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Take your overnight oatmeal to a new level of nutrition and enjoyment with this recipe! Here we take great low carb ingredients — hemp seeds and chia seeds — and add a wonderful secret ingredient! Overnight, this Low Carb Oatmeal becomes gentler to digest and more nutritious! Enjoy this new Keto, Paleo, Primal, Vegan, GAPS and Whole30 breakfast or snack — healthy, fast and delicious.Jump to Recipe
Are hemp seeds healthy?
The best thing about hemp seeds is that they are low-lectin and have no phytic acid — so very low in anti-nutrients and easy to digest, while also being a source of easy protein and fat (hemp seeds are 33% protein).
Hemp seeds also provide fiber, Vitamin E, iron, magnesium and potassium.
Hemp seeds do contain polyunsaturated fats, so I wouldn’t eat them with complete abandon. But amidst a balanced diet, hemp is a seed that’s well suited to Low Carb, Keto, Paleo, Vegan, GAPS and Whole30 diets.
Are all low carb oatmeal recipes equally healthy?
No. 😉 If we eat seeds in their raw state, they’re actually dormant. While they provide good fiber, chia (and most other) seeds are also high in lectins, and most of their nutrition is inaccessible.
This hurtle is easily overcome by what is called pre-digestion, or a simple overnight fermentation. If fermentation sounds too technical, all we’re really talking about is: sour cream! (Or vegan yogurt!)
Real sour cream is a fermented food, full of beneficial probiotics that, when combined with other foods, help to make them more nutritious by breaking them down (reducing anti-nutrients in them that protect the seed but prevent absorption of their nutrition).
So … overnight oatmeal is only healthy if we add real sour cream (or vegan yogurt), a thriving source of probiotics, in the evening. By morning, the probiotics have done their good work, and we have a nutritious bowl of keto oatmeal.
This Low Carb Keto Overnight Hemp Oatmeal uses seeds, ground low carb raw nuts (or seeds if there’s a nut allergy), water, a little sweetener (omit for Whole30) and a nice dollop of sour cream (or vegan yogurt), all stirred together. If a recipe doesn’t use probiotics, then the oatmeal will not be as gentle or as nutritious.
The nice thing is: adding sour cream is easy, simple and makes the recipe yummier.
Many overnight oatmeal recipes call for the use of yogurt, almond milk or coconut milk, but unless it’s a probiotic almond or coconut yogurt and allowed time to ferment in a warm setting, the recipe is lacking in nutrition.
What is the vegan, non-dairy version of Low Carb Keto Overnight Hemp Oatmeal?
Can you use probiotic almond or coconut yogurt instead of sour cream?
Yes, absolutely. For a non-dairy, Vegan, Paleo, Whole30 version of this recipe, simply substitute real sour cream with your favorite probiotic almond or coconut yogurt!
What does probiotic overnight n’oatmeal taste like?
It tastes like yogurt and porridge and seeds (a little sour, a little sweet, a little rich and nutty)! I like it very much and find it to be a super satisfying snack or solid breakfast.
If you make the Paleo version of this recipe and use maple sugar (or coconut sugar), you might also taste a little zippy kick — similar to the tangy spritziness of kombucha. (That’s the sugar fermenting.)
What ingredients go into Low Carb Overnight Oatmeal?
Only 4 necessary ingredients go into Low Carb Overnight Oatmeal: hemp hearts, real sour cream, nut meal (I use ground pecans) and chia seeds + filtered water.
For the best bowl of porridge, here’s the full list of potential ingredients:
- hemp hearts — A source of protein, fat, minerals and fiber, these little seeds are gentle to digest and a good low carb staple. Hemp’s texture makes a great bowl of porridge.
- sour cream — High in beneficial probiotics and fat, just be sure to look for a real sour cream like Nancy’s brand or Green Valley Creamery (which is also lactose-free). Or sub Vegan probiotic yogurt for the sour cream. When we whisk the sour cream and water together, that base tastes great! — like a drinkable yogurt!
