Overnight Chia Seed Oatmeal

Chia oats

Laurel Randolph

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Chill Time: 8 hrs
Total: 8 hrs 10 mins
Servings: 2 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
554 Calories
17g Fat
85g Carbs
21g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 2
Amount per serving
Calories 554
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 17g 21%
Saturated Fat 3g 15%
Cholesterol 13mg 4%
Sodium 239mg 10%
Total Carbohydrate 85g 31%
Dietary Fiber 10g 37%
Total Sugars 42g
Protein 21g
Vitamin C 9mg 47%
Calcium 351mg 27%
Iron 3mg 18%
Potassium 877mg 19%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Overnight oats is one of the easiest and most nutritious breakfasts you can make to feed your family. In barely 10 minutes of preparation, this wholesome meal comes together by simply mixing the ingredients the night before and placing them in the fridge. Rolled oats, milk, and a few other tasty ingredients are the base of this simple recipe, but you can add to them or replace a few to personalize your oatmeal. If you're keener on hot oatmeal, simply heat up slightly in the microwave. Hot or cold, they're equally delicious.

Rolled oats give a better texture, as they become soft but not mushy. Quick oats work well, but they do soften too much and the mixture, as tasty as it is, is going to be mushy. Steel-cut oats can be made overnight, but require a lot more time and liquid, and the end result has a lot of bite and texture, maybe not what you'd expect from oats. It all comes down to personal taste. This is a gluten-free recipe as long as the oats you are using are gluten-free certified.

A little maple syrup, cinnamon, and vanilla make this breakfast dish just sweet enough. We added dried cherries, toasted almonds, and bananas for some extra natural sweetness and lots of texture. Fresh apple slices, walnuts, fresh berries, coconut flakes, or cocoa nibs are also beautiful additions. This is a dish that kids are going to love too. Simply cater to their taste buds with some peanut butter or a spoonful of fruit compote. This recipe yields two servings, but simply double or triple the amounts to make larger batches for a bigger family—leftovers can be kept for up to three days in the refrigerator.


For the Oatmeal:

  • 1 cup rolled oats

  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1 pinch salt

  • 1/4 cup dried cherries

  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt

  • 1 cup milk, or non-dairy milk

  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup

  • 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For Serving:

  • 1 medium banana, sliced

  • 1/4 cup toasted almonds

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Combine all of the ingredients but the banana and almonds in a jar with a lid. A plastic container or large mason jar are great choices.

  3. Refrigerate overnight.

  4. The next morning, pour the oatmeal into two separate bowls and top each with the almonds and banana.

  5. Enjoy!

What Are Chia Seeds?

Known and used for centuries in Central America where they grow wild, chia seeds are the tiny kernels harvested from the plant Salvia hispanica. Greatly used in vegan baking, chia seeds act as an agglutinant thanks to their gluey texture when combined with a liquid. One tablespoon of chia seeds plus three tablespoons of water make what's known as a "chia egg." Replace each regular egg with a chia egg in a 1:1 ratio.

Overnight Deliciousness

These oats make the perfect base for a variety of other flavors and textures. Any of these variations and the main recipe itself can be made vegan by swapping the Greek yogurt with coconut yogurt, or any plant-based yogurt, and replacing the whole milk with plant-based milk. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Carrot cake: Replace the cherries with 3/4 cup of shredded carrots, add a pinch of nutmeg, and a handful of raisins. Refrigerate overnight and top with bananas, almonds, and a spoonful of apple sauce.
  • Peanut butter and jelly: Omit the cherries, and add 2 tablespoons of peanut butter or 2 servings of powdered peanut butter. Refrigerate overnight and top with bananas and a spoonful of your favorite fruit jelly. Omit the almonds.
  • Coconut cream: Omit the cherries and replace the yogurt with coconut cream or yogurt. Refrigerate overnight and top with bananas, coconut flakes, chopped walnuts, and an additional dash of cinnamon.
  • Chocolate extravaganza: Omit the cherries and add 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder. Refrigerate overnight and top with bananas, a handful of cocoa nibs or chocolate chips, coconut flakes, and sliced almonds.
  • Protein oatmeal: Follow the recipe as is but add 1 scoop of your favorite vanilla protein powder and an extra splash of milk. Refrigerate overnight and top with bananas, a spoonful of your favorite nut butter, and fresh fruit.