Want to know how to make overnight oats with coconut milk for a delicious breakfast or snack? Our high-protein overnight oatmeal recipe is made without layers of creamy quick-cooking oats and your favorite smoothie. Packed with flavor and nutrition this is the perfect grab-and-go recipe for the whole family! It's versatile and kid-approved so stop skipping breakfast and make these instead!
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🌱A Healthy Twist
As a busy mom of three, I know how challenging it can be to find time for a nutritious meal. That's why I created I love making overnight oats with water and layering in our favorite high-protein smoothie. It's an easy way to ensure we are getting a delicious, nutritious, and convenient solution for those hectic mornings or when you need a quick snack.
After my third son was born, I found myself often neglecting my own dietary needs. That's when I started making these creamy and simple overnight oats parfaits. I make them using quick-cooking oats soaked in either coconut milk, water, or oat milk and sweetened with maple syrup. Then we layer in our fav smoothie to pack ing the vitamins and minerals.
I love how easy these become to just grab during the day. We always think we have so much more time than we really do right so at least I know I am getting a healthy and easy breakfast.
This recipe also inspired me to create many more easy grab-and-go snacks, like these decadent no-bake bliss balls! Perfect when you need a sweet treat :0)
Read on to see how we make these overnight oats with coconut milk, plus a few different ways you can tailor this to your family's needs and preferences.
👪Why your family will love this recipe
We love this recipe for so many reasons! Here are a few reasons why we think your family will too:
- Nutrition-Packed: This recipe is loaded with nutrients thanks to the oats, plant milk, and smoothie. Packed with 16 grams of protein, 9 grams of fiber, 8 grams of iron, 3 miligrams of zinc, and starch!
- Promotes Healthy Eating Habits: This recipe is a great way to introduce kids to healthy eating habits. It's packed with whole foods, low in sugar, and high in fiber and protein. Plus, it shows kids that healthy food can be delicious and fun to make!
- Versatile and Customizable: This recipe is incredibly versatile. You can switch up the fruits in the smoothie, the type of protein powder, and the toppings on the granola. This means everyone in the family can customize their parfait to their liking.
- Grab-N-Go: Make a large batch at the start of the week and have a nutritious breakfast or snack ready to go. Plus, they're portable, making them a great option for those busy mornings or after-school snacks!
- Kid-Approved: The natural sweetness of the fruits and coconut milk, along with the fun crunch of the granola makes this a hit with the little ones. Plus, kids can help assemble their parfaits, making it a fun recipe for families!
🌿Health Benefits of Oats:
As a mom, I'm always on the hunt for healthier alternatives to replace packaged snacks and processed breakfast items. And through the years I have realized that healthy food doesn't have to be complicated or time-consuming! And as a neuroscientist, I can't help but smile when I serve this recipe to my kids - it's a brain-boosting powerhouse!
Here's why this recipe is a superstar:
- Oats are a nutritional powerhouse: Loaded with fiber, iron, zinc, and starch. They help keep our hearts healthy, manage blood sugar levels, and even help with weight management (1). Plus, they're great for protecting against some serious stuff like heart disease, colon cancer, and skin irritation - super helpful when dealing with conditions like eczema (2).
- Loaded with beneficial fiber: Fiber is the part of plant foods that our bodies can't digest, but it does some pretty amazing things for our health. It helps keep our digestive system running smoothly, and the soluble fiber in oats even helps us absorb more nutrients from our food. This can help keep our blood sugar levels steady and even lower bad cholesterol (3).
- High in Protein: Protein isn't just for bodybuilders, it's essential for all of us. It's important for healthy aging and can even help delay muscle loss as we get older (4).
- Regulates Blood Sugar: Oats are great for helping to keep our blood sugar levels steady. This means we can avoid those mid-morning energy crashes and keep going strong all day (5).
- Boosts Brain Function: Protein is super important for our brains! It helps our brain cells communicate with each other, which can improve memory, focus, and overall brain function.
- Keeps You Full and Energized: Protein and fiber are a powerful duo when it comes to satiety. They help you feel full and satisfied, providing you with steady energy throughout the day. This means you can say goodbye to those mid-morning energy crashes and hello to sustained productivity!
So, there you have it! This recipe is more than just a delicious snack or breakfast, it's a powerhouse of nutrition that supports your overall health. Enjoy! ?
|Nutrient||Per Serving in Recipe||Recommended Daily Value for Adults||Recommended Daily Value for Children (4-8 years)|
|Vitamin C||21mg||75mg (women)|
🧠Why This Recipe is Great for Kids
This high protein overnight oats recipe is not only tasty but also packed with nutrients essential for growing kids.
