This Bircher Muesli is made using a handful of nutritious and wholesome ingredients. It is the perfect healthy breakfast and an easy breakfast for those busy mornings. Bircher muesli is one of those meals that just makes you feel like a better person for eating it.
Originally invented by Swiss physician Maximilian Bircher-Benner for his patients in hospital in the early 1900s. Bircher Muesli is now a common Swiss breakfast. The original recipe was a combination of oats, nuts and seeds, grated apple and soaked in milk or orange juice - it was basically the original overnight oats.
The combination of these ingredients provides essential amino acids, essential fatty acids, complex carbohydrates and a multitude of vitamins and minerals. I've made a few changes to the original recipe, making it dairy free by using coconut milk beverage and serving with tahini for a little extra protein.
What's to Love About Bircher Muesli
- Bircher muesli is the perfect breakfast! - with nutrients like fiber, protein, calcium, magnesium and healthy fats, this healthy meal is not only delicious but will leave you feeling amazing!
- No added sugar - with natural sweetness from the apples and coconut milk, there is no need for added sugars. To add a little extra sweetness you can add a drizzle of maple syrup though!
- High fiber - fiber helps to stabilise blood sugar levels and promote gut health as well as helping to remove bad cholesterol from the system.
- Great for meal prep - this recipe makes 4 serves but can easily be doubled to make 4 days of breakfasts per person. Bircher muesli is a great, healthy make-ahead breakfast!
Ingredients Notes & Substitutions
My creamy Swiss bircher muesli is very similar to the classic bircher muesli. Read on to see the simple ingredients that you will need for this recipe, as well as any possible substitutions and notes. The full list of ingredient quantities can be found at the bottom of this post.
- old fashioned rolled oats - you can also use quick oats if you prefer. If you are gluten intolerant then I recommend buying the certified non-contaminated rolled oats.
- grated raw apples - grated apple is one of the key ingredients in traditional bircher muesli. They not only add to the flavor, but add a whole host of nutrients to the dish as well. I have used red apples but you can use green apples as well, whatever variety you prefer is perfect!
- linseeds - linseeds are a great source of plant-based omega 3, an essential fatty acid that promotes heart health, brain health, immune health and gut health. Other seeds that are a great source of omega 3 and can be used in their place are chia seeds and hemp seeds.
- pepitas - also known as pumpkin seeds. You can swap for sunflower seeds, chia seeds or hemp seeds.
- chopped almonds - other nuts that would work really well in this recipe include pecans and walnuts.
- coconut milk beverage - you can use any plant-based milk like unsweetened almond milk, oat milk, soy milk or cashew milk. I love using milk for the creamy texture, but you could also swap for freshly squeezed fruit juice like apple juice or orange juice.
- vanilla extract - vanilla extract always adds such a yummy flavor. You could also use ground cinnamon and nutmeg instead of vanilla.
Are oats gluten free?
Even though in the US you can buy certified gluten-free oats, Australia's regulations are more strict. This is because, while non-contaminated rolled oats are technically gluten free, they still contain a protein that is very similar to gluten and can cause the same effects to a person with Coeliacs as gluten does. If you do have Coeliacs, I recommend discussing with your specialist first before consuming.
One of the things that I love so much about this versatile breakfast is how easy it is to change up ingredients and to add your favorite toppings depending on what you feel like and what is in season. I love to top this homemade muesli with:
- a dollop of yogurt - I usually use natural, unsweetened coconut yogurt. If you're not dairy free you can use Greek yogurt.
- fresh fruit - top with seasonal fruit or berries like strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, sliced peaches, pear, whatever you feel like!
- nut butter or tahini - top with almond butter, peanut butter, cashew butter or tahini for an extra nutritional boost.
- dried fruit - add dried cranberries, sultanas, raisins or dried cherries to the muesli mixture.
How to Make Bircher Muesli
The other thing that I love about this recipe is just how easy it is to make, no cooking experience required! Follow my step-by-step instructions to see how to make bircher muesli.
Make the muesli mixture.
Add the rolled oats, linseeds, pepitas and chopped almonds to a large mixing bowl.
Add the wet ingredients.
To the bowl, add the grated apple, milk and vanilla extract. Stir everything together really well. Cover the bowl with a clean tea towel or some compostable plastic wrap and place in the fridge. Allow the bircher muesli to sit in the fridge overnight.
Serve the bircher muesli topped with a dollop of yogurt as well as seasonal fruit or berries. For a touch of sweetness add a little honey or maple syrup.
Once made, bircher muesli is best stored in individual serving sized airtight containers. I prefer to use glass containers as they are low tox and BPA free. Store in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Yes, bircher muesli is healthy. It is high in fiber and complex carbohydrates. It also contains essential fatty acids and essential amino acids and promotes stable blood sugar levels.
While they are very similar, bircher muesli isn't the same as overnight oats. Both contain oats soaked in a liquid overnight or for at least 2 hours. However, Bircher muesli always contains a mixture of nuts and seeds, oats and grated apples.
Traditionally, bircher muesli is made using milk and sweetened with honey. Bircher muesli can easily be made vegan, however, by using fruit juice or plant-based milk as the liquid and pure maple syrup to sweeten instead of honey.
Bircher muesli is not keto, as it contains complex carbohydrates. The keto diet is a high fat and high protein diet, with very low carbohydrates.
Bircher muesli can assist in weight loss if consumed as part of a calorie deficit diet. The ingredients in bircher muesli help to keep one feeling fuller for longer as it has a high amount of fibre, essential fatty acids and healthy fats, which helps to prevent overeating.
- Measuring Cups and Spoons
- Large spoon
- Chopping Board
- Sharp knife
- Box grater
- 2 cups rolled oats
- ½ cup almonds roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds
- 2 tablespoons linseeds
- 3 cups coconut milk beverage or other plant based milk
- 2 apples coarsely grated
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- strawberries to serve
- raspberries to serve
- maple syrup
- Add the rolled oats, pepitas, linseeds and chopped almonds in a large mixing bowl.
- Add the grated apples, vanilla extract and coconut milk to the bowl and mix to combine.
- Cover the bowl with a clean tea towel or compostable plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
- Serve the bircher muesli topped with fresh berries and pure maple syrup.