Recipe: High Protein Overnight Oats

Breakfast Recipes, Pre + Post Workout Recipes

By: Deborah Murphy, MS, RD, LDN

two servings of high protein overnight oats healthy breakfast

If you’ve tried overnight oats before but found your stomach rumbling just an hour later, you’re going to want to try this high protein overnight oats recipe. A scoop of protein powder added to the oats helps sustain your energy levels all morning long.

Easy, convenient, budget-friendly, endlessly customizable – there’s a lot of reasons to love overnight oats! We’re no strangers to the chaos of busy mornings where it is difficult to find time to fit in a healthy breakfast.

With just 5 minutes of prep time, we stock our fridge with a few servings of overnight oats and we’re no longer starting the work day with low energy from a skipped breakfast. 

Make your overnight oats with protein powder for an easy high-protein breakfast with extra staying power. We love adding a scoop of protein powder to our morning smoothies – it makes a great addition to overnight oats as well!

Eat these high protein overnight oats cold or heat them up, they are the perfect healthy breakfast option for on-the-go!


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    Ingredients You’ll Need

    • Old fashioned rolled oats: we like the texture of old-fashioned oats best, but you can use quick oats for this recipe as well. 
    • Milk: any dairy or non-dairy milk of choice will work for overnight oats. We like to use unsweetened almond milk but you can bump up the protein in these oats by using either dairy milk or soy milk. 
    • Protein Powder: We recommend using either a plain, unsweetened protein powder or a vanilla flavored protein powder for these oats. Our favorite brand is Truvani. Such an easy way to add an extra 20 grams of protein to your oats. 
    • Ground Flaxseeds: make sure to purchase ground flaxseeds rather than whole flaxseeds. If you only have whole flaxseeds, you can grind them up in your coffee grinder. The flax seeds in this recipe help thicken up the oats as they chill in the fridge for a more pudding-like consistency. They also provide fiber and heart healthy fats.  If you don’t have flaxseeds, you can use 1 tablespoon of chia seeds instead. 
    • Vanilla: if you can find vanilla bean paste, use that for this recipe! It has a thicker consistency than traditional vanilla extract and you can actually see specks of vanilla bean. It has a much richer flavor that works really well in simple recipes like these overnight oats. However, you can use vanilla extract as well. If you want to switch things up, add 1/8 teaspoon almond extract – it gives these overnight oats a sugar cookie flavor.
    • Honey: we like to use honey as a delicious natural-sweetener for this overnight oatmeal recipe, but you can also use maple syrup. If you don’t have either of those, you can use brown sugar instead.
    delicious high protein overnight oats recipe in single serving with fresh berries


    ​We love using this as a base recipe and add different toppings and flavors so that we never get bored. Here are a few of our suggestions for topping these creamy overnight oats. 

    Vanilla Raspberry: add some thawed frozen raspberries or mashed fresh raspberries to these overnight oats before serving. We love the combo of vanilla and raspberry together. This is also delicious with some almond butter too. 

    Chocolate: use chocolate protein powder and add 1 tablespoon of cocoa powder to the overnight oat mixture before chilling. We love topping this one with a few chocolate chips or fresh fruit like berries or banana the next morning. 

    Peanut Butter & Jelly: top your overnight oats with a tablespoon of both peanut butter and jelly and give it a stir before serving. 

    Apple Cinnamon: add ½ teaspoon cinnamon and ½ chopped apple to your oats before chilling. 

    Banana Peanut Butter: chop up ½ banana and add to the oats before chilling overnight. When ready to serve, stir in 1 tablespoon of peanut butter and top with the other ½ of the banana. 

    Make it Vegan: use non-dairy milk and a vegan protein powder. 

    Make it Gluten Free: use gluten free certified rolled oats.

    How to Make High Protein Overnight Oats

    raw overnight oats mixture in bowl with spoon

    Mix and Chill: add the oats, almond milk, protein powder, ground flax seed, honey, and vanilla bean pasta to a mixing bowl and give it a good stir with a whisk. Transfer to a mason jar or airtight container and store in the fridge at least 4 hours to overnight. Add desired toppings and serve!

    Tools for this Recipe

    What is the Best Overnight Oats Ratio (Oats to Liquid)?

    We like to use a ratio of ½ cup old fashioned oats to ¾ cup of milk for these easy overnight oats. However, you can adjust this slightly depending on your preferred oats texture.

    Can I Make Overnight Oats with Steel Cut Oats?

    Yes, but you would need to adjust the recipe in order to make it work since steel cut oats need more liquid for soaking. First, you’ll need to add 1 cup each of water and milk to a saucepan and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat and stir in ½ cup of steel cut oats with the rest of the ingredients (protein powder, flaxseed, honey, vanilla, salt). Allow to chill overnight before serving.

    two servings of high protein overnight oats with different fruit toppings on top

    How to Add Protein to Overnight Oats without Protein Powder

    Don’t like protein powder, but want to add extra protein to your overnight oats? Here are some other options: add 1/4 cup cottage cheese or 1/4 cup plain non-fat Greek yogurt.

    You can also score a few extra grams of protein by topping your overnight oats with hemp hearts or nut butter.

    Other Delicious Overnight Breakfast Recipes to Try

    Total Time: 5 minutes

    Yield: 1 serving(s)


    • 1/2 cup gluten-free rolled oats
    • 3/4 cup vanilla almond milk
    • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
    • 1 tablespoon ground flax seed (or chia seeds)
    • 1 teaspoon honey (or maple syrup)
    • ¼ teaspoon vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract)
    • Pinch of salt (optional)


    1. Add all the ingredients to a mixing bowl and stir well with a whisk. Transfer to a mason jar or airtight container to chill for at least 4 hours to overnight until thickened. Add desired toppings before serving. (We really like adding ½ cup mashed red raspberries.)

    Nutrition Information Per Serving

    Serving Size: 1

    Calories: 359

    Protein: 33 gram(s)

    Fat: 10 gram(s)

    Carbohydrates: 39 gram(s)

    Fiber: 7 gram(s)

    Sugar: 8 gram(s)

    *Vanilla bean paste is thicker than vanilla extract. It’s a thin syrup and has the little specks of ground vanilla beans - I like the look. You can sub out vanilla extract at a 1 to 1 ratio. I have been told and I have found the paste works best in uncooked or lightly cooked desserts and things like oats, pudding, etc. That is why I use it. You can find the paste online or at most grocery stores in the baking section.

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