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.

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 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.

What to Love About Overnight Oats

A warm bowl of oatmeal is pretty high up on the list when it comes to healthy breakfast options. But I’ll let you in on a secret – overnight oats is equally healthy and a cinch to make with no cooking. Here’s a few reasons why you should to whip up this recipe today…

  • It’s a time and money saver. 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!
  • It’s a nutritional powerhouse. It’s a known fact that oats are heart-healthy. They’re also rich in fiber, protein, antioxidants, and contain a wide range of vitamins and minerals.
  • It’s easier on the gut. Soaking your oats overnight helps to break the starches down and reduce phytic acid. That means it’s easier to digest the oats and absorb their nutrients more efficiently. Perfect for those of us with gluten sensitivities!

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 everything 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 (about 1 cup) from the bowl into a serving glass or bowl. Then add your favorite toppings!
Mixing overnight oats ingredients in a bowl.

8 Ways To Make Overnight Oats Exciting

Now here comes the fun part – toppings and mix-ins! Creativity is the name of the game here. So whatever your heart desires, go for it. But if you need some inspiration, here’s some of 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 and stir it 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 stay good 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.

All Your 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 gives a wonderful rich and creamy texture.
  • 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… any 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.

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)

4.96 from 141 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!


Basic Overnight Oats

  • ½ cup rolled oats
  • ½ cup milk (dairy or dairy-free)
  • ¼ cup Greek yogurt (dairy or dairy-free)
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup

Banana Bread Overnight Oats

  • ½ banana, mashed
  • 2 tablespoon chopped walnuts
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • pinch of ground flaxseed

Spiced Pear Overnight Oats

  • ½ pear, diced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped pecans
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • pinch of nutmeg

PB&J Overnight Oats

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

Pina Colada Overnight Oats

  • ¼ cup small diced pineapple
  • 1 tablespoon shredded coconut
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • *note: use coconut milk in the base recipe

Carrot Cake Overnight Oats

  • ¼ cup shredded carrot
  • 1 tablespoon shredded coconut
  • 1 tablespoon raisins
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon

Strawberry Protein Overnight Oats

  • ¼ cup small diced strawberry
  • 1 scoop protein powder or collagen powder
  • 1 tablespoon sliced almonds
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract


  • Add all the ingredients into a sealable jar or bowl and give it a stir until 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 about 1 cup for a single serving.


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
©Downshiftology. Content and photographs are copyright protected. Sharing of this recipe is both encouraged and appreciated. Copying and/or pasting full recipes to any social media is strictly prohibited.
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Recipe originally posted January 2021, but updated to include new information. 

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414 comments on “Easy Overnight Oats”

  1. Hi. Can you make the overnight oats with steel cut oats?

    • I haven’t tried yet, but I imagine you would need to cook the steel cut oats for a bit before mixing into the overnight oats mixture.

  2. This recipe is a winner! I prefer mine warm, so super easy to microwave with a little more milk. 5 stars

  3. For a person who who doesn’t care for cooked oatmeal much this recipe is awesome I love it I have tried a few of the flavors and so far love them all thank you 😋

  4. Thank you so much for the easy demo and recipe ideas. I am sure that I am going to try this. I tend not to eat breakfast and not much for lunch.5 stars

  5. I can’t wait to try these but have one question.    plain or vanilla Greek yoghurt?5 stars

  6. Wow, just wow! Not only is the baseline recipe for these Overnight Oats great on its own, but the recommended flavor combinations are fantastic! I tried the Banana Bread variation for my first go and immediately prepped the PB&J and Carrot Cake recipes for later this week. In addition to the flavor, I am also pleasantly surprised by how long this kept me full. I have very low blood sugar and tend to get hungry quickly but I haven’t felt the need to “check the fridge” as much throughout the day. Thanks for always writing such wonderful recipes, I can’t wait for the cookbook!5 stars

  7. These are really great recipes, thanks for uploading them. Just to clarify, is the caloric value based on the base recipe with no toppings?

  8. Every evening I make these delicious oats and they have me feeling my oats every morning 💅 10/10 oat recipe5 stars

  9. I love your ovet night oats very much.
    Thank you.5 stars

  10. Love this recipe! 
    I’ve just been getting into the overnight oats as way to shed some pounds and give me some actual breakfast options. It is very thick, but I heat it up and it’s delicious! 
    I’ve found using light blue agave works really well if you can’t get maple syrup. 
    I’ve been doing the spiced pear but I can wait to try the others! 5 stars

  11. I made it for the first time last night and it was too thick, where do you think I went wrong3 stars

    • Overnight oats are typically on the thicker side. But, you can also reduce the amount of chia seeds used as chia seeds are very absorbent.

