Overnight oats are a terrific make-ahead breakfast which is probably why you’re wondering how long they last in the fridge.
Or maybe, you’ve made a batch, and after a few days… something was “off” about them. Learn how long they last with fruit, with yogurt, and make your batch last longer.
How Long Do Overnight Oats Stay Good in the Fridge
Oats and water alone will last quite a while in the fridge. A quick search result will say “up to 5 days,” but the truth is that how long they stay good for in the fridge will depend on the ingredients added to the overnight oats recipe.
A quick overview:
Overnight oat recipes with berries will stay good for about 2 days. After that, the berries tend to get mushy and taste different.
Overnight oat recipes without berries will stay good for up to 4 days. After that, the texture of the oat mixture will change.
Overnight oat recipes using old-fashioned oats will hold their texture much better than recipes using quick oats, which can begin to feel more like mush after the 2nd day.
Do Overnight Oats Spoil?
Overnight oats will begin to deteriorate after the 2nd or 3rd day in the fridge, mostly due to the other ingredients added to the batch; and, they usually lose their texture and go bad after the fourth day.
Make sure that you’re storing them in an airtight container in the fridge.
How to Know if Overnight Oats are Still Good?
While overnight oats can last up to 5 days in the fridge, there are some telltale signs that they’re no longer good and should be tossed.
- Smell: the mixture in the jar should not have an acidic, sour, or weird smell. If it does, don’t eat them.
- Mold: any mold on the fruit or foam-like coating on top means bacteria growth, and your oats should be tossed immediately.
- Change in color: any changes in the color of the oat mixture, which is typically a beige-like color, other than discoloration from your add-ins (like purplish color from blueberries) can mean that the oatmeal has gone bad.
- Change in texture: after 2 days, the fruit in the overnight oats begins to change in texture -especially berries- so make sure to check. The oat mixture itself can change into a mush-like texture after 4 or 5 days.
- Change in taste: if the oats or fruit no longer taste as they should, the berries taste acidic, that’s another sign that the oats might no longer be good.
Steel Cut vs Old-Fashioned
Whether you use steel-cut oats or old-fashioned oats to make your overnight oats recipe, the same “rule of thumb” applies to how long they last in the fridge, which is about 5 days, or shorter if you added berries to the mixture.
How Long Do Overnight Oats Last with Fruit?
While we know that plain overnight oats can last up to 5 days, adding in fruit shortens that timespan to 2-3 days. This is especially true with berries which tend to deteriorate faster and change the way the overnight oats taste entirely.
How Long Do They Last With Yogurt?
Making overnight oats with yogurt is a great way to give them a creamier texture and add protein. With yogurt, they’ll last up to 5 days; but if you add fruit, they’ll need to be eaten within 2 or 3 days.
How to Make Overnight Oats Last Longer
The easiest way to make your overnight oats stay fresh longer is to not add any fruit to the mixture. Add any fruit or toppings once you’re ready to eat the oats.
By storing plain overnight oats in the fridge and then adding the fresh fruit directly to the jar or bowl, you can extend the lifespan to 5 days without issue.
Best Overnight Oats Recipes
When it comes to enjoying overnight oats, there are many recipes you can try. Below are some of my favorites that I think you’ll enjoy as well.
- Strawberry Overnight Oats
- Apple Pie Overnight Oats
- Peaches and Cream Overnight Oats
- Bananas Foster Overnight Oats
- Easy Overnight Oats with Yogurt
- Banana Overnight Oats Recipe
- Overnight Crockpot Oatmeal with Apples & Cinnamon