Cooked oats are a quick and easy addition to your morning meal—full of satiating and heart-healthy fiber. But during the summer, who wants to stand over a hot stove stirring oatmeal? Summer breakfasts need to be effortless and cooling. My grab-and-go oatmeal breakfast makes time and the refrigerator do all the work for you.
This recipe includes chia seeds in addition to oats for their nutritional boost of fiber and protein, both of which help keep you feeling full for longer than your typical oats breakfast. The resulting combination provides enough food for me in the morning, but if you have a bigger appetite (like my nephews, who happily road tested this recipe), consider increasing the oats and milk quantities to 3/4 cup or supplement it with a hard-boiled egg, yogurt, or almond butter toast.
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk, or your preferred type of milk
2 teaspoons chia seeds
Pinch of salt
Maple syrup, optional, to taste
Handful of fresh or frozen berries.
- The night before, put the rolled oats, milk, chia seeds, and salt into a glass container with a tight-fitting lid, and add maple syrup to taste. Start with 1 teaspoon of maple syrup if you want some sweetness—you can always add more syrup tomorrow.
- (A pint-size Mason jar is the perfect size for a 1/2-cup serving. Use a larger jar if you are using more oats. Alternatively, prepare as many servings as you would like in a bowl and stir the mixture before refrigeration.)
- Cover container and shake mixture well, or stir mixture if making in a bowl.
- Top with berries and re-cover container.
- Refrigerate overnight and eat in the morning.
- Grab-and-Go Breakfast with Chew. Substitute 1/2 cup quick-cooking steel-cut oats for the rolled oats. The result is a more textured, chewy oatmeal.
- Grab-and-Go Breakfast with Fruit and Nuts. Add chopped nuts on top of the fruit for more texture and protein.
- Grab-and-Go Breakfast with Yogurt.Stir the basic Grab-and-Go breakfast into a container of plain yogurt for a heartier, even more protein-dense meal.
Glass jars are an excellent addition to your kitchen. You can find Mason Ball jars at any hardware or home-goods store for a reasonable price. Glass jars make for environmentally conscious storage containers for leftovers and can also be used as water (or wine) glasses. While not as portable as plastic due to the chance of breakage, if cared for properly, glass lasts longer overall.
You might have heard of Chia Pets—those awesome terracotta figures from the late 1970s that grew “hair.” That chia is the same as this chia, but don’t let that deter you. Chia seeds, from the mint family, are full of fiber and protein and are a superior source of healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Try Blain Arin’s Lavender-Honey Chia Pudding for another delicious way to incorporate chia seeds into your diet.
We have heard “breakfast is the most important meal of the day.” Not only does a nutritious breakfast jump-start your metabolism and give you the fuel you need to physically and mentally meet the challenges of your day, but a good, healthy breakfast gives you the opportunity, every morning, to recommit yourself to eating well and taking care of yourself.