Oatmeal in a Jar

There's no denying that I am a breakfast gal. The early bird catches the tofurkey worm, and I'm sure as heck not going to go worm hunting without a mid-section full of delicious goodies. Breakfast also happens to be the most important meal of the day, but you know that already now, don't you?

Papas con Soyrizo at Mission Cafe

overflowing breakfast cabinetI devour Cream of Wheat with melted cheese like it's nobody's business. Special K with Red Berries has a very special place in my stomach. I never turn down an avocado-brie-tomato-sprout croissant. In Boston I'm a sucker for the parfaits from Whole Foods on Beacon Street. In San Diego you can drop me of at Mission for the Papas con Soy Chorizo and pick me up when my belly has tripled in size. I could go on and on and on. And on. And on. And even on. Point being, I love breakfast and despite an overflowing breakfast food cabinet I am always looking for new breakfast ideas.

Enter no-bake oatmeal. A friend posted a link to refrigerator oatmeal on my health-nut sister's timeline and the FB-stalker that I am -- I saw it and decided to give it a whirl. I am always trying to convince my partner to eat breakfast and I thought maybe a jar of cold oatmeal was something I could surreptitiously sneak into his backpack each morning. Also, I've been obsessed with the idea of canning and making freezer jam as of late, and refrigerator oatmeal somehow seemed like a good gateway drug.

First step? I went to Target and bought pint-sized Mason jars as well as some smaller plastic Ball jars. More on those later. Then I bought what I needed for blueberry-maple, banana-chocolate-almond-milk, and cinnamon-applesauce oatmeals.

BAM! Oatmeal time. I basically followed the recipes on TheYummyLife. I used:

  • 1/4 cup rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1/3 cup milk or chocolate almond milk
  • 1.5 teaspoons chia seeds (which took me FOREVER to find at Whole Foods. HINT: look in the HABA section)
  • Assorted amounts of blueberries, bananas, and applesauce depending on the jar

The pint jars I bought turned out to be way too big for the recipe. The half-pints are perfect, but the lids are nearly impossible to snap on. For 5 minutes I cussed and moaned, thinking that I bought a defective set. Then I had a breakthrough moment of brute force and got one lid on. Getting the other 2 on was just as frustrating. I would stick with glass jars if you want to try this recipe.

Filling the jars is simple. Put everything in except the fruit and give it a good mix/shake. De-lid the jar, throw the fruit in, lid it up, shake it a final time, and BAM! It's fridge time.

My babies are now sitting in the fridge overnight and I'm waiting impatiently to taste test the concoctions. I've never eaten a chia seed, but apparently they are from the mint family, taste nutty, have a ton of omegas 3s, and expand in liquid, becoming gelatinous monsters. And you thought they were just good for little clay pets...

If you're curious how it ended up tasting you can read my refrigerated oatmeal follow-up post