Protein Overnight Oats (Easy Prep!)
You won’t believe how easy this no-cook, high protein overnight oats recipe is. Everything comes together in one jar, then simply shake and let it get thick, creamy & delicious overnight in the fridge. Say hello to your new favorite make-ahead breakfast!
About this Protein Overnight Oats Recipe
I am all about embracing more ease in the kitchen, especially when it comes to creating simple, protein packed breakfast recipes!
From this easy protein chia pudding, to berry protein smoothie, this matcha protein shake I believe that adding a bit more protein to breakfast should be easy!
Overnight oats win the easy make ahead breakfast category because they don’t require any cooking.
Yep. NO cooking. At all.
The magic of overnight oats is that rolled oats and chia seeds transform overnight as they soak up the vanilla, almond milk, and Greek yogurt until you have a thick, creamy & custardy breakfast.
With multiple sources of protein, this particular protein overnight oats recipe will feel much more satisfying and have even more staying power than your typical hot oat breakfast.
Tip: This recipes makes it feel like you’re having dessert for breakfast, so don’t forget to top with your favorite fresh seasonal fruit like banana or strawberry and add some peanut butter or almond butter on top.
Process & Tips
The beauty of this recipe is that everything comes together in a mason jar.
Simply add your ingredients, shake everything up, and let it sit in the fridge overnight (or at least 4 hours to let it thicken up properly).
As they sit in the fridge the rolled oats and chia seeds soak up the liquid from the almond milk and Greek yogurt, softening the uncooked oats and plumping up the chia seeds until you have a thick and creamy consistency.
Since they only takes a few minutes to throw together, overnight oats are a great option for those who need something fast to take on-the-go on busy mornings.
Instead of feeling rushed and having to break out your pots & pans, you can just grab a spoon, add your favorite toppings and be on your way!
I enjoy my overnight oats cold (they’re especially delicious this way in the warmer months) because they’re so easy to grab & go straight from the fridge.
But if you’re a fan of classic warm oats, you can always heat them up for a bit in the microwave before adding your toppings.
Speaking of toppings, the skies the limit when it comes to flavor combos and ingredients!
The vanilla & maple flavor is pretty delicious as-is – but feel free to get creative with any chopped fruit, banana, nuts, seeds, jam, nut butter, mini chocolate chips, flaked coconut, or spices like cinnamon on top too.
How to Meal Prep Overnight Oats for the Week
These overnight oats with protein keep well in the fridge for up to 4 days (and somehow get even creamier & thicker the longer they sit!).
I created this recipe so that you can easily multiply it based on the number of servings you need.
So while it’s written to make one serving, you can multiply to make a whole week’s worth of make-ahead breakfasts.
Simply lay out your jars and measure your ingredients in a little assembly line, shake them all up, seal them and store them in the fridge.
And just like that you’ve got easy breakfasts handled for the next few days!
For best results, I’d suggest waiting to add any toppings (especially fresh fruit or crunchy toppings like nuts, seeds and coconut flakes) until just before serving.
Meal Prep Tip: I created this recipe to serve one. Feel free to double, triple (or more) the recipe if you want to meal prep breakfast for the week!
Protein Overnight Oats without Protein Powder
There are 3 whole food sources of protein in this easy make-ahead breakfast, including the oats, yogurt, and chia seeds.
So if you’d like to make these protein overnight oats without protein powder, make the recipe as is and you’ll still be getting a healthy boost of real food protein.
How to Add Even More Protein
Of course, if you want to bump up the protein even more, you can add one or two scoops of your favorite protein powder.
It’s important to note that protein powders can differ drastically in both sweetness levels and texture.
If your overnight oats taste grainy, it’s very likely because of your protein powder, so you may want to try a different brand instead.
Collagen peptides also work in place of protein powder in this recipe.
Bump up the protein even more by topping with peanut butter, almond butter, or sunflower seed butter.
Ingredients & Substitutions
Old-fashioned rolled oats: Old-fashioned (whole) rolled oats (such as these) work best for this recipe. Be sure to use gluten-free rolled oats if you want to keep this gluten-free. Note that steel cut oats will not work. I’ve also found that quick cooking and instant oats don’t work as well as old-fashioned oats because they get mushy and lose texture overnight, so rolled oats are definitely your best option for this recipe.
