These quick and easy peanut butter banana oatmeal bars are adaptable in many different ways. See my blog post above and recipe notes below. They’re a more solid form of my delicious baked oatmeal.
- 2 large ripe bananas (about 1 cup mashed)
- 1/2 cup (125g) creamy or crunchy peanut butter*
- 1/4 cup (50g) coconut sugar or brown sugar
- 1/4 cup (45g) unsweetened applesauce*
- 1/2 cup (120ml) almond milk (or any nondairy or dairy milk)
- 2 and 1/2 cups (200g) old-fashioned whole oats or quick oats (not instant)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup (180g) semi-sweet chocolate chips*
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line a 9-inch square baking pan with parchment paper with enough overhang on the sides to easily remove the bars from the pan. Set aside.
- In a large bowl or in the bowl of your stand mixer, mash the bananas. On medium speed, beat or whisk in the remaining ingredients in the order listed. Batter will be a little thick, but still pourable.
- Pour/spoon the mixture evenly into the prepared pan and bake for 25-28 minutes or until the center is set (it will still look relatively soft!).
- Remove from the oven and cool in the pan at room temperature for 30-60 minutes. After that, place the pan in the refrigerator for 1 hour until chilled. The bars are difficult to cut if they haven’t been chilled.
- Remove bars from the pan using the overhang on the sides then cut into bars. Sometimes I drizzle melted peanut butter over each, but that’s optional. (Note: the parchment paper is always a little moist from soaking up some moisture from the bars.)
- Cover leftover bars tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 10 days.
- Freezing Instructions: Freeze squares in single layers between sheets of parchment paper in a freezer-friendly container for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
- Peanut Butter: You can use any nut butter (peanut, almond, cashew) you want– natural, homemade, or processed.
- Applesauce: I used to make these bars with 1 egg instead of the applesauce, but love their flavor with applesauce a bit better. You can, of course, use an egg instead or even use a flax egg substitute. Flax egg = mix 1 Tbsp ground flax with 3 Tbsp warm water and let it sit for 10 minutes while it “gels” up. Use the “flax gel” as a replacement for the applesauce/egg.
- Oats: Use certified gluten free oats to ensure the bars are gluten free.
- Chocolate Chips: You can skip the chocolate chips or replace with peanut butter chips, chopped nuts, or raisins. Or use a combination of any of those add-ins.
- Vegan: Use dairy-free chocolate chips and nondairy milk to ensure the bars are vegan.
- Gluten Free: Make sure your oats are certified gluten free to ensure these bars are gluten free.
Keywords: oatmeal bars, peanut butter bars