Looking for a high protein breakfast recipe that isn’t eggs or a protein shake? Try these high protein overnight oats! Each serving packs 22 grams of protein with NO protein powder. The protein comes from whole food ingredients including Greek yogurt, milk, chia seeds, and oats. This simple and healthy overnight oats recipe takes 5 minutes to prep and is the perfect base for all your favorite toppings.

Two cups of overnight oats topped with berries, and a bowl of blueberries on a light striped dish towel

As a Registered Dietitian, I’m well aware of the benefits of eating a healthy breakfast with protein.

Eating a high protein breakfast (like my cottage cheese overnight oats or Greek yogurt chia pudding) supports muscle health and weight management. It also helps stabilize blood sugar levels and balances our hunger and satiety throughout the day.

This protein overnight oats recipe has 22 grams of protein per serving (that’s more protein than 3 eggs)!

Instead of using protein powder, the protein found in this recipe comes from a combination of different whole food sources.

Protein overnight oats take just five minutes to prepare. It’s as easy as mixing a few ingredients together in a container, then popping it in the fridge overnight!

This recipe makes two servings. It’s vegetarian, soy free, and can be made gluten free by using certified gluten free oats.

If you love this recipe, try my high fiber overnight oats with raspberries next! They have a similar amount of protein in them.

Are overnight oats healthy?

Generally speaking, yes, overnight oats are a healthy breakfast choice.

Oats are a whole grain food with dietary fiber, vitamins, minerals, and even a little bit of protein!

While oats on their own are pretty nutritious, you can boost the nutrient profile of your overnight oats even more by adding other ingredients to the oats.

Common overnight oats ingredients like chia seeds, hemp seeds, nut butter, Greek yogurt, and fruit will make overnight oats more filling and satisfying.

overnight oats ingredients measured out in small bowls

Ingredients

Here is everything you need to make this recipe, plus a breakdown of where the protein comes from:

  • Oats: Old fashioned oats are the best type of oat to use for overnight oats. They provide 5 grams of protein per serving.
  • Greek yogurt: Greek yogurt provides a creamy texture and helps thicken up the overnight oats. Greek yogurt has nearly twice as much protein as regular yogurt, and provides 5.5 grams of protein per serving. Use store bought, or make your own Greek yogurt at home using my shortcut recipe. Read more about the benefits of Greek yogurt here.
  • Milk: Cow’s milk is a widely available and affordable source of high-quality protein. Read about the benefits of including dairy in a plant-based diet here! Each serving of this recipe has 4 grams of protein from milk. If you prefer to use plant-based milk, I recommend soy milk. It has more protein than other plant-based options, and the same amount of protein per serving as cow’s milk.
  • Chia seeds: These little seeds are small but mighty. In addition to dietary fiber and healthy omega-3 fatty acids, they also provide protein! Each serving of this recipe has 1 tablespoon of chia seeds, providing 3 grams of protein.
  • Peanut butter: Peanut butter is a good choice to add to your diet if you want to eat more protein! Each serving of of this recipe gets 4 grams of protein from peanut butter.
  • Maple syrup: Maple syrup adds a touch of sweetness to overnight oats. You can use honey instead if you prefer.
  • Cinnamon: This sweet spice tastes delicious in overnight oats!
  • Fruit: The base recipe for overnight oats is the perfect vehicle for fruit toppings. I love to add mixed berries, sliced banana, or cinnamon stewed apples.

In addition to 22 grams of protein, each serving of overnight oats has 10+ grams of dietary fiber! This is about one-third of your daily fiber needs. High fiber diets have several health benefits, including digestive health, gut health, weight management, and more.

Kitchen equipment needed

To make this recipe, all you need is:

  • Measuring cups
  • Measuring spoons
  • Mixing spoon
  • Medium sized tupperware or jars

Step-by-step instructions

overnight oats dry ingredients in a circular tupperware
1. Add dry ingredients to a tupperware or jar: oats, cinnamon, and chia seeds.
dry ingredients for overnight oats mixed together in a tupperware
2. Mix together the dry ingredients.
overnight oats in a tupperware before being mixed
3. Add the wet ingredients: milk, Greek yogurt, peanut butter, and maple syrup.
hands mixing up overnight oats in a tupperware
4. Mix in the wet ingredients thoroughly.
hands closing a round tupperware
5. Close the tupperware or jar and set it in the fridge overnight.
overnight oats in a round tupperware with a silver spoon
6. The next morning, give the overnight oats a good stir. Portion into two servings and add your fruit toppings.

