Super Easy Breakfast Bars

Today I am sharing a great recipe for Homemade Breakfast Bars.

These oat bars are a great option for breakfast (and pair nicely with coffee). They also travel quite well, and make for a great snack on the go.

breakfastbar

I am by no means a professional in the kitchen, but these bars are nearly goof proof.  They are super quick to make, totally customizable for ingredients and will make enough to last throughout the week. We like to make them on the weekend, as we prep our meals for the week ahead.

The basic recipe is below, but feel free to vary the ingredients based on what’s in season or what you can find at your grocery store or at the farmers market.

Basic Recipe:

Ingredients:

    • 2 cups of oats ( I prefer to use the quick oats variety)
    • 1 cup chopped nuts of your choosing (Almonds or Peanuts are great choices)
    • 1/2 cup protein powder (any variety you like, preferably an unflavored or vanilla flavor)
    • 1 cup fresh or frozen fruit of your choice
    • 1/2 cup agave (can also use maple syrup)
    • 1/2 cup chopped dates (remove the pits)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract

You will also need:

    • Cutting board
    • Paring knife
    • Food Processor
    • Loaf pan or square pan (8 x 8 or similar size)
  • Cooking spray or silicone liner for your pan

oats

Tips for getting started:

Remember to rinse or wash your fruit.

While you are getting the rest of your ingredients prepared, soak your dates in a little water. This will soften them and they will be much easier to chop! Just drain before chopping.

If you are using frozen fruit, soak the portion you will be using in water (cold water is fine) to defrost them. It’s quick and only takes about 10 minutes.  Caution: Avoid the temptation to put them in the microwave, as this can alter the consistency and make some frozen fruits soggy.

If you don’t have the vanilla extract, it’s ok to skip it. The same goes for the pinch of salt; it’s totally ok to omit it if you don’t have it handy.

Directions:

    1. Preheat the oven to 350.
    1. Prepare the dry ingredients first. Start with the chopped nuts, protein powder, half the oats (so just one cup) and a pinch of salt. 
    1. Put everything into the food processor. Blend well until combined.
    1. Next add the chopped dates. Pulse the mixture for approximately one minute.
    1. Then add in your wet ingredients: fruit, agave (or maple syrup) vanilla extract plus the remaining cup of oats.
    1. Blend well. Stopping the food processor as needed to scrape down the sides; ensuring all ingredients are thoroughly mixed.
    1. The consistency will be sticky.  This is ideal.
    1. Add mixture to the loaf pan or baking pan.
    1. Put in preheated oven at 350 for 20 minutes.
    1. When the oats are cooked the edges will be ever so slightly brown.
  1. Cool thoroughly before cutting into squares. 

These Oat Bars can be stored in reusable “seal and store bags” or in a covered Tupperware and will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days.

oatsandgoji

Variations:

As I mentioned previously, we like to use seasonally available ingredients. Here are some ideas to give you flavor inspiration! Our favorites include:

Spring/Summer: Strawberries, Blueberries, or Pineapple with shredded coconut. Coconut is a great addition to any flavor Oat recipe. I add about 1/4 cup shredded coconut in with the ingredients in step 5 before the final blending.

Fall/Winter: Try this recipe with Apples, Cherries, Cranberries, Pumpkin (canned or cooked) and add in a little pumpkin spice or pumpkin pie spice flavoring. I add 1/2 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice in with the ingredients in step 2 of the recipe. I also use Maple Syrup for this recipe instead of the agave.

loafoat

I hope you try this easy oat recipe! If you do, let me know what flavor combinations you came up with and how they turned out!

I'd love to hear your thoughts!

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