- The oats provide a steady release of energy, helping them stay focused at school.
- The fiber content aids digestion, while the protein from the oats and protein powder supports their growth and development.
Moreover, the fruits in the smoothie layer add a natural sweetness that kids love, along with a host of vitamins and antioxidants. The granola topping adds a fun crunch and can be customized with their favorite ingredients.
This recipe is also a great way to involve kids in the kitchen. They can help layer the oats and smoothie, and choose their toppings - a fun and educational activity that encourages healthy eating habits.
So, not only are these overnight oats a lifesaver for busy parents, but they're also a nutritious and kid-approved breakfast or snack. Enjoy!
⏲️ Time-Saving Tips
- Prep in Bulk: A great recipe to add to your meal prep! Make a large batch of overnight oats at the start of the week. This way, you'll have breakfast ready to go for several days. Just remember to keep the granola separate until you're ready to eat.
- Use Quick Cooking Oats: These oats don’t need as much time to soak as old-fashioned or steel-cut oats, making them a great time-saver.
- Skip the Smoothie: If you're really pressed for time, you can skip the smoothie part of the recipe. Just top your overnight oats with some fresh fruits and granola, and you're good to go!
- Use a Granola Bar or Pre-Made Granola: Instead of making granola from scratch, this recipe uses a granola bar! It's a quick and easy way to add some crunch (and protein) to your oats.
This high-protein overnight oats recipe is a symphony of flavors with a creamy texture, each ingredient playing its part to create a delicious nutritious breakfast.
Overnight Oats with coconut milk:
- Quick Oats: I love these for their ability to soak up flavors and their time-saving convenience. Make sure you use certified gluten-free oats if you have celiac disease. Instant oats also work for this recipe.
- Coconut milk: Coconut milk has a natural sweetness and rich flavor that helps bring life to this overnight oats recipe. The tropical flavors pair nicely with the fruit smoothie. However if you need a substitute you can use oat milk or water! Same ratio.
- Maple Syrup: A drizzle of this natural sweetener makes our oats irresistibly delicious.
- Frozen Blueberries: My go-to for a burst of antioxidants and a lovely purple hue.
- Frozen Mangoes: Adds a natural sweetness that's hard to resist.
- Frozen Banana: A great way to get a creamy smoothie and use up overripe bananas!
- Medjool Dates: These natural sweeteners are a healthier alternative to sugar, and they add a lovely caramel undertone.
- (Optional) Vegan Protein Powder: A fantastic way to get some extra protein. I am using Garden of Life Vanilla Raw Protein for its fantastic ingredients and a great source of protein.
- (optional) Spirulina: An optional add-in, but it's a superfood worth considering for its myriad health benefits. Any type will do, you can find them on Amazon here, or in health food stores.
- Granola Bars: We use this as a topping. They add a delightful crunch that contrasts beautifully with our creamy oats and smoothie. I am using a Welo Probiotic Bar because of its low sugar content.
- Plant-Based Milk: If you want a creamier version, just replace the water with milk. I love using oat milk for its creamy subtle flavor. Coconut milk also goes well and gives it an extra twist.
The exact quantities can be found in the recipe card below.
💡Recipe Tips for Making Oats With Coconut Milk
- Soaking the Oats: To make creamy overnight oats make sure all the oats are submerged in the liquid before you put them in the fridge. This ensures they soften evenly and absorb all the flavors.
- Repurposing Leftover Oatmeal: If you have leftover steel cut oats, this recipe is a great way to repurpose them. Just add some maple syrup and a splash of oat milk to your leftovers.
- Overnight is Best: While you can technically eat your oats after they've soaked for 2 hours, letting them sit overnight will give you the creamiest results. So, try to prepare your oats the night before.
Tips for getting the perfect smoothie texture:
- Layering the Parfait: When assembling your parfait, try to create distinct layers for a visually appealing breakfast.
- Protein Powder: Consider a flavor that complements the fruits you're using. Vanilla or unflavored protein powder works well with most fruits.
- Use Frozen Fruits: Using frozen fruits in your smoothie not only makes it cold and refreshing but also gives it a thicker, creamier texture.
- Sweetness Level: The sweetness of your parfait will largely depend on the ripeness of your fruits and the type of protein powder you use. Taste as you go and adjust the amount of maple syrup as needed.
