Mornings are horrible at our house. I have always been a relatively early-riser, so throughout our marriage it's fallen on me to be the one to get up in the morning and get things ready for the day. (Jason holds up his end of the bargain after I go to sleep at night, since he's a night owl.) But with a toddler and a baby to deal with, there was no way I could get two kids up and ready, make a toddler breakfast, make adult breakfasts, and get myself showered and dressed before Jason has to head out the door. Guess what often goes by the wayside?
I know some people solve this problem by skipping breakfast or having a quick piece of toast, but that doesn't fly here. I need to have a seriously protein-packed meal when I first get up or I won't make it through the rest of the day - and Jason gets massive headaches without a hearty breakfast to get him going. We had relied on oatmeal (the real stuff - instant isn't as healthy or filling) as our go-to staple for as long as I can remember, but there's no time to make it. And muffins or breakfast cookies take a fair amount of prep that I don't have time for, either.
And then I discovered this.
I've had Swiss Oatmeal, or refrigerator oatmeal as it's sometimes called, at The Corner Bakery and on our cruise to Alaska a few years ago, but it never occurred to me to try it on my own until my brother and his wife recommended it. I searched for recipes online, tweaked some, and came up with one that works for us. Note: it's double the serving size that I usually found on Pinterest, so consider your own appetite and protein needs when making this for yourself.
1 pint-sized mason jar (wide-mouth works best for getting ingredients in)
1/2 cup regular uncooked oats (not instant or steel-cut)
2/3 cup milk
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 tbsp chopped walnuts
sweetener (honey, agave, brown sugar, etc.) to taste
1/4 cup frozen berries
Dump them all in the jar. Put on the lid. Shake vigorously. Let it sit in your fridge overnight. In the morning, open, stir, and eat. Depending on the brand of yogurt you use, this can have anywhere from 15-25 grams of protein per jar. (Again, "normal" people might just want a half-sized version of this recipe. But we're hungry hungry hippos over here.)
Now, as soon as we get Lorelei off to bed, I whip up this recipe in less than 5 minutes and the stress of the next morning is instantly abated. An added bonus is that this oatmeal can keep for an extra day in the fridge - so I make enough for two days at once and only have to worry about breakfast 3 times a week now. It's the little things!