Oats are one of those foods that I associated with special memories. I’m the youngest of three kids, so there was a short stage of my life where I got to be home with my mom by myself, when my older brothers were off to school. I always loved being in the kitchen with my mom. She always says she could just set me on the counter next to her and I wouldn’t move – I was happy there.
One of things I remember doing, that I associate with that time that was just for the two of us, was having oatmeal breakfasts. Other times, we'd bake oatmeal muffins and eat them with dinner for a special treat. Those memories, oats included, bring a smile to my face even now. And so I grew up loving oats.
I often cook oatmeal in the mornings when I need a hearty, warm meal to start off my day. I like stirring in different toppings, like walnuts or fresh berries or flaked coconut or even chunks of apple.
But sometimes it’s fun to shake things up. It was only a few months ago that I discovered a new, revolutionary way to prepare oats for breakfast: overnight oats. They take literally only a few minutes to prepare, can be taken with you in the morning if you need to eat on the go, and give a whole new texture and flavor to oats. Overnight oats are rich and creamy, and have a bit of a fresher feel than traditional oatmeal.
Give this overnight oats recipe a try if you love oats, love new ways of preparing the same old ingredients, and love options for customizing your meal to your taste buds.
Overnight Oats Recipe
½ c oats
½ c yogurt or non-dairy yogurt (I use plain unsweetened coconut milk yogurt)
½ c milk or non-dairy alternative (I use rice milk)
1 T chia seeds
½ t vanilla
Sprinkle of salt
A little drizzle of maple syrup, agave, or your favorite sweetener
Spices, such as cinnamon
Nut butter or jam (or both?) swirled in
-Mix all ingredients together in a small jar or on-the-go container with a lid.
-Let sit covered overnight in the refrigerator.
-In the morning, top with last-minute toppings (things like nuts and berries are best added fresh in the morning, rather than sitting overnight) and enjoy!
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How do you like to prepare your oats? Do you have favorite toppings or add-ins that give your overnight oats that special something? Share your ideas in the comments section below.