22 June 2015

Beautifully healthy banana, oat & chocolate munchy bars

Get this - the recipe contains no eggs, no flour and no fat other than that in the chocolate!  ~confused look~  I know!  How does it work?  Well, beautifully, is the answer - and before we go any further, I can see that this recipe would be a great candidate for those who are after a gluten-free cake recipe.  Just make sure that the oats you choose are gluten free versions.

When this recipe was drawn to my attention by a Facebook friend, I immediately thought "that has to be done".  I just couldn't see how an eggless, flourless, fatless cake bar could possibly taste like anything more than birdseed - and soggy birdseed at that.

Having made it, though, I can see how it works and what's more it takes just a twinkling to put together and I would anticipate could be adapted in many different and delicious ways.

The original recipe - which I followed to the letter .. oh hang on, no I didn't.  ~koff~  It'd be a cold day in hell when I EVER follow a recipe to the letter *chuckle* .. is here, on the Ambitious Kitchen blog.  Now you might have a more capable computer than me, but that blog slows my computer to a confused crawl, so I thought I'd blog my version of the recipe as soon as possible.

These yummy cake bars are just delicious.  We're using them as a treat to go with a cup of coffee at mid-morning or a cup of tea in the afternoon, but as you can eat them both warm and cold, I can quite easily see them with some ice cream or a spoonful of yoghurt as a dessert.  They really are that adaptable.

The flavour is reminiscent of a banana bread (perhaps not surprisingly, as the older the banana the better), but the texture is more of a sticky Brownie kind of affair.  The chocolate chips are scrummy but I can equally see them being luscious with a diced tart apple, or semi-dried apricots, coconut or even dates!  Mix and match - keep the chocolate chips but only add half and make up the rest with apple dice.  I can see there are going to be many and varied versions in our future.

Apart from how moreishly delicious they are, the BIG bonus is how easy they are to make.  All you need is a food processor, a bowl for mixing, a spoon and some cup measures.  Oh and a cake tin, of course.  Not to mention an oven, but then we're probably getting into the blinking obvious, now.  *wink*

Not that you'll have any left, but if (for some strange reason) you do, then these cake bars can be frozen.  You can freeze with or without their drizzle, just put them into a freezer container or a freezer bag - I separated mine with a layer of greaseproof paper, just to be sure - and in the freezer they go.  If you want to, once defrosted, you can give them a quick 30 seconds in the microwave to have hot versions for dessert.

There are no Cook's Tips for this one, as they're so simple to make!  So grab your ailing and old age pensioner bananas and give them a rewarding second life.  It's the decent thing to do.  (And don't forget to get the coffee or tea ready!).

31 July 2016

It's been a while since I made these, as we've been using our old aged bananas in smoothies and suchlike.  However, I wanted to make these again so I bought the bananas and announced they should not be eaten.  LOL  This time, I made the mix with apple sauce as I didn't have any mango puree to hand and included dark chocolate chips in the mix too.  The bars came out slightly lighter in colour (see above), but no less tasty and the chocolate chips were a great addition.


Ingredients :

2.25 cups coarse porridge oats
0.5 tsp baking powder
0.5 tsp bicarbonate of soda
0.25 tsp sea salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
3 very ripe bananas
2 tsp vanilla extract
0.25 cup mango puree (apple sauce is good too)
0.25 cup runny honey
100g dark chocolate chips

For chocolate drizzle:

4-5 squares of dark chocolate.

Method :

1.  Preheat oven to 180degC/350degF/Gas 4.  Oil a 9 x 9 inch square baking tin (I used a silicone version) with a little olive or light vegetable oil.  Add a strip of baking parchment as wide as the base of the tin, that extends higher than the sides, to aid removal of the cake when cooked.

2.  Place oats into a food processor and whizz until the oats resemble a coarse flour.

3.  Pour the oats into a medium bowl and add the baking powder, bicarb., salt and cinnamon.  Mix them through well and set aside.

4.  Break up the bananas into chunks and put them into the food processor.  Add the vanilla, mango puree (or apple sauce) and honey.  Whizz until all the chunks are gone and the mixture is smooth.

5.  Pour the banana mixture into the oaty mixture, add the chocolate chips and stir until just combined.  Don't be tempted to over-stir.

6.  Pour the resulting mixture into your prepared tin and level the surface.

7.  Bake for 15-20 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool for 10-15 minutes in the tin, on a wire rack.  Then, using the greaseproof paper, gently remove the cake and set it onto the rack for drizzling.

8.  Prepare the drizzle by placing the chocolate into a bowl over a pan of simmering water.  Make sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water.  Leave the chocolate to melt and don't be tempted to over stir, or the chocolate may seize and separate.

9.  Once melted, remove from the pan of water and using a silicone spatula or the back of a large spoon, drizzle the chocolate over the top of bars.

Cut the bars into 8 pieces and enjoy!

Printable version


  1. I love the look of the texture on these bars... it's quite dense but chewy too. Lovely stuff!

    1. It's not actually as dense as I was expecting, Dom. I was quite agreeably surprised at how much the mixture rose in the tin. :) However, they are so scrummy they really should be bad for you. lol

  2. This is just what the doc ordered. I have a problem of plenty with mango's (homegrown) and was searching for a recipe. 2 Q's please:
    tsp means tea spoons right?
    How can I increase the qty of mango pulp without spoiling the recipe?


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