It’s no secret that I’m obsessed with oatmeal
. I eat oatmeal every day in some form (and Layla does too!) whether it’s my traditional bowl with milk, blueberries and ground flaxseeds, or a less obvious use — like using oats in a smoothie! I can’t really live without oats 🙂
For a long time I’ve wanted to try overnight oats, but I just couldn’t move away from my warm bowl of oats in the morning (overnight oats are obviously eaten cold).
I usually make plain rolled oats because they cook faster and absorb more liquid than steel cut oats, and I love the soft fluffy texture when they’re freshly cooked. But I also feel like they are best eaten hot. For overnight oats, steel cut seemed like the better choice because they are chewy and have more of a dense texture – which means they won’t disintegrate in your fridge when mixed with the other ingredients overnight!
The question I always get is: are steel cut oats healthier than plain rolled oats?
Not necessarily. They are just closer to the original oat grain than rolled oats. But that doesn’t mean that rolled oats are heavily processed! Steel cut oats are made by taking the oat kernels and chopping them into thicker pieces, rather than rolling the oat kernel out and steaming it (which is what rolled oats are).
Steel cut oats may have a bit more protein than rolled oats, but the serving size is also a bit larger. Both are nutritionally equivalent, and both will keep you full for a long time.
The difference comes with instant oats — which are the most processed of the three oat varieties. They are pre-cooked, dried, and then rolled, cut up, and pressed more thinly than rolled oats. They cook more quickly than steel-cut or rolled oats, but retain pretty much no texture – so they often just taste mushy when cooked. They are higher on the glycemic index than steel cut or rolled oats, so they won’t keep you full as long.
So basically, when in doubt, use steel cut or rolled oats in your oatmeal! Choose the one whose texture you like the best, and nutritionally you will be getting the same benefits no matter which one you use. If you’re in a bind and have no other options, instant oats still has the same fiber/protein content as rolled, so they’re fine once in a while too. Bottom line: plain (non-flavored) oats are good, and you should eat them 🙂
For this recipe, I used steel cut oats (I like Bob’s Red Mill because they are non-GMO, organic and have gluten-free options!), plain Greek yogurt (I like Stonyfield Organic), some of my favorite fruits and nuts for texture.
The result is a protein-packed, delicious, grab-and-go breakfast that will keep you full forever. Like we’re talking at least 3-4 hours. I promise! AND this one little jar has over 20g protein and is vegetarian friendly!
Peanut Butter Banana, Protein-Packed Overnight Oats
Makes 1 serving. Nutritional Info Per Serving: 450 Calories, 14.3g Fat (1.9g Saturated), 88.1mg Sodium, 62g Carbs, 11.3g Fiber, 23g Sugar (all naturally occuring - no added sugars), 24.5g Protein
- 1 cup cooked steel cut oats (1/4 cup uncooked)
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1/2 cup plain 1% greek yogurt
- 1 tbsp almond or peanut butter
- 1 tbsp ground flaxseed
- 1/2-3/4 cup of any type of fruit (sliced strawberries, blueberries, etc)
- 1/4 banana
- 1 tbsp sliced almonds (or walnuts)
- Sprinkle of cinnamon and nutmeg (optional)
- Cook the steel cut oats ahead of time (Tip: I cook steel cut oats in bulk and freeze them in 1 cup portions to use later!)
- Combine the cooked oats, and the rest of the ingredients through the banana in a mason jar or tupperware. Stir until combined.
- Put the container in the fridge and store overnight.
- In the morning, add 1 tbsp sliced almonds or walnuts, cinnamon/nutmeg, stir and enjoy!
Recipe by: The Picky Eater, pickyeaterblog.com
Disclosure: I’m a brand ambassador for Stonyfield Organic. I am compensated and receive product samples. All opinions are always my own.