Easy Overnight Oats


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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.

Common Questions

Can you use quick cooking oats?

Yes, you can. But just be aware that 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 yogurt gives a wonderfully rich and creamy texture. If you’re dairy-free, you can always use dairy-free milk and dairy-free yogurt.

Can you eat overnight oats warm?

Absolutely! Overnight oats don’t have to be eaten cold. Just warm them up on the stovetop in a small pot or in the microwave for a minute or two 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?

Of course! As I always say… any food can be eaten any time of any day. So feel free to enjoy overnights oats for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.

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!

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)

4.97 from 222 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Chill Time: 8 hours
Total: 8 hours 5 minutes
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 below to see how I make all of the different flavors in my kitchen!



Basic Overnight Oats

Banana Bread Overnight Oats

Spiced Pear Overnight Oats

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

Carrot Cake Overnight Oats

Strawberry Protein Overnight Oats


  • 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
Did you make this recipe?Mention @downshiftology or tag #downshiftology!

Recipe originally posted January 2021, but updated to include new information. 

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About the author

Lisa Bryan

Lisa is a bestselling cookbook author, recipe developer, and YouTuber (with over 2.5 million subscribers) living in sunny Southern California. She started Downshiftology in 2014, and is passionate about making healthy food with fresh, simple and seasonal ingredients.

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Recipe Rating


  1. I have made these so many times and they are so good. I, usually, do not have yogurt on hand so I just use more nut milk in place of it. My favorite toppings now are blueberries, coconut flakes and cocao nibs. I will sometimes add a little bit of chia seeds, too.5 stars

  2. Hi Lisa!

    Weird question. Do you think I could add a scoop of flavorless collagen to these and still get a good result? I’m on the struggle bus with getting enough protein, and as much as I try, I can’t convince myself to love eating meat (I’m not against eating meat in any way, it just isn’t my preference, and I’d like to sneak the protein in!)

  3. Wonderful recipes – I’m so inspired! A word of caution about the pineapple version. I used a fresh pineapple with dairy yoghurt and protein powder – it turned bitter! I ran a search on Google to find out what was going on and sure enough, this is what I’ve found: “When pineapple mingles with dairy products such as milk and yogurt, its bromelain breaks down their casein, which is a major protein in milk. “The casein is chemically chewed up by bromelain, which will result in peptides, or smaller protein pieces, that can be perceived as bitter,” Wow, who would have thought? So if making the pineapple version – either cook the pineapple first or use canned pineapple (apparently the heat treatment destroys the enzyme bromelain – or use non-dairy milk/yoghurt. My bitter oat meal is still edible, not dangerous in any way – if anything it’s more easily digestible as the milk proteins have already started to break down – it’s just not as nice as I anticipated. On a positive note, the texture is spot on and I’ve still got all the other 5 versions to try which all sound very yummy – and I’ve also learned a valuable lesson in chemistry! :)5 stars

  4. Crazy question, but I have to ask. Are rolled oats used in all the recipes above? The only one that specifies is the basic recipe. 

  5. Hi Lisa, I’ve only just discovered your YouTube channel and now your blog – I’m getting your book too! I’m in awe of your hard work, endless talents and impeccable taste (both literal and figurative!) presenting your recipes so beautifully – the amount of effort and attention to detail you put into your videos and blog posts is unbelievable and your passion is contagious! I just wanted you to know that it’s much appreciated!5 stars

    1. Thanks so much for leaving a review and feedback! Hope you continue to enjoy Downshiftology recipes to come :)

  6. Hi, Lisa 👋. How are you? I’m fine. I have tried banana 🍌 bread overnight oats many years. WOW 😲! It tested very delicious 😋, well-flavored, nutritious, pleasant, and heavenly 😇. I loved it 🥰. You’re a magnificent chef 😀.5 stars

  7. Once I discovered these delicious oats, I’ve been making them for my family and giving them as gifts to people. So easy, nutritious, and good!5 stars

    1. Is it best to make the base and then add the toppings in the morning and then microwave? Or can I make the complete thing night before and then microwave it so I can eat while doing the school run? It’s coming into winter here 

  8. Love ❤️ the variety of flavors. I cut ✂️ the chia seeds & some of the add-in ingredients in half to cut ✂️ the Cal Count. The Oats still firm up adequately & the flavors are still delicious. Love ❤️ this idea 💡 for breakfast!5 stars

