Oatmeal Cookie Bars

We could probably all agree that the 4th of July and Labor Day weekend are some of the highlights of summer.  Day drinking, great food, water sports…what’s not to like?  These chocolate chip oatmeal cookie bars take the classic that we all loved growing up with, with a few changes. 

 

 

 

Whole wheat flour, flax meal, and oats add some great fiber and protein, and a smaller proportion of brown sugar and honey help to keep those sugar levels under control.  The reduced sugar and complex carbohydrates in the flours help to prevent a blood sugar spike and crash that cookies often cause.  Even better, reduced sugar and higher fat, protein, and complex carbohydrates keep you full longer, and will help to combat day-drinking hangovers.

 

Whether your celebrating the holiday by the pool, at the beach, at a BBQ, or simply at home, enjoy this dessert with friends and family, and have a wonderful holiday!

 

Ingredients

½ cup plus 6 T butter or coconut oil

½ cup brown sugar (this can be substituted for vanilla protein powder)

¼ cup honey

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp ginger

½ tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda

½ cup flax meal

1 cup whole wheat flour (or any whole grain flour)

3 cups whole oats

1 cup dark chocolate chips

1 cup walnuts

 

Instructions

*The key to great cookies (or cookie bars) are perfecting two steps: (1) when creaming the butter and sugar, you want to achieve a light and fluffy consistency.  During this step, more mixing is better.  (2) when mixing the dry ingredients into the dough, the opposite is true.  Avoid over-mixing to achieve a soft and chewy texture.

1. in a large mixing bowl, combine sugar, honey, and butter and cream until light and fluffy.

2. Add eggs and vanilla, and mix until fully combined.

3. Add all dry ingredients and seasoning, and mix until just combined, being careful to not over mix.

4. Fold in chocolate chips and walnuts until evenly distributed.

5. In a greased baking dish, gently press dough until an even layer is formed.

6. *Optional, sprinkle the top of bars with a few tablespoons of chocolate chips and walnuts.

7. Bake for approximately 30 minutes in a 325 degree oven until edges are brown, and tops of bars are a light golden brown. 

8. Cool for at least 10 minutes before cutting and serving.

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