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Peanut butter and chocolate star in this delicious, make-ahead Peanut Butter Cup Overnight Oats recipe that takes minutes to put together. Tastes like dessert but it’s really a hearty, healthy breakfast!
Why You’ll Love Overnight Oats
Here are some reasons to make overnight oats regularly in your home.
- Make-Ahead: Similar to our 7 Smoothie Freezer Packs, you can whip up several of these on the weekend and have breakfast ready to go for the week. They just take minutes to put together.
- No Cooking Involved: The oats soften in the liquid as it sits in the refrigerator, which means, like our Chocolate Energy Bites, no cooking is needed.
- Super Healthy: The combo of fresh or frozen fruit, whole grains, and other nutritious add-ins provide fiber, protein, antioxidants, and valuable minerals.
- Eat On the Go: Whether you have just a few minutes before you leave for the day or need to eat breakfast in the car or at your desk, this breakfast-in-a-jar fits the bill! Eat these overnight oats cold or warm. (Read on for tips for serving.) Check out more Healthy On-the-Go Snacks.
- Super Tasty: With a balance of sweet, salty, and texture, this recipe will make the whole family happy. It’s like a dessert in a jar.
Here’s what you’ll need for this particular version of overnight oatmeal:
- Oats – Rolled oats (or old-fashioned) work best for this recipe. However, if you only have quick oats, you can use them. They won’t take as long in the fridge and they will be a mushier texture than rolled. You can also use steel-cut oats, but they will take longer to soften and you may need to add more liquid.
- Ground flaxseed – We chose to include some ground flaxseed in this recipe for extra fiber and omega-3s. You can omit it or replace it with some chia seeds, hemp seeds, almond meal, or more oats.
- Peanut butter – I use all-natural peanut butter with no added sugars or oils. If you want to avoid peanuts, replace this with almond butter, cashew butter, or sunbutter.
- Peanuts – We love the little crunch from the peanuts in here, but you can replace them with any chopped or sliced nut like almonds, pistachios, or walnuts.
- Milk – Feel free to use any plain milk you want for this recipe. I’ve tested with 2% milk and almond milk and both work well.
How to Make Peanut Butter Overnight Oats
In just 4 simple steps, you can throw together your overnight oats and be ready for the week. Here’s the basic method:
1 – Build the Base: In a 12- to 16-ounce Mason jar, pour in your favorite (unsweetened) milk. Add old-fashioned or rolled oats and your all-natural sweetener of choice (pure maple syrup or honey).
2 – Add Fruit: Bananas are the starring fruit in this version, which adds more sweetness, flavor, and nutrition. When adding bananas, you can add them ahead of time if you don’t mind them getting mushy. We prefer to add bananas right before serving, however.
3 – Add Toppings: Pour in the remaining add-ins. For this recipe, it’s peanut butter, ground flaxseed, mini chocolate chips, and chopped peanuts.
4 – Shake and Refrigerate: Seal and shake. Set in the refrigerator for up to 3-5 days.
Do I Eat Overnight Oats Warm or Cold?
We hear this question a lot. The best way to serve overnight oats is…whatever you like best! Eating them cold or warm works.
Serve Overnight Oats Cold: Shake the jar. Stir in a little extra milk if it’s too thick and more sweetener if you’d like. Grab a spoon and eat your oats cold. This is the perfect solution for those mornings when you’re on the run!
Serve Overnight Oats Warm: This is our preferred way to serve overnight oats. Shake the jar and then remove the lid. Warm the oats in the microwave for about 45 seconds. Stir. Add more milk or sweetener as needed. Warm up even more, if desired.
The best containers for overnight oats have a wide enough opening to eat out of, are microwave-safe (preferably glass not plastic), and have a leak-proof lid. My two favorite containers are either 12- to 16-ounce Mason jars with lids or 2-cup glass Pyrex bowls with lids. There are also dedicated overnight oats glass jars with spoons now! I haven’t tried them, but it’s a fun idea.
