Soft and chewy peanut butter oatmeal bars made with healthy, wholesome ingredients. The chocolate is optional. Sort of. 😉
Let’s discuss something.
Is there really such a thing as “too much peanut butter?” Because I’m pretty sure we test those limits over here on Sally’s Baking Addiction. I mean, these peanut butter cookies are pretty much always in my oven.
My goal for today’s bars was to create a wholesome, quick, and easy oatmeal bar with little ingredients and a whole lot of taste. I also wanted a bar that you could easily adapt using your favorite mix-ins or whatever you have on hand. I also wanted something overloaded with peanut butter because well… duh.
In these 100% vegan bars (except for that chocolate drizzle!) you’ll find your standard kitchen staples. Nothing weird, nothing requiring a google search, and quite certainly nothing you’ll have to visit a special grocery store for.
Whole wheat flour, oats, a touch of brown sugar, baking soda, peanut butter, more peanut butter, even MORE peanut butter, and some chunks for texture. I added dairy-free chocolate chips and raisins to my bars, but feel free to add your favorites! Dried cranberries, white chocolate, more nuts, seeds, dried banana chips, etc.
Disclaimer: I am mildly obsessed with raisins and I don’t care if this makes me an old woman.
Each bar is rather dense and holds its own. They’re soft, rather moist and not dry in the slightest. I kept my bars in the refrigerator and LOVED biting into them cold. The chilled chocolate chips and peanut butter combination is spot on and easily filled me up when I wanted a snack or something to bring to work. Or a midnight munchie.
Midnight bites happened a lot with these babies!
In addition to adding in whichever chunks-of-stuff you’d like, you could easily make these bars your own by adding in more or less brown sugar. I found that 1/2 cup was plenty and didn’t make these bars overly sweet, especially since I added chocolate chips and a light chocolate drizzle. Chocolate was a complete necessity to my peanut butter bars.
Peanut butter & chocolate: saving tastebuds everywhere on this blog.
I’m a huge sucker for healthy recipes requiring a small number of ingredients and taking as little time as possible. With only 8 common ingredients, plus your little add-ins, I’m claiming these bars to be just as easy as my healthy dark chocolate almond truffles. And they only take about 25 minutes to make start-to-finish! 🙂
Oh! And these bars are completely vegan. I used dairy free chocolate chips and almond milk in the dough, but melted regular chocolate chips with peanut butter as the chocolate drizzle. The drizzle is completely optional and you could make it with dairy-free chocolate chips if a vegan bar is what you’re going for.
A small and common ingredient list, a whole lot of peanut butter, chocolate for my tastebuds, no butter or oil, chewy plump raisins, and a recipe taking less than 25 minutes.
So as I sit here getting over a tummy-ache as I write this post, eating peanut butter spread on saltine crackers—exactly what I had for lunch AND breakfast, we can just go ahead and answer that first question with a huge no.
There is never such a thing as too much peanut butter.
Soft and chewy peanut butter oatmeal bars made with healthy, wholesome ingredients. The chocolate is optional. Sort of!
- 1/2 cup (100g) packed brown sugar
- 1 cup (250g) chunky or creamy peanut butter
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup (127g) whole wheat flour (spooned & leveled)
- 1 cup (85g) old-fashioned whole rolled oats
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup (120ml) milk (I used almond milk, but use whichever you prefer)
- 1/2 cup (90g) dairy-free chocolate chips (or regular chocolate chips)
- 1/2 cup (70g) raisins (or whichever mix-ins you’d like)
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper or spray with nonstick spray. Set aside.
- With an electric or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix the brown sugar and peanut butter on medium speed until light in color and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Mix in the vanilla, scraping down the sides as needed.
- On medium speed, add in the flour, oats, salt, and baking soda. The dough will be very thick and clumpy, but it will come together. Slowly add the milk in a steady stream, mixing until a dough forms. Fold in chocolate chips and raisins. Use your hands to make sure everything is combined, if needed.
- Once dough is completely combined, press it lightly into the prepared baking dish. Bake for about 17-20 minutes until the bars are lightly golden and set. Allow to cool completely and cut into squares. I keep mine in the refrigerator in a covered container. Bars will be good stored up to 2 weeks.
- Special Tools (affiliate links): 8-inch Square Baking Pan | Parchment Paper | Electric Mixer (Handheld or Stand) | Silicone Spatula
- Chocolate Drizzle: I melted 3 tablespoons of chocolate chips with 1 tablespoon of peanut butter for the chocolate drizzle. This is completely optional. Be sure to use whichever mix-ins you like instead of the called for chocolate chips and raisins.
Keywords: healthy peanut butter oatmeal bars, peanut butter chunk oatmeal bars