STILL LOVELY : Oat Bars - Chef Says, "You Can Make Them"

Since I couldn't get the recipe for oat energy bars from Shannetta or Charlie, we asked Genea’s cousin Taylor for a recipe. I met her at Abi and Genea’s wedding 19 years ago. Taylor is a professional chef, and anything she bakes is hard to beat!

These oat protein bars will give you the stamina and energy you need to Run With It! I am planning to bake them myself this weekend, and chomp a few with a glass of milk before I go out for one of my neighborhood walks. In fact, I’ll probably put some in the freezer for a rainy day.

This is assuming I cannot sweet-talk my daughter-in-law Genea, the best cook on our staff, into baking a mega batch for all the runners-walkers-hikers-joggers-bikers-rollers-strollers in the family. Ooh, maybe we could have some for our Launch Party for the Run With It line this weekend!

Here’s the recipe with her notes.

Chef Taylor’s Oat Bars 

Created and Tested by: Chef Taylor LaTouche

Ingredients

  •   2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  •   ½ cup cane sugar
  •   1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  •   ½ teaspoon salt
  •   ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  •   2 eggs
  •   ½ cup almond milk
  •   ¼ cup applesauce
  •   1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  •   ¼ cup walnuts finely chopped
  •   ¼ cup dried cranberries

Procedure

  1.   Measure all the dry ingredients into a medium bowl.
  2.   Whisk the dry ingredients together using a fork.
  3.   In another larger bowl, measure all the wet ingredients. Then whisk the wet ingredients together.
  4.   Now combine the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients and give it a good stir.
  5.   Let the mixture set for 20 minutes so the oats absorb the moisture and the flavors of the oatmeal bars really blend. [Pause] 
  6. Then fold in the walnuts and cranberries and transfer the mixture to a baking dish lined with parchment paper. You want to bake it until it’s golden brown in color and firm when pressed against. If you use a square 9×9 baking dish like I did, you can easily cut the breakfast oatmeal bars into 16 squares.

 Tips from Chef Taylor for making superb breakfast oatmeal bars:

  1.   Let ingredients sit to absorb moisture. This is key to making the oatmeal bars recipe successfully and ensuring that it holds together without crumbling. The mixture needs to soak before baking, or it will not stick together.
  2.   Use a larger piece of parchment paper than necessary. This will allow some of the paper to hang over the sides, making it easier to lift the bars out of the pan and slice them neatly. Plus easier clean-up!
  3.   Double the recipe for a bigger crowd. The recipe doubles just fine. But if you double the recipe, use a larger baking dish and add 10 minutes to the baking time, or bake in two separate dishes.
  4.   Switch out the add-ins. The recipe is so versatile you can make it based on your taste preferences and available ingredients. I love the combination of cranberries and walnuts with oatmeal bars, but you can use other nuts, chocolates or seeds.

Speaking of eating on the patio, I’m hoping to BBQ for Mother’s Day. Do you have plans? Or Memorial Day, the unofficial first day of Summer. If YOU have some favorite energy-enhancing edibles and are willing to share your recipes, we would love to feature you. As summer will be here before we know it, think about runs, walks, hiking, biking, jogging, rolling and strolling. And BBQ grilled out on the patio!

Send me your thoughts about food, clothes, kids, exercise and Mother’s Day! Photos welcome!

Let’s talk soon!

 Michele

Michele Parish Zuniga

 michele@LovelyandStrong.com

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