How long do overnight oats last?

Once prepared, overnight oats will last in the fridge for up to five days. They will become a bit mushier after a few days, as the oats continue to soak up the liquid.

This makes overnight oats a great option for weekly meal prepping!

Two cups of overnight oats topped with berries

Oats nutrition benefits

Oats are highly nutritious! They’re a great food to include regularly in your diet, especially if you follow a plant-based diet.

Oats are filled with dietary fiber, including both soluble and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber can help lower “bad” LDL cholesterol levels.

A half a cup of oats has 5 grams of dietary fiber, or 15 percent of your daily needs.

Oats provide many other nutrients:

  • 5.3 grams of plant-based protein
  • 1.7 mg iron (9% of your daily needs)
  • 0.186 mg thiamin (16% of your daily needs)
  • 55.89 mg magnesium (13% of your daily needs)

Are overnight oats healthier than cooked oats?

Overnight oats and cooked oats each provide the same amount of nutrients listed above. However, overnight oats retain more resistant starch than cooked oats.

Resistant starch is a type of carbohydrate that is not digested – similar to fiber. Instead, resistant starch is fermented in the large intestine and feeds the good bacteria (probiotics) in your gut.

Two cups of overnight oats topped with berries, and a bowl of blueberries on a light striped dish towel

Chia seeds nutrition benefits

These little seeds pack a TON of nutrition! Two tablespoons of chia seeds provides:

  • 5.5 grams of dietary fiber, primarily from soluble fiber (20% of your daily needs)
  • 3.7 grams of plant-based protein
  • 0.330 mg thiamin (28% of your daily needs)
  • 78.79 mg magnesium (20% of your daily needs)
  • 0.25 mg copper (28% of your daily needs)
  • 129.04 mg phosphorus (18% of your daily needs)
  • Small amounts of several other minerals, including calcium, zinc, selenium, potassium, and iron

A majority of the fat in chia seeds comes from omega-3 essential fatty acids. This type of fat is essential in our diet because our bodies cannot produce it.

Omega-3 fatty acids have heart health benefits, and they can decrease inflammation and help lower cholesterol levels.

Let me know if you love this post by leaving a comment or star rating below, and check out Instagram and Pinterest for more healthy lifestyle inspiration. Thanks for stopping by!

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Two cups of overnight oats topped with berries, and a bowl of blueberries on a light striped dish towel

Healthy High Protein Overnight Oats (without Protein Powder)

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  • Author: Alex Aldeborgh, RD
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Overnight Time: 12 hours
  • Total Time: 12 hours 5 minutes
  • Yield: serves 2
  • Category: breakfast
  • Method: Overnight soak
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan
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Description

Looking for a high protein breakfast recipe that isn’t eggs or a protein shake? Try these high protein overnight oats! Each serving packs 22 grams of protein with NO protein powder. The protein comes from whole food ingredients including Greek yogurt, milk, chia seeds, and oats. This simple and healthy overnight oats recipe takes 5 minutes to prep and is the perfect base for all your favorite toppings.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 cup old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt – any fat content works
  • 1 cup low-fat milk
  • 2 tbsp creamy natural peanut butter
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • Fresh fruit of choice, for topping


Instructions

  1. In a medium sized tupperware or jar, combine the dry ingredients: oats, and cinnamon, and chia seeds. Mix together.
    dry ingredients for overnight oats mixed together in a tupperware
  2. Add the wet ingredients to the dry: Greek yogurt, milk, peanut butter, and maple syrup. 
    overnight oats in a tupperware before being mixed
  3. Thoroughly mix everything together.
    hands mixing up overnight oats in a tupperware
  4. Cover the tupperware and pop it in the fridge overnight. 
    hands closing a round tupperware
  5. The next morning, give the overnight oats a good stir and portion into two bowls for serving.
    overnight oats in a round tupperware with a silver spoon
  6. Top with fresh fruit.

Notes

How long do overnight oats last?

Once prepared, overnight oats will last in the fridge for up to five days. They will become a bit mushier after a few days, as the oats continue to soak up the liquid.

This makes overnight oats a great option for weekly meal prepping!