It’s starting to feel a little like spring around here. The snow has disappeared (thank god) though it rains most days, there are some breaks in the clouds with sunshine beaming through.
With spring comes all the spring baking – fruit galore and spring vegetables. Winter dishes are carb heavy and comforting, while Spring brings a lightness with crisp veggies, the return of the green smoothies, and a variety of fruit.
Even in the last few weeks, especially while on spring break (woot), I’ve enjoyed making smoothies, salads, and springy baked goods.
While certain fruits like blueberries, for example, aren’t quite in season – I can’t help but crave them in baked goods. Thankfully, frozen berries are available all year round and we’re always fully stocked in the freezer for things like smoothies, chia-seed jam, berry compote, and of course – baking.
Being pregnant during the winter (and holidays) meant lots of comfort food. Although winter produce is great, you just don’t crave those raw veggies as much. But next week marks 5 months (halfway!!) and I’m determined to eat as many fruits and vegetables as I can for baby. And sometimes, that also means fruit in baked goods. Hey – still counts right?
These Blueberry Oat Bars come together quickly, and you probably already have everything on hand. I’m sure you could even try them with frozen raspberries! or even Blackberries!
Bring on spring.
- 2 cups gluten-free rolled oats
- 1 1/4 cups oat flour (can use whole-wheat flour)
- 1/4 cup coconut sugar
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 egg, whisked
- 1 cup coconut oil, room temperature or slightly melted
- 3 1/2 cups frozen blueberries (can use fresh if you have 'em! reduce to 3 cups for fresh)
- 2 Tbsp coconut sugar
- 1 lemon, zested and juiced
- 2 Tbsp chia seeds
- 1 tbsp cornstarch
- Pulse 2 cups rolled oats in food processor or blender to soften, but still slightly maintain their shape.
- To make your own oat flour, add 2 cups oats to high speed blender to blend until fine flour forms. Measure out 1 1/4 cups.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line square 8" x 8" baking dish with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In mixing bowl, add pulsed whole oats, oat flour, coconut sugar and baking powder.
- Add coconut oil and egg. Mix with a spatula or wooden spoon until dough forms.
- Dough will be moist and should stick together. If too dry, add more coconut oil or a splash of non-dairy milk.
- If using frozen blueberries, microwave for 2 minutes to slightly thaw. Stir in coconut sugar, lemon zest, half of the lemon juice, and chia seeds. The chia seeds absorb the extra liquid and make it jam-like when baking. Mix together well and add cornstarch. Stir again.
- If using fresh blueberries, add 2 tablespoons of water to microwave-safe bowl before heating up.
- Place 3/4 of the dough in prepared baking dish, flatten with spatula and press with the back of a spoon.
- Spread Blueberry Filling on top evenly.
- Add a small handful of rolled oats to the leftover dough, and crumble remaining dough on top of blueberries in small clumps.
- Bake for 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool completely before slicing.
- Store in container on counter, in fridge or freeze for later.
- I prefer these bars chilled from the fridge, or heated up!