Remember those no bake cookies you made as a kid? My Cinnamon Chocolate Peanut Butter Overnight Oats are twist on those classic flavors and make for a great, protein filled, make-ahead breakfast on the go!
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Why We Love Cinnamon Chocolate Peanut Butter Overnight Oats
First off, let’s just say chocolate + peanut butter and that should be enough right? Unless you’re my daughter who doesn’t “get it” and have the same love of this classic flavor combination as I do. (Is she my child? This makes me question things).
No seriously, it IS one of my all time favorite flavor combos and that’s one thing I do love about these overnight oats. The addition of cinnamon takes it up a notch and it almost feels like you’re eating dessert for breakfast!
I originally created the recipe for Cinnamon Chocolate Peanut Butter Overnight Oats when I partnered with a peanut butter company. They offer a variety of peanut butter flavor combos but I decided to simplify the recipe and tweak the ingredients a bit to use items you probably already have on hand instead of a specialty peanut butter you’d have to go out and purchase.
I remember as a kid making the no-bake chocolate and oatmeal cookies many, many times after school. The flavors in these overnight oats remind me of those cookies. I’ve added cinnamon because that is one of my new favorites with chocolate.
Not only do the oats provide a great way to get in some healthy fiber to help start your morning and fill you up, I’ve snuck in a few extra ingredients to boost the nutrition content. The Greek yogurt provides a boost of protein as do the chia seeds.
Best of all these overnight oats, as suggested, are make ahead which makes them a great idea for busy weekday mornings! And with the healthy ingredients, you can feel good knowing you’re getting a delicious AND nutritious breakfast that will keep you full until lunchtime. You can enjoy them hot or cold. I choose either depending on my mood.
How To Make Overnight Oats
What goes into Cinnamon Chocolate Peanut Butter Overnight Oats?
Old-Fashioned Rolled Oats – These are what I describe as “whole oats” vs. the instant or quick-cook oats that are chopped and cook more quickly. Not a major deal if you use a different one but I prefer the old fashioned variety.
Chia Seeds – Chia seeds are tiny black seeds that you can usually find in the natural food section of your grocery store. That is if they’re not with the other cereals like oatmeal above.
Chia is packed with amino acids, five times the omega-3 content of a ¼ cup serving of walnuts and tons protein, iron, magnesium, calcium, potassium and fiber! They are a powerhouse of nutrition and have no real flavor so it blends right into my recipe easily.
If you don’t have chia seeds, you can omit them or substitute ground flax seeds instead (which are equally awesome nutrition-wise).
Peanut Butter – We prefer the natural creamy peanut butter because it has no added sugar. I buy the natural peanut butter from Sam’s Club that doesn’t require refrigeration. Any peanut butter will do though. Or even peanut butter alternatives like almond butter or sunbutter. Or you can also use chunky peanut butter!
Cocoa Powder – This is the plain baking cocoa powder that you find in the baking aisle. Not to be confuse with cocoa drink mix (as that has lots of other ingredients you don’t want in this recipe)
Plain Greek Yogurt – Our favorite is the Kirland brand from Costco—it’s a great price too! But again, any brand will do.
Cinnamon – I buy our cinnamon in bulk because we use it so much!
Vanilla Extract – Be sure to get the real vanilla extract and not the imitation vanilla. The taste difference is quite noticeable—to me anyway.
Milk – We prefer skim milk but you can substitute any type that you prefer even varieties like almond , soy or oat milk for example.
Recipe tips for making Cinnamon Chocolate Peanut Butter Overnight Oats?
This recipe is so easy to prepare! It’s basically assembling all the ingredients in a medium bowl then stirring together. Cover bowl and put in the refrigerator for eight hours or overnight.
In the morning, I like to let the mixture sit out for about 10 minutes so it’s not super cold but that’s my personal preference. Sometimes I’ll also heat it up a bit and enjoy that way.
I will also often add a tablespoon or so (doesn’t need to be exact) bit of extra milk if it just seems to thick that day. It kind of just depends on my mood!
Can these be made ahead?
Yes! As the name suggests, these are meant to be made ahead—the day before in fact! I’ve made them in a larger batch though and they will keep up in the refrigerator for a few days.
You can also make a big batch of the dry ingredients and divide it up into baggies. Label and add instructions to add the “wet” ingredients when you assemble them for overnight. This would mean the peanut butter, vanilla, Greek yogurt and milk.
This is a great idea if you are short on space but want to get a bit ahead on the prep side of things and you can add the fresh ingredients later.
Can you freeze overnight oats?
I’ve not tried this but I’m not sure why not. One thing to consider though it the amount of thaw time-give it a good overnight or even a whole day in the refrigerator. Also, if you’re short on freezer space, making up the dry mixture as I mentioned above then adding the wet ingredients will help you do some prep ahead but still save space.
What Are Some Other Make Ahead Breakfast Ideas?
I’m all about making breakfast time as simple as possible. We have some other simple favorites like theseOvernight Apple Cinnamon Rolls, my Slow Cooker Homemade Honey Cinnamon Granola or these Make Ahead Spinach, Bacon and Swiss Cheese Mini Quiches (which are great for lunch or snacks too!)
I love mixing things up for breakfast so can’t wait to try these other recipes from some of my food blogger friends like:
Slow Cooker Pumpkin Chia Steel Cut Oats from Flavor the Moments
Whole Wheat Almond Nutella Sheet Pancake (what a fun idea!) from Lathi’s Kitchen
Freezer Friendly Make Ahead Breakfast Bowls from Mommy Hates Cooking
Make Ahead Sausage Egg and Cheese Muffins from Everyday Savvy
Frozen Breakfast Quesadillas by Slender Kitchen
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Cinnamon Chocolate Peanut Butter Overnight Oats
- ¾ cup old-fashioned rolled oats
- 2 tablespoons chia seeds
- 3 tablespoons creamy peanut butter you may also substitute almond or soy butter
- 1 tablespoon baking cocoa
- 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
- 4 tablespoons plain Greek yogurt
- 1 ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¾-1 cup 1% milk see note
- Pinch salt
- In a medium bowl combine all ingredients (I like to mix right in my storage container—so a glass Pyrex or mason jar).
- (I like to mix right in my storage container—so a glass Pyrex or mason jar),
- Stir just to blend.
- Store covered in refrigerator 6-8 hours or overnight.
- When ready to eat, serve cold or warm 1-2 minutes in microwave.
- If it is too thick for you, add a little milk to thin it out.
- Mixture will keep up to three days in refrigerator.
Can these be made ahead?Yes! As the name suggests, these are meant to be made ahead—the day before in fact! I’ve made them in a larger batch though and they will keep up in the refrigerator for a few days. You can also make a big batch of the dry ingredients and divide it up into baggies. Label and add instructions to add the “wet” ingredients when you assemble them for overnight. This would mean the peanut butter, vanilla, Greek yogurt and milk. This is a great idea if you are short on space but want to get a bit ahead on the prep side of things and you can add the fresh ingredients later.
Can you freeze overnight oats?I’ve not tried this but I’m not sure why not. One thing to consider though it the amount of thaw time-give it a good overnight or even a whole day in the refrigerator. Also, if you’re short on freezer space, making up the dry mixture as I mentioned above then adding the wet ingredients will help you do some prep ahead but still save space.
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