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Chocolate Chai Tea Oatmeal

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I made the mistake of walking outside yesterday.

Chocolate Breakfast Oatmeal

And then immediately turned right back around.

washington dc weather


Just… no.

Chocolate Chai Oatmeal

I love how they feel the need to write “very cold” under the temperature. As if seeing –12 didn’t already make that abundantly clear.

There’s something about abysmally-cold weather that screams comfort food. And this healthy breakfast recipe, which combines spicy chai tea, dark chocolate, and creamy oatmeal is pure comfort food in a bowl. Feel free to triple up on the chocolate by adding chocolate chips and Healthy Chocolate Sauce.

Chocolate Breakfast Oatmeal

Chocolate Chai Oatmeal

(serves 1)

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats (40g)
  • 1 cup water or milk of choice (240g)
  • 1/2 cup milk of choice (120g)
  • 2 chai tea bags (decaf or regular)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cocoa powder (4g)
  • sweetener of choice, to taste
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract (2g)
  • 1/2 tbsp melted coconut oil or peanut butter (optional, but much richer if added)
  • mini chocolate chips, optional

If using the microwave: heat the water and milk, then add the teabags and let sit for no less than 15 minutes. Right before removing the teabags, smush the tea bags a little with a fork so more of the flavor goes into the milk. Combine the liquid with the oats and salt, then microwave 3 minutes. (If it starts to boil over, you may stop the microwave and keep heating in ten-second increments until the time is up. But don’t open the microwave door.) Let oatmeal sit in the closed microwave 5 minutes, then transfer–uncovered—to the refrigerator. It gets thicker as it sits, but if you want to eat it immediately simply use a little less water and cook longer. Right before eating, add all remaining ingredients and stir well.

If you wish to use the stovetop: after soaking the tea bags in warm liquid, simply heat the oats, salt, and tea soaking liquid until oatmeal is thick and fluffy. Then stir in all remaining ingredients.

Click for: Oatmeal Nutrition Facts

Chocolate Chai Oatmeal

Question of the Day:

Was it freezing cold yesterday for you too?

Apparently every single state—even Hawaii!—dipped below freezing at some point during the day. However, maybe I shouldn’t complain about our weather here in Washington… To people in Minnesota and Chicago, it probably sounds like a tropical vacation.

zucchini fries
……..Crispy Zucchini Fries

Katie is the baker, photographer, and author of the popular blog Chocolate-Covered Katie. Her favorite food is chocolate, and she believes in eating a balanced diet that includes dessert every single day. More about Katie—> 

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  1. becauseHeloves! says:

    Yum! I might have to make that tomorrow. I think it was -1 where my mom was yesterday, and wind chill made it feel like -20! So ridiculous

  2. This looks great Katie! I have come across a few recipes for chai bread and porridges recently, I might try my hand on this in the near future! 😀

    Wishing you all the best for 2014 :)
    x J

  3. Amanda says:

    Hi – I noticed the same thing in the sugar cookie oatmeal recipe – what is the theory/reason behind not opening the microwave door? Thanks!

    1. D says:

      I’ve never tried it, but I believe that opening the microwave door immediately after cooking the oats could cause a small explosion? I could be wrong though.

    2. EVA says:

      It’s the same with making a baked potato. You keep the microwave door closed and it traps the heat. So, using the baked potato as an example, if you don’t open the door after it’s finished heating up, the heat from the cooking is trapped and keeps the potato warm and moistens it.

      For oatmeal, if you keep the door closed, it’ll absorb the liquid more and puff up, allowing all the contents to soak in. No explosions! If you see an explosion, you probably just microwaved it for too long and it happen during the heating process. Been dere done dat.

    3. Amanda says:

      Follow up : I’m eating this now for lunch and it is delicious! I made it exactly as stated, including the 1/2 tbsp of coconut oil. Yum!!!

