If you’ve been on the hunt for a high-protein breakfast that’s not only delicious but easy to make as well then this High Protein Overnight Oats is exactly what you need!
It’s the best way to start the day and the perfect breakfast after a run or workout! This is a super easy recipe that’s made by soaking oats and protein powder (or a pre-made protein shake) overnight for a creamy, chewy, and delicious breakfast to go!
What’s even better is that this is an ideal breakfast to prep for a few days so you can have a protein-packed breakfast on hand whenever you want. The added benefit of having some protein powder makes them even higher in protein than your usual bowl of oatmeal.
And you can even customize it to fit your personal preference easily! I’ll teach you all that and more in this article. So let’s get started!
What are Overnight Oats?
Overnight oats are a nutritious raw breakfast recipe that involves soaking rolled oats in milk overnight in the fridge. It has a similar feel to oatmeal, but because it is uncooked, it retains all of the nutrients of the ingredients we’ll use.
It’s as simple as mixing all the ingredients in a large container (or individual mason jars) and popping it in the fridge to chill overnight. Yep, that’s all it is!
But you wouldn’t be able to guess how easy it is to make if you have a bite of it; it’s packed with flavor in every bite for a truly satisfying breakfast.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
There are a ton of reasons to love this recipe, but here are some of my top five reasons:
Quick and easy: This recipe is incredibly quick and easy to make, and all you need is 5 to 10 minutes to get five days’ worth of breakfast in one go!
Customizable: It’s super easy to customize this protein oats (aka proats) recipe and I’ll show you exactly how!
Make ahead breakfast: This is the perfect make-ahead breakfast you can prep the night before so that you can wake up to a healthy breakfast every single day!
Ready to go: The best thing is that you can just grab it out of the fridge and gobble it down without any extra work in the morning. That means you can have a high-protein breakfast easily, especially if you’re tired after a long run or intense workout.
Packed with protein and fiber: Each serving is packed with protein and fiber to keep you full and satisfied till your next meal. Since protein has made such a difference in how I feel, I’m absolutely focused on continuing to add it to my meals. Plus, a balance of protein and carbs in the meal keeps the blood sugar steady and the fat burning going.
What You Need to Make Protein Overnight Oats at Home
This protein-packed breakfast recipe is super simple to make and you need only a few pantry staples for it. Let’s look at what these are:
You’ll need some rolled oats (aka old fashioned oats) for this recipe. Make sure they’re not instant oats or steel cut oats because they won’t absorb liquid the way rolled oats do and the texture won’t turn out right.
Use whatever oats you prefer, but I tend to lean towards Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Rolled Oats, especially since our local Colorado brand stopped making plain oats. Just eliminating any potential stomach issues for my runs.
Protein powder (or protein shake):
Next, we’ll add our favorite protein powder! You can even use a pre-made protein shake, in which case you can skip the milk! I’ve shared two recipes down below to show you how to try each method.
Here are my best protein powders for runners >>
You can use whole milk if you like, or go for the vegan route and use unsweetened vanilla almond milk like I have in one of my recipes. Honestly, I use water most of the time because I am mixing in a protein powder.
Check out the variation ideas down below to learn how to customize this recipe.
Chia Seeds or Flaxseeds:
If you’re going to make healthy oatmeal, then why not really make it healthy. These are two add-ons that have big benefits for everyone and especially athletes.
Flaxseeds help get that Omega 3, which most folks are lacking. So good for the heart, skin, eyes and more. Meanwhile chia seeds are the hidden secret of many vegan runners. Perhaps you heard of them in Born to Run?
They’re going to add plant based protein and fiber to your bowl, along with some bulk.
Again we’re looking to pack a punch with nutrition here and adding some fruit means fiber and antioxidants. Plus, they bring tons of flavor without needing to add in extra sugar!!
Berries are my go to, but you can easily dice up any fruit and toss it in.
Once we have our base of oats, protein powder, and milk, you can add any toppings like nuts, chopped fruits, natural sweeteners like maple syrup, etc to change things up. Don’t worry, I’ll share some of my favorite ways with you in this article!
