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Banana Oat Bars

September 26, 2011

Typically before sharing a recipe I tweak  it several times and put my own twist on it.

 Not this time!

These bars were far to good “coloring with-in-the-lines” not to share with you right away. Go make these, now! 

People these are seriously easy and seriously good.

I am day dreaming of adding shredded coconut, ground flax, wheat germ, using some almond banana dip for the binder and omitting the chopped nuts to make a more toddler-friendly version. Wait wait, how about using a fruit butter or pumpkin purée, oh man I could go on and on here!

 Dates are also a little expensive, I will be trialing my stash of dried fruits in this recipe. I’ll keep you posted. Until then here is the original untweaked recipe. Enjoy!

Banana Oat Bars
Makes one 9×9-inch pan. Adapted from  The Kitchn   who Adapted it from Ginger at Friesen Cold.

2 large, very ripe bananas ( I used 3 medium)
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups rolled oats (or any rolled grain)
1/2 teaspoon salt 
1/4 cup pitted, chopped dried dates (or try other dried fruits) 
1/4 cup chopped nuts — such as walnuts, hazelnuts or pecans
Grated nutmeg or cinnamon (optional)

Heat the oven to 350°F and lightly grease a 9×9-inch square baking dish with olive oil, butter, or my all time favorite coconut oil.

Peel the bananas and mash in a medium mixing bowl or whiz up in the food processor. The goal is liquified bananas.  (You will have between 1 cup and 1 1/4 cup.) Stir in the vanilla, salt, add the oats and stir them in. Fold in the dates and nuts. It is thick, don’t worry!

Pat the thick mixture evenly into the greased baking pan. If desired, sprinkle the top lightly with nutmeg or cinnamon. Bake for 30 minutes or until the edges just begin to crisp up. Er on the side of undercooking.

Place the baking pan on a rack to cool. When the pan is mostly cool, cut into bars and enjoy with a glass of milk or tea. Or if you are me, cut into the pan right away and burn the heck our of your mouth as your three-year-old asks, “Mommy what is wrong? Why aren’t you talking? Why are you holding your mouth like that?”

:::::UPDATES:::::

Extra! Extra! Ok I have improved upon perfection…not that I believe in perfection, but let’s save this topic for another day. 

 I just add ingredients by the handfuls so all measurements are estimations.

Ok, here we go.

1tsp vanilla extract to the bananas, scant 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, 1/8 cup shredded coconut, and a dash of coarse ground sea salt on top as well as fresh grated nutmeg and cinnamon.

:::::

Amelia enjoying many-a-bar!

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