Cart Smarts: 10 reasons to try refrigerator oatmeal

I recently helped plan a menu for a healthy breakfast at a local business. When one of the members of the planning committee suggested we serve muesli, I got a little embarrassed because I had never tasted it. Since I work in the grocery store, I pride myself on trying new products as they hit the market. But, unfortunately, this is not something that had landed in my cart quite yet.

As I learned, muesli is a native Swiss breakfast cereal made of uncooked oats, nuts and fruit, typically soaked overnight with milk or yogurt. Once I read the definition, I realized I had seen several posts from friends on social media who were raving about a similar type of breakfast, calling it refrigerator oatmeal, yogurt oats or summer porridge.

That's it — I had to try it.

Here are 10 reasons why you should try it, too:

It's a new way to eat oatmeal.My husband Barret, our son Owen and I eat oatmeal almost every single day for breakfast. As much as I love a warm bowl of oatmeal this time of year, it's easy to get bored. This is a fun new way for us to eat oatmeal.


It's got a different texture.This recipe takes on the texture of yogurt, which is exciting for those of you who don't love the mushiness of traditional oatmeal.

It's served at a different temperature.The cold version will be a great option for the summer months when hot oatmeal is less appealing. I will definitely be keeping this recipe on hand for then.

It has hidden chia.If you have always wanted to incorporate chia seeds in your diet, this is a great way to do just that. To be honest, I didn't even notice they were in there, but they offer lots of health benefits from their omega-3 fatty acid content.

It helps with appetite control.Fiber and protein are the two nutrients that help you feel full longer. This recipe provides both.

It's a protein-packed breakfast.Greek yogurt has double the protein of regular yogurt plus there's extra protein coming from the skim milk, oats and chia. By my calculations, the recipe provides about 25 grams of protein.

It's grab-and-go.If you aren't a morning person, this is the perfect breakfast for you to take on the run.

No cooking required!For once, you can eat oatmeal without cooking it.

It's got a great nutritional profile.This recipe provides a good balance of fruit, dairy, whole grains and seeds. The only food group missing is vegetables!


And it's customizable.You can tweak the recipe to include whatever fresh or frozen fruit you have on hand. Or, add some extra protein with peanut butter and banana.

Have I convinced you to try this recipe? Then stop in the store on Friday between 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. to taste it.

Kaitlin Anderson is a registered dietitian at Hy-Vee North in Rochester. This information is not intended as medical advice. Please consult a medical professional for individual advice.

1/2 cup old fashioned oats

1/2 cup vanilla Greek yogurt

1/2 cup skim milk

1 tablespoon chia seeds


1/2 cup fresh or frozen fruit

Add oats, yogurt, milk and chia seeds to a pint-sized mason jar or 2-cup storage container with plastic lid. Stir ingredients together. Top with fruit. Cover and let stand in refrigerator overnight. Serve cold. Recipe inspired by The Yummy Life blog at

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