I love these No-Bake Peanut Butter Oat Bars mostly because they can be made in a few minutes and served pretty quickly as well. Normally when I make oat-filled bars, I bake them and call them granola bars. But in a recent meet-up with my raw blogger friend Gena, I was inspired to try simply chilling nut/oat bars instead of baking them. I was a bit skeptical that the oats would be soggy and lacking in flavor. But my taste test was surprising..
Back to School. Gena and I were filming our Back to School special featuring tips and recipes for back to school. This bar recipe made it into Gena’s 5-minute lunch packing segment. Video#2 here. I had to try them!
Later that week I whipped up my own version of Gena’s recipe. You can find Gena’s recipe on her site Choosing Raw: 5 minute No Bake Sunflower Oat Bars.
I strayed from Gena’s recipe a bit, but still loved my bar recipe – her technique for chilling raw bars is a winner! I was pleased by the peanut butter maple flavor of my bar recipe variation – accented with cinnamon. I really liked the bits of chia seeds I chose to sprinkle in as well. The goldenberries and goji berries added a sweet-tart, chewy fruit layer to each bite. Totally love this easy, healthy, portable snack bar.
For my second “oat bar” attempt I added in raw sunflower seeds. I actually found the chilled sunflower seeds a bit too firm and buttery for my tastes. Maybe roasted sunflower seeds would suite me better. No bad, but I preferred the light crunch of the chia seeds. I might try some chopped cashews or pecans next time. You can even use almond butter or sunflower butter (as Gena’s recipe did) in place of peanut if you’d like. So many variations to these wonderful bars Genna dreamed up.
Yum Idea -> crumble a bar in a bowl, add a splash of milk and serve like cereal! Add fresh fruit for a healthy, fast, oat and nut butter-infused breakfast.
And yes, kids will love making these bars themselves! Since they are no-bake, they can really do it all. From ingredients, to mixing and patting the mixture down in the pan – and placing in the fridge. Start to finish kid-friendly cooking. (Let mom or dad do the bar slicing though!)
Here’s the recipe I made and loved best..
No-Bake Peanut Butter Oat Bars
makes about 12 bars
1 3/4 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup mixed super food dried fruit (goldenberries, mulberries, goji berries)
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 1/2 Tbsp chia seeds
a few dashes cinnamon
1/2 cup room temperature creamy peanut butter
*note, if using a new jar of peanut butter and a little oil off the top gets folded in – that is a good thing. Otherwise you may want to also add in 1 Tbsp of your favorite healthy oil to give the bars a bit more plushness.
1. Add all ingredients to a large mixing bowl.
2. Fold well until all the oats are soaked in nut butter and maple syrup.
3. Pour into a dish. I used a basic 9″ cake pan. The size of your pan will alter how thick your bars are. A good thickness is about 3/4 of an inch.
4. Chill in fridge until firm enough to slice. However, these bars are delicious a bit softened as well! Slice into squares and wrap in plastic wrap for to-go bars.