    4. Juli Smith says:

      Skip the microwave! Microwaves, though convenient, ruin the quality of our food. I once read about a science fair experiment that used different types of water to see if there were any different effects on plant growth (bottled, tap, cooled microwaved waters, for example.) The plant that received the microwaved water sort of grew, but it looked so sickly and failed to thrive! And that is just water! I can only imagine what microwaving does to the rest of our food. My family of 6 is moving slowly away from microwave use. Honestly, it really isn’t taking much longer to cook and re-heat in the oven or on the stove top – it’s more a new habit to develop and get used to. :)

      1. Marquess says:

        I really appreciate your dedication to eating healthily Juli, but microwaves are (when used responsibly!) one of the healthiest ways to cook food. It heats food evenly, and so doesn’t expose any part of the meal to high, protein-denaturing temperatures.

        Happy cooking!

  4. I love the idea of adding tea to flavor oatmeal, I tried an overnight oats recipe a couple years ago with chai tea, guess I should do it again!

  5. D says:

    Another oatmeal recipe! Thank you! Thank you! THANK YOU!

  6. Yum! This looks super good.
    It was definitely cold for us yesterday. -12 with a windchilll of -28. Brrr!

  7. EVA says:

    YES I was going to make the reliable banana oatmeal tonight, but thank god the timing was just right and you posted a new oatmeal flavor. I don’t like tea, but I’m sure the chocolate drowns it out enough to where it’ll barely phase me.

    As for the temps, I live in Kenosha, Wisconsin (45 minutes north of Chicago), and with windchill, it’s been -42 degrees for two days straight now. AND THAT DIDN’T EVEN BREAK A TEMPERATURE RECORD! Good ol’ upper Midwest.

    1. Sophie Bolich says:

      Honestly!! School in my state of Wisconsin was cancelled for two days because the temp hit -45. Nice and chilly here in the Midwest! P.s. I almost yelled put loud when I saw this post because chocolate and chai are my absolute favorite ever I the world flavors. I couldn’t be happier right now!

  8. Kathy says:

    The temperature was Minus 11 when I left for work yesterday in Central PA. When I left work to come home in the afternoon, it was a high of ZERO!! Way too cold for any normal human to be out!!! Can’t wait to try the oatmeal recipe. Everything tastes better with chocolate added!!

  9. Cindy says:

    I’ve never tried chai tea (nor do I have teabags for that), but I do have decaf green tea individual bags, and rooibos individual tea bags. Would one of those work ok? Does the chai flavor come out really strong in this? I’m not a strong-tea flavor sort of gal… Or maybe I could just leave that out entirely?

    1. chocolate covered katie says:

      You can definitely use rooibos tea bags instead :).

  10. Hollie says:

    I agree about wanting comfort food in this cold weather. That is seriously is all I want right now. -12 is about what we had with wind chill yesterday. The coldest I’ve ever witnessed was -30 when I was in college in Upstate, NY. I was visiting Lake Placid with my parents and I have truly never been that cold ever.

  11. Marguerite says:

    I am going to make this recipe this morning. Sounds Soooooo good. Compared to you guys it is tropical out west- 48 degrees right now. But we need rain. Please do a rain dance for us.

  12. We had wind chills of -40 the other day. Needless to say, I stayed inside like you! Moving to a colder climate, did you have to buy a bunch of new clothes? Sounds like a great excuse for a shopping trip to me 😉

    1. chocolate covered katie says:

      It’s actually not much different here than in Texas. Dallas does get cold in the winter, so sadly no excuse for a new wardrobe ;).

      1. Ayaka says:

        Hahaha. That is being very good! I would make any excuse to buy new clothing 😉

  13. Pamela says:

    It was 7 but “feels like 4” … the really motivated runners in the office still ran. Perhaps the free gloves and hat were great motivators but, I only had capri pants to run in so… no. I ran in 30 degree weather last week. It was nice after 5 minutes and for the following 15. Then my skin began to feel like burning. Oatmeal wins!

  14. Allison says:

    Oooh, this looks delicious! I’m definitely going to have to try this. In the Detroit-ish area, it got down to -35° with the windchill. Way too cold.

