Radiant Recipes: Overnight Chai Steel-Cut Oats!

:the best overnight oats – dressed up with some walnuts + vegan chocolate chips!:

 

I can’t believe it has been so long since I posted a recipe! Sorry y’all, things have been busy and honestly, with all the detoxes + other food-related issues around here, recipes haven’t been at the front of my mind.

But enough excuses, onto something fun!

First, a story: I had never even heard of oatmeal before moving to Chicago and upon seeing it for the first time, I declared it the most revolting thing and swore never to eat it (although jowar porridge is a millet dish I grew up with that is somewhat similar now that I think about it). Fast-forward ten years to a brunch date with my husband at the adorable + delicious Milk and Honey cafe in Chicago. After much argument, I finally caved and agreed to having one tiny bite of oatmeal to prove that I had been right all of these years.

You can imagine what happens next.

Oh my, the oatmeal! It wasn’t slimy + mushy as I had feared, but instead was warm, hearty + comforting! It had been cooked with dried cherries and raisins and smelled of cinnamon! I was completely shocked that I had been missing out on something so easy to make. I made a vow then and there that I would welcome oatmeal into my life.

These days, I cook oatmeal every weekend when my husband and I have the mornings together. We take the extra time to make steel-cut oats because they are healthier for you than rolled oats (although I love making oatmeal bakes, cookies + smoothies with the rolled kind). Steel-cut oats are from the whole oat kernel, whereas rolled oats have the outer shell removed (which is where most of the fiber is!) and are more processed than their steel-cut counterparts.

The main issue with steel-cut oatmeal is how long it takes to cook. On our mornings off, spending half an hour preparing oatmeal, letting the breeze flow through the kitchen window and listening to some folk-y tunes is a lovely way to start the day. During the week when we are rushing to work and/or school, however, it is just too much of a bother.

So what can a steel-cut oat fan do? Bring out the overnight oats approach! Overnight oats hit the blogging world a few years ago and showed us how easy it was to “set + forget” rolled oats until the morning. Angela from Oh She Glows has posted some great vegan overnight oats (or “VOO”) resources including recipes for 12 VOO parfaits!

I have used a similar approach for this recipe, swapping rolled oats for the nutrient-packed steel-cut babies…and made it like a cup of chai tea!

OVERNIGHT CHAI STEEL-CUT OATS

(Vegan, Gluten-free, Soy-free, Nut-free)

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup steel-cut oats
  • 1 cup hemp milk (or any non-dairy milk that you prefer)
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger or 1 tablespoon crystallized ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • optional: a pinch of nutmeg, a pinch of black pepper and/or 1 tablespoon of natural sweetener

INSTRUCTIONS:

  • In a jar (such as a mason jar), combine all ingredients.
  • Stir to combine, secure lid and refrigerate overnight
  • In the morning, stir once more and enjoy!

You can also add a number of toppings right before eating, such as nut butter, dried coconut or (my favorite) chopped pistachios!

 

NOTE: As a (future) Ayurvedic Practioner, I have to remind my readers that cold food is strongly discouraged in Ayurveda. Not only do these oats get stored in the fridge, but they aren’t heated up before eating! In Ayurveda, food needs to be cooked to release certain healing properties for nourishing the body (which definitely goes against the raw food trend!) I love my green smoothies + breakfasts such as this one but I just needed to get that out there :)