These Medjool Date Apple Oat Bars are the perfect healthy lunchbox snack. Just six ingredients, no baking, vegan, gluten free and naturally sweetened with Medjool dates.
I was driving through East Lansing the other day–through the MSU campus–before the hustle and bustle of back-to-school had started. It had me thinking about those days in your early twenties, where everything feels like such a big deal. Like in that moment, the paper you had to write or the project that was due in eight hours, was a BIG. Freaking. DEAL.
And I kind of wish that I had some resources to help me realize that in that moment whatever was going on, it would pass. Something bigger and better was waiting on the other side. But then at the same time, it is as though you have to experience those crazy, “Oh my god what am I going to do?” moments to come out on the other side with a more collected self. A more knowledgeable self. Someone you can trust and tune into.
Learning from those experiences makes us stronger and more resilient. Because the next time the world feels like it is going to crash down on you, you say to yourself, “Oh hellz no. I got this.”
And whatever it was that you were going through didn’t seem so bad after all. Right?
Anyways. I suppose I could tell you I’ve been feeling a lot of overwhelm lately. I do this thing where I essentially feel like I can take on the world… Then logic kicks in and I am like “Uh wait, what did you just do?” But because I have experienced those crazy moments and times of freaking out, I know deep down there is nothing to worry about.
So to my HS or college kids reading this right now, know that “this too shall pass.” Even when it feels like the world is crashing down around you, you’ll come out stronger in the end. Just have faith and keep on keepin’ on.
And with that, I bring you a healthy back-to-school snack bar recipe! 😀 Which is perfect for both kids and adults alike.
Medjool Date Apple Oat Bars
These guys are vegan, gluten-free and made with no added sugars. Not even honey or maple syrup. I KNOW. I can hardly believe it myself. But that’s because we’re using the magical fruit that is Medjool dates, from Natural Delights.
I say this every time but GUYS… MEDJOOL DATES ARE THE BEST. They’ve easily become one of my go-to foods to have on hand at all times. Medjool dates make a great pre-workout energy boost, as well as a great source potassium for post-workout recovery. They are most definitely “nature’s power fruit.”
what you need
apple pie spice
natural nut or seed butter
dried apple pieces
Just 6 ingredients and less than 20 minutes needed for these Medjool Date Apple Oat Bars!
What holds the oat bars together is mainly the Medjool dates, which you process down to create a paste. That is then combined with your choice of nut or seed butter, before combining with the rest of the dry ingredients. The mixture is then pressed into a square pan, chilled for about 15 minutes, and cut into squares. That is it!
You have yourself a delicious, healthy snack for both kids and adults 🙂
Oh, and I decided to add a little peanut butter drizzle because I don’t know about you but I am ALL about that peanut butter-apple combo.
- 1 cup Medjool dates, packed (10-12 large dates)
- 1 TBS water
- 1 1/4 cups gluten-free rolled oats
- 2 TBS chia seeds
- 1 TBS apple pie spice*
- 1 cup dried apple slices, roughly chopped
- 1/3 cup natural nut or seed butter (no sugar added) plus more for drizzle if desired.
1. Line a square 8x8 or 9x9 pan with parchment paper, or use silicone pan. Set aside.
2. Make the date paste: In a small bowl soak dates in warm water for 5 minutes. If dates are fresh and juicy, no need to soak. If dates have been stored in fridge or feel dry, soak. Remove pits from dates and place in small blender or food processor. Process dates have broken down and paste forms. You may need to scrape down the sides of the blender cup or bowl, and add 1 tablespoon of water to get the dates moving. 1 cup packed dates should yield roughly 1/2 cup date paste.
3. Add all dry ingredients to large bowl.
4. Combine date paste and nut/seed butter (your choice) together before combining with rest of dry ingredients. Mixture will be thick and sticky.
5. Transfer mixture to prepared pan pressing evenly into all four corners. Transfer pan to freezer for 15 minutes to chill bars – this will make them easier to cut.
6. Remove bars from pan and place on cutting board. Using large sharp knife, cut oat bars into 16 squares. Drizzle with peanut butter if desired. Enjoy!
*If you don't have apple pie spice, simply combine 2 tsp ground cinnamon + 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg, 1/8 tsp all spice, 1/8 tsp ginger and dash of cloves.
Store in airtight container in fridge, up to two weeks.
Making this recipe? I would love to see it!
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SOME OF THE PRODUCTS I USED IN TODAY’S RECIPE
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