This is my first time sharing a recipe that is not mine, but it is one that I just love. My friend and fellow cooking instructor, Katelin Petersen, came up with these delicious Banana-Blueberry Bars. They are moist and hearty, and contain no salt, oil or refined sugar. They make an ideal breakfast, traveling, or dessert snack.
Katelin has a Master’s Degree in nutrition from Bastyr University. She is a nutritionist and culinary educator who inspires and supports people toward improving their health through the adoption of a healthy plant-based diet. You can visit Katelin’s website at www.katelinmae.com.
1 cup medjool dates (about 7), pitted and diced
1 1/2 cups apple juice
1 cup oat flour
2 cups rolled oats
¾ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
3 medium ripe bananas, diced
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup blueberries, frozen or fresh
½ cup walnuts
1. Place pitted and diced dates in a bowl with the apple juice. Set aside and soak for at least 20 minutes.
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9×9 baking dish (see note below) with parchment paper, making sure the sides are lined as well (cut slits in the corners of the paper so that it overlaps).
3. Combine the flour, oats, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a large bowl and set aside. Place the diced bananas, vanilla extract, apple juice, and dates into a blender and blend until creamy.
4. Pour the banana mixture into the dry ingredient bowl and mix with a fork. Fold in the blueberries and walnuts. Pour the batter into your baking dish and smooth the top. Bake for 30 minutes. Test for doneness by poking bars with a fork or knife. It should come out clean. The top should be a light brown. Let cool for 5-10 minutes before cutting and serving.
Preparation: 25 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Makes: 12-24 bars depending on how you cut them
Pan: I didn’t have a 9×9 pan, so I used my 9×13 pan and just cooked them for a little less time (about 25 minutes). Any size pan would work, just be sure to decrease the cooking time as bars get thinner.
Flour: For the oat flour, I grind rolled oats in my high-speed blender, but you can also use store-bought oat flour.
Apple juice: Try to get an apple juice with no added sugar.
Optional: The walnuts and/or blueberries may be omitted. If you do not have apple juice on hand, you can use water; the bars will be a little less sweet in this case.
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