We know what the calendar says, but it feels more like October around here! We’re getting a much needed break from the summer swelt making it feel more like Indian Summer instead of mid-August weather. With this relief comes the hankering for pumpkin. Since we are still keeping things healthy(ier), our sweet treat this week is a waist-friendly version of our favorite Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Oat Bars. With this recipe why stop with one!
Healthy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Oat Bars
3 cups gluten free oats
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
pinch of ground cloves
1 cup canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix)
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup agave syrup
1 tablespoon olive or coconut oil
1/3 cup carob chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray 8×11 or 9 inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.
Make oat flour: Place oatmeal into blender or food processor and blend for 1-2 minutes until oatmeal resembles flour. You may need to stop blender and stir oats a couple of times to ensure that all oats have been blended.
Measure out just 2 1/2 cups of the oat flour and place in a medium bowl. Whisk in baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices; set aside.
In a separate large bowl, whisk together pumpkin, agave, vanilla extract, oil, and applesauce for 1-2 minutes until the consistency is smooth and creamy. Slowly add in oat flour mixture and mix until just combined.
Gently fold in 1/3 cup of carob chips. Pour batter into prepared pan and sprinkle remaining 2 tablespoons of carob chips on top. Bake for 15-25 minutes or until knife inserted into center comes out clean or with just a few crumbs attached. Timing will depend on what size pan you use, but definitely check around 15 minutes. Once finished baking, cool 10 minutes on wire rack. Cut into 16 slices.
*recipe adapted from Ambitious Kitchen