Recipes > Breakfast > Overnight Oats Base Recipe

Overnight Oats Base Recipe

Overnight oats are great for breakfast and can make busy mornings a breeze. This recipe teaches the basic overnight oats ratio so that you can customize any bowl of overnight oats to your taste!
overnight oats base recipe in a white bowl topped with blueberries and chopped peans

This is one of the base recipes as seen in our Whole Life Meal Plan. Overnight oats are great for breakfast and can make busy mornings a breeze. This recipe teaches a basic overnight oats ratio so that you can customize any bowl of overnight oats to your taste!

Three Must-Know Cooking Skills

For recipe success, learn how to:

Measure Weight vs. Volume
Measure Wet vs. Dry Ingredients
Toast Nuts in the Oven

Culinary Tips for the Basic Overnight Oats Recipe

Want to make a quick and healthy breakfast for the entire week or for the whole family? To speed up prep time, make a big batch in a bowl, then distribute into individual servings.

If adding nuts, toast them first for best flavor.

If adding berries, wash and add them in the morning or whenever you plan to eat the oats. Washed berries turn mushy very quickly!

Ingredient Substitutions

  • Oats: use old-fashioned or quick oats. Old-fashioned oats create a firm, chewy texture, whereas quick oats create a soft, mushy texture. Do not use steel cut oats, as these have to be cooked for optimal digestion.
  • Milk: use regular or dairy-free milk. Don’t have milk? You can also make overnight oats with water, but they won’t taste as creamy.
  • Greek Yogurt: substitute regular plain yogurt. Choose a fat content that works for your overall diet. Choose sugar-free varieties and sweeten to your taste. Don’t have yogurt? Simply leave it out. Want to make your overnight oats vegan? Substitute a plant-based yogurt.
  • Mix-Ins: use nut butter, flaxseeds, chia seeds, cocoa powder, or coconut flakes. If using nut butter, don’t worry if it doesn’t combine thoroughly. It will soften overnight and be easier to mix when ready to eat.
  • Sweetener: use any variety – agave nectar, brown sugar, honey, or maple syrup. You can also use jam, juice, or pureed fruit in place of sweetener.
  • Flavor Extract: use any variety – vanilla, almond, coconut, etc.
  • Spices: use any variety of sweet spices – allspice, apple pie spice, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, nutmeg, or pumpkin pie spice.

We love buying our spices from The Spice House. Click on the picture below to view & try out hundreds of flavorful spices and herbs!

row of spices

Base Recipe Variations

Remember that this is a base recipe, so the goal is for you to customize it to your taste!

Feel free to add a splash of flavor extract, such as vanilla, almond, or coconut, to your taste. 

Serve overnight oats hot or cold.

Need some overnight oats recipe inspiration?

Check out some of our favorite variations, then have fun exploring other flavors, ingredients, and textures!

Take a look at our stovetop oatmeal base recipe and its variations for even more ideas!

Banana Nut

Berry

Blueberry

Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana

Apple Pie

Cinnamon

Chocolate Cherry Almond

Pumpkin Pie

Equipment Recommendations

Use these kitchen tools for recipe success!

Overnight Oats are a Healthy Breakfast

The first meal of the day can affect how you feel for the rest of the day. A balanced breakfast should contain fiber-rich complex carbohydrates, protein, and healthy fats. The featured ingredients in this healthy overnight oats recipe are oats and Greek yogurt. This recipe also contains natural sweetener, but a much lower amount than many breakfast cereals.

Oats 

Oats are a whole grain and are a good source of fiber and complex carbohydrates. Fiber is important for digestion, satiety, stable blood sugar, good cholesterol, and healthy gut bacteria. Complex carbohydrates are important for steady energy and focus. (1, 2)

Greek Yogurt 

Making overnight oats with Greek yogurt creates a creamy texture and taste. Plus, it adds a nutritional boost! Greek yogurt is a great source of protein, calcium, and gut-friendly probiotics. 

Less Sugar than Breakfast Cereal

Many breakfast cereals contain large amounts of added sugars that don’t support health. By making refrigerator oats, you get to control the amount of added sugar that you eat! Learn how to make your own healthy cereal here!

