Ok. So I’m late to the party. Seems like everybody BUT me knows about overnight oats.
Yesterday, while following an aimless path through fitness and nutrition blogs, I found a new (to me) clean eating website. The Gracious Pantry. (Go have a look, I’ll wait!). I know, pretty great, huh?
The author’s mission is to take your favorite recipes (you know, the ones full of sugar and unhealthy fat) and turn them into something clean and delicious. She regularly posts new recipes and you can sign up for email notifications of new posts (incidentally, you can do this with my blog too; look for the subscription button in the bottom right corner of this page ).
While looking through past recipes, I came across one for Clean Eating Overnight Oatmeal. While the recipe looked delicious, it required a crock pot. Not a big problem, but mine was buried in the back of the corner cabinet behind the bread maker, the Mr. Coffee (a wedding gift that gets used once a year), some pot lids whose pots have long disappeared and a lot of miscellaneous plastic ware. Do-able, but a bit of an imposition.
Half-way down the page, the author made reference to simply soaking your oats in liquid over night and suggested that this was a commonly known method of making overnight oats.
Two minutes later, a Google search rewarded me with thousands of references to ‘overnight oats’. Seems like fitness and nutrition bloggers have been talking about them for some time and have published a ton of recipes including everything from chocolate to pumpkin to spinach. The basic recipe is dead-simple, three ingrediants and you can add whatever seasonings, fruits, vegetables and nuts you like (or in my case, whatever needs to be eaten up before it reaches the ‘best before date’ ).
Are you ready for it?
- 1 part oats (not instant, the longer-cooking the better)
- 1 part liquid (water, milk, almond milk, soy milk; you choose)
- 1 part yogurt (flavored, unflavored, organic or not, low-fat; I prefer President’s Choice 0% fat Greek yogurt ’cause it’s full of protein!)
Mix ingredients together, add your favorite extras, cover and refrigerate over night (or at least 4 hours). The oats will soak up the liquid and in the morning you will have a thick, gooey, oatmeally mess.
You can eat it cold. You can let it warm up on the counter for a few minutes. You can pop it in the microwave.
I used 1/3 cup oats, 1/3 cup low fat milk and 1/3 cup 0% fat Greek Yogurt. This morning (or rather, last night), I added the following to the mix;
- 1 Tbsp almond butter (no sugar, no salt)
- 1 tsp unsweetened, shredded coconut
- 1 Tbsp sundried cherries
Just before eating, I microwaved the bowl for about 15 seconds and threw a handful of sliced almonds on the top (if you like crunch, don’t add your crunchy ingredients until the last minute). A nice, balanced mix of complex, whole-grain carbs, lean protein and heart-healthy fat. Calorie count would have been somewhere between 350 and 400.
Yum, yum! Quick, no pot to clean up and I could eat it while making everybody else’s breakfasts and packing up their lunches. Even got me through a high-energy spin class, with enough left in my tank to hit the weight room!
Overnight oats will definitely become a regular item on my breakfast menu. I’m thinking banana and peanut butter for tomorrow, apple and cashew butter on Friday, pumpkin and maple syrup on Saturday…