How to Make Protein Overnight Oats Step by Step
This is the perfect recipe to meal prep for the week and you can easily double or triple it for larger batches. Use either a large container or individual ones like mason jars to portion out your breakfast for the next 5 days.
All you need to do is get your container (or jars) ready and then add each of the ingredients to it one by one. Give it all a quick stir, close the lid, and pop it in the fridge to chill overnight.
And that’s really all you need to do for the tastiest protein-packed breakfast you’ve ever had! Let me share with you two of my protein overnight oats recipes to show you how to portion out the ingredients!
2 Different Protein Overnight Recipes
Here are two of my favorite overnight oatmeal recipes that I’m sure you’re going to fall in love with:
Strawberry Banana Overnight Oats
And as noted, I’m LAZY. I don’t like complicated recipes. These can be as easy or crazy as you want with mix-ins. I started with the easy version.
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 2/3 bottle Strawberry Banana Core Power
- 1 tbsp chopped walnuts or serve with 1 TBSP nut butter
Vegan High Protein Overnight Oats
Can you add protein powder to overnight oats? Why yes indeed, you can!! You may find in the morning that you need to add just a little more liquid, but otherwise it works great and gives you the ability to play with flavor if you have a kind you like.
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 2/3 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- 1/2 scoop vanilla pea protein powder
- 1 tbsp chia seeds (optional)
- 2 tbsp blueberries (I’d add fresh in the morning)
- dash of salt
*fun tip! I learned that you often need to add that little bit of salt to your overnight oats to help the flavor!
Bonus: For those of you who can do dairy, I can’t say enough about Greek Yogurt as an option. I love this one from The Healthy Foodie as a great option (pictured above).
How to Customize Protein Overnight Oats
I absolutely love how you can quickly and easily customize this overnight oats recipe to your preferences. Here are a few ideas for you to try:
Protein powder: You can easily change up the flavor by switching out the vanilla protein powder for some chocolate protein powder or even strawberry one! Feel free to go for a pre-made protein shake and skip the milk in the recipe if you like!
Nut butter: For some extra grams of protein, add your favorite nut butter to the proats! Peanut butter goes really well with some banana slices. Sunflower butter changes up the taste entirely, so good.
Chocolate version: Do you love chocolate? Go for some chocolate protein powder and top your overnight oats with some dark chocolate chips for some extra chocolate goodness! Cacao nibs have tons of health benefits too!!
Milk variations: You can go for any non-dairy milk you prefer. And if you’re looking for some nut-free options, try hemp milk, coconut milk, or oat milk instead.
Natural sweeteners: To naturally sweeten your overnight oats, you can lightly drizzle some maple syrup or honey on top! A dash of cinnamon works great too!
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Have Pre-Workout Overnight Oats?
Can you eat these before a run?? I’ve detailed my best pre-run meals and snacks previously, but especially after watching my husband on race mornings freaking out over eating enough or not enough, I thought we should talk about this option.
Oats + protein + any of the mix-ins are going to provide you with a great balance of energy, but also FIBER. So this is where it pays to know how your body reacts to different foods.
I love that this will give you a steady flow of energy, but if you have a sensitive stomach, I’d suggest keeping it to a post run meal so as to avoid the runner’s trots.
Why are overnight oats a good choice for runners?
I love it when my nutritionist friends talk to me about branching out from my Cheerios love because they tell me things like “here’s why you need to eat other grains”. And of course, now that we see how easy these are and have been reminded of the benefit of combining them with protein…more reasons:
- Great source of Vitamin B
- High fiber to feel full longer and keep our digestion on track
- Great vegan source of iron (runners are often deficient)
- Contains a ton of other nutrients like magnesium
- Can improve blood sugar control, which keeps runger at bay and means it doesn’t cause that huge energy spike and crash
All right, now that we have expounded on the virtues of a food we’ve all known for years…can I also remind you that potatoes might be the best runner carb you’re skipping?!
Other ways to connect with Amanda
Instagram Daily Fun: RunToTheFinish
Facebook Community Chatter: RunToTheFinish
Get more running tips: Pinterest