What’s the story with recipes that include a 2000 word intro before you’ve even seen a photo of a vegetable? Is this another one of those things that only annoys me, like Reply All email chains or text messages beginning ‘Hi’ not ‘Hi Lisa’ (ruuude)? I promise, I will never start a recipe with a long essay. But…
I will preface this banana oat bar recipe by saying that I first started making this recipe because I used to eat those ‘healthy’ cereal bars a lot, before I realised that there’s more sugar in them than in a cupcake and they’re pumped with palm oil, additives and all sorts of nasties. When I don’t eat on the hour, every hour, I get hangry, so I needed a healthy snack to pop in my bag and eat on the go.
I found a great recipe for banana, oat and raisin bars in Dale Pinnock’s The Medicinal Chef book (a much-recommended recipe book that organises recipes by medical problems) and that set my oat-bar-baking ball rolling.
I altered Dale’s original recipe slightly to include nuts and seeds instead of dried fruit but you can go for whatever extras you like – dried cherries, raisins, berries, flaked almonds – and I’m positive they’ll turn out delicious. These oat bars are great for a healthy breakfast snack, for sneaking nuts and seeds into your diet and if you’re looking for a high fibre healthy snack on the go.
Here’s my banana oat breakfast bar recipe:
- 1 cup & a half jumbo oats
- 3 ripe bananas, mashed in a bowl
- 1 heaped tablespoon of crunchy, sugarfree peanut butter
- Half a tablespoon of raw organic extra virgin coconut oil
- Roughly chopped walnuts/pecans (I use about 12 walnuts but go wild!)
- 2-3 tablespoons of flax seeds/sesame seeds (or both)
- 3 tablespoons of sunflower seeds/pumpkin seeds (or both)
- Slowly melt the coconut oil and peanut butter over a medium heat. If the consistency isn’t runny, you can add a teaspoon of honey at this stage but I prefer to keep the recipe vegan.
- Remove from the heat, add the mashed bananas and stir in.
- Add the oats bit by bit and fold them into the mixture, ensuring there’s no pockets of dry oats.
- Add the seeds and chopped nuts. Mix gently so evenly dispersed.
- Preheat your oven at a medium-high heat (180 C) and lightly grease your flat baking tray with coconut oil.
- Spread your mixture onto the baking tray and flatten it out gently so that it resembles a large rectangle. Sometimes I add more chopped walnuts as a topping and gently press them into the mixture before baking.
- Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Allow to cool before cutting into bars (or big messy squares like I do). Enjoy!