These soft-baked oatmeal squares taste just like the Nature Valley version of cinnamon brown sugar soft-baked oatmeal squares. They are soft with a chewy texture and have a molasses flavored glaze. These bars are made with whole grains and packed with good ingredients.
Because not everyone is obsessed with peanut butter like me. Sometimes I forget this fact. Because, well, peanut butter is kind of a large part of my life. As in, I eat at least 2-3 spoonfuls of it daily. Most of the time there are chocolate chips covering the spoonful, but I will still eat the peanut butter with or without chocolate chips. I am absolutely completely obsessed with peanut butter. And don’t even get me started on combining peanut butter and chocolate.
But, the reality is, not everyone likes it or can even eat it. Funny enough, my mom hates peanut butter and so do two of my sisters. AND my brother is extremely allergic to nuts. So we really never had that much peanut butter growing up. Can I please blame my obsession with this nutty butter on the fact that I was partially deprived of it growing up? Okay. Thank you.
Anyways, I have no idea why I’ve gone on and on about peanut butter, when this recipe, has absolutely none. I guess it is to say, I get it, not everyone likes or can even eat peanut butter. So here is a delicious oatmeal square recipe with NO peanut butter. And if you are as utterly obsessed with peanut butter as I am, come back tomorrow, because I’m sure there will be lots of peanut butter tomorrow. Or the next day. It makes it into a recipe at least once a week 😉
First off, these are delicious. They are soft, chewy, cinnamon-y, and all around pretty healthy. I mean, not the frosting, it’s not that healthy. So feel free to leave off the frosting – they taste great without it. But if you are trying to get an authentic Nature Valley copycat – you’ll want to leave it on. There is a pretty good amount of brown sugar. If you really like your oatmeal sweet, leave it in. If you are used to healthier foods and can do without it, you can cut down a bit on the brown sugar. I’ve gone down to as little as 1/3 cup and I think they still taste great. But the more you reduce the amount, the less true to the version I am copy-catting they will taste. Also feel free to increase the cinnamon amount to your preference. You can taste the mixture before adding the egg and decide if you want more or less. Finally, you are going to think my recipe is wrong. Seriously, when it is all stirred up it is like this thick messy dough like blab. That’s how it is. Be patient and press it evenly into the pan. It will bake into perfection!
- 1 and 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
- 1/2 cup oat flour blend regular oats in the blender
- 3/4 cup white whole wheat flour or sub white
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon or more to taste
- 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk or sub another milk
- 1 large egg
- 1/4 cup butter softened (do not melt)
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1-2 tablespoons milk
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup + 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8 x 8 baking pan with parchment paper. (These will be near impossible to get out if you don't use it)
- Combine the oats, oat flour, white whole wheat flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and brown sugar in a large bowl. Stir until combined.
- In a small bowl, combine the vanilla extract, milk, and large egg. Lightly beat with a fork.
- Mix together the dry and wet ingredients until just combined (do not overstir). The mixture will be very thick and wet. Press the mixture into the parchment lined pan. Press until it it evenly spread throughout the pan.
- Bake for 15-18 minutes or until the center is slightly inflated and the edges are lightly browned.
- Combine all of the ingredients in a medium sized bowl starting with only 1 tablespoon of milk. Beat until completely combined. Add extra milk until you reach the desired consistency.
- Remove the baked squares and let cool completely before cutting into 9-12 squares.
- Once they are cut into squares, place the glaze mixture into a resealable plastic bag.
- Cut off the tip of the bag and pipe the glaze on the top of the bars.
- Sometimes these bars can be a bit crumbly and you may want to refrigerate them.
- Always store these in an airtight container or they will dry out.