puree
  • 1 tablespoon peanut butter , or almond butter
  • 1 teaspoon chopped pistachios

Pina Colada

  • 1/4 cup small diced pineapple
  • 1 tablespoon shredded coconut
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • *note: use coconut milk in the base recipe

Carrot Cake

  • 1/4 cup shredded carrot
  • 1 tablespoon shredded coconut
  • 1 tablespoon raisins
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Strawberry Protein

  • 1/4 cup small diced strawberry
  • 1 scoop protein powder or collagen powder
  • 1 tablespoon sliced almonds
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions 

  • Add all the ingredients into a sealable jar or bowl and give it a stir until it's all combined.
  • Let it soak in the fridge for at least 2 hours, but it's best to soak overnight for 8 hours. This will yield a creamier consistency.
    Overnight oats mixed in a large bowl with a spoon.
  • Top your overnight oats with your favorite toppings and enjoy!
    Different flavored overnight oats in jars on table.

Lisa's Tips

  • If you make a large batch in a bowl, once it's set and thickened overnight scoop out 1 cup for a single serving.

Nutrition

Calories: 308kcal, Carbohydrates: 48g, Protein: 12g, Fat: 8g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 3mg, Sodium: 104mg, Potassium: 311mg, Fiber: 8g, Sugar: 14g, Vitamin A: 8IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 174mg, Iron: 3mg
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Keyword: healthy overnight oats, overnight oats, overnight oats recipe
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244 comments on “Easy Overnight Oats”

  1. Hi is this nutritional value for one base recipe?

  2. Is the nutrition information just for the base recipe or also for the add-ons?5 stars

  3. I wad scrolling thru to loom a recipe and a zucchini soup one popped up in the video. But when I went back it was gone and it looked so good. How yo I find it

  4. I so enjoy your overnight oats& Chia pudding. So tasty 5 stars

  5. Wonderful great presentation I will make all of her suggestions ❣👍

  6. Never wanted to try overnight oats as the texture didn’t seem appealing. I made them for my husband and he loved them. I tried them and couldn’t believe how good they were. 
    Absolutely fantastic recipe! Thank you5 stars

  7. This recipe is a winner. I love the carrot cake version. I can’t wait to try different flavors.5 stars

  8. So, for the flavored options (like the banana bread, PBJ, etc) do you mix it ALL together overnight? Or just the base recipe…. then do the flavors the next morning?
    The recipe isnt very clear

    • You can do either way, depending if you have time in the morning to make the flavors. If not, then pre-mix everything.

  9. Sorry. A bit confused. Do I add the base alone first for the overnight batch and then add the flavour portions the next day when I eat them or do I have them added in altogether?

    • You can do either or, depending if you have time in the morning. But if you’re meal prepping flavored overnight oats, I say make them on a Sunday for the week with the flavors incorporated into it.

  10. Thanks my favorite summer in Az. breakfast! 5 stars

  11. Love this overnight oats recipe – this is my go to breakfast these days since diagnosed with Alpha Gal Syndrome. I adapted the Carrot Cake version by leaving off the coconut and carrots and adding 1 more TBS raisins. Love this recipe with Silk Oat Milk. Will try making homemade oat milk next.5 stars

  12. Thick,really the best overnight oats 5 stars

  13. Hey! I have a question, can I make them, and not put them in a fridge? I am going on a camping trip and I do not have access to a fridge. I have planned making it one morning and eat it the next one. Will it still be good?

  14. My fav is PB&J and banana bread ! So good … thanks for sharing Lisa5 stars

  15. Tried over night oats for the first time this morning. Love it. Quick to make and taste is fab, added strawberries to mine. Full nutrition break down too. Thank you5 stars

  16. NEW to over nite OATS…Absolutely loved it.. can’t wait to try the recipes. This video was very helpful.. thank you.5 stars

  17. These recipes have made mornings in our house much easier. They are simple enough that my kids can put them together the night before and enjoy them the next morning before running out of the door for school. With several delicious options to choose from they can change up flavors so they don’t grow tired of eating them. Thanks for sharing!5 stars

  18. Love this recipe. Thank you very, very much from New Zealand. Just one question: would adding amaranth flakes work with the overnight oats?

  19. Can you tell me how to make the peanut butter and jelly one healthy? I know Jelly is usually just processed sugar. 5 stars

    • The jelly part I’m using is actually my homemade chia seed jam, which is much healthier than store-bought versions :)

  20. This base works great and so customizable, will not get boring at all. Love it, thank you Lisa!4 stars

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