- Keeping Granola Crunchy: To keep your granola crunchy, add it to the parfait right before you're ready to eat. If you're taking the parfait to go, pack the granola separately and sprinkle it on top when you're ready to dig in.
👩🏽🍳 Step-By-Step: Making Overnight Oats
Step 1: Bake the Granola:
Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Break apart the granola bars onto a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Keep an eye on the granola as it can burn quickly. It's done when it's golden and crispy. Once finished keep the granola separate until you're ready to eat the parfait to maintain its crunchiness.
Step 2: Blend the Smoothie Ingredients:
Start by adding all the smoothie ingredients into a high-speed blender. This includes water, frozen blueberries, mangoes, banana, Medjool dates, vegan protein powder, and (optional) spirulina. Blend until smooth.
Pro tip: Start blending at a low speed and gradually increase to avoid overloading your blender and achieve a smoother consistency.
Step 3: Prepare the Overnight Oats With Coconut Milk:
In a large mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients for the overnight oats. This includes quick-cooking or old-fashioned oats, coconut milk (or water), and maple syrup. Stir until everything is well mixed.
Pro tip: Make sure all the oats are submerged in the liquid to ensure they soften evenly and that the oats are not overly watery.
Step 3b: Using Leftover Oatmeal:
If you have leftover oatmeal, this is a great way to repurpose it. Simply add the maple syrup and a splash of oat milk to your leftovers. This method works best with steel-cut oatmeal, which maintains its texture even if reheated.
Step 4: Assemble the Parfaits:
It's time to assemble the parfaits. Grab 4 mason jars or cups. Begin with a layer of overnight oats (about ¼ full in each container. Then top with the same amount of smoothie using a spoon so that you don't disturb the oat layer below. Repeat until you are within 2 inches of the top.
You can add the granola in now to save time in the morning, however, for best results I recommend adding it in when you are ready to eat.
Pro tip: For a beautiful presentation, aim for even layers and use a spoon to help slowly drizzle the smoothie over the oats.
Step 5: Chill:
Place the parfaits into the fridge overnight, or for a minimum of 4 hours. This allows the flavors to meld and the oats to soften and will be ready for you to enjoy the next morning!
Pro tip: If you're in a rush, 2 hours of chilling time can work in a pinch, but the longer the better for optimal creaminess.
Step 6: Assemble and eat:
When you are ready to enjoy your high protein overnight oats with water, simply sprinkle the granola on top of the parfait or use any fresh fruit or your favorite toppings.
And there you have it, our basic overnight oats recipe topped with a high-protein smoothie. NOw you have easy gran and go breakfasts all week long!
🥬Substitutions & Variations
- Quick Cooking Oats: The best kind of oats for this recipe are quick-cooking oats. However, you can use instant oats, or old-fashioned oats as well, just adjust the liquid and soak time. They might need a longer soaking time to soften. If you have steek-cut oats or rolled oats, you will need to cook them prior. Follow the package instructions and once cooked just add them in without soaking. They'll give a different texture to your overnight oats. Just remember, they might need a longer soaking time to soften.
- Frozen Blueberries and Mangoes: Don't have these on hand? No worries! Any frozen fruit will do. Try strawberries, raspberries, or peaches. Fresh fruit can also work in a pinch.
- Frozen Banana: If you're not a fan of bananas, try frozen avocado. It gives a similar creaminess and is packed with healthy fats.
- Medjool Dates: If you don't have dates, you can substitute them with honey or agave syrup for sweetness.
- Vegan Protein Powder: If you want to skip the protein powder, add in some almond butter or peanut butter or a few scoops of yogurt instead. Alternatively, experiment with other plant-based protein powders that you enjoy. Our favorites are vanilla and chocolate protein powder.
- Spirulina: This is optional and can be omitted without a substitute. However, if you're looking for other superfood add-ins, chia seeds or hemp seeds would be a great choice.
- Coconut Milk: Any plant milk can be used in place of coconut milk. Almond milk, oat, soy milk, or cashew milk would all be delicious.
- Maple Syrup: If maple syrup isn't your favorite, try honey (if not vegan), agave syrup, vanilla extract, or even a sugar-free sweetener.
- Granola Bars: If you don't have granola bars, you can make your own granola or use your favorite toppings like nuts, seeds, or even chocolate chips for a treat.
Let's talk about storing your overnight oat recipes. Proper storage is key to maintaining the freshness and flavor of your breakfast parfaits.