  15. Karen w says:

    You are very right that positive 6 sounds like tropical vacation to those of us in Chicago. I only went outside once yesterday for about one second just to feel how cold it was, but I’m pretty sure it was below 0 most of yesterday and all of they day before. As my dad pointed out, it was probably the first time ever that the city was shut down because of cold rather than snow. I certainly did enjoy having two extra days of winter break!

  16. I’ve been craving warm drinks, oatmeal and Italian food ALL week. Cold weather definitely sparks the cravings for comfort food! I adore the spicy taste of Chai – never thought of adding it to my oats! Thanks for the idea 😀

  17. Eryn Cha says:

    -20 c is a norm for me in north british columbia. Everyday for our 6 onmonths of winter we reach below zero. Its reaches -40 occasionaly too. Love your site tjou! Keep up the good wor

  18. Kayla Marie says:

    If it makes you feel any better, it was LITERALLY -21 here the other day – not including wind chill. Brrrrrrrrr!

  19. Rachel says:

    I have some instant chai latte mix. You think I could simply make the appropriate amount of chai and then proceed with the recipe?

  20. Kathryn says:

    Just finished eating this for breakfast. My husband, who doesn’t normally like chai, loved it, and my picky 3yr old enjoyed it. Thanks for the great recipe Katie! :)

  21. Winter says:

    I live in Los Angeles and yesterday was warm! I feel my city has been spoiling me with this great weather after going to Texas a week ago and seeing the numbing temperatures Texas has to offer…

  22. Laura says:

    Hello! Love your blog!
    Welcome to a typical Alberta, Canada winter. Just last night we were talking about how -14C was practically bikini weather compared to what we typically have. But it is hard to get used to. Remember layers!

  23. Callin says:

    I just made this! (And ate it!) I didn’t have any chai tea but I did have a bag of vanilla caramel tea so I used that with a dash of cinnamon instead. ^_^

    I like my oatmeal more oat-y so I halved the water/almond milk portion of the recipe and used only 1 tea bag. After allowing the tea to seep for 15 mins I returned the mixture to the microwave for another minute to bring it to boil then poured it over my oats. Mixed all ingredients together, returned to microwave for 30 seconds then finished with chocolate chips. The result is now in my tummy.

    1. Emilylovesraisins says:

      Ooo did you use the bigelow brand tea? I don’t have any chai so i’m probably going to try your idea- there’s a big box sitting in the cabinet!

      1. Callin says:

        Yep, I used Bigelow with a few shakes of cinnamon. ^_^

  24. Bethanny says:

    God, it’s cold here in Virginia, isn’t it? I live in Williamsburg and it was super cold in the morning. I had to wear like five pairs of pants just to walk myself to work, and I was still freezing.

    Alas, no snow. The cold weather feels like such a waste without it.

  25. I wish it was snowing here! And I wish I had a bowl of this oatmeal, it looks wonderful.

  26. Jacqueline says:

    In Canada we were in the -30 to -40 range !
    We’ve had wind chill warnings all week lol

  27. anything with chocolate and oatmeal and I am in! I know what you mean about the cold – it was -40 with the windchill in the Toronto area yesterday …. :O Time to stay in and sip warm hot chocolate if you ask me!

  28. Katy says:

    It’s been freezing cold here for a while now, they call our city Winnipeg “winter-peg” for a reason! This oatmeal looks like a great way to warm up and I love all the spices in chai tea so it’s very creative to try something new!

  29. Marilyn says:

    I love the idea of chai-seasoned oatmeal! I’ve been eating so much oatmeal lately (with the polar vortex and whatnot) that I could use a new version. Thanks!

  30. doralice says:

    Hi Katie:) Thank you so much for this idea, I can’t wait for tomorrow morning to try this! I looove oatmeal so much at the moment (I generally do but right now I’m craving for it!)

    Here in France it’s not cold AT ALL, very weird for january and I’m afraid that we won’t have any spring this year either… but for now I have to say that I enjoy the sun and mild weather:)

    1. Elena says:

      Me as well! I live in Geneva, and the weather is sooo warm now! I’m really enjoying it!

  31. Tammela says:

    It’s not that cold in London, but when I lived in Ukraine the winters were quite cold. I went on a few runs at “7 degrees feels like minus-something.”

