Monday, February 15, 2010

Banana Oat Bars

I received this recipe from a friend of mine and they are delicious!
4 cups rolled oats

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon cinnamon

1 medium or large ripe banana

2 tablespoons chia seeds

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup applesauce

3/4 cup vegan milk product (I used almond milk)

1 tablespoon pure maple syrup

1 tablespoon molasses

1/2 cup agave nectar (I used amber, but I'm sure light would work too)

1 tablespoon vanilla extract (I actually used a praline liqueur here because I was out of vanilla, but I understand that not everyone has praline liqueur sitting around in the kitchen!)

1 cup dried cranberries

First things first: Preheat your oven to 325. Prep your 9 x 13 pan by either greasing it or fulling lining it with parchment paper. Also, go ahead and prep your chia seeds by mixing the chia seeds with the 1/4 cup of water. Let it sit for a few minutes while you work on the other stuff. The seeds and water will make a gel that will bind your bars.

Start by mixing the oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in a big bowl. Make a well in the center and set aside.

In a separate bowl, mash the banana to your liking (I like some chunks in mine, personally), and then add the chia gel, applesauce, vegan milk product, maple syrup, molasses, agave nectar, and vanilla extract. Whisk until the clumps of chia gel are mostly broken up and the mixture is fairly homogeneous-looking.

Pour the liquid mixture into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Stir in the cranberries.

Smush the mixture into your prepped pan, making sure to smush it into all of the corners. Bake for 45 minutes. When it's done, let it cool for a few minutes to finish setting, then cut into 12 bars. YUM YUM YUM.

Time: about an hour
Servings: 12 (183 calories/serving)

P.S. If you don't have chia seeds and/or don't want to buy any, you can replace the chia gel (the chia seeds + the water) with 2 flax "eggs", or just mash in another banana.

**The only things I did differently were: I used blueberry applesauce and 2 bananas. They were so good. :) Here's my pic:

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