Breakfast and snack time just got easier for military spouses thanks to these naturally-sweetened Berry Oat Breakfast Bars. They’re like overnight oats, but you don’t need a spoon. You can eat them on the way out the door, or slow down and make them a teatime treat. Plus, if you’re gearing up for a PCS, this recipe uses up a good quantity of pantry items. Use whatever nuts and seeds you have on hand. Don’t skimp on the fresh berries though. My family said the fresh raspberries and blueberries made these bars extra delicious, but you can use whichever berries are in season and selling for a decent price at your local store.
For quite a while, I used somebody else’s meal plan which was super convenient, but I’m finding that I spend a lot less on groceries each week when I make my meal plan using ingredients I have on hand. I’m forced into it with an upcoming PCS, but it makes good financial sense to take a little time to plan my meals this way each week. To make meal planning easy, I typically alternate oats and smoothies for breakfast each morning.
These are vegan and gluten free (if you use gluten free oats), so they’re really versatile to take to gatherings.
Make sure to put these on your meal prep list. They need to firm up in the fridge overnight.
Berry Oat Breakfast Bars
Makes 24 bars
· 3 cups rolled oats
· 3 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
· ¾ cup pecans
· ½ cup sunflower seeds
· 1 14-ounce can coconut milk
· ¼ cup coconut oil
· ¼ cup maple syrup
· 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
· 10 dates, pitted
· 3 ripe bananas
· ½ cup fresh raspberries, rinsed
· ½ cup fresh blueberries, rinsed
· Line a 9×12 inch baking dish with parchment paper, letting the paper hang over the long edges of the dish.
· In a large mixing bowl, mix together the rolled oats, unsweetened shredded coconut, pecans, and sunflower seeds.
· In a food processor, combine the coconut milk, coconut oil, maple syrup, pure vanilla extract, dates, and bananas, until smooth.
· Transfer the mixture in the food processor to the large mixing bowl. Combine with the dry mixture.
· Carefully fold in the fresh berries.
· Smooth the mixture into the prepared pan.
· Refrigerate overnight.
· Carefully transfer the oats out of the dish and onto a cutting board by lifting up the parchment paper.
· Cut into 24 bars.
Show us your bars on social using #IDthrive. We’re looking forward to seeing what you make!
Kimberly Bacso is the operations director and co-founder of InDependent. She began her career working as a certified public accountant and earning a Master of Business Administration degree, but after becoming an Army spouse and mom, she followed her passions for teaching and wellness and became a yoga teacher. In addition to her work for InDependent, she is the managing editor of Legacy Magazine, a print publication celebrating service member families. She is a lifelong vegetarian who loves experimenting with new recipes and enjoying a good cup of tea. She can often be found traveling off the beaten path with her husband and daughter.
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