Overnight No-Cook Oatmeal Yogurt Cups

Overnight No-Cook Oatmeal Yogurt Cup

Overnight oats have a lot going for them.

The no-cook, prep-ahead recipe makes the morning routine a breeze with its winning combination of protein, calcium, fiber, and Omega-3s. And it tastes great!

In fact, I enjoy this easy breakfast-in-a jar so much that I’ve created many seasonal versions. The following recipe is my original, however, and I find myself returning to it every fall.

Fresh berries and juicy peaches are a mainstay of our summer breakfasts, and I’m always a little sad when their season comes to an end. But frozen fruit can ease the transition, and it works surprisingly well in these grab-and-go cups.

Because they maintain their plump sweetness, frozen blueberries are my favorite. Unlike their perishable counterparts, the quality of frozen blueberries is consistently good, as they’re frozen at the peak of ripeness. You can keep a stash of them on hand and transfer the berries directly to the oat cups. No thawing, washing, or chopping is needed.

Now, I know what some of you may be thinking. Uncooked oats? Eat them cold? And you’re right. It sounds strange—until you try.

Think of this as a cold, fruity porridge–refreshing and filling at the same time.  After an overnight soak, the oats become creamy. I like the texture to be fairly thick with the slightest bit of soupiness.  The first time around, I suggest following the recipe. Then, if you prefer your oatmeal cup a bit thicker or thinner, simply add or subtract a tablespoon of milk or a teaspoon or two of oats until you have the perfect consistency for you.

The recipe is quite flexible, so feel free to experiment further. For example, almond extract is a nice option to the vanilla. It delivers a bigger flavor punch, so when using, you may wish to start with just 1/4 teaspoon. With regard to sweetness, I like two teaspoons of pure maple syrup, but feel free to adjust to your taste buds.  If you like a little crunch, toss in some toasted nuts or granola before digging in. Chopped banana is another welcome addition. Reheating is an option but not necessary (I never do).

However you mix your personal-size oatmeal cup, I am willing to bet that if you eat one for a few days in a row and find the combination that suits you best, you will find yourself looking forward to these–maybe even craving them.  I’m always happy to quickly mix a few jars in the evening and have breakfast ready and waiting!

Overnight No-Cook Oatmeal Yogurt Cups
A 12-ounce jelly or Mason jar is an ideal size for this healthy, make-ahead meal. Put the lid on and store in your refrigerator for up to three days for a speedy yet satisfying breakfast. Frozen fruit is a surprisingly delicious option and allows you to whip up these single-serve cups any time of year.

Yields 1 serving.
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  1. 1/3 cup (1 ounce) old-fashioned oats (the kind that cook in 5 minutes, gluten-free in necessary) plus an extra teaspoonful for topping
  2. 1/3 cup (2 3/4 ounces) Greek yogurt (I often use plain, nonfat; you may use 2%, whole, or flavored, as desired)
  3. 1/3 cup (2 3/4 ounces) milk (I use almond milk but, again, use what you prefer)
  4. 1 teaspoon chia seeds
  5. 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (or 1/4 teaspoon almond extract)
  6. 2 teaspoons maple syrup (or sweetener of choice, to taste)
  7. 1/2 cup fruit, frozen or fresh (see notes)
  1. Add oats, yogurt, milk, chia seeds, vanilla or almond extract, and maple syrup to the jar. Screw the lid on tightly and shake well.
  2. Stir in the fruit and mix to distribute throughout the jar. Sprinkle an extra teaspoon of oats (I like a slightly rounded teaspoon) over the top and do not stir.
  3. Replace the lid and store in the refrigerator for up to three days. In the morning, stir and enjoy straight from the jar.
  1. While I do vary the fruit, my personal favorite when using frozen fruit is blueberries, and I often add half of a chopped banana in the morning. Strawberries, mango, raspberries, and peaches are also delicious. I keep bags of frozen, organic fruit on hand and add while still frozen. For the larger pieces of fruit, chop before adding. The fruit can be cut fairly easily while still frozen.
  2. In the morning, feel free to also add other traditional oatmeal toppings, from toasted almonds to shredded coconut.
The Fountain Avenue Kitchen http://fountainavenuekitchen.com/
Overnight No-Cook Oatmeal Yogurt Cup

When fresh berries or peaches aren’t in season, frozen blueberries work especially well.

