This overnight chia oatmeal recipe is based on two breakthroughs I’ve had recently: 1) that white chocolate is little more than a secret magical ingredient (I’ll get to that later) and milk and 2) that chia makes overnight oatmeal a million times creamier and better, and oatmeal makes chia pudding a million times heartier and more textured and that they shall henceforth live together in harmony and be called choatmeal. Yes, choatmeal. I’ve seeded it in urban high schools across the country and a few of the Kardashian’s cell phones, so keep an eye out for it to become the new cool word in 4 – 5 months or so. Choatmeal will be on fleek. If you don’t know what that means, your life is probably better for it.
So what’s the secret ingredient, you ask? It’s cacao butter, probably previously known to you as that ingredient in the lotion you slather on your dry elbows and hands during the cold winter months. Let’s learn about our new little friend, shall we?
Cacao butter is the pressed oil of the cacao bean (responsible for cacao nibs and cacao powder). To extract the cacao butter, you essentially press the nibs (which are broken up cacao beans), to separate the oil from the fiber. It’s used in almost all chocolate recipes, which are typically cacao butter, cacao or cocoa powder, and some kind of sweetener (or milk, if you’re making milk chocolate). Like cacao, which is long recognized as a superfood, cacao butter is rich in antioxidants, as well as oleic acid, which has been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease, and theombromine, which raises energy and alertness levels.
When I discovered that white chocolate is made from a simple mix of cacao butter, milk, some kind of sweetener and vanilla, and I knew I had to try to incorporate it’s silky sweet flavor in a recipe. Choatmeal (ah, it feels so natural) felt like an easy place to start, and guys – it worked out so much better than I even expected. This breakfast is sweet but not too sweet, rich, creamy. It tastes, seriously, exactly like white chocolate. Layered in with the juicy strawberries – it’s so divine, I can’t even tell you. It feels like cheating to call it breakfast.
- 1.5 cups milk of choice (I used a homemade blend of almond and cashew that worked beautifully)
- 2/3 cup rolled oats
- 2 tbsp chia seeds
- 3 Medjool dates, pitted and soaked in boiling water for 10 min, then drained
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Generous pinch sea salt
- 1 – 2″ cube cacao butter, about 3 tbsp melted (can be purchased in Whole Foods, most health food stores and on Amazon)
- 1/2 cup fresh raspberries
- In a small saucepan, melt cacao butter over low heat. Blend with milk, dates, vanilla and sea salt under very smooth, then mix with chia and oatmeal in a glass jar or container. Place in fridge overnight, stirring after 1 hour. In the morning, layer it with the raspberries and enjoy! Serves 1, although you can double or triple the recipe and grab them from the fridge throughout the week.