Almond Butter Oatmeal Bars. Vegan. Gluten Free.

Oatmeal Bars. Vegan. Gluten Free.
Almond Butter Oatmeal Bars. Vegan. Gluten Free.

The weekend is in sight! And that means Mother’s Day is too.  Are you prepared?  We have fun plans for Sunday.  I hope you have something relaxing, fun or exciting in the works.  Homemade gifts I find the most touching.  I think these would make the perfect gift for that special woman in your life.  Kids can easily make these with a little help and they package up nicely with a cute ribbon.

This recipe was inspired by Ella Woodward’s cookbook and I have to say… they are so delicious.  They aren’t overly sweet, which was exactly how I love my oatmeal bars.  These bars are packed with protein, potassium and oats contain manganese, selenium, phosphorus, fiber, magnesium, and zinc. Oats are also rich in carotenoids, tocols (Vitamin E), flavonoids and avenanthramides – a class of polyphenols.  So they aren’t just tasty… they are good for you and do a body good.  So much better than pre-packaged granola bars from the store.

Ingredients:

4.5 cups of rolled oats (I used Bob’s Redmill GF oats)
2 ripe bananas
6 tablespoons of maple syrup
6 tablespoons of cashew or nut butter of your choice (Justin’s is my favorite)
4 tablespoons of melted coconut oil
1 tablespoon of ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
Optional:  Vegan mini chocolate chips

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.  In a small saucepan, mash the bananas with the back of a fork until mashed.  Then add your syrup, nut butter of choice, oil and ground cinnamon.  Over a medium heat, whisk to combine.  Once it starts to simmer, turn the burner down to low.  I keep whisking until creamy and it looks like below.

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Then to your stand mixer bowl add your oats.  Pour the hot banana mixture over the oats.  With the paddle attachment, blend the mixture until incorporated.

Take a 13 x 9 pan and spray it with baking spray.  Pour your mixture into the pan and using the back of a spatula – press the oat mixture down evenly into the pan. This takes a bit of time.   If using vegan chocolate chips – press them into the top of the mixture.   Then bake for 20 minutes or until golden around the edges.  Remove and let cool completely before slicing.  Store in an airtight container.

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fitness_update

Lately my pace has been getting faster but I just feel so blah when running.  I’m thinking allergies are bothering me – not quite sure but I’m getting the miles in and just grunting my way through it.  Here is my fitness recap for the week:

Sunday: 25 cycling miles
Monday: 4 treadmill miles/strength training
Tuesday: 8 outdoor miles
Wednesday: 4 treadmill miles/strength training
Thursday: 6 very pollen filled outdoor run.
Friday: Rest day

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— Knead to Cook

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