Overnight No-Cook Oatmeal Yogurt Cup

 I made this version in 2013 as a part of a strawberry feature in the June issue of Susquehanna Style.  A big appeal of these healthy cups (beyond the convenience and great taste, of course!), is the versatility.

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  1. Terra

    You know it is funny, every time I see over-night oats, you have to microwave them when you plan to eat it. I am a girl on the go, and I do not have a microwave:-p I love your recipe, and will be enjoying this week for sure! Yum, Hugs, Terra

  2. Dorothy

    I love yogurt,fresh fruit,and oatmeal..so I will surely be making some of these..I think I try some pineapple with almond flavoring….sounds so good…Thanks

  3. penny

    I make these and never heat them, you just eat it as is, cold yummy goodness. heating it would destroy and kill the good bacteria in the yogurt.

    1. Ann

      Hi Penny,
      I don’t heat the cups either. When I mentioned heating, I was referring to the basic combination of oats and milk or water. A simple two-to-one ratio of liquid to oats soaked overnight works for a speedy breakfast. When made that way, I prefer it warm: ) Hope that makes sense!

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  5. christine rosser

    Ann, I had difficulty locating chia seeds. You suggested trying an extra tablespoon of oats or decreasing the milk by 2 tablespoons. I gave it a try the other day and added 1 extra tablespoon of oats. I even added 1 tsp. of wheat germ for a little extra nutrition(as if this isn’t healthy enough!). It was delicious, and just the right consistency. Thanks for the advice. I’ll be making more of these!

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  7. Barbara

    I’ve had this yummy, healthy, filling dish for breakfast every day since I first saw the recipe. I’m with Ann – blueberries are the best. In my freezer I have a few bananas that got too ripe & have placed a frozen one on top of the cereal mix at night. The next morning before eating the banana is soft and easily stirs in – that’s pretty good too. And what about flavored yogurt? Tried it, like the Greek plain best but the lemon was not bad, not bad at all. And I use Vanilla Silk soy milk – seriously, the variations can be unlimited. I got the chia seeds at the Giant in their natural food section.

    1. Ann

      Thanks so much for your great comments, Barbara! I love the frozen banana idea and agree with you completely…the variations are endless!

  8. Allison

    Love this recipe. We use frozen mixed berries and it is amazing. You can vary the type of yogurt and milk as well. My family hasn’t met a variation they didn’t like. It works well as a grab and go breakfast for hubby and kids on school days.

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  10. Amie

    Ann, another winning recipe. I put this aside for awhile and just recently picked it up again. This is a regular morning breakfast for me now. I make two or three at a time and throw them in the fridge. Wonderful and nutritious!

    1. Ann

      Hi Amie,
      I’m so glad you enjoy these as much as we do! I make several at once, too, and look forward to grabbing one in the morning. (I actually have a couple new versions to pass along one of these days!)

  11. diane ricciardi

    I love this meal! I am also new to canning and am wondering if that is possible with this receipe? If so, what would be the canning time?

    1. Ann

      I’m so glad you like it, Diane! Given the ingredients, this would not be a great meal to preserve. You can, however, make them up to three days in advance and store in the refrigerator.

  12. diane ricciardi

    Thank you Ann! Yes, I got to thinking about it afterwards and knew it couldn’t happen. I’m on my third day, soooo, I’ll be making more today with mixed berries and almond soy milk. Yummy!

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  14. Lauren

    I’ve already made this twice this week. It LOOKS a little strange, but it is so good! And very filling for the calories, absolutely. Protein, fiber, fruit…..great idea. I made mine with frozen strawberries. Love your column!

    1. Ann

      Thanks so much for taking the time to check in, Lauren. I’m so glad you’ve enjoyed these and appreciate the thoughtful comment!

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  16. Mary Lou Keller

    Made this and put in the fridge for breakfast tomorrow Ann. Funny thing, I used the same jelly jar, it’s the perfect size. 🙂

  17. Gerardo

    Do you know the nutritional content? I’m diabetic and the carb and sugar count are a big deal for me. Thank you.

  18. Donna S McManus

    I love these oatmeal cups! I’m not a breakfast person but the chewy texture of the oats, the creamy yogurt and bursts of sweet fruit are awesome. I eat this cold from the fridge. Perfect summer breakfast or snack.

    1. Ann Post author

      As long as the oats have softened to your liking, you’re good to go. My guess is you’d want to wait at least 3-4 hours…but let me know if you find otherwise!