Al’s Overnight Oats – Home and Trail Versions

The difference between breakfast and dinner is rather interesting. It seems like when dinner comes around, variety is the name of the game.  But not breakfast. Breakfast is a staple and in my house, I eat the same thing for breakfast day in and day out and never get tired of it. Is that how it works for you?

There must be something about mornings that lends it’s self towards consistency. Maybe it’s that we just aren’t ready to bring in a lot of choice, options and decisions to our minds that early. So finding a good solid breakfast that can be relied upon is essential.

Al’s “go to” breakfast for the last couple of years has been overnight oats. I first came upon a recipe for this on a favorite food blog – My New Roots. Sarah posted a recipe for Bircher Muesli with Spiced Strawberry Sauce and that is where this breakfast obsession got started.

Though we completely enjoyed her recipe, we quickly discovered that we didn’t want to make the strawberry sauce each time. It is a scrumptious sauce and is great to bring out for guests but we wanted something with a little less fuss for our mornings. So we just add a variety of fruits and some of our  favorites are mangoes, blueberries, strawberries, figs, etc..

Why overnight oats?

  1. Save time – Soaking the oats overnight makes them instantly ready in the morning.
  2. Healthier – Soaking oats reduces the amount of phytic acid stored in the grain and makes the nutrients more available to your body.

As time has gone by, Al has adapted the recipe to the spices that he enjoys. Below will be the base recipe with suggestions for mixing it up – but of course not too much since mornings like consistency right?

Cold Oats?

Yes, these overnight oats are made to be enjoyed cold/room temperature. This is a raw food recipe. Feel free to warm them up on the stove with a bit of almond or coconut milk if you would like.


  • The buckwheat flour and the apple cider vinegar are to help reduce the phytic acid.
  • I buy whole buckwheat groats at the health food store and “grind” them into a flour in a coffee grinder (I use this only for grinding spices and small amounts of flour – not coffee).
  • Only put dried fruits and nuts in the mix over night. Fresh fruit should be added in the morning.

Al’s Overnight Oats

Yield: four servings for most – two for Al

Time: 10 minutes



  • 2 cups rolled or steel cut oats
  • ⅓ cup chia seeds
  • 1 Tbsp. buckwheat flour (optional)


  • 3 cups of almond milk – any nut milk will do
  • 2 Tbsp. Apple Cider Vinegar

Al’s additions:

  • ⅓ cup raisins
  • 1 Tbsp. raw chocolate – ground
  • 1 ½ tsp. cinnamon powder
  • 1 tsp. ground fennel seed (optional)
  • 1 tsp. ground anise seed (optional)
  • unsweetened coconut flakes
  • various fruits and nuts

Put all the dry ingredients in a two quart bowl (with a lid).


Add all the ingredients from Al’s additions, except for the coconut and fresh fruit and mix.


Add the wet ingredients and mix. Sprinkle the top with the coconut flakes. Cover with a lid and place in the refrigerator overnight.


In the morning, take the bowl out of the refrigerator and serve it up into bowls, topping with various fruit.

IMG_4727 - Version 2

Various presentations:

We have also found these oats to be the perfect backpacking breakfast.


This is a GREAT recipe to take backpacking. What you need to know:

  • Instead of almond milk, we add ground almonds and then mix with water.
    • Recently, I found powdered coconut milk at the health food store (Jimbo’s). This would be a great option too.
  • The recipe below is a HEFTY portion. Depending on your needs – you may be able to ½ it. Al eats the entire thing!
  • Make sure to bring an “extra” freezer strength quart size bag. This is so that when you add the water to your sandwich size bag, you can put the entire thing inside of the other bag and seal again. No one wants a leak out there!
  • If you are in bear country – put this in your bear canister overnight.

Backpacking Overnight Oats

Yield: one serving

Time: Depends on how many you make at a time! Not long though. 



  • 1/2 cup rolled oats or steel cut oats
  • 1 heaping Tbsp. of chia seeds
  • 1/4 cup ground almonds
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp. shredded coconut
  • ½ to 1 tsp. buckwheat flour – optional
  • 1/4 cup various dried fruits

Mix all ingredients together at home and put in a sandwich size bag.

Write with a Sharpie on bag “1 cup H2O”.

Go backpacking!

At dinner time the night before, open bag and add 1 cup of water. Mix bag around a bit to mix well. Seal bag and leave upright overnight. Put inside a quart size freezer bag (to help prevent leaks). Open and eat in the morning.

I really hope you enjoy these overnight oats. This recipe has been wonderful for our mornings whether we are home or on the trail. Please share with you hiking buddies and enjoy!

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