How many times have you heard, “breakfast is the most important meal of the day”? Now….how often do you actually eat breakfast? Yeah, me too. It’s just a lot to expect a person to get up and do everything they have to do to get ready for the day, AND make something worth eating. But I have found that if I have something ready to grab and go in the fridge, that I can quickly load with fun and yummy toppings, I not only will eat breakfast but I will actually look forward to it. These Overnight Oats fit the bill. They are jam packed with healthy ingredients like oats and chia seeds that energize me throughout my busy day, with a flavor that has taken a delightful detour through the tropics.
Coconut Milk Overnight Oats
I’ve tried various overnight oats recipes over the years, but found them a little bland and boring. Using coconut milk as the dairy base was a game changer! It transforms the oats and chia into a lush, pudding like consistency. Let’s face it, oats are a blank canvas and they need to be infused with flavor to prevent them from tasting like cardboard, and coconut milk does the trick!
Then I let the mixture sit for a few minutes, and stir again. Otherwise all the chia seeds sink to the bottom, but if you wait a few minutes they start to thicken and when you stir them again they will more evenly disperse. The chia seeds are what help overnight oats set, so you want to make sure they are well mixed.
Now they just need to be covered and put in the refrigerator overnight. And then the fun can begin!
Overnight Oats Toppings!
Coconut chips, bananas, and chopped dates are my favorite toppings for these. The chips add crunch, the bananas continue the tropical island party, and the dates are fun and chewy. Overnight Oats are perfect for any nuts or fruits you want to add, but this combo is hard to beat. I’ve seen some recipes that add the toppings the night before, but I prefer to have fruit that’s freshly cut for the best flavor, color, and texture. I like to really lean in to my toppings and add a generous amount to each serving. Go big or go home, right?
Add a layer of dates on top of the bananas:
Finally I add a generous pinch of coconut chips:
Enjoy your Overnight Oats right away, while the bananas are still in pristine form. Try these and let me know what you think, I want to hear if these cured your breakfast blues too. Leave a comment here or tag us @funkyasiankitchen!
For the oats:
- 1 can (13.5 ounces) coconut milk or coconut cream
- 14 ounces water
- 2 Tablespoons maple syrup or to taste
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅛ teaspoon sea salt
- 1 cup rolled oats (not instant)
- ½ cup chia seeds
For the topping:
- 3 bananas
- 12 dates
- 1 cup crunchy coconut chips, nuts, or anything crunchy
- Combine the coconut milk, water, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt in a container.
- Stir with a fork.
- While stirring, add the chia seeds and the oats.
- Let the mixture sit for a couple minutes and stir again.
- Pour the mixture into 6 containers (the containers should only be filled half way since you will need space for the toppings).
- Cover and refrigerate overnight.
- Pit the dates and chop them into small pieces.
- Peel and chop the bananas.
- Top with the dates, bananas, and coconut chips.
- Serve your Overnight Oats immediately.
*I like to put the overnight oats into plastic lidded containers and store them in the fridge. Top them with fruit only when ready to eat to keep the banana from turning brown.
Keywords: breakfast, chia, oats, overnight oats, gluten free, fruit, bananas, make ahead, snacks