  9. Best overnight oats recipe I’ve ever used. I’ve liked the idea of overnight oats for a long time, but a lot of recipes (specifically the ingredient ratios) I’ve tried in the past have left me disappointed. This recipe is perfect for my tastes! And I’ve been shocked at how well it freezes. Thank you for making my life and morning routine just a little bit easier! 5 stars

  10. Absolutely delicious, we don’t add any extras until the morning when we’re ready to eat. I like mine hot so I heat in microwave for 2 minutes then add my favorite toppings-chopped walnuts, blueberries, cinnamon were it so far. My husband has been heating his for 1 minute & trying all your suggested toppings. 5 stars

  11. This is the easiest and best overnight oat recipe I have seen and used. I never liked the overnight oats until I made this one. I make it plain and add different fruits depending on my mood. As I usually use sweetened alternative milk I don’t add as much sweetener. My favorite mix is are banana with blueberry and super ripe mangos.5 stars

  12. This is a great breakfast option! Before now it was a waffle, sausage and eggs etc. My husband and I have a new favorite breakfast option with these overnight oats. All of the amazing flavor combinations are super yummy. Our current favorite is the Pina Colada OO’s.5 stars

  13. Hi Lisa! I am about to start making your Overnight Oats and your Chia Pudding recipes. I’m still waiting for a couple of ingredients to be shipped. I see that many YouTube channels are producing Overnight Oats videos now. Seems to have caught on. My question: Have you tried making the Overnight Oats using oat bran instead of o.f. rolled oats? I’m curious if oat bran will work as well, but I didn’t want to re-invent the wheel if you have already tried it. I’m looking forward to making these recipes, and switching things up a bit at breakfast from my ‘every morning’ egg white omelette. Thanks for your videos, the recipes, and your reply!5 stars

  14. Hi Lisa:
    I’ve been wanting to make this for a while but had to wait for ingredients to come.
    Ever since I’ve been googling your website for this I’ve been bombarded with short videos of overnight oats on Instagram! 
    But I kept asking them for nutrition info such as calories etc. But I went back to your website today and yours has nutrition info! Thank you so much. A professional makes the difference from the tiktokers in Instagram! Made this last night and tried it today, and I love it!5 stars

  15. I am excited to make this in a few minutes. I have searched and researched the internet and this recipe seems to be the most desired to me. I do have a silly question for the next time I make this…should I mix in the toppings before I let the sit to help infuse flavor or just make the base and then add the toppings later?

    Thank you!5 stars

    1. Hope you enjoy my version Leslie! And for toppings it’s really up to you. Try both ways and see which you like better. :)

  16. I’m wondering when you’re adding coconut…do you use unsweetened or sweetened..or does it matter. I have Type 2 Diabetes.

  17. Easy, delicious and highly customizable depending on what I have on hand and what I’m in the mood for. I made a big batch of this for the fridge and this morning I mixed in banana, raw cacao powder, a spoon of peanut butter and some nuts for crunch. This will keep me full all morning.5 stars

  18. Best overnight oats I’ve had, really creamy and makes good use of almond milk I have, I used to have oats, frozen fruit, wait for the fruit to defrost and put yoghurt on, not any more :) satisfying and filling :)5 stars

  19. As always, another amazing, delicious, healthy and simple recipe!
    When I made the carrot cake version I added crushed pineapple the second time and didn’t use any sweetener. It was great.
    Thank you Lisa, for making eating healthy taste so good!! Also, I just picked up your cookbook! Can’t wait to start prepping!5 stars

    1. Yum, sounds great with the crushed pineapple on top! And thanks so much for buying my cookbook, I hope you enjoy all the new recipes!

  20. I’m a Scottish lass and like hot, salty porridge. First time I’ve tried a recipe like this. Delicious for a hot Australian summer’s morning 5 stars

  21. Easy and delicious recipee!!! I can proudly say that I have tried all the variations described on this post during this week. My favorite is banana bread.
    Also… I can’t wait for your cookbook to arrive!5 stars

  22. I can not get enough of this! This was originally going to be used for work when on early shift, as a quick grab an go thing. I now make it a big batch of the basic recipe an add as I go every morning ☺️5 stars

  23. I have been using the base recipe for a few weeks. I love the ease and simplity and the taste is amazing. I am going to try muesli for my next batch.5 stars

  24. I have been using these delicious recipes for overnight oats for about 3 months. I do not tire from these as there are so many options. Breakfast was my downfall, but no more! I make 2 or 3 ahead and always have one at the ready. Thank you Lisa.5 stars

  25. I make 3 servings at a time. It’s been my go to breakfast since having my baby in March. It never gets boring because I just use whatever fresh fruit is in season.

