Apple Oatmeal Bars

4.67

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These healthy apple oatmeal bars are made with wholesome ingredients and studded with fresh apple chunks. They’re kid-friendly, portable and perfect for meal prep. Vegan + gluten-free.

Fall is right around the corner and you know what that means?! Time for apple season! One of my all-time favorite EBF recipes is this apple cinnamon baked oatmeal, but this year I wanted to create more of a portable apple oatmeal recipe. Cue these apple oatmeal bars!

They’re denser and more portable, making them perfect for a grab-and-go breakfast or snack or a great addition to your kid’s lunchbox. And don’t worry, they’re still packed with tons of cinnamon apple goodness. They’re so good! I can’t wait for you to try them.

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Three apple oatmeal bars stacked on one another on a cooling rack.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Easy to make: They come together quickly in one bowl!
  • Healthy: These bars are packed with simple, nutritious ingredients. Plus, they’re vegan, dairy-free + gluten-free.
  • Family-friendly: Kiddos and adults will love these apple bars. They’re also nut-free, so make for a great back-to-school snack!
  • Versatile: Enjoy these apple oatmeal bars for a quick grab-and-go breakfast, mid-day snack or healthy dessert.
Ingredients measured out to make Apple Oatmeal Bars: applesauce, quick oats, coconut oil, cinnamon, baking powder, sea salt, maple syrup, vanilla, ground flaxseed and apple.

Ingredients Needed

  • quick oats – the base of our apple bars! I like Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Quick Cooking Rolled Oats.
  • applesauce – adds moistness without the need for a ton of oil. It also adds natural sweetness and helps in binding the ingredients together. Make sure you’re using unsweetened applesauce!
  • maple syrup – the perfect natural sweetener that pairs perfectly with apples and cinnamon. Just make sure you’re using pure maple syrup, not pancake syrup!
  • ground flaxseed – to make these bars vegan we’re using ground flaxseed instead of an egg, which helps bind the ingredients together. It’s also a fantastic source of omega-3 fatty acids and fiber.
  • coconut oil – helps to keep the apple oat bars moist.
  • vanilla extract – a nice flavor enhancer.
  • baking powder – helps the bars rise.
  • cinnamon – the perfect spice pairing for these apple bars.
  • sea salt – to bring all the flavors together.
  • apple – I like to use a crisp, sweet variety like Honeycrisp, Gala or Pink Lady, but any variety of apple will work! The apple chunks add a fresh burst of flavor and a nice texture to the bars. And there’s no need to peel the apple, as the skin adds extra fiber and nutrients.
Collage of four photos showing how to make Apple Oatmeal Bars: mixing the batter and then baking in a pan.

How to Make

Make oat flour: Take 2 cups of the quick oats and blend them in a blender or food processor until you get a fine flour consistency. Alternatively, you can use scant 2 cups of store-bought oat flour.

Combine dry ingredients: Transfer your freshly made oat flour to a large bowl. To this, add the remaining 1 cup of oats, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Stir everything until it’s well combined.

Add wet ingredients: Add the applesauce, maple syrup, flaxseed, coconut oil and vanilla into the bowl with your dry ingredients. Stir everything together until it forms a dough.

Fold in the apples: Fold in ¾ cup of your chopped apples to the mixture.

Bake: Pour the batter into your prepared 8×8 inch baking dish. Spread it out so there’s an even layer across the pan. Scatter the remaining apple chunks on top, pressing them gently into the surface. Place the pan into your oven at 350°F and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the pan comes out clean.

Cool: Allow the bars to cool completely in the pan. Once cooled, cut them into 8 equal bars and serve. Enjoy!

Apple oatmeal bars on a cooling rack.

Substitutions & Notes

Oats – Quick oats are the best for these oat bars, but rolled oats will work as a substitute.

Maple syrup – You can replace this with any other liquid sweetener, such as honey, agave syrup or monk fruit maple syrup for a sugar-free option. I don’t recommend swapping the maple syrup for a dry sugar like brown sugar or coconut sugar as it’ll change the consistency of these bars.

Flaxseed – If you don’t need these bars to be vegan you can use a regular egg instead of the flaxseed.

Coconut oil – You can use any other neutral oil in place of coconut oil like olive oil or avocado oil. Alternatively, you can use melted butter if you don’t need these bars to be vegan.

Close up photo of apple oatmeal bars.

