Savory Overnight Oats | The Jewish Week | Food & Wine

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Savory Overnight Oats

Savory Overnight Oats

Savory Overnight Oats. Courtesy of Roost Books

Makes 3 or 4 or servings

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In the world of oats, the steel-cut variety, also known as “Irish oats,” is at the top of the “good-for-you” food chain. I’m crazy about them, but I’m not so fond of the fact that they take forever to cook. It’s the risotto of breakfast foods. And who has time for risotto at the crack of dawn? This overnight method cuts morning cooking time down dramatically and results in warm and creamy oats that will fuel you until lunchtime. Here, I do them up savory instead of sweet, with butter, salt, and black pepper instead of brown sugar or raisins. If you’ve never tried oats this way, do.

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2¼ cups water

1 cup milk

1 cup steel-cut oats

½ teaspoon kosher salt

1 or 1⅓ tablespoons butter

Freshly ground black pepper

Flaky such as Maldon or fleur de sel (optional)


1. The night before, pour the water and milk into a medium saucepan. Set over medium-high heat and bring it just barely to a boil. Watch the pot closely because it can quickly bubble over. Add the oats and salt, stir, and lower the heat. Gently simmer for 1 minute, stirring a few times. Remove from the heat, cover with a lid, and place in the refrigerator to chill overnight.

2. In the morning, return the pot to the stove over high heat. As soon as the oat mixture comes to a boil, lower the heat. Gently simmer, stirring occasionally, until the liquid is mostly absorbed and the oats are still a little chewy, 8 to 10 minutes. It may look rather soupy, but it will thicken as it cools.

3. Divide into serving bowls and top each one with a dab of butter and a few cracks of black pepper. Add a small pinch of flaky salt to each bowl, if desired.

Boost It: Top each bowl of oats with a fried egg just before serving. Alternatively (or in addition), add leftover warmed vegetables and shaved Parmesan. Sautéed mushrooms and leafy greens are particularly tasty.

Adapt It: If eating oats the savory way is too much of a stretch, no problem. Enjoy this how you normally might, with maple syrup or brown sugar. You may want to scale back the amount of salt to ¼ teaspoon.


Leftover oatmeal and other hot cereal keep well for several days in the fridge, so make a double batch. Simply reheat on the stove or in the microwave, adding milk or water as needed. Alternatively, chilled oatmeal, polenta, or grits can be cut into thick slabs and browned in an oil-slicked skillet. Top with a pinch of salt and a drizzle of olive oil or maple syrup. Delicious.

From Rise and Shine by Katie Sullivan Morford, © 2016 by Katie Sullivan Morford. Photographs © 2016 by Erin Scott. Reprinted by arrangement with Roost Books, an imprint of Shambhala Publications, Inc. Boulder, CO.