- chia seeds — High in Vitamin B6, K, copper, calcium, and trace minerals such as iron, magnesium, manganese, selenium and zinc, chia seeds gel when combined with liquid and make a nice, grain-free oatmeal.
- pecan meal — Or any nut or seed ground into a course flour. I put raw pecans into our coffee grinder. You could also use hazelnuts or macadamia nuts. This small amount of nut meal rounds out the keto hemp oatmeal, giving it just the right appearance, texture and flavor.
(See the kitchen snapshots below: it’s easy to grind up raw nuts for your oatmeal! Use a coffee grinder (here‘s the one I have and love, great for nuts, seeds, spices and herbs), small food processor or blender. The raw nuts ferment overnight, with the chia seeds, in the “yogurt” base and become more digestible and nutritious.) If you can’t eat nuts, choose another seed — such as sunflower or pine nuts.
- optional collagen — For an extra boost of protein (beneficial amino acids for tissue repair and gut health), collagen is an easy way to add more protein to breakfast.
- Sukrin Gold or stevia for Keto OR unrefined sweetener for Paleo/Vegan — Monk fruit would also work well here. For Paleo/Primal and Vegan, use your favorite granulated natural sweetener, such as maple sugar (lasts forever and is SO good) or coconut sugar. For GAPS, use honey.
- optional vanilla extract — For the best flavor.
- sea salt — Contributes necessary trace minerals and rounds out the flavor of oatmeal.
Why not add flax to keto oatmeal?
Some recipes for low carb oatmeal use flax seed.
I purposely exclude flax because of its phytoestrogens — plant compounds which mimic estrogen in the body. The presence of phytoestrogens in the body can unknowingly wreak havoc, making women’s cycles longer and heavier, causing mid-cycle bleeding and affecting mental health. Flax is notorious for causing symptoms in women.
For a recipe I plan to eat regularly, I exclude flax.
Do you refrigerate the keto oatmeal overnight?
No. Fermentation of the chia seeds and nut meal happens in a warm environment. Leave your keto oatmeal out on the counter at room temperature.
The beneficial microorganisms in sour cream need warmth to wake up and begin their action.
In the winter, seeds are dormant. Similarly, the cold refrigerator tells the probiotics and seeds to sleep. Think springtime and summer! The warmer temperature in your kitchen tells both the probiotics and the seeds to wake up and multiply or germinate.
You can also place your bowl or jars of hemp-chia oatmeal on a warming mat or nestled over your Instant Pot on the Yogurt setting. This gentle extra-warm setting will increase the fermentation action even more.
Does Low Carb Overnight Oatmeal have probiotics?
Yes! Your entire bowl of hemp-chia oatmeal will be brimming with probiotics! — like a rich bowl of Greek yogurt.
The probiotic count will continue to increase for up to 24 hours, especially if you use a warm environment (versus a cold kitchen).
If you’re concerned about anti-nutrients such as lectins or have more sensitive digestion, you can choose to ferment for the longer period of time to make your “noatmeal” gentler and extra-nutritious.
Can I make extra of this recipe ahead of time?
Yes, you can definitely make multiple servings of this recipe. Simply double, triple or quadruple this recipe (etc). (Measure each duplicate ingredient into a separate bowl or jar.)
If you love probiotic foods and want to put a bunch in your fridge ahead of time, simply make a big batch, leave all the jars or bowls on the counter to ferment overnight, or up to 24 hours. Then place them in the fridge until you intend to eat them.
How long does probiotic hemp-chia oatmeal last in the fridge?
Low Carb Oatmeal lasts 5 days in the fridge, or longer, but that’s as long as I’ve let ours go. Because probiotic grain-free oatmeal is a fermented food, it is somewhat preserved and will likely last a week or longer.
I love to make this recipe in shallow mason jars with lids, for easy storage and on-the-go convenience.
What keto oatmeal variations are good?