Chia seeds: The chia seeds help the overnight oats set, plus they add a good amount of plant-based protein, but if you want to skip this ingredient you can add 3 additional tablespoons of oats to step one of the recipe card below.
Unsweetened Greek yogurt: A plant-based Greek yogurt can be used in place of traditional Greek yogurt for a vegan and dairy-free option.
Maple syrup: I used pure maple syrup to make this recipe refined sugar free, but you could also use another liquid sweetener like honey, agave, coconut nectar or date syrup in its place, of skip it altogether if using a pre-sweetened protein powder.
Pure vanilla extract: Together with the maple syrup the vanilla extract helps give that extra dessert type of feeling to this sweet breakfast recipe.
Almond milk: Any non-dairy milk will work great in this recipe, so if you don’t prefer almond milk you can use any other milk you like, such as this homemade cashew milk. For a nut-free option, try hemp milk or oat milk instead.
Vanilla protein powder: You can use any vanilla protein powder you like the taste of. To keep this recipe vegan friendly, be sure to use a dairy-free, plant-based protein powder.
If you want to make chocolate protein overnight oats, you can add 1 tablespoon of cacao powder (or cocoa powder) to the mix in step one of the recipe card below! You can even add sliced bananas for chocolate banana overnight oats!
This Recipe Is…
Dairy FreeGluten FreeNut FreeVeganVegetarian
More Protein Breakfast Recipes
Protein Overnight Oats
- ¼ cup old-fashioned rolled oats
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- 3 tablespoons whole unsweetened Greek yogurt, traditional or plant-based for vegan and dairy-free diet
- 2 teaspoons maple syrup
- ¼ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ½ cup almond milk, or milk of choice
- 1 scoop vanilla protein powder of choice
- chopped fruit, sliced banana, nuts, seeds, nut butter, flaked coconut
- To a 8-oz mason jar, add the oats, chia seeds, yogurt, maple syrup, vanilla extract, almond milk and protein powder.
- Cover and shake until the ingredients are very well mixed. Let settle for 2-3 minutes, then shake again until you see no clumping.
- Store in the fridge overnight or at least 4 hours.
- When ready to serve, uncover and add any topping you like.
- Store, refrigerated, for up to 4 days.
Robyn! You nailed it! I never cared for yogurt in my overnight oats before, but I tried it again with your recipe and I love it! Plus, I am a huge oatmeal lover, but trying to lessen my carbs so going down to the 1/4 cup makes me feel better about eating oatmeal again. Even better, my teenage kids are loving it which is a total win because it gives us another easy option and I love knowing that I’m setting them up with balanced nutrition for the day. I add 1/4 cup frozen blueberries to it, which thaw perfectly by morning, and we only use 1/2 tsp maple syrup. Thank you!
Debbie, yay, so happy to hear you’re enjoying oats this way, along with all that good fiber and protein! Love the idea of keeping the sweetener to a minimum and adding frozen blueberries. Thanks so much for leaving a review!
Hi! I really want to try these overnight oats. Can you recommend a protein powder that you like? I’ve tried to find one and it’s confusing trying to figure out which ones are really healthy. Thank you!
Agree, it can be really tricky! We’re actually in the process of testing a number of options and will report back if we find any we really love!
I will look for the post in the future! Hopefully you can include a budget option, too! Thanks!
If you omit the protein powder, do you change any of the other ingredients (like the amount of liquid)?
I have tried overnight oats before and love them but never with yogurt or protein. Thanks!
I tried making it without the protein powder without changing anything else and it worked out well, so I’d say go for it! Let us know how it turns out!
Game changing recipe for my mornings! I quadruple the recipe & have delicious breakfasts ready to go all week. Just takes a few minutes to prep. I usually add thawed frozen berries & a spoonful of nut butter on top.
Yay, so glad you’re enjoying this one, Dahlia, and love that you’re prepping multiple plus adding the frozen berries. Genius. Thanks so much for leaving a review!
Hi Robyn, when you say Rolled Oats, are you meaning wholegrain oats or will quick oats or instant oats also work?
Yes, whole rolled (old fashioned) oats. Quick or instant won’t work well, as they dissolve and get mushy. I hope you enjoy!