Jumping on the Overnight Oats Bandwagon

Today I ate my first batch of overnight oats. Except I replaced the oats with barley. It was pretty good. I think I’ll try this more often.

I’ve been researching oats for a few weeks now. Ever since I discovered I can make my own granola, I’ve been meaning to make some more. But I needed more oats first. The problem is oats aren’t super easy to access. At least rolled oats aren’t. I can easily get whole oats, at my local market, but quaker oats require a trek to a specialty store on the other side of town and are a bit more pricey.

I was researching if I could make things like oatmeal and oatmeal cookies with whole oats- but it seemed like a lot more work. That’s when I took a closer look at the bag in the supermarket that looked suspiciously like rolled oats, but was actually rolled barley. Turns out rolled barley can be used as a rolled oats replacement in a lot of baked goods. And granola. And it was even cheaper than the whole oats. So I bought a bag this week, but it’s been sitting on my counter, waiting to be opened.

In yoga this week, B told me about how he uses barley in his overnight oats. “Every sunday I make 4 jars for the week. Barley needs a little more time to soak than oats, so I don’t eat the first jar until Tuesday. The Friday jar is always the best,” he says.

I’d had several friends who were avid fans of the overnight oats phenomenon, but this was the first time I had heard I could use barley as a substitute. I decided to try it out that night with my fresh bag of barley. That was Sunday. It’s had two days to sit and it turned out quite well. I’m excited to experiment with how a longer sit affects the flavor.  I also added a handful of pumpkin seeds, dried cranberries, and apple slices to mine. The variations of additions are endless.

How To Make Overnight Barley

  1. Add a scoop of barley to a jar.
  2. Pour in almond or soy milk to cover the barley by a few centimeters.
  3. Add cinnamon, nutmeg, or other flavors.
  4. Close the lid and let it sit in the fridge for at least 2 nights.
  5. When you are ready to eat, smash up a banana (for sweetener) and mix it in.
  6. Add any other fresh fruit, nuts, or seeds on top for more flavor.
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