I have been trying to eat better at work and avoid unnecessary snack trips for unhealthy and expensive snacks during the day, so while pursuing the web looking at different recipes for granola type bars I could make I ran into the 4 Ingredient Banana Nut Bars from The Kitchn. I liked how simple the recipe was so I went to work making some with what I happened to have on hand in my kitchen on that particular day, which happened to be Oats, bananas, Coconut Flakes, and dried blueberries. While the original recipe did not include any egg my mix seemed a bit dry so I threw one in to help bind everything together and add a bit of extra protein into the mix. From that first round of bars I have started to experiment with different additions and subtractions to switch it up and find what I like best.
Regardless if you follow the orignal inspiration recipe or my version below these snack bars are quick to make and great as a quick, healthy and filling breakfast, snack during the day, or as a pre gym energy snack.
OAT AND SESAME SNACK BAR
Makes about 16 1 1/2″ squares
This Recipe makes a particularly dense bar which is why I suggest cutting them into such small pieces. You can make them less dense by adding some chopped dried fruit to the mix. Either way they are filling, healthy and tasty. I used powdered peanut butter because it has less fat than regular peanut butter but feel free to substitute the normal stuff in its place. This recipe is very forgiving so feel free to experiment and substitute ingredients as you see fit for your tastes and pantry contents.
8oz Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
1 Ripe Yellow Plantain (about 5oz)
2 Ripe Bananas (about 6oz)
1 Large egg
2oz Chopped Almonds
1 Tbsp + 1 Tsp Sesame Seeds
1 Tsp Blue Agave
1 Tsp + 1/2 Tsp of Ground Cinnamon
1/2 Tsp Kosher Salt
2 Tsp Powdered Peanut Butter (available at Health Food Stores)
Preheat your oven to 350°F
In a large bowl mash together the Bananas and Plantain making sure there are no large chunks in the mix. (When I made mine the Bananas and the Plantain were still a bit hard so I sliced them into pieces before mashing to help incorporate, by nature the plantain is less soft than the banana but the mix comes together with enough man power)
Once the Banana and Plantain are mashed up add the egg, powdered peanut butter, 1 tsp of the Cinnamon (save the rest for the top of the bars), Blue Agave, and Salt. Mix well until all ingredients are incorporated.
Add in the Oats, Chopped Almonds, and 1tsp of the Sesame (save the rest for the top of the bars) and mix well.
Once everything is incorporated turn out the mix into a non stick or grease 7×7 (or 6×6) baking pan.
Sprinkle the top of the bars with the remaining sesame seeds and cinnamon.
Bake for about 30 minutes until the mix is solid and has browned.Let cool for about 10 minutes in the pan on a cooling rack then turn the bars out of the pan on to the rack and allow them to cool completely.
Cut into 16 pieces and enjoy!