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You know those foods that are always in the back of your mind, but you never think about? The ones that you’ve eaten but when asked, you can’t recall a time or flavor that you had? Well, oatmeal kind of fits in this category. I was recently talking with a friend about my renewed love for oatmeal, and they responded that they didn’t know if they’d ever really eaten any. With a shocked look on my face, they covered with the fact that they love oatmeal cookies. But we all know that doesn’t quite count.
Oatmeal has become synonymous with a
I hate a trend, and overnight oats is definitely trendy. You see it all over social media and that’s really no surprise. The oats are fast: make them at night and eat them in the morning. Who doesn’t love that?
As I experimented with my own recipe, I realized that overnight oats really are the perfect food. Why? Well, they’re not just a breakfast food. Nope, they’re great for lunch, supper, afternoon snack, evening snack, etc. And if you’d have been in my kitchen the last two weeks, you’d have seen me eating jar after jar of this instead of cooking up a storm.
Better yet, oats are an ideal backdrop for any and every flavor profile we’re hunting down. I love all the flavors I experimented with, but plain oats really hit the spot. If you’re looking for flavor combinations, I’d start with:
- blueberries and cinnamon – after plain, this is a close second favorite
- freeze-dried raspberries
- fresh fruit and granola
It’s sugar-free! (if you want)
Oatmeal is often masked with way too much sugar. Brown sugar is good, but we’re all trying to reduce sugar, right? An excellent way to add a little sweetness without overpowering the flavor is with liquid stevia . A few drops of this magical, natural gift from the gods gives a hint of sweetness without any of the sugar. In fact, stevia is an herb that produces a sweet, calorie-free liquid and unlike sugar, stevia does not raise the glycemic levels in the body. Bonus: it’s not addictive.
Make your own oat milk!
Milk is the base of a good oatmeal. I’ve never really understood the whole water-and-oatmeal thing. How does water make the oatmeal taste good? Yeah, that’s right… it doesn’t! You need milk for that.
Recently, I’ve tried to cut out some of my dairy intake, and while searching for replacements, I fell in love with oat milk. It’s super easy to make and has a quasi-nutty flavor. Plus, the use of oat milk in this recipe makes for vegan overnight oats! A few simple steps (soaking, draining, straining) and you have homemade oat milk, which just adds to the flavor of the oats.
Choose your texture
What I love best about these oats is the texture they retain. A lot of times, heated oatmeal can become mushy and extra soft. In this recipe, soaking the oats in the refrigerator helps these become toothy and still have a little bite.
If you’re worried that the oats will be a soupy mess, don’t be. A few chia seeds become the lifesaver and thicken the oats to a thick, pudding-like consistency.
If you want to change the thickness, add more milk. That’s the beauty of these oats. They can be tailored to whatever you want!
How to eat it!
Overnight oats aren’t complete without toppings, and I love to crumble on fresh fruit with some of my favorite granolas:
- Cinnamon nut granola – totally grain-free, vegan, keto,
- Peanut butter granola – takes away the vegan aspect, but…
- Pumpkin spice granola – perfect for fall!
Watch how to make these vegan overnight oats
Vegan Overnight Oats
For the oat milk
- 1 cup thick-cut oats
- 6 cups water separated
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- 5-10 drops liquid stevia
For the overnight oats
- ⅓ cup thick-cut oats
- 1 tbsp chia seeds
- 12-18 drops liquid stevia
- ⅔ cup oat milk (or any milk)
For the oat milk
- Combine the oatmeal and 3 cups water. Cover and refrigerate for 6-8 hours.
- After steeping, drain and rinse the oatmeal. Do not skip this step as rinsing the oatmeal washes away extra solids and starch.
- Blend the rinsed oatmeal with the remaining 3 cups water until smooth. Strain through a fine-mesh bag or 4-ply cheesecloth. Do not press or squeeze the oatmeal. Once strained, discard the solids.
- Stir the vanilla and stevia (if using) into the milk and store in an airtight container. Chill up to one week.
For the overnight oats
- In an airtight container, combine the oatmeal, chia seeds, milk, and stevia. Stir to combine.
- Optional: To start your flavor explorations, try stirring these into the oats before chilling: 1) 2 tablespoons freeze-dried raspberries, or 2) 2 tablespoons raisins and ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon.
- Cover and place in the refrigerator for 6-8 hours until thickened.