Here’s everything you need to know to make healthy and delicious overnight quinoa oats. It’s the perfect make-ahead breakfast, and I’ve included a base recipe PLUS 6 recipes to help get you started!
Overnight Oats with Quinoa
Overnight oats are basically
As they rest, the oats and seeds will absorb the liquid, making the uncooked oats soft enough to eat. Texturally, it's also denser and creamier than the stove-top oats, like this baby oatmeal.
Now for an extra boost of protein and subtle nutty flavor, you HAVE to try this overnight quinoa oats. It's an easy and delicious way to use up any leftover quinoa (I always seem to cook way more quinoa than I need at the time)!
It's also a great way to serve this nutritious grain to your baby without losing your sanity. We did baby led weaning, and it’s not so fun to see tiny grains flying everywhere. Although my son would tell you otherwise.
You can prep it the night before, so mornings are a breeze. Dealing with early-rising, always-hungry kids, make-ahead breakfasts are total life-savers.
- Oats - old-fashioned rolled oats will work best. You'll get that creamy and smooth texture with just the right amount of chew.
- Quinoa - Be sure to cook and chill prior to adding to the jar/container. White and red quinoa are the two types I recommend for this -
whiteif you want a milder, lighter texture and red for a richer, nuttier, slightly chewier texture.
- Chia seeds - gives the overnight quinoa oats the pudding-like texture. You can leave them out if you wish, but I highly recommend that you give it a try first.
- Milk - I like to use whole milk since that's why my kids are drinking, but feel free to use whatever you have on hand, whether it's dairy or non-dairy milk.
- Yogurt - makes it rich and creamy. It's also a great source of probiotics and protein. Leaving it overnight does enhance the tanginess as it absorbs into the oats. So if you'd like to lessen the flavor, you can
- a.) add something sweet to create a balance or
- b.) leave it out completely and add it in the morning
- Sweetener: fruit, applesauce, maple syrup, honey, date syrup, chopped dried fruits. They will all work. You can also top with more when you're ready to eat
- Spices: again, feel free to use whatever you fancy!
How to Make Overnight Quinoa Oats
Step 1: In a large bowl, mix together all the ingredients. Be sure to stir really well. Either cover and refrigerate the mixture or divide it into individual serving containers.
Step 2: Refrigerate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight. Give it a good stir and add extra splash of milk, if desired. Add your favorite toppings and enjoy!
Pro Tip: It is best to add the toppings after the overnight quinoa oats have chilled, so right before eating.
That way, you get a mixture of textures and the toppings don't get mushy. As you can see, there are endless options! And if you tend to gravitate towards sweet oatmeal, try flipping the switch to savory variations (see below for ideas)!
- Finely chopped or ground nuts and seeds
- Peanut butter, almond butter, or sunflower seed butter
- Grated carrots
- Mashed sweet potatoes or butternut squash
- Fresh fruits - like strawberries, blueberries, mangoes, apples, banana
- Granola - (try this homemade no added sugar granola)
Tips for Success
- Oats + Quinoa and Milk Ratio: I generally like a
1:1ratio. Start with this ratio and feel free to adjust to your desired consistency. You can always add more milk the morning of, or when you're ready to eat.
- Stir, Stir, Stir! It's really important that you give everything a good stir before placing it in the fridge AND right before eating. This will ensure that you'll get all those yummy flavors and textures in every bite.
- As mentioned earlier, you can leave
chia seeds if you wish. However, you do have to cut back on liquid as they play a key role in helping the overnight quinoa oats to thicken. It also won't be as creamy. out the
- They don't have to be refrigerated overnight, but I do recommend at least 4 hours in the fridge.
- Store chia seeds in the freezer to keep them fresh longer and prevent them from going rancid.
Frequently Asked Questions
Feel free to use almond, coconut, cashew, pea, or soy milk. All of these will work. Although I recommend these two non-dairy milks for maximum nutrition. You can also use water, but I don't recommend it. You'll definitely be missing the rich, creamy factor.
Once assembled, store in an airtight container. Will keep in the fridge for 3-5 days.
6 Overnight Quinoa Oats Variations
1. Apple Pie Overnight Oats with Quinoa
A classic, oh-so-comforting dessert that is totally appropriate to enjoy first thing in the morning! Freshly chopped apple, walnuts, and the warm flavor of cinnamon make for the perfect accompaniment to the creamy oat/quinoa base.
For babies, finely grate apples and finely ground walnuts.
2. Peanut Butter and Raspberry Overnight Quinoa oats
Super straightforward but is one of my personal favorites! It hits the spot every.singe.time. Simply mash a banana and stir it into the oat/quinoa mixture along with a tablespoon of peanut butter. You can also swap it out with any nut butter of choice and fruit.
3. Pumpkin Pie Overnight Quinoa Oats
Eat dessert for breakfast while getting whole grains and protein? Sign me up! Thick and creamy, it truly tastes like fall in a jar. I more often than not use canned pumpkin for convenience but you can certainly make your own. We honestly enjoy this
4. Carrot Cake Overnight Oats with Quinoa
This is one of my son's favorite. It's creamy, crunchy, chewy, and sweet, and is packed with all the good-for-you nutrients. Oh! and may I draw attention to the fact that you get ¼ cup of carrots per serving? You're welcome ;). Ooh, and a dollop of cream cheese will be a lovely touch too!
5. Savory Avocado Egg Overnight Quinoa Oats
Simply add scrambled eggs and avocado right before eating. I personally like to add some Everything bagel seasoning ;).
6. Cheesy Roasted Vegetable Overnight Oats
Such a great way to repurpose leftover veggies! I recommend serving this warm. Toss in some cheese and reheat in the microwave briefly until cheese has melted.
More Healthy Breakfast Ideas
Did you make this recipe? Leave a rating below and let me know how you liked the recipe! Your feedback means so much to me!
Overnight Quinoa Oats
- ½ cup uncooked rolled oats (50g)
- ½ cup cooked quinoa (60g)
- 1 cup unsweetened milk of choice
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- ¼ cup Greek yogurt or dairy-free alternatives (optional, see notes)
- ½ medium ripe banana (mashed) or sweetener of choice (honey, maple syrup, date syrup)
- In a large bowl, mix together all the ingredients. Be sure to stir really well. Either cover and refrigerate the mixture or divide it into individual serving containers.
- Refrigerate overnight or for at least 4 hours.
- If you'd like, add additional liquid in the morning. Once you achieve the desired consistency, enjoy with toppings.
- to oats/quinoa, milk, and chia seeds, add: ½ cup unsweetened applesauce, 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- toppings: chopped (or grated) apples, pecans, maple syrup
- Add: 1 tablespoon peanut butter, ½ medium banana, mashed
- Toppings: a drizzle of peanut butter and fresh raspberries
- Add: ½ cup pumpkin puree, 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, 2 teaspoons maple syrup/date syrup
- Toppings: pecans
- Add: ½ cup finely grated carrots, 1 tablespoon chopped dates
- Toppings: walnuts, unsweetened coconut