Here are some delicious add-ins:
- nut butter or seed butter: add 1 tablespoon per serving
- fresh berries or runny jam
- cream or macadamia nut milk
- roasted hazelnuts, walnuts or pecans
- chocolate chips
- broken up pieces of crispy bacon or fried pork sausage (I love combining sweet and savory for breakfast.)
Before the overnight soaking:
After the overnight soaking:
Low Carb Keto Overnight Hemp Oatmeal (Paleo, Primal, Vegan, GAPS)
- bowl, whisk and spoon
- ⅓ cup water
- ⅓ cup hemp hearts
- 2 Tablespoons pecan meal or other raw nut meal
- 1 Tablespoon + 2 teaspoons chia seeds
- 1 Tablespoon sour cream (probiotic, real sour cream with living cultures, such as Nancy's brand or Green Valley Creamery); use unsweetened coconut or almond yogurt for Vegan, dairy-free, Paleo and Whole30
- 1 Tablespoon collagen optional
- 1 Tablespoon Sukrin Gold or 2 drops liquid stevia for Keto; use maple sugar or coconut sugar for Paleo/Vegan; use honey for GAPS; omit sweetener for Whole30 and use chopped diced dates when serving
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- In a measuring cup with pour spout, whisk together water and sour cream (or vegan yogurt) until cream mixes into water smoothly (it will look like milk). Place all dry ingredients into a bowl OR a 1 cup or larger jar. Add sour cream mixture and whisk until well-mixed. Cover loosely (if using a jar, do not seal or screw lid on tightly).
- Leave out at room temperature overnight. (Do not refrigerate. The room temperature ensures better nutrition from the chia seeds and nut meal, as the probiotics in the cultured sour cream "pre-digest" the chia seeds and nut meal, making them gentler and more nutritious.)
- In the morning, eat as-is. Optional: top with berries and chopped nuts. Or serve with warm milk and other suggested toppings.
Why not full fat yogurt? Most of the lactose gets turned into lactic acid?
Hi Anita, you can use yogurt if you prefer, but the dilution with water makes a less creamy outcome. So you may prefer to use half yogurt, half water for the overall amount of both. For Keto, Low Carb and VAD, yogurt isn’t an option, which is (the other part of) why the original recipe is cultured with probiotic sour cream. Thanks for the question. 🙂
Emily Jenkins says
This looks amazing! We have conflicting allergies in our house and this all works for us except for the yogurt/sour cream. Is there anything else that would provide the same culturing properties? Water kefir? I know it wouldn’t be as creamy as the other options but we have dairy, coconut and almond allergies at our house.
Hi Emily, yes! I’m all for it! You could also make your own yogurt with any seed or nut you can have, but water kefir is gentler. Here’s a cashew yogurt recipe to use as a template with another seed or nut if you’d like the creamier option. 🙂 My other new favorite it to make homemade chestnut milk. If that at all appeals to you, chestnuts are gentler than other seeds and nuts. You could use the creamy chestnut milk in place of water, then use 1 Tablespoon of water kefir to culture it. I’ll publish the chestnut milk soon, but it’s intuitive. Thanks for the great question, and I hope you all enjoy it and find the right version for your family’s needs. 🙂
Was wondering if raw sheep kefir would be fine to use for this recipe.
Yes, raw sheep kefir sounds amazing!! (YUM!) It will work great here. 🙂
I like this idea and have been needing options for an easy breakfast. We’ve been eating dairy lately, but it probably isn’t helping the ol’ gut and I’d like to transition back off of it soon; so please do give us the cashew milk recipe. ?Raw cashews are almost totally unavailable in the local stores.
Kathy Robertson says
I disagree with your calling it oatmeal when it has no oats in it. I was going to say hot cereal, but then I bethought myself of the meaning of the word cereal. You should call it hot mash, since the word cereal, by definition, is “A cereal is any grass cultivated for the edible components of its grain, composed of the endosperm, germ, and bran. The term may also refer to the resulting grain itself.”
