If you’re looking for a healthy dessert alternative, this oatmeal bar recipe could be just what you need. These crunchy, mildly sweet bars will satisfy both your appetite and your sweet tooth.
This recipe only requires a few simple ingredients that you may already have in your pantry. But before we start baking, here are some facts about the main ingredient of today’s recipe: oatmeal.
Benefits of Oatmeal
Oatmeal, typically known as rolled oats, is made from steamed and flattened whole oats to make it cook faster. It is considered one of the top go-to grain options of the healthy eating community.
So, what are the benefits of this cereal meal that make it so special? Let’s take a look at the nutritional content in half a cup of dry, rolled oats:
- Calories: 303.
- Carbohydrates: 51 grams.
- Protein: 13 grams.
- Total fat: 5 grams.
- Fiber: 8 grams.
While it contains more calories, fat, and carbs than many other types of grains, it’s rich in fiber and protein. In addition, it’s packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidant compounds, making it one of the most nutrient-dense foods.
Oats are rich in soluble fiber beta-glucan, which has a number of beneficial properties. Here are a few examples:
- The soluble fiber beta-glucan may improve insulin sensitivity and help lower blood sugar levels.
- The beta-glucan fiber slows down the emptying of the stomach, making you feel full longer. This may help you lose weight as it reduces your urge to snack and prevents you from consuming excess calories.
Porridge vs. Oatmeal: What Are the Differences?
While oatmeal is also known as rolled oats, it can also refer to a breakfast cereal dish called porridge.
By definition, porridge is made by heating or boiling starchy grain in milk or water to make a thick, mushy paste. For taste and texture, it is often boiled or served with flavorings such as sugar, (dried) fruit, or nuts.
That being said, it can also be mixed with spices, meat, or vegetables to make a savory dish.
When the porridge is specifically made by boiling rice in water, it is called “congee,” a popular comfort food in many parts of Asia. Unlike sweet porridge, congee is considered a savory food.
Ingredients for Oatmeal Bar Recipe
Here are the ingredients for today’s oatmeal bar recipe:
- Oats: We used old-fashioned rolled oats and we recommend you should, too. Don’t use instant oats as it may change the consistency of the dough.
- Seeds and nuts: We used a combination of pumpkin seeds, cashews, and walnuts. We also added peanut butter to give these bars an extra nutty, buttery flavor.
- Flour: All-purpose flour when mixed with eggs will become a binder that helps hold all the nuts together. On the other hand, you can use almond flour
- Flavorings: Cinnamon powder and vanilla extract are always great additions to desserts and sweets.
- Dried fruits: We love mixing dried fruits into our oatmeal bars as they are sweet, slightly tart, and tangy. They’re perfect for balancing the rich and buttery nuts.
- Seasonings: We used two types of sweeteners for this recipe: brown sugar and honey.
- Binders: We mixed eggs and milk into the mixture. They moisten the all-purpose flour and turn it into a thick, adhesive paste that glues everything together.
How to Make Homemade Oatmeal Bar
Here is a summary of our oatmeal bar recipe:
Combine the ingredients.
Transfer to a baking pan.
Cut the dough.
Bake in the oven.
Full ingredient measurements and detailed instructions are available in the recipe section below.
How to Store Oatmeal Bars
Leave the oatmeal bars to cool completely before putting them into an airtight container or Ziploc bag.
If you’re stacking them, we recommend cutting out a piece of parchment and placing it between the layers. This will ensure they won’t stick to each other making it difficult to take one at a time.
Keep them in the fridge or freezer, depending on your purpose.
How Long Do Oatmeal Bars Last?
These oatmeal bars will last for up to five days in the fridge if you plan to eat them right away.
You can also make a big batch and freeze them for about a month. To thaw, simply transfer them to the fridge or leave them on the counter for an hour or two.
Oatmeal Bar Recipe
- 10 oz old-fashioned rolled oats
- 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup almond flour
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1.5 oz pumpkin seeds toasted
- 1 oz cashews toasted
- 1/4 cup walnuts roughly chopped
- 1 oz dried cranberries
- 1 tbsp peanut butter
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 medium eggs
- 3 tbsp brown sugar
- 2 tbsp honey
- 1/4 cup whole milk
- Combine the ingredients: Preheat the oven to 340°F. In a large bowl, mix together all the ingredients until you get a thick dough.
- Transfer to a baking pan: Line a baking pan with parchment. Add the dough to the pan and spread it out using a spatula greased with nonstick cooking spray.
- Cut the dough: Using a knife greased with nonstick cooking spray, divide the dough into 20 equal pieces.
- Bake in the oven: Put the baking pan into the preheated oven and bake for 35 minutes. Once done, remove from the oven and set aside to cool for at least 15 minutes.
- Serve: Transfer the oatmeal bars to a plate and serve.