If oatmeal is one of your go-to breakfast options and you want to know how to add protein, so you stay full longer, you’re in the right place.
In this post, I’m sharing 6 ways you can add protein to oatmeal to make it a more satiating and nutritious start to your day.
Oats are one of my favorite ingredients for their nutritional benefits and versatility. I eat them almost every day and cook them on the stove, in the microwave, or with the overnight oats method.
After learning about the hunger curbing benefits of combining protein and carbohydrates, I started to include different protein sources in my oatmeal; and I have to tell you that indeed, you do stay full longer.
One serving of oatmeal in the morning kept me from snacking and made oats really enjoyable; depending on which method you use to add protein, you can add flavor from your protein powder or even a creamier texture when adding yogurt.
Why Add Protein to Oatmeal
Adding protein to your morning oats is an efficient way to boost nutrition and create a hearty breakfast that will help you power through the morning.
We all know protein as the macronutrient needed to build muscle and maintain a healthy body weight, but it also does a little more.
Protein is very efficient in keeping us full for longer periods of time by reducing the level of ghrelin, our hunger hormone. It also reduces how quickly carbohydrates, such as oats are broken down into the bloodstream, translating into longer-lasting energy.
Now you know what I mean when I say that protein oats will keep you full and fueled.
What to Add to Oatmeal for More Protein
Below are 6 simple ingredients and supplements to add more protein to your favorite breakfast food.
Each of these options is for 1 serving of oatmeal. If you make oats on the stove-top for multiple people, adjust the amounts as needed.
1. Protein Powder
1 scoop = 15 to 20 grams protein
Protein powder is a beneficial and convenient way to pack your oatmeal with up to 25 grams of protein. Use whey, soy, or vegan protein but make sure it’s a flavor you enjoy, like vanilla, chocolate, or birthday cake.
When to add protein powder to oatmeal: Once the oatmeal is fully cooked, remove it from heat, and stir in the protein powder until the oats are thickened, and no clumps are left.
When to add protein powder to overnight oats:
Combine the protein powder and milk first, then add the oats and other ingredients.
2. Egg Whites
2 eggs whites = 7 grams protein
No worries, this option is completely safe. The egg whites cook right into the oatmeal and give them a fluffier texture without any defection in flavor.
*I recommend using egg whites for stove-top oatmeal only. Egg whites added to oatmeal made in the microwave are often not stirred well enough and end up with streaks of cooked white.
When to add egg whites to oatmeal:
Once the oatmeal is cooked, add the whisked egg whites, and stir for about 2 minutes. It’s important to stir, otherwise, you run into the risk of the egg white ‘scrambling’.
When to add egg whites to overnight oats:
Don’t do it. At this point, the egg whites would be raw.
3. Greek Yogurt
¼ cup = 5 grams protein
This will give oatmeal a rich and creamy texture and add a hint of tangy flavor. You can start with ¼ cup plain Greek yogurt per serving of oatmeal and add more if desired. Try to stick with plain Greek yogurt, which is high in protein and includes no added sugars or a no-sugar-added variety.
When to add Greek yogurt to oatmeal:
Once the oatmeal is cooked, stir in the Greek yogurt, and serve. You could also serve the yogurt on top.
When to add Greek yogurt to overnight oats:
I’ve got an overnight oat recipe with Greek yogurt that tastes amazing. Just stir the yogurt in with the rest of the ingredients, that’s it!
4. Nut Butter
2 tablespoons = 7 grams protein
This option is for my peanut butter and almond butter lovers! Not only does it add healthy fats, but it will certainly make your oats much thicker. You can also use a nut butter alternative. Most of them have at least 6 grams of protein per serving.
When to add nut butter: to oatmeal
Add up to 2 tablespoons of your favorite nut butter to cooked oats and stir to combine.
To add nut butter to overnight oats: Stir the nut butter into the milk until combined. Add the oats and remaining ingredients.
2 scoops = 18 grams protein
Collagen is a form of protein that helps improve skin and joint health. Powdered collagen made from grass-fed beef is flavorless and odorless, making it a great supplement to stir into your oats. I like using this one, it dissolves quickly and won’t give oatmeal a weird texture.
When to add collagen peptides to oatmeal:
After the oats are cooked, stir in the collagen until dissolved and the texture is thickened.
When to add collagen peptides to overnight oats:
Stir the collagen powder into the milk until combined. Add the oats and remaining ingredients. The overnight oats will be thick; add additional milk just before eating, if needed.
6. Hemp Hearts
2 tablespoons = 6 grams protein
This option is rich in healthy fats such as omega-6 and omega-3, and overall, flavorless. They have a soft, chewy texture that makes them suitable for topping and adding to recipes without altering the flavor.
When to add hemp hearts to oatmeal:
Add hemp hearts to the cooked oatmeal or sprinkle over the top of your bowl.
When to add hemp hearts to overnight oats:
Make the recipe as directed, adding the hemp hearts along with the oats.
Since you’ve made it this far, you must be serious about getting protein into your oats, and I’ve got the perfect recipe for you, these Protein Oats with protein powder AND Greek yogurt.
It’s also topped with strawberries and almond butter which rounds the protein count up to 27 grams, not to mention all of the incredible flavors going on!