With just five ingredients and a texture and flavor that’s similar to a soft oatmeal cookie, these Banana Oatmeal Bars are a nutritious (and yummy!) make-ahead breakfast or snack.

Banana oatmeal bars cut into rectangles.

Banana Oatmeal Bars

I am so happy to share this recipe today because it has become a new staple weekday breakfast in our house. It’s been amazing to have this option to make ahead and stash in the fridge to grab on mornings when the kids need a little more time to sleep…and still need a substantial breakfast.

These are easy to take on the go, you can cut them into sticks or squares, and they can be eaten chilled out of the fridge or warmed up slightly.

It’s basically like eating a bowl of oatmeal, but in bar form!

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Ingredients

Here’s a look at the ingredients you need to have on hand to make this recipe so you know what to grab from the pantry or store.

Ingredients for banana oatmeal bars.
  • Bananas: Very ripe bananas are key to the sweetness and flavor in this recipe. They should have lots of brown spots, which indicates natural sugars.
  • Instant oats: You can use store-bought instant oats or quickly grind up rolled oats in a blender or food processor. You can also use oat flour. All work to make an oatmeal bar with a nicely uniform consistency.
  • Peanut butter: Peanut butter adds protein and beneficial fats to help the bars keep us satisfied. It also helps the bars hold together easily without using egg. To make these nut-free, use sunflower seed butter. (You can also use almond butter if you prefer.)
  • Milk: I usually use whole milk in my baking, but any kind of plain unsweetened milk will work here.
  • Chocolate chips (or dried fruit): We love these topped with chocolate chips, but you could also use dried fruit or fresh or frozen blueberries if you prefer.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Below is an overview of the process involved in making this recipe so you know what to expect. Scroll down to the end of the post for the full amounts and timing.

how to make banana oatmeal bars in grid of images.
  1. Preheat the oven and line an 8×8-inch pan with parchment paper. (I allow 2 inches to hang over the edges on either side so the bars are easy to lift out and slice.) Add the ingredients to a medium bowl.
  2. Stir well to combine thoroughly.
  3. Pour into the prepared pan, smoothing evenly. Add chocolate chips.
  4. Bake until firm to the touch and lightly golden around the edges.
Banana oatmeal bars cut into rectangles with hand holding one.

How to Store

Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for up to 6 months. Enjoy cold or warmed slightly according to how you prefer to eat them. (We like them both ways!)

Banana oatmeal bars on pink kids plate.

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Banana oatmeal bars cut into rectangles.

Banana Oatmeal Bars

With just five ingredients and a texture and flavor that's similar to a soft oatmeal cookie, these Banana Oatmeal Bars are a nutritious (and yummy!) make-ahead breakfast or snack.
5 from 69 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Cuisine American
Course Breakfast
Calories 164kcal
Servings 12

Ingredients

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Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degree F and line an 8×8-inch pan with parchment paper. (I allow 2 inches to hang over the edges on either side so the bars are easy to lift out and slice.)
  • Add the ingredients to a medium bowl. Stir well to combine thoroughly.
  • Pour into the prepared pan, smoothing evenly.
  • Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until firm to the touch and lightly golden around the edges. Let cool fully in the pan, then lift out onto a cutting board and slice.

Notes

  • Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for up to 6 months. Enjoy cold or warmed slightly.
  • Use rolled oats that have been ground up in the blender, instant oats, or oat flour.
  • Leave out the chocolate chips or add dried fruit instead if you prefer.
  • Use gluten-free oats to make this gluten-free.
  • Use sunflower seed butter to make this nut-free.
  • Add ¼ cup honey or maple syrup to make this sweeter if your family prefers.

Nutrition

Calories: 164kcal, Carbohydrates: 21g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 8g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Cholesterol: 1mg, Sodium: 99mg, Potassium: 235mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 7g, Vitamin A: 34IU, Vitamin C: 2mg, Calcium: 28mg, Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Rate in the comments and tag @yummytoddlerfood on IG!

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    So easy and tasty! My 5 and 1 year olds both helped make these and they were a hit. Filling too! Definitely will be making again.

  2. 5 stars
    I made these and baked for 40 mins and they’re very soft! Are they supposed to be sort of mushy? Either way, the flavor is amazing. It may be my own fault. I used oatmeal cereal I had leftover because at its base it’s ground up oats! Maybe that was my mistake lol

  3. 5 stars
    Amazing how just 5 ingredients can taste soooo good. So stinkin easy and so delicious. Can’t wait to give these to my 13 months old!!

  4. 5 stars
    I made this yesterday evening and we’re out already! It’s that delicious! Can’t wait to make more of it tomorrow! 🙂

  5. 5 stars
    Omg this was totally absolutely amazing. YUMMMmMmmMm going to be making this one always and forever. Thank you!

    1. I guess it may be possible to press the batter into each round. You’d want them each to be about the same thickness as a bar though.

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