Prep & Cooking Time: 35-40mins
Cooling Time: 20mins
Notes: This recipe contains: B-Vitamins, Vitamin E, carbohydrates, protein, fibre, calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, omega 3 & 6, phosphorus, zinc and per serving is low in salt and has a moderate quantity of added, sugar and fat!
We simply love oats! From a simple and tasty bowl of porridge to some delicious muffins or slightly more indulgent crumbles or flapjacks! With all of this cooler weather that has suddenly rolled in, we are definitely craving fuel, an oaty-based snack…which got us thinking; a while ago we tried a leading plant-based bar which had ‘peanut flour’- gorgeous to say the least but at 90p a bar you can forget it!
So last week we decided to prepare an ‘almost’ flapjack with two great food loves of ours (peanut butter and oats!). So, ‘almost’ because the texture is slightly spongy and not crispy and/or oily, simply because it does not contain a tonne of typical golden syrup and butter, in addition to the fact that ground peanuts and peanut butter do not make it very authentic either!
As the bars are energy packed, we’d advise to halve them into ‘bites’ and enjoy them as a healthy snack on the go, for those colder winter days to come; whether you’re out Christmas shopping or enjoying a long wintery walk in the snow! However, enjoy them as an occasional bar and save yourself a few pennies!
Overall we were happy with the result! There is certainly a huge margin for adapting these lovelies- let the sky be your limit! In terms of alterations, there isn’t many. We have advised using a little more milk, a little less flax and that the dried cranberries are optional, but you could reduce the quantity and just keep a few for added texture! If you want to help reduce the fat, try using less peanut butter or adapting the recipe with almonds instead. We definitely recommend toasting the peanuts, or any nuts that you use before grinding them (we forgot to!); it’ll really help bring out their lovely nuttiness!
We think that these bars were just sweet enough, but it you have a ‘sweeter tooth’ than us you could perhaps try:
- using a sweetened protein powder or DF milk.
- adding some ripe and mashed banana (or your favourite fruit!).
- omitting some of the cranberries and/or dates for more fruit syrup or try using some fresh fruit juices (apple, pineapple etc.) instead! Of course you could always try omitting the syrup altogether and just use ripe bananas- they always make everything really (naturally) sweet!
Happy GF, DF and refined sugar free baking everyone! 🙂
7 Pitted Dates (60g)
55g Unsalted Peanuts (toasted)
2 tsp Virgin Coconut Oil (20g)
¼ Cup Natural Peanut Butter (80g)
30g Soya Isolate Powder (unsweetened)
1¼ cup Almond Milk (unsweetened & fortified)
2 cups Porridge Oats (GF if required) (180g)
1½ Tbsp Ground Flax Seed (30g)
1-2 Pinches Table Salt
1 tsp Ground Cinnamon (3g)
¼ Cup Fruit Sweetener (Your favourite: agave, carob, date, etc!) (55g)
1/3 cup Dried Cranberries (Naturally sweetened)*Optional (50g)
1. Place the dates into a bowl. Pour in some freshly boiled water, enough to cover them. Cover the bowl with a large plate. Allow to soak for 8-10 mins.
2. In the meantime, heat a small, non-stick frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add the peanuts. Dry-fry until lightly toasted. Remove from the heat. Allow to cool slightly. Transfer into a food processor. Pulse until a ‘fine-ish’ flour is achieved. Transfer the ground peanuts into a large mixing bowl. Tip: Fancy some added texture? Save some of the nuts, roughly chop and then add them into the raw flapjack mixture later on!
3. Remove the dates from the water with a slotted spoon. Transfer them into the food processor with 6-8 tbsp of its ‘soaking’ water. Pulse until mostly smooth. Add the coconut oil and peanut butter. Pulse until smooth and combined.
4. Heat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Grease (or line with a liner) an 8X8″ baking tin.
5. Place the protein powder into a shaker bottle (or just use a large bowl if you do not own one). Add the milk. Shake (or whisk if applicable) until all of the powder has dissolved.
6. …Time to work those biceps! 🙂
- Place the oats, ground flaxseed, salt and cinnamon into the same bowl as the ground peanuts. Stir until thoroughly combined.
- Make a well in the centre of the oaty mixture.
- Pour the milk and date mixture into the ‘well’.
- Using a silicone spatula or large spoon mix until thoroughly combined.
- Add the dried cranberries and/or chopped pieces of peanuts (if applicable). Stir through. Tip: The mixture will be a bit ‘tacky’, but this is OK!
7. Place the mixture into the greased tin. Use the back of your spatula or a piece of parchment paper to help press it evenly down into the tin, making it as flat and as even as possible.
8. Place the tin onto the middle oven shelf. Bake for about 16-19 mins or until just lightly browned and firm to touch. Remove and allow the mixture to cool in the tin for 20 mins before slicing (that’s just enough time to make and have a perfectly cooled cup of tea!).
Tip: Loosen the sides of the baked mixture with a dinner or palate knife before slicing. Also slice the mixture into rectangles/’bars’ and then remove and allow them to cool on a cooling rack before slicing into smaller ‘bites/squares’.