The fruit in this recipe also adds natural sweetness along with antioxidants, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. The spices also add a taste of sweetness without contributing extra sugar.

Serving Suggestions

Overnight oats aren’t just for breakfast! They can also be a great snack or post-workout treat.

Serve hot or cold.

How to Store Overnight Oats

Store overnight oats in the refrigerator. They’ll be ready to eat the next morning but can be stored for up to one week. The longer the oats are held in the refrigerator, the mushier they will become.

If storing for more than a few days, add fresh fruit in the morning for best taste and texture. This is especially important for quick-to-spoil fruits like berries.

Want more healthy breakfast recipes?

Check out these healthy base recipe breakfast ideas, then adjust to YOUR taste! Also, be sure to check out this healthy oatmeal recipe roundup article for more ideas!

Kefir Smoothie Base Recipe

Greek Yogurt Smoothie Base Recipe

Homemade Granola Base Recipe

Whole Grain Pancakes Base Recipe

Baked Oatmeal Cups Base Recipe

overnight oats base recipe in a white bowl topped with blueberries and chopped peans

Overnight Oats Base Recipe

Overnight oats are great for breakfast and can make busy mornings a breeze. This recipe teaches the basic overnight oats ratio so that you can customize any bowl of overnight oats to your taste!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 8 mins
Total Time 8 mins
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Servings 1 serving

Ingredients
  

  • ½ cup old fashioned or quick oats
  • ½ cup milk or milk alternative
  • 1 teaspoon natural sweetener or to taste
  • Dash flavor extract and/or spice

Optional Toppings or Mix-Ins

  • ½ cup fresh, ¼ cup pureed, or 2 Tablespoons dried fruit
  • ¼ cup Greek yogurt
  • 1-2 Tablespoons seeds, nuts, or nut butters
  • ½ – 1 Tablespoon mini chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon cocoa powder
  • Or go crazy with a combination of all your favorites!

Instructions
 

  • Combine oats, milk, sweetener, and optional flavor extract and/or spices in a bowl or jar.
  • Mix-in or top with optional ingredients or add them in the morning.
  • Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  • Enjoy cold!

Notes

 
 
Keyword Overnight Oats

This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. Vahishta (yes another one)

    I first tried it on a cruise ship and have been making it since. Add Apple, nuts and cranberries. Chopped apricots when I have those.

  2. RecipeFollower#1

    Another great staple in my house! Super easy and delicious. I love to make mine with a little brown sugar and cinnamon. I usually top with berries and banana and sometimes nuts or granola (recipe from your website!) for a little texture. I usually make a few at once and it keeps very well in the fridge. Thank you!

  3. Cheryl

    Is the oats amount before or after cooking?

Leave a Reply

Recipe Rating




Did you make this recipe?

Let us know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment above and share a picture on Instagram or Facebook using the hashtag #totasterecipes! And don’t forget to share it with all of your friends and family!

Please note that this post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate and Share-a-Sale affiliate, we earn from qualifying purchases. If you click on those links and make a purchase, we will earn a small percentage of the sale, at no extra cost to you. 

Hey there! We are To Taste – a team of registered dietitians, chefs, and culinary medicine specialists.

We’re here to teach you how to cook confidently, simplify nutrition, and feel better (no BS)!

Our Recipe Promise

The Whole Life Meal Plan Title Slide

Meet the only meal plan you'll ever need.

Improve your kitchen efficiency! Learn how to slice, dice, and chop 20 common ingredients

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter

Never miss a beet! Sign up for updates, recipes, and course offerings!

Is your kitchen set up for success?

Find all of our go-to kitchen tools, books, and accessories here!

Want to improve your culinary skills?

Check out these helpful knife skills, fundamental skills, and even beyond-the-basics videos!

Need some recipe guidance?

Each base recipe is accompanied with at least 3 variations that are totally customizable to your taste.

Want to know which ingredients to buy?

Download our free ingredient guide for helpful tips on which ingredients are best.

Latest Recipes

Download our FREE Meal Plan!

Learn how to cook confidently, simplify nutrition, and feel better (no bs)!