Overnight oats are simple to put together, full of flavor and slow-burning energy, and they make busy mornings go faster! Here’s a great list of my favorite 25 grab-and-go overnight oats recipes.
What do we want?
When do we want it?
Ok no, really, overnight oats are one of the easiest morning time grab-and-go breakfasts a busy mama can keep in her meal prep arsenal.
Overnight oats are simple to throw together, kids love them, and you can eat them while walking out the door.
I tell my kids it’s like eating lumpy ice cream for breakfast. The 2 year old buys it and the 4 year old rolls her eyes at me (how is this a thing already? #4goingon14) but reality is, overnight oats are the tasty bedrock of any busy morning.
Overnight oats are packed with slow burning energy, meaning they have a better chance of keeping you full til lunch.
Add nuts and milks for protein and sweeteners and seasonings for flavor (and maybe cold brew for your mama brain) and you’ve got yourself a winning breakfast.
You can even make savory overnight oats, if you’re not a big fan of the sweets-for-breakfast thing.
Here’s my basic overnight oats ratio, for those who want to make it themselves:
If you’re having a hard time getting the kids (and yourself!) out the door in the morning, then a breakfast casserole can be a time saver! Just make a big one on the weekend and serve it up all week long. Here’s a huge list of 23 delicious breakfast casseroles to get you started!
One thing every one of my busy mama friends tells me is this: Mornings are freaking hard with little kids.
Remember those heady pre-kids days when our coffee was hot, our showers were hotter, and we could listen to the news without the background noise of cartoons?
The glory days, man.
But those days of calm mornings are behind us (and, eventually, ahead of us)
So for here, for now, we’re in the get-everyone-out-the-door-without-going-berserk phase.
And on the crazy days, having breakfast made ahead of time is a life saver.
A sanity saver, too. Time saver, even!
Breakfast casseroles are the best at this. Make a big pan (or two!) on Sunday, divide it up, and BOOM PRESTO, breakfast is over and it’s time to go get your shoes on.
I’ve rounded up some of my favorite breakfast casseroles from the interwebs here for you!
Also, I helpfully separated them into the three categories I find most breakfast casseroles fall into: Paleo/Keto/Healthy/Gluten-Free, Sweet Casseroles, and Basic Breakfast Casseroles.
Bonus? Any of these casseroles are great for the holiday season as well!
Oh, and here’s a tip: If you want to make your own breakfast casserole with what you’ve already got on hand, this is my basic ratio. I like to start with this, and then I play around with flavors:
Line a 9×13” baking pan with bread cubes.
Mix 8-10 eggs with 1 ½ cups half and half and pour on top
Add cheese and protein, like sausage
Bake at 350*F for about 10 minutes, until the middle of the pan is set.
Here’s the rest of the list; I’d love to hear your favorites in the comments below!
A simple grab-and-go breakfast bowl that rocks on busy mornings! This post was sponsored by Farmland Fresh Dairies. Click here to read my disclosures.
Here’s the story of how an easy breakfast bowl got this mama her morning groove back.
See, I love implementing systems and rhythms in my family’s days. I know, right!? I only gush about them every chance I can get in this space. But seriously though guys, I Really. Freakin’. Love. Routine.
But hey, guess what? I’m also a human, who screws up, and loses steam, and gets distracted. And my rhythms sometimes fall apart, just like they do with basically everyone else in this world.
I just make sure that when that happens, I stop, reassess, and get back into the fallen rhythm as soon as I possibly can.
Case in point: the wheels have lately begun to come off of our morning routine.
And I needed to do something about it.
My kids are both in school now and everyone in the family has to be out the door by 7:40 am. The first few weeks of the school year I was really nailing our new-to-us morning routine and getting a hot, filling breakfast on the table for everyone.
But things started slowly piling up and one day I found myself wrapping peanut butter toast in paper towels and passing them out as we all rushed out the door. And while I’d never fault that for happening occasionally, it started happening more and more.
My awesome morning routine wasn’t so awesomely routine anymore.
So when Farmland Fresh sent me a shipment of dairy products and asked to create a recipe for them, I knew exactly what I wanted to do: breakfast.
Preferably a breakfast that was healthy, grab-and-go, and full of natural flavors.
Like an easy breakfast bowl. (Seriously. Really easy.)
Crisp fall mornings go hand in hand with apples, so this Apple Pie and Chia Easy Breakfast Bowl, featuring plain yogurt from Farmland Fresh thickened with chia seeds and topped with warming apple pie flavors,, takes just a few minutes of hands-on work for a great reward.
Plus, these easy breakfast bowls are allllllllmost like having dessert for breakfast.
Like, if you close your eyes real tight and pretend you’re eating real apple pie instead of, you know, a healthy breakfast, you might just believe it.
In any case, easy breakfast bowls are a great option for anyone riding the weekday morning struggle bus (like me lately).
You can mix these apple pie breakfast bowls up the night before and throw ‘em in the fridge, or even make a handful at the start of the week and skip the morning cooking altogether for a few days.