Fridge: Your overnight oats parfaits can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Make sure to keep them in an airtight container, like a mason jar with a lid, to keep them fresh. Remember to add the granola just before eating to maintain its crunch.
Lunch-Box Safety: If you're planning to take this oatmeal parfait to school, work, or on a picnic, packing it with an ice pack in an insulated lunch box is a great way to keep it cool and safe for longer. This method will ensure they stay fresh for about 4-5 hours, depending on the outside temperature. However, it's always best to consume it as soon as you can after this time period to ensure it's at its best quality and to maintain food safety.
Freezer: While you can technically freeze overnight oats, I wouldn't recommend it for this recipe because of the layers. Freezing and thawing can change the texture of the oats and the smoothie, making them less enjoyable. The granola would also lose its crunch.
Remember, food safety is paramount. Always store this oatmeal recipe properly and consume it within the recommended time frame. Enjoy your delicious and nutritious breakfast!
If your overnight oats aren't creamy, it could be due to the type of oats you're using or the ratio of liquid to oats. Quick oats tend to absorb more liquid and become creamier than rolled or steel-cut oats. Also, make sure you're using enough liquid. A good rule of thumb is a 1:2 ratio of oats to liquid for a creamy texture.
Absolutely! Overnight oats are a great source of fiber, protein, and other essential nutrients. They're also versatile, allowing you to add in a variety of fruits, nuts, and seeds for extra nutrition. Plus, they're made with whole grains and are usually free of added sugars, making them a healthy choice for breakfast or a snack.
If you're having trouble with the layers in your overnight oats, it could be due to the thickness of your ingredients. If your smoothie is too thin, it might mix with the oats instead of sitting on top. Try making your smoothie layer a bit thicker, or add a layer of chopped fruit or nuts between the oats and the smoothie to create a barrier.
Yes, you can use steel-cut oats for overnight oats, but they will have a chewier texture compared to rolled or quick oats. If you prefer a creamier texture, stick with rolled or quick oats.
No, you don't need to cook the oats before making overnight oats. The process of soaking the oats in liquid overnight softens them enough to eat. Plus, it saves you time in the morning!
🥣Make this next…
Hope you enjoy this twist on the classic overnights oats with coconut milk recipe. If you guys are looking for another easy high-protein breakfast recipe be sure to check out these:
If you make this high protein overnight oats recipe be sure to tag me (@at.my.table) with your re-creations so I can share it over on Instagram! I like to hang out there so come by and say hi!
Easy Overnight Oats with Coconut Milk, High-Protien Parfait
- Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Break apart the granola bars onto a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Keep an eye on the granola as it can burn quickly. Once finished keep the granola separate until you're ready to eat the parfait to maintain its crunchiness.
- Add all the smoothie ingredients into a high-speed blender. Blend until smooth.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients for the overnight oats. Stir until everything is well mixed.
- Leftover oatmeal option: If you have leftover oatmeal, this is a great way to repurpose it. Simply add the maple syrup and a splash of oat milk to your leftovers. This method works best with steel-cut oatmeal, which maintains its texture even if reheated.
- Now asemble the parfaits. Grab 4 mason jars or cups. Begin with a layer of overnight oats (fill to ¼ full in each container). Then top with the same amount of smoothie. Repeat until you are within 2 inches of the top.
- Place the parfaits into the fridge overnight, or for a minimum of 4 hours.
- When you are ready to enjoy, simply sprinkle the granola on top of the parfait or use any fresh fruit or your favorite toppings.
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- Paudel, D., Dhungana, B., Caffe, M., & Krishnan, P. (2021). A Review of Health-Beneficial Properties of Oats. Foods, 10(11), 2591.
- Chandalia, M., Garg, A., Lutjohann, D., von Bergmann, K., Grundy, S. M., & Brinkley, L. J. (2000). Beneficial Effects of High Dietary Fiber Intake in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus. New England Journal of Medicine, 342, 1392-1398.
- Paddon-Jones, D., Campbell, W. W., Jacques, P. F., Kritchevsky, S. B., Moore, L. L., Rodriguez, N., & van Loon, L. J. C. (2015). Protein and healthy aging. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 101(6), 1339S-1345S
- Englyst, K. N., Vinoy, S., Englyst, H. N., & Lang, V. (2003). Glycaemic index of cereal products explained by their content of rapidly and slowly available glucose. The British Journal of Nutrition, 89(3), 329-340.