  12. When I make this with the chia seeds, it comes out the next as a block of oats instead of an oatmeal like consistency haha does it help the add more milk or?

    • Overnight oats is typically much thicker than regular warm oatmeal. But, chia seeds do absorb a lot of moisture. So I would reduce the amount of chia seeds, or add a bit more milk.

  13. Thank you for those amazing recipes for overnight oats.I never had them before but are struggling with digestive issues and was told oats helps all stomach issues.
    However my doctor suggested warm foods for breakfast instead of cold so how will those taste hot.Thanks

  14. EXCELLENT, i do enjoy my oatmeal in the morning, i will definitely try all of these (one by one of course)…thank you so much

  15. Love this recipe.. this is the 1st time I’ve ever made overnight oats and I loved them!! Thank you for sharing your recipes5 stars

  16. After the husband was told he was pre-diabetic we had to find better alternatives. He never ate breakfast before and needs it on the go. Finding that skipping breakfast creates sugar spiks the reat of the day made him realize he need to add morning meals to his diet. I made one of these for him and it was a hit.5 stars

  17. I use this recipe once a month for a easy and great breakfast or snack. I double the recipe. I use almond milk and vanilla yogurt. The combination gives it a great flavor. Plus the fiber is great. I used to cook my oatmeal in pressure cooker not anymore this is better. 5 stars

  18. is the protein powder you use unflavored? this is my first time ever making them I have protein powder but its chocolate, I also have vanilla, unflavored it so hard to find.

  19. I make my first yesterday and eat it this morning for breakfast. I use the Banana recipe and it’s so good! But I wasn’t able to finish the all portion on my own! I will definetly have some again and in my freezer just in case.5 stars

  20. Been having a lot of fun with these, thanks, I think my favourite so far has been banana and blueberry with sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds. I’m a little afraid to try the carrot cake one because there’s a chance I might never eat anything else ever again. 5 stars

  21. Wonderful base – thank you! How do you freeze the overnight oats? do you mix and let it sit in the fridge 2 hours then freeze or freeze right away? can you freeze in the mason jars with lids on? thanks5 stars

    • You can freeze them right away after stirring together. And yes – you can freeze with the lids on top! Just make sure to leave some space in the jar as it will expand a bit in the freezer.

  22. I tried this once with sprouted oats and the consistency wasn’t very good (my fault for using the wrong oats) – like cold very thick oatmeal. I tried again, followed the recipe (except I added a splash of vanilla to the base). I topped with mixed berries and granola. It was SO delicious and creamy! Thanks for the delicious recipe. 5 stars

  23. THE perfect base recipe. I also add a drizzle of honey on top in the morning for a tiny extra sweetness!5 stars

  24. Do you think you could add a protein powder in the morning, after they’ve been soaking? I’m trying to make them “Mommy and daughter” friendly for my 16 month old. She doesn’t need protein powder but I would like it.

  25. This is DEFINITELY the wave. If you’re looking for a fun, exciting, delicious and new way to eat Oatmeal, I can assure you that you don’t need to look any further. So far I have tried the Carrot 🥕 Cake and 🍓 Strawberry Protein version and I am in love!!!5 stars

  26. HI! Would steel-cut oats work in this recipe? Are they healthier than rolled oats?

    • It’s best to use rolled oats for this recipe. But, I will test steel-cut oats in the future to make sure the consistency is right :)

  27. Delicious 😋5 stars

  28. I love this recipe!! I have made 3 flavors and can honestly say I will only eat oatmeal this way now! and my hubby who has never cared for oatmeal is trying them too!5 stars

  29. I’m in love with these overnight oats! So far I have made the Carrot 🥕 Cake 🎂 version and the Pina Colada. Eating oatmeal has NEVER been more versatile, fun or this good 👍5 stars

  30. Delicious and filling 😍5 stars

  31. Absolutely love it. Just made another one.5 stars

  32. Should you put your toppings in the oats before you put them in the frig or after you take them out of the fridge?

    • You can do either way! Just note that if you prep with fruit in the jars, it will last for 2 to 3 days instead of 4.

  33. This is a motivating one…

  34. I have never been a great oatmeal fan, but now I’m a believer! I love the base recipe. I use lactose-free (Green Valley) yoghurt. I tried chopped frozen bing cherries, sliced almonds with a little vanilla and my mouth had a party the next morning. Thank you for making my breakfasts fun again. 

  35. I finally took the time to make one up and try it! Took me a while to find a non dairy yogurt that wasn’t really runny….cause gross….. Anyway, decided to try the PB&J first seeing as I already know I love the flavor of a PB&J. This morning I warmed mine up for about a minute and stirred it all together. It was soooo good. I’m hooked! I can’t wait to try the other flavors. Thanks again for hitting it out of the park. I’ve yet to be disappointed by anything of yours I’ve tried.

