Soaked Oats

Soaking or fermenting grains before using them to make porridge, breads, cakes, and casseroles is an age old tradition. Here are a few reasons why you should should jump on the ‘”soaked oats bandwagon” and give your digestive tract a break!


All grains contain phytic acid in the outer bran layer. Phytic acid is an organic acid that combines with calcium, magnesium, copper, iron, and zinc in the intestinal tract blocking your body from absorbing them. Because phytic acid actually pulls beneficial nutrients from your body, we call phytic acid an antinutrient.

While eating unprocessed bran may improve colon transit time at first, eating large amounts over time can cause gastrointestinal distress and adverse effects on the gut. Enzymes and live cultures such as lactobacilli present in yogurt, kefir*, or whey help break down and neutralize phytic acid allowing you to absorb all of the beneficial nutrients oats have to offer. Soaking and fermenting oats also helps to partially break down difficult-to-digest proteins such as gluten into components that are more easily digested and absorbed by the body.

Soaked Oats

vegetarian, gluten-free, soy-free, peanut-free, tree nut-free, sugar-free, shellfish-oil, fish-free, nightshade-free, bean & legume-free


In a medium bowl combine oats, warm water, and kefir. Cover and let soak overnight on kitchen counter. In the morning, rinse oats well under cold water. Heat 1 cup cold water and salt over medium heat until boiling. Add soaked oats, reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit for a few more minutes. Stir in ground flaxseed and any other mix-ins. I added a small amount of butter and maple syrup to mine. Other ideas include dried fruit, nuts, milk, spices, natural sugar, or honey.

By getting in the habit of soaking your oats overnight, you will reap the maximal nutritional benefits that come along with this delicious grain!


* Kefir is similar to yogurt, but has a more “drinkable” consistency and contains a greater number of healthy bacterial cultures than yogurt. Kefir contains 10 probiotic cultures per cup, which help strengthen the immune system and aid in digestive health. Kefir is a great source of calcium, protein, and fiber and can even help with lactose intolerance. Kefir is readily available at any major grocery store.

Source: Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon


  1. I love the information so quick cooking oats is no go??? What about using flavored Kefir what happens then??

    • While quick oats are better than nothing for breakfast in a pinch, they do not offer as much nutritional benefit as soaking the oats overnight. Keep in mind that once the oats are soaked, they only take about 5 minutes to cook. This can be done either on the stove top or in the microwave; just as easy as quick oats! As for flavored kefir, I don’t see why there would be a problem in using it. However, your oats may take on the flavor of the kefir, which is why I tend to use plain.

  2. im realy confuse on the rinsing the oats some dietitian say you wash away some of the nutrients,please let me know what best i soak my steel cut oats for 24 hrs in water and a tablespoon of apple cider vinagar and never rince

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