Banana Blueberry Bars

Banana Blueberry Bars

Photo by Cathy Fisher

 
Recipe by Katie Mae
 
My Banana Blueberry Bars are one of my favorite whole food vegan treats, as I know they are for many others. Yes it’s a breakfast bar recipe, but they also make a convenient snack, or healthy dessert. These bars have rolled oats that give us lasting energy, unrefined sugars that provides natural sweetness, and fiber for good digestion. The powerful blueberries are extra loving to our body in countless ways, including benefits to the heart, brain, and eyes! Isn’t it nice to know you can have a delicious treat that supports your body at the same time.

I like to keep my recipes gluten-free for myself and any others that are sensitive to gluten. However, this recipe is only gluten-free if you purchase gluten-free rolled oats. Even though oats don’t contain gluten themselves, they is usually cross-contamination with wheat products being made in the same facility. So if you would like to make this a gluten-free recipe you can do so by buying certified gluten free oats. Bob’s Red Mill is a great company for gluten-free products.

If you’re looking for a healthy treat for your kids, you definitely want to try this recipe. Banana Blueberry Bars are a perfect treat for your kid’s lunch box or a to-go snack when they’re off to soccer practice. These bars can also be made into muffins just by using a muffin pan instead (see photo below). Note that baking time will be about 3-5 minutes less. Take them in for a classroom birthday celebration – the Moms will thank you and the teacher will love you! And with a yummy banana flavor and juicy blueberries, I’m sure your kids will love them as much as I do.

 
Makes 12 bars  …OR 20-24 mini muffins!
Ready in minutes
Stores days in fridge

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup dates, pitted and halved
  • 1½ cups apple juice
  • 3 cup rolled oats, divided
  • ¾ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 2 ripe bananas, peeled
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries (frozen also works)
  • ½ cup walnuts

 

Banana Blueberry Bars

Photo by Cathy Fisher

 

ACTION STEPS

 
1. In a small bowl, soak dates in apple juice for 10-15 minutes. Preheat oven to 375ºF. Lay a piece of parchment paper in a 9 x 9-inch baking pan, making sure the sides are covered. Cut slits in the corners of the paper so that the paper overlaps and is flat.

2. In a medium bowl, combine 2 cups of the rolled oats, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Mix and set aside. Remove dates from apple juice and set dates aside. Place bananas and vanilla extract into blender. Remove dates from apple juice and set aside. Add the strained juiced to the blender. Add the remaining 1 cup of rolled oats and blend until creamy. Add dates and pulse a few times until the dates are in small pieces.

3. Pour banana mixture into dry ingredient bowl. Mix well. Stir in blueberries and walnuts.

4. Using a spatula, pour the batter into a baking pan. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool at room temperature for 5-10 minutes before cutting and serving.

Banana Blueberry Bars
 

 
 
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28 Comments

  1. Morgan Evans
    January 16, 2014

    KP, we love this recipe! I’m still looking for more low-carb, low-dairy breakfast options for my girls and I feel like the only thing I find are recipes with oatmeal. Any other ideas that don’t include eggs and oats?

    • Brian W. Gendron
      April 25, 2016

      This is almost the same recipe as in Forks over knives. I’ve made them twice and both times not so good. This recipe doesn’t call for baking soda and the FOK one calls for 1.5 tbsp (tablespoons) which to me seems excessive. But this is my first experience with non wheat flour. To baking soda or not?

      • Katie Mae
        Katie Mae
        April 25, 2016

        Hi Brain, Forks Over Knives posted this recipe of mine a few years ago. Since then I realized the baking powder is not essential, but it does make the bars rise slightly. Personally, I like the consistency more with the baking powder added, but it’s a minimal difference. It’s up to you whether you want to add it or not. I’m sorry to hear the bars didn’t turn out good for you. What didn’t work, or what about them didn’t you like?

        • Brian
          April 26, 2016

          I’ve tried them two times and they seem to not bake completely in the middle. The first time I thought it was old baking powder. The second time. . Not too sure. The bottom and tops got over bakedinner and the middle didn’t bake.

          • Katie Mae
            Katie Mae
            April 28, 2016

            They may seem like they’re not baked completely because of all the banana, which take a long time to dry out. Know that they’re definitely supposed to be semi-moist when they come out. Let them cool for 15-20 minutes before slicing into them. If you don’t like them this moist, you can use less banana and/or add more oats.

  2. Katie Mae
    Katie Mae
    January 20, 2014

    Hi Morgan! I love to hear your family likes it! I’ll be posting more breakfast recipes and ideas in the next couple weeks…stay tuned! For now, check out these potato pancakes: http://bit.ly/1akSFnm. They’ve been a huge hit among all ages. Kids also love smoothies for breakfast, and good choice for lasting energy is a whole-grain toast/english muffin with unsweetened almond butter and a 100% fruit spread. Hope this helps!