    This past week I’ve been making a pumpkin spice version. 1/4 cup canned pumpkin, 2T walnuts, 1/2 t pumpkin spice, 1/2 t vanilla extract, 1 T flax seed. It tastes extra amazing warmed up a little.5 stars

  26. I used vanilla unsweetened almond milk.   Do you think that will taste okay?   The soy milk, oat milk, almond milk, alpaca milk ;-) aisle was sooo confusing.   Trying to make something healthy but delicious for my husband who needs to lower his a1c.  Some options had a lot of added sugar so I tried to stay away from those.   I just hope it doesn’t ruin the flavor.   

  27. Hi,
    I just love this stuff. I can’t stop eating this creamy, multi textured, healthy cup of goodness!
    I make the small batch up and snack on it through out the day for 2 days. It Wonderful.
    Thank You so much for all your great dishes.5 stars

  28. Hi these recipes look so good! I am not a fan of chia seeds, can I omit them? Would I lessen the liquid if so? Thanks!

  29. I don’t care for raw oats, can I make the oatmeal and then put the stuff in it and put it in the fridge. I don’t mind cold oatmeal just not raw oats. Can you help me?

    1. Hi Lorie!
      After soaking in the milk combination overnight, the consistency and texture of this is really amazing – the oats are soft and creamy as if they were just cooked, not at all gloppy like cold oatmeal gets. If the issue is a consistency thing, make one serving up and give it a try. If it’s an intolerance thing, ignore what i just said do what you gonna go ;D

      1. Oh! I forgot to add: making them per the above recipe saves you time and dirty dishes because it eliminates the need to cook them, cool then down, etc. Fast and convenient, these are!

  30. Diagnosed with high cholesterol 3 months ago (LDL 220 😳). Oatmeal is recommended to help reduce it, so I have overnight oats everyday. I use almond milk and also add 1 TBSP of ground flaxseed. Bagged frozen fruit from the grocery store makes things easy. I also googled heart healthy foods etc… and started walking every day. Three months later my LDL is 133! It dropped 87 points. Still high but I’m on my way 😊. BTW, I normally don’t like oatmeal but using it as a base for things I like works for me. 

  31. Hi There
    I love the overnight oats recipe. I’m not a food “prepper” and I’ve never made overnight oats but I love oatmeal so I am betting I’ll like overnight oats too. One thing I’d like to ask is where did you get that enormous measuring cup/bowl with the lid attachment that you used in the video while making the large batch of overnight oats? Having that huge bowl-like cup with the lid to mix everthing in and just pop it in the fridge would make everything so convenient. Thanks for any help.

  32. I am excited to make these for my breakfasts next week. How long would you say I could make them ahead of time and they still be good in the refrigerator?

    1. I actually have all the storage information written in the post! But, they 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.

      1. I don’t care for raw oats, can I make the oatmeal and then put the stuff in it and put it in the fridge. I don’t mind cold oatmeal just not raw oats. Can you help me?

  33. Fist time trying it, I made the Base overnight oats and I absolutely loved it. Can’t wait to try the other recipes. Thank you so much for sharing. 

  34. I made the Spiced Pear. My husband and I love it! I’d like to make the Pina Colada one. Do you use fresh, frozen or tinned pineapple? Also do you recommend tinned coconut milk or the plant based milk you can buy that’s made from coconut?5 stars

    1. For the pineapple, I normally use frozen for ease. As for coconut milk, I’m using canned coconut milk for creaminess!

      1. So feels like a silly question… But do you just make your base and then add flavoring in the morning? I’ve been doing the whole thing overnight which tasted great but wasn’t sure that was what was intended.

        Also, can you only make a day in advance? Or can these keep for a Wednesday breakfast made Monday night?

      2. You can add the toppings before or after – it’s up to you! Just note that if you add the fruit toppings before, they will keep for no more than 3 days as the fruit will likely go bad. Otherwise, without fruit it will keep for up to 4 days or so. You can find all this information + more tips written in the post :)

  35. if you are making several servings for the week, should you add your liquid (milk or water) base into the solids base at the start, or shoudl you just add the liquid the night before you will eat that serving?

    Also, in the carrrot cake option, are the shredded carrots RAW or COOKED?

    1. You will make the recipe as is (with the liquid). As for the carrot cake version, the carrots are raw.

  36. I have been looking for a food I can actually eat in the mornings, and this is it! I have a hard time eating breakfast, since everything makes me sick in the morning. I’ve been this way all my life, but I can definitely eat overnight oats with this recipe! Thank you for sharing your secrets!5 stars