This Bircher muesli recipe is gluten free and vegan. It’s the perfect breakfast to meal prep because it’s packed with nutrition that will keep you feeling full. Prepping a batch on the weekend allows for balanced and satisfying breakfast meals all week long!
The best part about this vegan and gluten free muesli recipe is the countless variations you can make. No need to ever eat a boring breakfast!
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What is Bircher Muesli?
Bircher muesli is basically the same thing as overnight oats. Bircher muesli is a mixture of oats, nuts, seeds and dried fruit that are soaked overnight. Typically, Bircher muesli is soaked in dairy products (ex. cream or milk) but it’s easy to swap that out for vegan alternatives.
Muesli is also typically defined as being uncooked, but this recipe does toast some of the ingredients to add a lot of flavour.
Overall, muesli is a lighter variation of granola and Bircher muesli just adds the extra step of soaking the oat mixture overnight. Bircher muesli is often served cold but can be warmed up if you prefer!
Toasted Muesli vs Raw Muesli
Traditionally, muesli is a raw, grain-based cereal (usually made with oats). This recipe can be made raw but toasting the muesli brings out the taste and aromas of the oatmeal and coconut, increasing the flavour of the cereal. It’s also nice to toast any nuts you incorporate into the muesli recipe.
If you would like to make a raw version, all you have to do is toss all the ingredients together. I would recommend leaving out the maple syrup if you aren’t toasting the muesli it so the cereal doesn’t become soggy.
Variations for Making Bircher Muesli (Vegan)
For this batch of vegan toasted muesli, I used poppy seeds, pumpkin seeds, raisins, walnuts and cacao nibs. I recommend selecting at least one nut, one seed and one dried fruit each time you make a batch of Bircher muesli. But, you can add in as many nuts, seeds or dried fruits as you like. Some other ingredient ideas to try in your vegan Bircher muesli are:
- Sesame seeds, chia seeds, hemp seeds, flaxseeds, or sunflower seeds
- Almonds, pecans, hazelnuts, cashews, pistachios, peanuts, Brazil nuts, macadamia nuts etc.
- Any dried fruit: cranberries, apricots, dates, figs, apples, mango, gogi berries, cherries, strawberries etc.
- Additional spices such as nutmeg or pumpkin spice
If you want to increase the flavour of this vegan and gluten free Bircher muesli, add the walnuts (or whichever nuts you use) to the muesli as it toasts. This is a great way to bring out the flavour of the nuts. Please note, if the nuts you purchased are already toasted or roasted, they don’t need additional cooking; only toast them with the muesli if they are raw.
Gluten Free Bircher Muesli Recipe
To make this Bircher muesli a gluten free recipe, simply select to use gluten free oats. Oats themselves don’t actually contain gluten but are typically processed in the same facilities as wheat, which leads to cross contamination.
The remaining ingredients are naturally gluten free as well. If cross contamination is a concern for you, opting for gluten free certified brands of nuts, seeds and dried fruit is an option.
You can check out some gluten free oats here.
Serving Toasted Bircher Muesli (Vegan)
There are as many ways to serve toasted Bircher muesli as there are ways to make it! Some of my favourites are:
- Add fresh fruit to the Bircher muesli: Bircher muesli traditionally is served with lots of fresh fruit. Apples and bananas are easy options but berries are also a tasty treat.
- Top a smoothie bowl or banana ice cream: toasted Bircher muesli is an easy option for topping smoothie bowls or banana ice cream!
- Don’t soak the Bircher muesli: change things up and don’t soak the toasted muesli overnight. Instead, add some plant-based milk or yogurt right before serving for a crunchy alternative.
- Snack on it plain: Leave the toasted muesli dry and eat it plain as a snack!
Making Overnight Muesli Vegan
As noted above, Bircher muesli is basically a classic version of overnight oats but is traditionally made using dairy.
To make overnight muesli vegan, simply select your favourite plant-based milk or yogurt to soak the vegan Bircher muesli in overnight.
Everyone has different taste preferences, so experiment to determine how much liquid you like in your overnight vegan muesli. I personally just cover the toasted vegan muesli with plant-based milk to create thick muesli in the morning. If you prefer softer oats, additional liquid is needed.
Plant-based yogurt is another option for soaking muesli in overnight. Again, select your favourite vegan yogurt alternative and use enough to at least cover the ingredients. If you prefer softer muesli, adding a bit of extra liquid (ie. plant-based milk) would be helpful to get that softer consistency.
If you’re looking for jars to use for soaking overnight muesli in, here are some of my favourites.
How do you like your Bircher muesli? Let me know in the comments below!
Vegan Bircher Muesli (Gluten Free)
- Large bowl
- Baking tray
- Silicone baking mat
- Preheat oven to 350 °F.
- Mix together the 4 C rolled oats, 1 C shredded coconut, 2 tbsp maple syrup, 2 tsp cinnamon. Optional to add in walnuts. Spread mixture into an even layer on a large parchment-lined baking tray.
- Bake 8 minutes. Take out of oven, toss around then bake for another 8 minutes.
- Remove the muesli from the oven and allow to cool completely. Stir in the remaining ingredients (2 tbsp poppy seeds, 2 tbsp pumpkin seeds, 2/3 C raisins , ½ C walnuts, 3 tbsp cacao nibs).
- Store in an airtight container or jar for up to 3 weeks.
- To serve, take 1/2 C to 3/4 C of the muesli and place into a jar. Cover with the plant-based milk of your choice. If you like a softer/ thinner muesli, add more milk. If you like a thicker muesli, add less. Place lid on jar and let soak overnight.
- Add additional plant-based milk or yogurt in the morning as needed to reach your desired consistency. Can serve without soaking overnight if preferred.
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This is an updated post: original post date April 2017.