While rolled oats are the most commonly used oats for overnight oats because they soften more quickly, you can use steel cut oats. However, you’ll need to increase the soaking time and may want to use more liquid to ensure they soften adequately.
Yes, but the texture will be much mushier, almost porridge-like.
You certainly can, but just know that the texture after thawing will be very mushy oats and fruit.
A better bet might be to try one of our Baked Oatmeal recipes instead:
– Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Baked Oatmeal
– Peanut Butter and Banana Baked Oatmeal
– Baked Oatmeal with Fruit
– Brownie Baked Oatmeal
You can use various liquids like plain cow’s milk, almond milk, soy milk, or coconut milk, depending on your dietary preferences and taste.
If using rolled oats, they ideally need to sit at least 4 hours but are even softer and better after 6-8 hours in the fridge.
It’s best to eat overnight oats within about 3-5 days, especially if you added in fresh or frozen fruit. After that, the texture and quality of the oatmeal deteriorate.
Replace with almond butter, cashew butter, or sunbutter and almost any other finely chopped nuts you like. If you’re trying to avoid tree nuts, use shelled sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds.
Sure! Adding protein powder will increase the protein and calories. If using a sweetened protein powder, be sure to cut back on the sweetener in the overnight oats recipe. You may also need to add more liquid
More Overnight Oats Recipes
We are obsessed with overnight oats! Prep a few of these overnight oats ahead of time and enjoy healthy, hearty breakfasts throughout the week.
7 Overnight Oats Cheat Sheet
We’ll send you all 7 of our popular overnight oats recipes, so you can have them in one place. Download and print it for free!
Did you make this? Snap a photo and tag us on Instagram at @thrivinghome so we can see your creations and cheer you on!
- 1/2 cup milk, plus more for serving (your choice of milk)
- 1/3 cup old-fashioned rolled oats (sub: quick oats)
- 1/2–1 tablespoon maple syrup or honey
- 1 tablespoon peanut butter
- 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
- 2 tablespoons mini chocolate chips
- 1–2 tablespoons chopped peanuts
- 1/2 banana, sliced
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- In a 12- to 16-ounce Mason jar, pour in the milk.
- Add oats and your all-natural sweetener of choice (pure maple syrup or honey).
- Add in the remaining add-ins (except bananas), which are peanut butter, ground flaxseed, mini chocolate chips, and chopped peanuts.
- Screw on the lid tightly and shake. Set in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours and up to 3-5 days.
- When ready to eat, add your sliced bananas per the instructions below. Here’s how to serve when ready:
- Serve Cold: Shake the jar. Open and add in the bananas. Stir in a little extra milk if it’s too thick and more sweetener if you’d like. Grab a spoon and eat your oats cold. This is the perfect solution for those mornings when you’re on the run!
- Serve Warm: This is our preferred way to serve overnight oats. Shake the jar and then remove the lid. Warm the oats in the microwave for about 45 seconds. Stir. Add in the sliced bananas and more milk or sweetener, as needed. Warm up even more, if desired.
- If using rolled oats, they ideally need to sit in the fridge for at least 4 hours but are even softer and better after 6-8 hours in the fridge.
- It’s best to eat overnight oats within about 3-5 days, especially if you added in fresh or frozen fruit. After that, the texture and quality of the oatmeal deteriorate.
- You can use steel-cut oats in place of the rolled oats, but they will require longer in the fridge to get soft and may need more liquid.
- Feel free to add in some protein powder to your overnight oats to increase protein and calories. If using a sweetened protein powder, be sure to cut back on the sweetener in the overnight oats recipe. You may also need to add more liquid.
- Peanut butter/Peanuts Sub: Replace with almond butter, cashew butter, or sunbutter and almost any other finely chopped nuts you like. If you’re trying to avoid tree nuts, use shelled sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds.
- Gluten-Free Note: If you have a gluten allergy, be sure to buy certified gluten-free oats. While oats are a naturally gluten-free food, they are often processed in a factory where gluten is present.