  32. Becky says:

    I live in Alaska, and we’ve actually been having ABOVE freezing temps (which is not normal for this time of year AT ALL). I would be happy to switch back, warmer temps here just mean that snow and ice melt and cause the nastiest, most dangerous road conditions, which no one is happy about! Here’s a good article for some quick tips. And thanks for the comfort food ideas, keep em coming! We could all use them in the cold, dark months. 😉

    1. Kayla says:

      Same with Northern British Columbia, Canada. It’s usually like -30°C right now but it was at least 0°C yesterday! Soo warm! Really bad roads though!

  33. Emilylovesraisins says:

    Yum chocolate chai oatmeal! Sounds amazing!
    To the qotd: when I woke up this morning it was -15. The high yesterday was 2 degrees! But I live near Chicago so it was to be expected, I guess. 😛

  34. Carroll says:

    Yesterday was sooo cold! Monday was worse, it doesn’t get very cold here and the high for Monday was 8 degrees. With windchill it felt like -10 and it hasn’t gotten to like agile digits in a long time.

  35. Yup, I feel ya girl! I’m not too familiar with degrees F, but it has been as low was -28 CELCIUS here! Yikes!!

  36. Chai Tea + Oatmeal + Cold Day = Very Satisfied Treat! :)

  37. Gloria says:

    Could I use mint tea to make them mint chocolate oatmeal? :)

  38. Nicole says:

    I live in Hawaii and right now it’s 77 degrees, but I’m FREEZING. If it ever goes below 80 here we all complain of the cold haha. I’d never make it on the mainland!

  39. Cindy says:

    So if you put it in the fridge after cooking – how long do you leave it in there? I don’t want it to get cold so that I can’t eat it. If you leave it in there very long, then take it out, add the other ingredients – how long do you reheat in the microwave again?

  40. KK says:

    It was 3 yesterday, wind chill in the negatives. We had an evacuation drill at my school, and it was FREEZING! I didn’t even have my coat with me! :( Of course it was in the middle of my lunch period.

  41. Melissa says:

    It was -20c here with a wind chill of -40c… Could have definitely used this! Going to try it for breakfast tomorrow… Looks wonderful! :-)

  42. Emma says:

    Oh this does sound perfect! I made banana soft serve yesterday morning and used a splash of liquorice tea to give it a bit of a twist. But this is warm!
    Yesterday was ok. The day before was SO COLD! I don’t know precisely how cold but… cold enough. I went for a little run and had to be on the lookout for invisible black ice 😉
    Thanks, Katie =)

  43. Kayt says:

    Making this tomorrow! On Monday, it got to -20, without windshield! Sooooo cold!!!

  44. Michelle says:

    Hi Katie! I have a recipe request for you that I *think* should be pretty simple. Have you seen the chocolate covered donuts that entenmanns makes? They are horrible for you and certainly not vegan, but I used to eat them as a kid. It’s basically a plain donut with a hard chocolate shell type of coating. I always loved the texture. Maybe it would work to use your plain donut recipe with melted chocolate mixed with coconut oil? Then just dip the donuts in the chocolate coating. I might have to try it myself, but I hope you will too :-)

  45. Tammy says:

    I have those same white bowls<3

  46. You speak to my heart. These are my favorite things wrapped up into one delicious and decadent breakfast bowl. I made chai overnight oats once, but will definitely have to try this soon!

  47. I am glad I am not the only one just avoiding going outside. I literally stayed home, even canceled social plans, this past weekend because it was too cold!

  48. Jennifer says:

    This looks yummy! I never would have thought to put peanut butter in it. I can’t wait for the rest of your breakfast recipes! :)

  49. Stefanie says:

    Oh my gosh, I have to make this for breakfast tomorrow! I usually put cinnamon and cardamom in my oatmeal, but I never thought about combining chai with chocolate… genius!

  50. Elena says:

    I’ll definitely try it! Here in Europe the weather is incredibly warm, in contrast to the US. Now I’m in Geneva, and the temperature is 10 degrees (Celsius)! Imagine, this is one of the coldest cities in Europe!