I can’t be the only person who intentionally buys too many bananas, and waits for them to get overripe just to have an excuse to make banana bread, right?? Only problem is that when I make a batch, I somehow find a way to rationalize eating the sweet treat for every meal until all that remains is an empty pan and a few crumbs.
Ever since I discovered my love for quinoa, and started incorporating quinoa flour wherever I could, I began experimenting with different flours, too. Oat flour, the main ingredient in these bars, can easily be made at home from rolled oats and brings in all the health benefits of oats, like stabilized blood sugar, lower cholesterol levels, and a reduced risk of Cardiovascular Disease.
My love of banana bread, coupled with my tendency to overindulge in it, is part of the reason I’m really excited to share this recipe. Besides being a sweet way to start the day with no sugar, it’s also gluten-free and can easily become vegan too. On top of its yummy taste, all of the ingredients are common items you’ll probably have in your pantry (always a baking bonus).
One of my favorite food blogs, Ambitious Kitchen, shared this recipe and calls it a breakfast bar, but it also makes an excellent snack. These bars can be frozen and popped into the microwave for 30 seconds to enjoy anytime.
Note: If you’re using an 8x8 pan, like I did, bake it for closer to 20 minutes.
Makes 16 Bars
For the batter
- 2 ¼ cups oats
- ½ tsp. baking powder
- ½ tsp. baking soda
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 3 medium, ripe bananas
- 2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
- ¼ cup honey (or agave for vegan-friendly bars)
- 1/3 cup dark chocolate chips (vegan, if desired)
For chocolate drizzle
- 2 Tbs. dark chocolate chips (vegan, if desired)
- ½ tsp. coconut oil
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 9x9in. or 8x8in. baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.
- Place oats into blender or food processor and blend for 1-2 minutes until oats resemble coarse flour. Make sure to stop periodically and stir to ensure all oats are processed.
- Transfer oats to a medium sized bowl and combine with baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
- Place bananas, vanilla, and honey (or agave) into blender, and blend until it reaches a smooth, creamy texture.
- Add the banana mixture into the bowl with the oats flour mixture, and mix until combined evenly.
- Fold in 1/3 cup chocolate chips, and pour the batter into the prepared pan. Spread evenly with a rubber spatula, and bake for 15 minutes, or until knife or toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool for 10-15 minutes.
- In a small, microwave-safe bowl, combine the remaining 2 Tbs. chocolate chips and ½ tsp. coconut oil, and microwave in 30-second increments (stirring after each round) until fully melted, and smooth.
- Drizzle chocolate on top, and cut into 16 bars. Serve warm with coffee, chilled with a scoop of frozen yogurt, or any other way you can think of to enjoy them!
Check out these other great posts too:
- 6 Healthy Eating Objectives to Improve Your Life
- 10 Practical Insights to Stay Healthy and Balanced With Ayurveda.
- 3 Healthy Pick-Me-Ups to Get Through Your Day