Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Bars — A FAST and EASY dessert that is on the HEALTHIER side with only 1/4 cup butter and no oil!! Bold banana flavor, chewiness from the oats, and plenty of chocolate in every bite!!
Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Bars
These oatmeal cookie bars have the flavor of banana bread, the dense and chewy texture of oatmeal cookies, and the melty chocolate factor of chocolate chip cookies. I took a tried and true recipe for Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies that has been a reader favorite over the years and adapted it into bars.
Truth be told, it is so much faster and easier to make bars compared to cookies. Rather than making dough that needs to be chilled and then making individual cookies one by one, this dough needs no chilling and you just slap it all in a pan. No fuss baking is the only kind of baking I do.
I consider the bars to be on the healthier side, but you would never know it because they taste so good. There is only 1/4 cup of butter used and lots of whole-grain oats.
You’re going to love the bold banana flavor, the chewy oats that add so much texture, and plenty of chocolate that melts in your mouth in every bite.
What’s in Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Bars?
To make these banana chocolate chip bars, you’ll need:
- Ripe bananas
- Light brown sugar
- Granulated sugar
- Unsalted butter
- Vanilla extract
- Old-fashioned oats
- All-purpose flour
- Baking soda
- Semi-sweet chocolate chips
How to Make Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Bars
In a large bowl, cream together the egg, bananas, sugars, butter, and vanilla, then beat until well combined. The mixture won’t be smooth, fluffy, or ‘creamed’ like traditional cookie dough and will have small chunks of bananas present and it’s on the runnier side. Add in the dry ingredients, then fold in the chocolate chips.
Turn the batter into a greased 9×9-inch pan and sprinkle the top with more chocolate chips. Bake until the bars are set. Allow bars to cool in the pan for 30 minutes before slicing and serving
Can I Use Instant Oats Instead of Old-Fashioned?
Make sure you use old-fashioned whole rolled oats and not quick cook or instant. The latter two more flour-like and would overly dry the dough and render the bars dry and crumbly.
Can I Add Other Mix-Ins?
Yes, you can add up to 1 cup of mix-ins. Chopped nuts, different flavors of chocolate chips, or even butterscotch chips would taste delicious in this recipe.
Tips for Making Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Bars
If you’d like your bars to have a stronger cinnamon flavor, feel free to add more in. I like my bars super cinnamon-y, so I added a full teaspoon to the batter.
Also, if you don’t have an electric mixer you can certainly make this recipe with just a bowl, spoon, and elbow grease. It’ll be a bit tricky to cream together the banana and butter mixture, but it’s doable.
Lastly, note that because bananas have differing levels of moisture and no two are exactly alike, baking times could range. Don’t get too hung up on what the clock says and bake until your cookies are done.
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Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars
- 1 large egg
- 2 small/medium or 1 extra-large ripe bananas, about 1/2 heaping cup mashed banana
- ½ cup light brown sugar, packed
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup unsalted butter, softened (1/2 of 1 stick)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups old-fashioned whole rolled oats, not instant or quick-cook because they act more like flour and aren’t suitable here
- 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- ½ to 1 teaspoon cinnamon, added to taste
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt, or to taste
- 1 ¼ cups semi-sweet chocolate chips, divided
- Preheat oven to 350F, line an 9×9-inch pan with foil for easier cleanup, and spray with cooking spray; set aside.
- To the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or large mixing bowl and electric mixer) combine the egg, bananas (I leave them whole and don’t pre-mash them before adding to bowl), sugars, butter, vanilla, and beat on medium-high speed until well combined, about 4 minutes. The mixture won’t be smooth, fluffy, or ‘creamed’ like traditional cookie dough and will have small chunks of bananas present and it’s on the runnier side.
- Stop, scrape down the sides of the bowl, and add the oats, flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, and beat on low speed until just combined, about 1 minute.
- Stop, scrape down the sides of the bowl, and add 1 cup chocolate chips, and beat on low speed until just combined, about 30 seconds.
- Turn the dough out into prepared pan and using a spatula, spread it into a smooth, flat layer.
- Evenly sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup chocolate chips.
- Bake for about 25 minutes, or until just set. Bars firm up as they cool. Baking times may vary due to the moisture content variances in bananas, climate and oven variances; etc.
- Allow bars to cool in the pan for 30 minutes before slicing and serving.
- Bars will keep airtight at room temperature for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 6 months.
- Recipe adapted from my Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.
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