Not quite read to jump into the fall flavors yet? We feel you. Fall is upon us and according to my Urban Outfitters emails, it's time for sweaters and pumpkin spice errthang. However, in Florida we still have another 2-3 more months of unwavering summer heat. With the mercury rising to a whopping 90+ degrees yesterday, we were reluctant to pick up any butternut squashes or cinnamon brooms at the market.
Instead of jumping right into fall flavors after Labor day, we decided to celebrate the end of summer with a wide variety of summer produce including corn, zucchinis, eggplants, and of course, strawberries. Why not give all this gorgeous produce a last hurrah before jumping into seasonal autumn dishes? With strawberries still at reasonable prices, we decided to pick up a basket and try combining a few of our of our favorite pre-workout foods: chia seed anything, fruit, and oat bars.
Queue the strawberry lemon oatmeal bars.
Okay, let’s get one thing straight – I’ve had my share of oat bars, both homemade and store-bought. Store bought oat bars are typically dense and also include some preservatives to keep ‘em on the shelf longer. They’re good, but nothin’ like homemade. What Luke and I absolutely love about these oat bars is that they’re chewy and soft, similar to the texture of a cookie fresh out the oven.
There’s some sort of baking magic that happens when rolled oats, smashed bananas, and some chopped pitted dates come together. Best part about these is that you don’t have to feel guilty about having 1 or 5. Also, you can lick the spoon without fear of salmonella, one of the many perks of vegan baking.
Forget that pre-workout, green shake powder abomination you’re drinking these days. These strawberry lemon oatmeal bars are chock full of the good kind of the energy-filled sugar from dates, strawberries, and bananas. Eat these a couple of hours before a moderate run or workout, and you’ll definitely feel a difference.
Whole foods>processed foods any day.
Tell us what your favorite energy bars or oat bars are in the comments below! Heck, if this is your favorite oat bar, show us a picture!
We hope you love these strawberry lemon oatmeal bars!
<3 Sam and Luke
Strawberry Lemon Oatmeal Bars
Strawberry Lemon Chia Jam
- 2 cups fresh strawberries, sliced
- 1 tsp organic cane sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 tbsp chia seeds
- Juice from 2 lemons
- 2 cups rolled oats
- 3 ripe bananas smashed
- 1 cup chopped pitted dates
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
Crumble Top (optional, but highly recommended)
- 1 tbsp non-dairy, vegan butter
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 1 tbsp organic cane sugar
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- In a medium sauce pan, cook strawberries, water, and sugar for 10-15 minutes, or until strawberries soften.
- Add chia seeds and let strawberry jam cook for an additional 5 minutes until chia seeds have soaked up some liquid. Take off heat and add lemon juice.
- In a mixing bowl, smash bananas until mushy. Add rolled oats, chopped pitted dates, vanilla extract, baking powder, and salt. Mix until a sticky dough forms. If it's a little crumbly, that's okay. Grease an 8x8 pan or a small circular baking ban with vegan butter. Press oat mixture evenly into pan so it makes sort of a crust. Spread chia jam evenly across oat crust.
- In a small dish combine the crumble top ingredients. Sprinkle evenly on top of oats/chia jam.
- Bake on middle rack for 40 minutes, or until the sides start to lift off of pan and look a bit golden brown. Let cool, slice and store refrigerated in tupperware container for a week.