These cookie bars combine almond butter, hearty oats, dark chocolate and coconut sugar for a delicious healthier treat!
These chocolate oatmeal almond butter cookie bars have the stamp of approval from my hubby! You would never guess they are vegan and gluten-free. They taste just as good as any version containing refined flour and eggs. Try them and let me know if you like them!
Let’s chat ingredients
You will need a 16 ounce jar of almond butter. Select a kind that is just almonds with no added sugar or salt. This serves as the “flour” for this recipe. You will be surprised how it bakes up! When you are making these cookie bars, you will notice the almond butter makes the dough very thick and it will require a bit of elbow grease. In addition, when you go to add in the chocolate you have to cut it in with your spoon.
Speaking of chocolate, I like to use dark chocolate bars for this recipe. You will need two 3 ounce chocolate bars and you will roughly chop them. The smaller pieces of chocolate will melt into the bars giving them a delicious chocolate flavor. If you use chocolate chips instead of bars, it will taste a bit different but will still be delicious!
Chia seeds serve as the “egg” in these bars. When you combine ground chia seeds with water, they gel up and help bind other ingredients together. Chia is high in omega 3s and fiber.
Coconut sugar, also called coconut palm sugar, is derived from the sap of a coconut palm. It is an unrefined sugar that still contains minerals like iron, zinc, potassium and calcium and even contains antioxidants. Coconut sugar is brown in color and lends a brown color to most baked goods. While it is a healthier alternative to white table sugar, it is still sugar; which means it is high in calories. Consumed in excess, added sugars may contribute to weight issues, diabetes and other diseases. You can find coconut sugar in most grocery stores in the sugar section or in the natural foods area.
These cookie bars are:
filled with fiber and healthy fats
easy to freeze!
This recipe is adapted from Megan Gilmore’s recipe “Deep-dish Chocolate Chip Cookie” that is found in her “No Excuses Detox” cook book. Check out her website detoxinista.com for all kinds of free recipes and also check out her amazing cookbooks!
If you make it with chocolate chips, the chocolate is less uniform throughout (see above photo) and the bars are lighter in color. Both options are good!
Love Cookies? Me too! A few more to try…
- Vegan Chocolate Chunk and Tahini Oatmeal Cookies
- Double Peanut Butter Cup Cookies
- Chocolate Chip and Oat Cookie Bars
Chocolate Oatmeal Almond Butter Cookie Bars
- 2 tablespoons ground chia seeds
- 6 tablespoons water
- 16 ounce jar of almond butter (salt-free and sugar-free)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup coconut sugar
- ½ cup rolled oats (gluten-free if needed)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- 2 three ounce dark chocolate bars, chopped (or 1 ½ cups dairy free semi sweet or dark chocolate chips
- Line a 9 x 9 dish with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- In a medium to large sized bowl, combine ground chia seeds with water and set aside for 2-3 minutes. (I grind my chia seeds in a coffee grinder)
- To the chia mixture add the jar of almond butter and vanilla extract. Stir to combine.
- Next add coconut sugar, gluten free rolled oats, baking soda, and salt. Stir until well combined. This dough will be very thick. Depending on what kind of almond butter you use, you may have to use the spoon to cut in and kind of chop up the dough. Almond butter that is runny will mix better, but any almond butter will work.
- Add the chopped dark chocolate or chocolate chips. Whatever variety you decide to use, it should be about 1 1/2 cups of chocolate. Work the chocolate in by chopping up the dough with a spoon.
- Transfer dough to parchment lined dish. Press down evenly until the dough is distributed evenly and is fairly flat on the surface.
- Bake for 35 minutes until lightly golden around edges. Let rest for at least 60 minutes before cutting. The cooler they are the easier they will be to cut and serve. I only keep them on the counter for 1 day. If they last longer than this, please put in a sealed container in the fridge or you can freeze them for later use.