Banana Oatmeal Zucchini Bars
Oatmeal meets sweet ripe bananas and hidden grated zucchini for a convenient oat bar on the go whether it’s for breakfast on the way out the door or a mid afternoon snack.
Hello fall weather! Wow, what a gorgeous weekend it’s shaped up to be. Perfect football weather, walking the dog, and some golf which is where we found ourselves yesterday. When the temps start to drop I get pretty anxious to pull out some ‘comfort food’ recipes such as…baked oatmeal.
Last fall I was on a kick for several months of different variations of baked oatmeal. To the point that I was worried I burned myself out on it indefinitely. Good news, I still love baked oatmeal! I just needed cooler weather and oh, a few months of smoothies this summer and I’m faithfully returning to my baked oatmeal ways.
I have an obsession with anything banana. The Hubs likes to give me a bit of a hard time because most things I bake includes bananas. These Banana Oatmeal Zucchini bars are no exception and for good reason. I attribute my obsession with bananas partially to being overly restricted on the availability or should I say affordability of bananas while I lived in Australia for 3 months a few years back.
Australia takes their imports of food pretty serious and for good reason, they have a beautiful country to protect. Fun fact, all fresh produce is either grown there or comes from New Zealand. When weather conditions greatly impact a region where something like bananas is grown, it inflates the cost of those bananas significantly. So you know how here in the States we can go buy an entire bunch of bananas for under $2? Well ONE banana cost me $4 when I was in Australia. I was devastated to say the least. When I came back home people would ask me what I missed the most about the States when I was away…bananas was pretty high on that list!
Zucchini bread recipes are all the rage this time of year. There are gazillions (is that even a real number?) of recipes to choose from out there. I’m partial to this recipe for a few reasons. For one, it has the perfect balance of sweetness. It’s not dessert in your face sweet, but it’s not zucchini bitter either. It’s naturally sweetened by the ripe bananas and a touch of honey with the flavor of cinnamon and nutmeg truly disguising the fact that it contains a vegetable at all.
Banana Oatmeal Zucchini Bars are filling and satisfying from the protein and whole grains. Oatmeal is naturally a good source of protein and is crazy good for you, check it out. Add in some chopped walnuts and a scoop of unflavored protein powder (Jay Robb is my favorite) and you have yourself a filling oat bar to keep you going through whatever your day might throw at you.
Like a lot of my recipes, these are freezer friendly and are easy to whip up on a Sunday to enjoy all week long. Cut them into individuals servings, wrap in plastic, put in a ziploc bag and toss them in the freezer.
Whether you are storing them in the fridge or pulling one out of the freezer, I like to pop them in the microwave for 30 seconds (from fridge, longer if still frozen) and enjoy with a tall glass of milk or cup of coffee.
Last weekend when I was creating this recipe amongst a few others, Ramsey (our pup) started to get annoyed that I was still in the kitchen and not sitting on the couch with him. I think this next picture is his way of getting back at me. Notice anything out of place in this next picture? How I didn’t notice it when I was taking the photos, I have no idea. But I definitely had a good laugh when putting together this post. That giant hot pink blob in the background is his newest toy, his pink elephant.
Perhaps it was Ramsey’s way of saying you should enjoy this Banana Oatmeal Zucchini bake while cuddled up with your furry four-legged friend and a glass of milk. 🙂
What’s your favorite fall breakfast food?
- 3 c. oats
- 2 c. plus milk (I used unsweetened almond milk)
- 2 ripe bananas, mashed
- 3/4 c. shredded/grated zucchini (1 small zucchini)
- 1/4 c. chia seeds
- 1 scoop unflavored protein powder (I use Jay Robb Whey Unflavored, link in post)
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/4 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 3 Tbsp honey
- 3 syringes liquid stevia (or 3 more Tbsp honey)
- 1 Tbsp. cinnamon
- 1 tsp. nutmeg
- 1/2 c. walnuts (or other type of nut)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Using a small scoop of coconut oil, grease a 9X13 pan. Could use butter if you don't have coconut oil.
- Mash bananas using your hand while they are still in the peel. As the peel starts to break, dump mashed banana in a large bowl.
- Grate zucchini over the bowl.
- Add all other ingredients except walnuts.
- Whisk ingredients together. Batter will be slightly lumpy from the banana. May need to add extra milk if batter is too stiff. See image of batter in pan for an idea of consistency.
- Stir in walnuts.
- Pour batter into greased pan.
- Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes until toothpick comes out clean.
Store in refrigerator for longer shelf life. Best when enjoyed after microwaved for 30 seconds. Freezer friendly, wrap individual servings in plastic and place in ziploc bag to freeze.