Overnight oats are such a trendy breakfast meal. And for good reason! They are easy to prepare and delicious. Plus, the combinations of ingredients are endless.
In case you are unfamiliar with overnight oats, they are basically a combination of oats with some spices and liquid. You let them sit in your fridge overnight and they become soft (like cooked oats). They are easy to grab on your way out the door to eat at your desk, a great post-workout snack, or perfect for breastfeeding women to fill up with a satisfying breakfast or snack.
I try to prep my overnight oats right after supper, before I do the dishes. That way I’m not really making any extra mess and the few dishes I dirty (a few spoons and measuring cups) can easily be cleaned up with the supper dishes.
The recipe below was a result of me trying to figure out what to do with some leftover canned pumpkin after making pumpkin muffins.
Simple ingredients for pumpkin overnight oats (not pictured is cinnamon)
I always use equal parts oats to milk or water. So 1/3 cup oats with 1/3 cup milk or water, or 1/2 cup oats with 1/2 cup milk or water. I find 1/3 cup is a great portion size for one person.
The best oats to use are rolled oats or quick oats. Oat groats or steel cut oats will not typically soften enough overnight. If you want this recipe to be gluten free, be sure to choose certified gluten free oats; oats are often processed in facilities with other glutinous grains, so keep that in mind.
Oats are highly nutritious. They are high in fiber and many vitamins and minerals (vitamin B5, vitamin B1, zinc, iron, folate, manganese, magnesium). They are dense and help you to feel full and satisfied. They also contain antioxidants that may help to lower blood pressure.
Pumpkin is not only a seasonal treat, but is very nutritious. It is high in vitamin A and vitamin C, both of which help to boost your immune system. Women who are pregnant typically have a suppressed immune system so adding some pumpkin into their diet can be helpful to boost their immune system. You can definitely cook a pumpkin and puree it for this recipe, but you can also buy organic, canned pumpkin (which is what I typically do).
The chia seeds help to bulk up the oats and add a great dose of protein, antioxidants and omega-3 healthy fats – all things that are perfect for pregnant and breastfeeding women!
I have a sweet tooth, so I like to add a bit of maple syrup or honey to my overnight oats. I find maple syrup mixes in a bit better because it isn’t as thick as honey, but honey has far more beneficial nutritional properties (it is antibacterial, anti fungal and full of antioxidants). However, maple syrup is known to contain many minerals (manganese, zinc, iron, calcium) that are sometimes hard to obtain through our regular diet. Although touted as “healthy”, maple syrup still contains sugar; however, it is a great choice instead of brown or white sugar.
This recipe is super simple. You measure the ingredients into individual jars or containers, shake it up and let it sit in your fridge over night. I always thank myself in the morning for prepping these the night before when I’m rushed or too tired to cook breakfast for my family. You’ll thank yourself too!
Comment below if you’ve tried overnight oats. What are your favourite ingredients?
Pumpkin Overnight Oats
Prep time: 5 mins
- 1/3 cup oats
- 1/3 cup nut milk (almond, cashew etc.)
- 3 TBSP pumpkin puree
- 2 TBSP chia seeds
- 1 TBSP maple syrup
- ½ tsp cinnamon (or pumpkin pie spice)
Combine all ingredients in a jar or container that has a lid. Shake or stir the contents until well mixed. Refrigerate overnight. In the morning, eat straight out of the jar.