Sustainable Innovation: Repurposing beer grain to make high fibre Overnight Oats 

Overnight oats have gained popularity as a convenient and healthy breakfast option. This case study explores an innovative twist on the traditional overnight oats recipe, incorporating spent grain, a byproduct of the beer brewing process. The use of spent grain in overnight oats not only adds a unique flavour and texture but also addresses sustainability concerns by reducing food waste.

Background

Spent grain, which is primarily a mixture of malted barley and water, is a byproduct of the beer brewing industry. Historically, it has been considered waste and often discarded or used as animal feed. Ruairi and Niamh Dooley have sparked a newfound interest in the byproduct in recent years. They have created a brand, Biasol, which specialises in repurposing the grain into a number of baking mixes which can be purchased in health food stores and supermarkets across the country.

Sustainability

The incorporation of this repurposed barley  into overnight oats aligns with the growing emphasis on sustainability. By using this byproduct, breweries and food producers can significantly reduce waste and environmental impact. Spent grain is rich in fibre and protein, making it a valuable addition to the diet. 

Delilites are the first to the market in Ireland, incorporating the highly nutritious spent grain into their new overnight oats. This eco-conscious and sustainable approach to innovation has made Deli lites unique in their approach to creativity in the breakfast category. 

Flavour and Texture

Spent grain adds a unique flavour and texture to overnight oats. It imparts a subtle nuttiness and a hearty, chewy texture to the dish. This enhances the overall sensory experience, making it more appealing to those who appreciate diverse flavours and textures in their meals.

Collaboration between Breweries and Food Producers

To make this innovation possible, collaboration between breweries and food producers is essential. Biasol collects the spent grain from breweries creating a symbiotic relationship that reduces waste by upcycling the grain into flour that can be used to add nutritional benefits and flavour to many different types of dishes. This collaboration demonstrates how different industries can work together to find sustainable solutions to waste in the food sector.

Nutritional Benefits


Spent grain is a good source of dietary fibre, protein, and various vitamins and minerals. When incorporated into overnight oats, it boosts the nutritional profile of the breakfast dish. This can be particularly appealing to health-conscious consumers looking for ways to enhance their diet with whole, nutrient-rich foods.

Consumer Appeal


Consumers are increasingly interested in unique and innovative food products. Overnight oats with spent grain offer a novel and sustainable twist on a classic breakfast dish, making it more attractive to those seeking creative and eco-friendly food options.

Food Waste Reduction


Utilising spent grain in overnight oats is a significant step in reducing food waste, aligning with global efforts to minimise waste in the food industry. This innovation between Delilites and Biasol can serve as an example for other industries on how to repurpose byproducts to create value and reduce their environmental footprint.

Conclusion


The case study of overnight oats with spent grain demonstrates how innovation and sustainability can be seamlessly combined to create a unique and appealing breakfast option. By addressing sustainability concerns, enhancing flavour and texture, and leveraging the nutritional benefits of spent grain, this innovative twist on a classic dish has the potential to reduce waste, promote collaboration between industries, and cater to the evolving preferences of conscious consumers. As sustainability continues to gain prominence in the food industry, such creative solutions will likely continue to emerge, reshaping the way we view food waste and its potential for culinary applications.

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