    • Joe
      April 8, 2014

      Love this recipe!! I also like you web site!
      Joe

  3. Jennifer
    June 28, 2014

    Thanks Katie, the video was very clear and helpful. I’m into the simplicity of ingredients. I might wait til the end of summer when we get a glut of apples from a friend’s tree and can make the juice freshly. (Any uses for apple pulp?? ) Maybe hunt around for some local walnuts too. I bet the mix tastes great uncooked too lol. These would be great to take with along on a car journey and for camping I’ll bet.

  4. Sara
    September 3, 2014

    Just made these the other day and have been eating them for breakfast since then. So yummy and easy to make! Katie, do you have nutrition info for them?

    • Katie Mae
      Katie Mae
      September 12, 2014

      Hey Sara, I’m so glad to here you like them! I don’t have the nutrition facts yet, but that is a project I’m working for all my recipes. This recipe is mostly carbohydrates – the healthy kind from whole foods – perfect for energy in the morning or mid afternoon.

  5. Bruce Hamilton
    September 30, 2014

    This is an excellent recipe, but 30-35 minutes is a crazy short baking time. I gave it about 50 minutes and it was still awfully moist. You especially need a longer baking time if using frozen blueberries; probably up to an hour.

    • Katie Mae
      Katie Mae
      April 25, 2016

      Bruce, you’re right that they come out moist. I prefer to only bake them for about 35 minutes and then I let them cool for 10 to 20 minutes before servings. As they cool, they firm up. I don’t like to bake them for a longer period of time, because once they’re fully cool, they will still taste moist and then I can reheat them the next day without making them too dry. If you prefer to cook them longer so they’re not so moist, please do so.

  6. brenda
    January 4, 2015

    thanks for the recipe. do these “keep” well? I’m assuming you need to refrigerate (?) … can they be frozen as well? thanks.

    • Katie Mae
      Katie Mae
      January 27, 2015

      Hi Brenda! They do keep for well for about 3-4. They will last longer, but the flavor’s not as good. You can certainly freeze them. If they’re already cut, I would use parchment paper to wrap and store them in the freezer.

  7. Kelly
    February 16, 2015

    These are DELICIOUS!!! Thank you so much for this recipe. I am looking for things like this to give my 4 year old.

    • Katie Mae
      Katie Mae
      February 17, 2015

      Thank you Kelly! These are a wonderful wholesome snack for kids!! I hope he/she likes them as much as you do! :)

  8. Brenda C
    July 29, 2015

    Just made these. YUMMY! I increased the cinnamon and added 1/2 extra cup of fresh blueberries.

    • Katie Mae
      Katie Mae
      July 30, 2015

      Awesome, Brenda! Glad you liked them! I often add more blueberries too. It makes them a little moister, but still scrumptious!

  9. Brenda C
    July 29, 2015

    I also baked these into 12 muffins.

  10. Marietta B.
    August 30, 2015

    Just made these for our family – they taste awesome, but they’re extremely “moist.” A toothpick came out clean after 30 minutes, but you can almost roll a serving into a ball after it’s cooled & cut. Is that how moist they should be?

    • Katie Mae
      Katie Mae
      August 30, 2015

      Hi Marietta!

      I’m glad you and your family enjoyed the bars! Yes, they are very moist. I really enjoyed this aspect and it seems many others to do. However, I also know that many want a dryer version as well, so I will be creating a similar recipe in the near future to meet that request. For now, you can reduce the moistness if you’d like to by using less apple juice and/or less banana.

  11. Kathleen
    January 16, 2016

    Hello Katie!
    I came across this recipe during the holidays and just made it! Oh my! This is going to be s staple for sure! I made a double batch thinking that I would like it but didn’t realize just how much I would! My husband loves it too, which is such a plus! Super flavorful, exceeded my expectation for moist, very satisfying and filling and healthy! I have put some in the freezer and I plan to defrost, slice up and serve at our next week’s Bible study group. Thank you for your wonderful recipes! I really enjoy the way you cook and I very much appreciate your sharing with us all!

    • Katie Mae
      Katie Mae
      January 17, 2016

      Fabulous, Kathleen!! I’m so glad you and your husband loved these bars! That was very smart of you to do a double batch – they tend to disappear before your eyes! I hope your Bible study enjoys them just as much!!

  12. Greg
    March 3, 2016

    These look delicious. Do you happen to have a calorie count for rhem?

    • Katie Mae
      Katie Mae
      March 3, 2016

      Thanks, Greg! If you make 1 batch and cut it into twelve bars, each bar would be around 300 calories. These are great for a hearty snack, healthy treat, or to take on a hike. If you want to decrease the amount of calories you can replace some or all of the apple juice with water, or you can reduce or cut out the dates and/or walnuts. Hope this helps!