Tips for Success

  • Use the right apples: Not all apples are created equal, especially when it comes to baking. Choose a firm variety like Honeycrisp or Pink Lady, which hold up well during the baking process and offer a nice, sweet-tart flavor.
  • Blend oats properly: To create a nice, soft texture for your bars, make sure to blend 2 cups of the quick oats into a fine oat flour. A high-powered blender or food processor will do the job perfectly.
  • Check for doneness: Ovens can vary, so start checking your bars a little early to ensure they don’t overcook. They’re done when firm to the touch and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Don’t skip the cooling time: Allow your bars to cool completely before cutting them. This will make sure that they hold their shape and don’t crumble when cut.
  • Spice it up: If you’re a fan of warming spices, feel free to add a pinch of nutmeg or allspice to the mixture along with the cinnamon. This will provide a deeper, more complex flavor profile.
  • Double the batch: If you have a 9×13 dish and want to meal prep for the week, you can easily double the recipe. Just remember to adjust the baking time accordingly.
  • Customize your bars: While this recipe calls for apples, you can substitute other fruits like pears or berries, or add in extras like nuts, seeds, raisins, or chocolate chips for added texture and nutritional value.
A woman's hand holding an apple oatmeal bar over two other bars.

What to Serve With Apple Oatmeal Bars

I love eating these apple cinnamon oatmeal bars with a drizzle of almond butter or peanut butter for breakfast or a mid-day snack, but if you’re looking to get a bit more protein at breakfast here are some pairing suggestions:

  • Hard boiled eggs: I’ll typically eat 1 or 2 hard boiled eggs with a bar.
  • Protein shake: a protein shake is a great option when it comes to amping up the protein in your breakfast. I have a few different protein shake flavor variations you can check out.
  • Egg dish: serve these bars with these egg white bites or baked egg muffins for another quick, easy and portable breakfast option.
8 apple oatmeal bars spread out with 2 on their side.

How to Store

At room temperature: Once cooled, place the apple oatmeal bars in an airtight container. They will stay fresh for about 2 days at room temperature.

In the fridge: These bars will stay fresh for up to 1 week in the fridge. I like using glass storage containers or Stasher bags for storage.

Freezing: These bars will last for up to 3 months in the freezer in a freezer-safe container. To enjoy, thaw overnight in the refrigerator or for a few hours at room temperature.

More Apple Recipes You’ll Love

More Bar Recipes to Try

Be sure to check out all of the apple recipes as well as the full collection of snack recipes!

4.67 from 3 votes

Apple Oatmeal Bars

These healthy apple oatmeal bars are made with wholesome ingredients and studded with fresh apple chunks. They're kid-friendly, portable and perfect for meal prep. Vegan + gluten-free.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 8

Ingredients  

Instructions 

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F. Line an 8×8 inch baking pan with parchment paper or spray with cooking spray and set aside.
  • Put 2 cups of the quick oats in a blender or food processor and blend until you’ve created oat flour.
    Blended oats in a blender.
  • Transfer to a large mixing bowl. Add the remaining oats, baking powder, cinnamon and salt and stir to combine.
    A woman's hand with a silicon spatula in a large mixing bowl of blended oats.
  • Add applesauce, maple syrup, flaxseed, coconut oil and vanilla and mix well until combined.
    A woman's hand using a silicone spatula to mix ingredients for the apple oatmeal bars in a large mixing bowl.
  • Gently fold in about ¾ cup of the chopped apples.
    A woman's hand using a silicone spatula to mix ingredients for the apple oatmeal bars in a large mixing bowl.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared baking dish. Scatter remaining apple chunks on top, gently pressing them down.
    Apple oatmeal bars in a square baking pan before being baked.
  • Bake for about 25-30 minutes, until the bars are cooked through and a toothpick insured comes out clean.
    Apple oatmeal bars in a square baking pan after being baked.
  • Allow the bars to cool completely in the pan before cutting into 8 bars and serving.

Nutrition

Serving: 1 bar | Calories: 231kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 208mg | Potassium: 61mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 14g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Bars and Balls, Breakfast/Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Apple Oatmeal Bars
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About Brittany

Hey there, I’m Brittany, the creator of Eating Bird Food, cookbook author, health coach and mama of two littles. Here you’ll find quick and easy recipes that make healthy fun and enjoyable for you and your family!

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Recipe Rating




6 Comments

  1. Can you just use store-bought oat flour instead of processing your own? if so, how much would you use? I’m assuming the 2 cups processes down to less once a flour? Thanks! Love your recipes 😋

  2. 5 stars
    These were simple to make and turned out perfectly! I made them for my toddler, but couldn’t resist eating one as soon as they were cool enough! 🤭 I will be making these again!

    1. Aw this makes me so happy to hear, Veronica. I am so glad that you and your toddler are loving these and they turned out great for you. Thank you for coming back and sharing your review + star rating, I really appreciate it!

  3. 4 stars
    I made these following the recipe, but did add some nutmeg & a handful of craisins. I found the batter quite thick & seriously difficult to spread in the pan. All in all I liked the bars, though i think I’ll up the spices a bit. This will make a nice handy breakfast on the go for me since its basically apple cinnamon oatmeal in bar form.

    1. Sounds delicious, Rose. Glad you found this recipe and are enjoying it. Thank you for coming back and sharing your review & star rating, I really appreciate it!