It’s like I ran across someone who made something she called “corn bread” and it didn’t have a molecule of corn in it.
Hi Kathy, thanks for sharing your observation. In the keto/low carb and paleo worlds, there’s a n’oatmeal concept. So when the term Keto Oatmeal is used, that it’s grain-free is understood, or discovered upon seeing the recipe. 🙂
I’d love to try this! Is there a difference between hemp hearts and hemp seeds?
Great Deborah! Nope, they’re the same thing. 🙂
I had this for breakfast this morning and it was delicious and very filling. I just found out I have sensitivity to dairy, eggs, almonds and gluten. I needed to find something to replace my daily egg breakfast. I appreciate your books also. Looking forward to finding recipes I can have.
Hi Krin, I’m so happy this recipe works well for you! Thanks so much for sharing and coming back to comment! 🙂
Don’t lie to us. This is not an oatmeal recipe. Find another name for it.
Would it work to substitute Greek Yogurt in this recipe?
Hi Michelle, yes, Greek yogurt will work great. 🙂
Michelle Wilber says
This was so good! I added some heavy cream and blueberries and it made for a very filling breakfast.
That sounds delicious, Michelle! Thanks for sharing what you did, and I’m so happy you loved the n’oatmeal!
Thanks I’ll definitely try it!
So I am trying to convert this to a backpacking meal for hiking. Do you think if I used dehydrated coconut milk and a probiotic capsule (instead of sour cream/yogurt) and then just added water (when eating the next morning) that this would turn out ok? I’d have everything pre-measured into a silicone bag.
Hi Mikki, yes, I love that idea! Very cool. The only considerations are 1) to be sure your probiotic is live and can inoculate a ferment and 2) to keep the ferment warm, if possible … so consider using warm water and a loosely sealed small thermos or some other means of maintaining a warm, steady environment overnight. (You would add the water in the evening.)
Would this reduce the oxalates in the chia?
Hi Ann, yes! Good question. 🙂
Julie Hopkins says
I made this and liked it but it tastes a little tinny/metallic-y. I added salt in the morning — but can you add salt when you are making it the night before or might that interfere with the fermentation? Thanks for your response!
Hi Julie, interesting about the metallic taste. I wonder if that was from the hemp or ? You can indeed add sea salt the night before, and it will not impede fermentation. I like to add sea salt to mine too! 🙂 I’m glad you liked the recipe overall.
Because sour cream doesn’t work for my diet and coconut yogurt gets eaten faster than I can make it, I make my overnight porridge using probiotic capsules. I’ve found Amazon’s brand Solimo Probiotic 35 Billion CFU works very well and is inexpensive. For a big family-sized bowl, I use 2 capsules. Megan, I often have a bowl culturing on my counter. Thanks for this wonderful recipe! p.s. I’ve been including tiger nut flour and/or sliced tiger nuts in my porridge and it is sweet enough that I don’t need any additional sweetener.
Hi Jan, yay!, great idea, love that alternative you came up with, and thanks for sharing the brand of probiotic. I also love the inclusion of the tiger nut and not needing any sweetener. Thanks for sharing what you do, and so happy you’re enjoying the porridge! 🙂
I just made this overnight & it’s amazing! I was just curious how long this keeps (I made a double batch of the recipe)? I’m guessing it it stored in the fridge?
Who knew that letting sour cream (the one I bought was store/home brand) sit on a bench overnight with some seeds & maple syrup could produce something so nice!
Yay, that’s awesome, Allison, so glad you loved the recipe! The Oatmeal will keep in the fridge for a while because of the probiotics, but will taste the best for the first 3 days. Yes, store in the fridge in a sealed container.
Can I substitute basil seeds for the chia? Chia is high in lectins.
Yes, definitely. Here’s a post on them so you can see a few differences, but overall, it works great. https://eatbeautiful.net/what-are-basil-seeds-how-to-eat-them/