    • Happy to hear you finally got the time to try these overnight oats and ended up loving it Megan! Stay tuned for tons more exciting recipes I’ve got planned coming soon. Also, be sure to stay updated on social for news on my upcoming cookbook :)

  36. I tried the Pina Colada one this week. I made it yesterday afternoon, and this morning the pineapple tastes bitter. I cut up a fresh pineapple so when I get home I will see if the pineapple not in the oat mixture tastes bitter as well. Has anyone else come across this ? The base is good by itself.3 stars

    • Yessssss! Fresh pineapple has certain enzymes that cause this reaction when combined with dairy. I learned this the hard way by baking a big batch of pineapple dessert. Had to throw it all out. 

      • Working on a different desert recipe, I read about the enzyme issue, which is why that one insisted on using canned diced pineapples. Something about the canning process prevents those enzymes from interfering with the other ingredients. Worth a try?

    • I had the same issue. I found it was tied to the vanilla extract and removed it from the recipe. 

      • I make mine without the chia seeds… it’s a texture thing for me, but I don’t use any sweeteners, just flakes of coconut. I chop banana small and add 1/4 cup of frozen blueberries. Give it a quick toss and yum yum!! 
        Thanks for making breakfast good again and easy!!!5 stars

  37. Confused, are the different flavors considered the toppings or do they go in with the base overnight?

    • You can do either or! Just keep in mind that if you mix it in, it will last a bit less than if you add them in the day of to eat. But, you can see more storage tips written in the post :)

      • I love this recipe-I rarely comment on recipes but honestly this might be one of my favorite breakfasts now. My favorite way to spice it up is diced strawberries and mini chocolate chips 🤤

  38. Can you mix in the toppings at the same time you mix everything else and then put it in the fridge?

  39. I made the base and added the ingredients for the banana bread option. Very good! However I feel like the calories are off. I calculated closer to 350 for the base, then 520 when I added the banana and walnuts. I’m hoping this keeps me full for a while!5 stars

  40. I tried making overnight oats for the first time using your recipe, used the strawberry vanilla flavouring, and it was a huge hit with everyone. My husband was raving about it, and my kids have now requested oatmeal for the whole week. Thank you so much. This is a gamechanger!5 stars

  41. Can you use steel cut oats?

  42. Love this recipe ❤️Easy to make, healthy and delicious 😋 5 stars

  43. Love this recipe. I created a reel using your recipe and put your info in the description. I eat at least two a day of this just as a quick snack. Love it!5 stars

    • Glad you’re loving this overnight oats recipe Brittani! I’ll be on the lookout for your Instagram reel :)

  44. This recipe is fantastic!  Easy and delicious! You should definitely include the chia seeds.  So far I have tried the Strawberry Protein and PB&J which are amazing! 5 stars

  45. Love it ! Thank you so much. My husband loved it too. Now he doesn’t have to go hungry to work at 3 AM 5 stars

  46. How long will this store in the refrigerator?

    • These 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.

  47. Great recipe and variations! I would add to stir the maple syrup into the milk first to make sure it dissolves well and doesn’t clump, specifically around the seeds. 

    • I love this recipe. I used oats, peanut butter, vanilla yogurt, almond milk and blueberries. I tried it with regular milk too and it was just as good. I didn’t have yogurt one day so I just added a little vanilla extract. Put a banana in one day too. Such an easy lunch. I make it at 6 am and eat it at 11:00 am. It is perfect. Thank you.5 stars

  48. This is my first time trying overnight oats and they taste amazing. I made the carrot cake bowl for my husband and strawberry protein for myself. I can’t wait to try the Pina colada bowl when I make a new batch! Thank you for this enjoyable recipe with the yummy mix ins.5 stars

    • Happy to hear both you and your husband enjoyed these overnight oats! Let me know how you like the other flavors ;)

  49. I followed the recipe with the exception of the chia seeds.  Mine did not thicken at all but stayed the same consistency as when I put them in the fridge. Where did I go wrong?

    • Hi Angelique – interesting, it should have thickened up a bit. But, maybe try using less yogurt/milk, because chia seeds are very absorbent.

  50. I just wanted to say thank you for this recipe. I got sick of lunch meat sandwiches at work and recently figured out I liked overnight oats. I just made a banana peanut butter chocolate chip flavor, birthday cake flavor, and blueberry. Took me maybe 10 minutes. Thank you again for the inspiration and this base recipe it’s so good.5 stars

    • Happy to hear you’ve found a delicious alternative to lunch meat sandwiches! It’s always a good idea to switch it up with some jars of overnight oats :)