Because other than a pre-set coffee machine, there’s nothing easier than a premade, easy breakfast bowl that only needed the plastic wrap to come off before digging in. Am I right?
Make these grab and go breakfast bowls the night before! Chill them in the fridge overnight and then grab and go in the morning. Adding antioxidant-rich chia seed to the yogurt will bulk it up and help you stay fuller for longer.
2 tablespoons butter
2 teaspoon apple pie seasoning
1 tablespoon brown sugar
4 tablespoons chia seeds
1/2 cup Farmland Fresh plain yogurt
Remove the core from the apples and cut them into small dice.
Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat, then add the apples, apple pie seasoning and brown sugar.
Stir to combine and let cook until the apples have softened and the mixture is starting to break down, about 10 minutes.
While the apples are cooking, divide the yogurt into 4 bowls.
Stir 1 tablespoon of chia seeds into each bowl until combined.
When the apple have cooked, remove from the heat and spoon onto the yogurt bowls.
Serve immediately or let cool and then wrap and store in the fridge.
Today, my busy lovelies, I’m going to teach you how to make overnight oats for breakfast so you can actually get up, get out, and not be running late on an empty stomach for once.
You’ve probably heard some fuss about overnight oats and how they can save you time, money, and extra calories in the mornings. It’s true! Overnight oats are a fab option for busy people breakfasts since they are literally made while you sleep.
Overnight oats can save you a ridiculous amount of time in the mornings, and as a bonus, they are super customizable, easy to make, and a great make-ahead prep recipe!
Here’s why learning how to make overnight oats can save you morning time hassles.
I’ve long struggled with eating breakfast; I’m rarely hungry in the morning and would prefer just coffee.
But I know breakfast is important, and if I don’t eat it, I usually wind up a hangry, shouty mommy by like 9am.
I kept hearing how amazing overnight oats were, but I was hesitant to try it out since, like, cold oatmeal? Um, no.
But my son loves oatmeal and I was sick of making it from scratch in the mornings, so I gave an overnight oats recipe a whirl.
They’re more filling than a bowl of cereal or a slice of toast, and I can create individual options for my kids based on their tastes. PBJ for one, brown sugar and walnuts for the other, fruit-topped for me.
Or we could all eat the same flavor instead. No one will die from the lack of variety. But that’s not nearly as Pinterest-y, now, is it? 😉
Combine oats, milk, and salt in a jar or container with a tight-fitting lid, seal, and shake to mix thoroughly.
Refrigerate at least 4 hours or overnight.
Top as desired and enjoy!
A note on oat types: Steel cut oats will give you a ‘chewier’ and heartier texture (they’re my favorite!) Rolled oats are the standard style used in most overnight oats recipes and bring a more traditionally soft oatmeal texture Quick or 1-minute oats tend to get too soggy when left overnight; these are best used when you want “overnight” oats but forgot to make them the night before 🙂
A note on milk types: Feel free to use any kind of milk here, be it plant-based or animal based. You can also sub in water or even bone broth if you’re going for a savory flavor!
I love customizable recipes, as you know, and smoothie bags are pro at being customizable to what you’ve got going on. They can be seasonal (right now I’m all about cantaloupe and citrus) or they can be totally out-of-season, since they’re frozen.
Busy mornings are much more manageable when you’ve got make-ahead smoothie bags stashed in the freezer!
I first got hooked on make-ahead smoothies when I was pregnant with my youngest (more on how they saved me is below).
Few things brighten up a gray, cold, dreary morning in January than a smoothie of bright summer fruits. They totally get me through busy mornings with my kids! They go to a nanny a few days a week for a few hours, so I can work in peace. And every ‘work’ morning tends to go the same dang way.
Here’s how mornings usually tend to go in my apartment:
First, my daughter climbs into bed with me around 6:30 and wakes me up by stealing my pillow.
Coffee is made, a show is watched (We’re on a Doc McStuffins kick here lately), my 18-month old who loves sleeping in (for now) wakes up around 7:30.
Breakfast for the kids. I wash any dishes left from last night, pack lunches (and curse myself for not doing this the night before). NPR on the radio, toys scattered across the living room that I JUST PICKED UP LAST NIGHT.
Fight with my daughter that she can’t wear a bathing suit out of the house because it’s January.
Chase my 18-month old with a pair of socks.
Send the kids into my bedroom to say goodbye to their sleeping Daddy (who likely got home from work around midnight).
Zip coats, secure hats, tie shoes, switch out mittens when my son uses the first pair to wipe his runny nose.
Pop the 18-month old up onto my back in the baby carrier, tell my daughter for the thousandth time that no, she can’t bring a tub of Legos to the nanny’s house.
Head down the stairs of our walk-up apartment, out the door to the street, and drop the kids off before heading back home and going to work.
Notice anything missing there? MY BREAKFAST. I always have high hopes for sitting down and eating breakfast with my kids and every morning, it gets pushed by the wayside.
Enter a make-ahead smoothie bag. It makes my life so much easier, healthier, and I can drink it in the mornings on the go.
