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Overnight Oats

I’ve received a lot of questions lately about overnight oats – how they’re prepared, do you eat them cold, what exactly are they. I promised that I would share my go-to recipe and explain how I make them.

Overnight oats are eaten cold. They are a mixture of milk, yogurt, oats and whatever else you want to add in. You make them the night before, stick them in the fridge and the mixture thickens and the oats soften overnight. I also sometimes make them the morning I’m going to eat them. I find that if I leave them to soak for about 30 minutes, it comes out the same as the overnight method. I know it sounds kind of icky but trust me – overnight oats are the best way to enjoy oats during the hot summer months.

Here’s what generally goes into my mix. Keep in mind that this is totally customizable to what you have on hand.

Overnight Oats


1/3 cup oats
1 tablespoon chia seeds (or ground flax – for Omega 3s)
1/3 cup plain or vanilla Greek yogurt
1/3 cup almond milk (or soy or skim)
1/2 banana, diced (I love banana in my overnight oats – it also adds some natural sweetness to the mixture)
Handful of blueberries
Dried cranberries

Almond, peanut, sunflower butter
Fresh fruit (peaches, strawberries, blueberries, etc – this can also be stirred into the overnight mixture!)
Jam (like Crofter’s)


Mix together all of the “overnight” ingredients. Mixture will be soupy but remember it will thicken in the fridge as the oats absorb the liquid. Cover and place in fridge overnight (or at least 30 minutes)

In the morning, add desired toppings and enjoy!

Yield: 1 serving

{ 64 comments… add one }
  • becca July 20, 2010, 11:11 am

    thank you for sharing this recipe! was always curious about it, & now definitely want to try. do you use the same oats that you would use on a morning routine?

    • Jen July 20, 2010, 3:19 pm

      Becca – I just use normal rolled oats (not quick oats!). They get really soft overnight!

  • Miriam July 20, 2010, 3:15 pm

    So when you make “banana overnight oats” do you soak oats, milk, yogurt, seeds, and a cut up banana overnight? I’m so excited about this :). I just discovered that Whole Foods sells Crofters and will pick some up today. Thanks Jen!

    • Jen July 20, 2010, 3:18 pm

      I actually haven’t made them with banana (I do make hot banana oats all the time) but I think I would maybe add it as a topping the next morning so it doesn’t get brown. Sounds like a yummy combo – might have to try that this week! Ohh…maybe with strawberries too 🙂

  • Josie July 20, 2010, 8:50 pm

    I made some last night!! They were perfect when I came back from my run all hot and sweaty. BTW I love the Creative Loafing in the background!

    • Jen July 21, 2010, 12:06 pm

      I’m so glad you liked the overnight oats. I think they are the BEST oatmeal-based breakfast for hot summer days – especially after a workout.

      Hope you are doing well and life is getting back to normal! Loving the tasty looking drink recipes you’ve been posting on your blog. Yum!

  • Cristen July 28, 2010, 10:23 am

    I made these last night and had them for breakfast. They were so cool and combatted the heat outside. I added honey as the sweetening agent but would probably do a half tbs instead of a whole next time. I topped with PB, strawberry jam, and half a peach. I am not used to such a filling breakfast and did not finish the last quarter cup. Rich and delicious!

  • Giovanni Arrance January 21, 2011, 3:30 am

    Good recipes here. Bookmarked.

  • Colleen May 3, 2011, 2:59 pm

    Hey Jen – love your blog! Do you have any tips on “vegan-izing” these? I would love to try them but am wondering about omitting/replacing the yogurt…


    • Jen July 7, 2011, 2:01 pm

      colleen – i know you left this comment forever ago but i was just responding to another comment and saw this!

      i know some people completely omit the yogurt to make it vegan and just use soy or almond milk. you could also try using a vegan yogurt.

      hope this helps!

  • stephanie May 9, 2011, 10:37 pm


    maybe try soy yogurt? i personally love the stuff, but have never used it to make this breakfast staple.

  • Shae July 7, 2011, 1:36 pm

    This is probably a silly question but do you cook the oats before putting them in the fridge or leave them drive and just add all the ingredients?? I can’t wait to try!

    • Shae July 7, 2011, 1:37 pm

      *dry not drive

      • Jen July 7, 2011, 2:03 pm

        hi shae – you don’t cook them! the raw oats “cook” and become soft by soaking in the liquid mixture.

        you can leave them overnight or just 30 minutes in the morning! super easy – just dump it all in and leave to do its thing! 🙂

  • Taylor February 12, 2012, 11:42 pm

    Cold oats? I don’t know if i’m brave enough to try that.

  • Miranda March 9, 2013, 10:49 pm

    could you use steel cut oats?

  • Mandi April 10, 2013, 8:02 pm

    Making this tonight for my post run breakfast tomorrow! Would you add pecans/walnuts morning of or tonight?

    Also – I’m officially obsessed with your blogs:) My husband might get a little annoyed with all the recipes I’m going to try.

    • Mandi April 10, 2013, 8:07 pm

      Oh – would wheat germ be an okay substitute for the chia?

      • Jen April 11, 2013, 7:16 am

        this recipe is so versatile! add anything you would like whenever and it usually turns out great. thanks for reading my blog and trying my recipes! 🙂

  • Ray Giovanelli August 12, 2014, 11:25 am

    Can you share calorie, nutritional info?

    • Jen August 12, 2014, 11:30 am

      it will vary depending on brands you use and what you ingredients you include. i recommend using an online tool to calculate it yourself based on the ingredients used.

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