This delicious and easy Banana Oatmeal Bars recipe is wholesome goodness! Packed with ripe bananas, hearty oats, and a hint of sweetness, these soft and chewy bars make for a delightful and nutritious snack or breakfast treat.
All you need is one bowl and one pan!
There's nothing better than Easy Oatmeal Bars with subtle hints of cinnamon and vanilla to satisfy your snack craving or mix up your breakfast routine! These soft & chewy Banana Bars with Oats are no exception! Wowza, are they good! Just like our homemade banana bread!
There's something extraordinary about oatmeal breakfast bars; the bonus is this recipe is soooo simple to make. We see why people love it so much. Try it, and you'll discover the perfect balance of flavors and textures in every bite.
If you're a nutty peanut butter fan, try our Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars.
Why These Oatmeal Bars Are So Good!
- SIMPLE & EASY RECIPE. This easy-to-follow recipe is made with pantry staples and comes together in one bowl.
- FAMILY-FRIENDLY. A fantastic grab-n-go breakfast or snack idea, post-workout pick-me-up, or healthy dessert for the entire family.
- HEALTHY WHOLE GRAINS. Mega flavorful and wholesome! You make these oatmeal bars with no refined sugar and whole grains! Yay, for healthy, nutritious, and delicious!
There are a few wholesome ingredients baked into your healthy banana oatmeal bars:
- Bananas - overripe bananas (you know, those spotty bananas sitting on your counter) make the best addition because they add sweetness and are easy to mash.
- Old-fashioned oats (not instant)
- Butter - butter or melted coconut oil for healthy fats.
- Honey - you can use honey or maple syrup in your bars.
- Egg - binds the recipe and gives it its soft texture.
- Baking soda - a leavening agent to give the batter a little lift.
- Cinnamon - a hint of warm spice elevates the recipe.
- Sea salt
- Pure vanilla extract - we prefer real vanilla extract.
- Whole wheat flour - or a combo of all-purpose white and whole wheat, depending on your preference)
- Chocolate morsels - an optional ingredient, but semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips are incredible!
Find the full ingredient list and instructions in the printable recipe card below.
Substituions & Variations
- FLOUR OPTIONS. We like using the healthy option of whole wheat flour, but regular all-purpose flour or a combination also works. You can also use a 1:1 gluten-free flour option. Try our Banana Almond Butter Muffins if you need a gluten-free recipe.
- SWEETENER - you can use honey or maple syrup in your bars. If you prefer a sweeter bar, use ¾ cup brown sugar.
The possibilities for delicious add-ins to change up these banana bars are endless! Dried fruit, coconut, chocolate, caramel, nuts, and M&Ms will all work! Add ground flax seeds if you like.
In addition to topping with a handful of pumpkin seeds, if you want to take your bars to the next level, here's a sweet little combo to try!! Make them Peanut Butter Banana Oatmeal Bars.
- Mix a tablespoon of creamy natural peanut butter (or almond butter) and ¼ cup of white chocolate in the microwave.
- Once melted, place the mixture in a Ziploc baggie, snip a corner, and drizzle it onto your Banana Oatmeal Squares.
Can you believe it takes only one bowl and one pan to make this recipe?
The banana flavor in these Banana Oatmeal Bars makes it a classic. Let's get baking!
- Line Your Pan & Preheat Oven. Line your 8×8 baking pan with parchment paper. This makes it easy to get your bars out when they’re done cooking. You can also spray your pan with a non-stick spray as an alternative. Then, preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
- Mix Ingredients. Next, in a large bowl, mash your banana with a fork or potato masher. Then combine the other wet ingredients, melted coconut oil, and honey (or sugar if using) (Image 1). Add egg, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, and vanilla, mixing well (Image 2). Add dry ingredients—rolled oats and flour and mix until well combined (Image 3). (Add any optional chocolate chips or chunks. See recipe notes for suggestions.)
- Bake. Place the batter into your prepared baking pan (Image 4). Finally, bake oatmeal bars in the oven for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. **Don't overcook your bars, or they'll get too dry!
- Cool. Remove from the oven and let the bars cool completely in the baking dish. Once cooled, lift the parchment paper with the bars from the dish and transfer them to a cutting board.
Your whole house should smell absolutely fantastic at this point!
PRO TIP: spray your measuring cup with non-stick spray before putting your honey in – it will slide right out!
- PAN: Use an 8-inch square baking dish for the recipe or if you'd like thinner bars, use a 9-inch square. Remember to line your pan with parchment paper so the bars come out of the baking dish easily!
- OATS. We recommend using old-fashioned oats instead of instant or quick oats in this oatmeal banana bar recipe for optimal results. Using quick oats may result in overly dense bars.
- ADD-INS. The possibilities for delicious add-ins for your banana bars are endless! Dried fruit, coconut, chocolate, caramel, nuts, and M&Ms will all work!
How to Store
We recommend making a double batch and storing some for later!
To Freeze: Bake as directed and allow your Banana Oat Bars to cool completely. Cut into bars, then wrap individually in foil or plastic. Place wrapped bars in a freezer bag for later. Thaw for at least one hour before eating.
To Store: Layer the bars between waxed paper in an airtight container. Store in the refrigerator for 3 - 5 days. Bring back to room temperature before serving.
With whole grains and old-fashioned oats, these bars are healthy. Oats are among the healthiest grains on earth. They’re a gluten-free whole grain and a great source of essential vitamins, minerals, fiber, antioxidants, and heart-healthy! So these bars a packed with healthy ingredients you don't find in pre-packaged food.
They’re chewy but maintain their bar shape when you’re holding/biting into one. It's like baked oatmeal in texture. We recommend storing them in the refrigerator.
Yes, you can use maple syrup, honey, agave, brown sugar, or coconut sugar to sweeten your oatmeal bars.
More Healthy Oatmeal Bars
Love this Banana Oat Bars recipe? Please leave a 5 star ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating in the recipe card below ⬇️ and/or a review in the comment section further down.
Banana Oatmeal Bars Recipe
- Large Mixing Bowl
- Mixing spoon or spatula
- 8 x 8 baking pan
- parchment paper
- 3 medium ripe bananas (about 1 cup)
- ½ cup butter or melted coconut oil
- ½ cup honey (or ¾ cup brown sugar)
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups old fashioned oats (not instant)
- 1½ cups whole wheat flour (or a combo of white and whole wheat depending on your preference)
- 1 cup chocolate morsels (optional)
- 1 tablespoon creamy peanut butter (optional)
- ¼ cup white chocolate (optional)
- Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).
- In a large mixing bowl, mash bananas. Next, stir in melted coconut oil and honey. Add egg, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, and vanilla, mixing well.
- Add in oats and flour and mix until well combined. (Add any optional mix-ins like chocolate morsels. See notes for suggestions)
- Spread mixture in a parchment-lined 8x8 inch baking dish. Bake in the preheated oven for about 25-30 minutes or until golden brown and bars are set.
- Remove from the oven and let the bars cool completely in the baking dish. Once cooled, lift the parchment paper with the bars from the dish and transfer them to a cutting board.
Optional Peanut Butter Topping
- Once cooled, you can melt melting the peanut butter and white chocolate in a small bowl in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time until soft. Then, place it in a sandwich baggie and drizzle it over the top of the bars. Enjoy!
This post was originally published January 12, 2019. It was republished with enhanced instructions and images on June 26, 2023.