Likely, I’ll be guzzling it down in between wrestling a preschooler into a pair of tights and slicing kiwifruit for lunches.
Want more smoothie ideas? This list has 21 new combos! Print it out and hang it up, take a screenshot with your phone, whatever works. Leave your name and email address below and I’ll send it to you right away.
I can create make-ahead smoothie bags from fruit I’ve got that’s starting to go bad, frozen fruits on sale at the grocery store, fruit that’s in season. Sometimes I’ll make it so all I have to do is dump the bag in the blender and away we go – the rest of the time (most of the time), I make the ‘bones’ of a smoothie and then add almond milk or yogurt to the blender to combine.
Below I’ve got three variations on my favorite make-ahead smoothie bags this time of year! I tend to switch it up depending on the season, and I don’t go out of season if I can help it.
One more thing before I share the smoothie recipes- these little babies SAVED me during my last postpartum period. Granted, I had my son in late May so the weather was much warmer than it is now in December and January, but they were a godsend.
Not only did an icy smoothie cool me down in the mornings (postpartum sweats are real, yo) but they were grabbable, easy, and – this is the best part- I could pour them into a large cup with a straw and drink one with one hand while I held a breastfeeding baby with the other.
Each make-ahead smoothie bag I had premade before the baby came was like a little fist bump from my pregnant self to my postpartum self. They’d make a great gift for the pregnant moms you know!
Ok- on to the combinations!
APPLE (peeled and diced)
Want more smoothie ideas? This list has 21 new combos! Print it out and hang it up, take a screenshot with your phone, whatever works. Leave your name and email address below and I’ll send it to you right away!
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Here’s a make-ahead breakfast casserole that’s easy to cook, gluten-free, and perfect for special occasions or busy weeks!
A few months ago, I got a spiralizer. It’s a pretty cool piece of equipment (and surprisingly affordable!) but not being gluten-free, I’d kind of run out of ideas to do with it!
Because #tinykitchenlife, I am starting to run out of places to put specialty kitchen equipment, so I wanted to find a few ways to get good use out of the spiralizer before needing to rethink my storage options.
And, with Christmas coming, I’ve got breakfast casseroles on my mind!
We have an easy make-ahead breakfast casserole every Christmas morning, and it’s honestly one of my favorite parts about the holiday!
I love digging into a warm plate of breakfast casserole.
Melty gooey cheese smothering salty sausage, all baked with cubes of crusty bread and custardy eggs. It’s heaven.
But what if, I thought, you subbed out those crusty bread cubes for another type of starch? Then, the gluten-free members in my family could enjoy breakfast casserole too, instead of glancing longingly at it and then eating something different.
Enter one neglected spiralizer plus one fat, peeled sweet potato. The result is this craaaaaazy delicious, gluten-free, super simple breakfast casserole!
Seriously, this baby is only 6 ingredients deep. (7 if you count the salt)
It’s great as a make-ahead option (in fact- I think it’s even tastier when left in the fridge overnight).
It’s still loaded with cheese and sausage and creamy eggs, so you’re not missing out on any holiday morning decadence. (although I bet if you lightened up the cheese and swapped regular sausage for something like turkey sausage, you’d be lighter still in calories).
The original recipe is borrowed in part from the make-ahead breakfast casserole my family makes every Christmas morning.
That original recipe is a standard one, loaded with cubes of good-quality, sturdy bread. In this new make-ahead breakfast casserole recipe, I kept many of the same components as the original, and simply swapped out the bread for spiralized sweet potatoes.
The starch in the sweet potatoes works similar to bread in this dish, but it changes the texture so that in every mouthful, you get soft strands of sweet potato along with the cheese, eggs, sausage, and seasoning.
It’s a fun little changeup from the usual, and one that I’m sure I’ll be making more of in the future!
Spiralized sweet potatoes add heft to this breakfast casserole without the bread. Use a mild, melty white cheese that’s not too sharp, so as to not overpower the flavor of the sweet potato. I haven’t tried it this way yet, but I think a spicy sausage such as chorizo would do really well here, if spice is your thing.
1 pound sweet Italian sausage (casings removed)
1 large sweet potato (about 1 pound)
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 cups shredded mild cheese (such as gouda)
3 cups whole milk
1 teaspoon salt
In a saucepan over medium heat, cook the sausage until browned, crumbling it into small pieces as it cooks. Once cooked, drain and set aside.
While the sausage it cooking, peel the sweet potato and discard the skins. Insert the sweet potato into a vegetable spiralizer, and spiralize the entire potato. You should have about 2 cups of spirals when finished. Toss the spirals with the cornstarch and set aside.
In a separate, large bowl, whisk together the shredded cheese, eggs, whole milk and salt. Stir in the sausage until fully combined, then add the sweet potatoes. Stir until combined, then pour the mixture into a 13”x9” baking dish. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit in the fridge overnight.
When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 375*.
Remove the plastic wrap and bake the casserole, uncovered, for 40-45 minutes or until the center is set and doesn’t jiggle when moved.
Remove from the oven and let sit until cool enough to handle. Serve warm.