Key Lime Cheesecake Overnight Oats Recipe

oats with crumbs and lime
oats with crumbs and lime - Feta Topalu/Mashed

Oatmeal is a healthy way to start your day, but taking the time to make it in the morning may be a hassle, and eating a warm bowlful of the stuff is not easily done while you're on the go. Overnight oats are a much more convenient option since, as developer Feta Topalu points out, much of the prep work can be done ahead of time and the dish requires no cooking at all. Topalu says, "I love prepping them and taking them with me on busy mornings when I don't have time to make pancakes or bacon and eggs."

Overnight oats on their own can be plain, but Topalu's recipe for key lime cheesecake–flavored ones is anything but ordinary. "I love that these overnight oats do not lack flavor," she says. "The lime zest brings on a bold and vibrant punch." On top of this, the cream cheese and graham cracker crumbs help make it feel like you're eating one of your favorite desserts. However, with sugar alternatives — vanilla extract and maple syrup — and the healthful additions of Greek yogurt and chia seeds, "You get the best of key lime pie and cheesecake flavors, and they're packaged in a nutritious breakfast," Topalu says.

Read more: How To Get More Flavor From Your Coffee Pods & Other Keurig Hacks

Collect The Ingredients For The Key Lime Overnight Oats

oats milk and other ingredients
oats milk and other ingredients - Feta Topalu/Mashed

The base of this recipe comprises rolled oats mixed with almond milk, plain Greek yogurt, cream cheese, and chia seeds, while lime zest, maple syrup, vanilla extract, and salt are used for flavoring. Once the oats have set, they're finished off with a sprinkling of graham cracker crumbs.

Step 1: Combine All Of The Ingredients Except The Graham Cracker Crumbs

oats and milk in bowl
oats and milk in bowl - Feta Topalu/Mashed

Add the rolled oats, almond milk, yogurt, cream cheese, chia seeds, lime zest, maple syrup, vanilla extract, and salt into an airtight container or a jar with a lid.

Step 2: Stir The Mixture

oats and milk in bowl
oats and milk in bowl - Feta Topalu/Mashed

Stir together until well combined.

Step 3: Chill The Overnight Oats

overnight oats in lidded container
overnight oats in lidded container - Feta Topalu/Mashed

Place the lid on and refrigerate overnight.

Step 4: Garnish The Overnight Oats

oats with crumbs and lime
oats with crumbs and lime - Feta Topalu/Mashed

The next morning, top with crumbled graham cracker and additional lime zest.

Key Lime Cheesecake Overnight Oats Recipe

oats with crumbs and lime
oats with crumbs and lime - Feta Topalu/Mashed

How Can You Change Up These Key Lime Overnight Oats?

oats with crumbs and lime
oats with crumbs and lime - Feta Topalu/Mashed

There are many ways you can tweak this recipe, starting with the choice of milk. While Topalu likes to use almond milk, you could opt for another plant-based alternative, such as soy milk, hemp milk, or coconut milk, with the last one providing a hint of tropical flavor that would complement the key lime cheesecake profile. Dairy milk is also an option since the recipe is not a vegan one, but if you want to go entirely dairy-free, you could swap out the yogurt and cream cheese for plant-based versions. As for the sweetener, honey or agave would work as well as maple syrup, or you could opt for a calorie-free one, such as stevia. If you want to make the oats even more nutritious, stir in a scoop of protein powder.

You can also change up the taste of these oats with a few additions to the recipe. Topalu suggests "a pinch of cinnamon or nutmeg spice for a warm undertone," as well as white chocolate chips for extra sweetness. When it comes to topping the oats, that's where you can really have some fun. Coconut flakes or chopped nuts would add some crunchy texture, while fruits like blueberries, kiwis, or strawberries would complement the cheesecake flavor.

What Are Some Tips For Making, Storing, And Meal-Prepping Overnight Oats?

hand with spoon and bowl
hand with spoon and bowl - Feta Topalu/Mashed

One common mistake that everyone makes with overnight oats is choosing the wrong type of oats, but this won't be a problem if you follow Topalu's advice: "I use old-fashioned rolled oats for the best texture," she says. "I recommend avoiding instant oats, as they can become too mushy, and steel-cut oats don't soften up without cooking."

As for storing the oats, Topalu advises using airtight containers and suggests mason jars as a cute option for presentation. She says that the oats can last up to five days in the refrigerator and adds a super-useful tip: "I like to label the jars with contents and date to keep track of freshness," she says. Once you take the oats out of the fridge, you can always stir in a little milk if you find they've become too thick for your liking. You can also heat them up in the microwave or a pot on the stove if you prefer warm oats to cold ones.

Read the original article on Mashed.