Sweet Potato Rosemary Overnight Chia Oatmeal (Gluten Free, Vegan, Refined Sugar Free)
I spend a lot of my life thinking about breakfast – some might say too much. It’s often the thing that finally pulls me from the comforts of my sheets and blankets and snuggly kitten in the morning. Without breakfast, there is a fair chance I’d be writing this very post from bed.
I expect a lot from my breakfasts. They have to be satiating, first and foremost; there’s little worse than a breakfast that leaves you ravenous by 11 am.
They need to be healthy; while I’m not completely sold on the idea of breakfast being the most important meal of the day, I do think it sets the tone for how I eat from there forward. If I start my day with maple syrup laden pancakes, the blood sugar spike and resulting crash often leaves me craving mac and cheese or bread-heavy sandwiches by lunch, and, come middle of the afternoon, I’ll find myself mindless munching chocolate covered almonds until my hand grazes the bottom of the empty container. If, on the other hand, I start with a green smoothie, my body begins to crave greens, and I end up having a salad for lunch, and maybe quinoa with mixed vegetables for dinner (followed by chocolate, because, well, that’s what real life looks like).
The final requirement for my breakfasts is about flavor: they have to be delicious, and, perhaps equally importantly, creative. I get bored with flavors quite quickly, and can’t stand the feeling that I’m eating the same thing day after day, week after week. In the same way that a healthy breakfast sets off a day of healthy eating, a delicious, interesting breakfast jumpstarts my palette. It gives me something to get excited about; it revs me up for a creative, stimulating day.
All of which is to say: I love this recipe. It’s packed with delicious healthy ingredients, from the fiber and protein rich chia seeds that soothe the intestinal lining, to the skin-loving, Vitamin A rich sweet potato, to the immune boosting rosemary. Because of all that fiber, protein and good fat, it’s incredibly filling; I ate this yesterday for breakfast and wasn’t hungry for lunch until 2 pm. And finally, that flavor! The silky sweetness of the sweet potato is grounded in the earthy, herby rosemary. It feels sophisticated, unexpected, and utterly delightful. Even if you’re skeptical – rosemary for breakfast?? – I insist you give it a shot at least once. The flavors meld perfectly, and it simply elevates the morning meal to another level. Plus, you can walk with a bit of a rebel swagger when you eat it. Yeah, there’s rosemary in your breakfast. What up.
Because overnight oats are, well, made overnight, remember to put this together the night before you want to eat it. It’s super easy and requires hardly any work, but that remembering is vital. I’ll usually make a big batch Sunday nights and eat throughout the week.
- 1 ⅓ cup oats
- 4 tbsp chia seeds
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 2 cups milk of choice (I used homemade coconut cashew)
- 4 stems of fresh rosemary (with all of the leaves still attached - leave them on)
- 1 medium sweet potato
- ⅛ tsp salt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, then place the sweet potato a top a piece of parchment paper or foil to catch any drips (I don’t even wash the sweet potato first, as I’ll be discarding the skin). Roast for 45 minutes to an hour, or until you can very easily squish the sweet potato with your hand, then remove from the oven and let cool completely before splitting open the top and scooping out the delicious orange interior. You'll need 1 cup for this recipe; eat or reserve the rest.
- While your sweet potato is roasting, bring your milk of choice just to boil; add the rosemary and cover, then let sit for 20 minutes. Remove rosemary sprigs and discard, then blend milk with 1 cup sweet potato, maple syrup, salt and vanilla until smooth and creamy. Mix with chia and oats until well distributed, then cover (I like to put it in two Mason Jars) and place in the fridge overnight. Serves 2, and will keep in the fridge for up to 4 days.