Soft-Baked Oatmeal Breakfast Bars

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These gluten-free Soft-Baked Oatmeal Breakfast Bars are ultra chewy and loaded with flavor. They’re packed with oats, nut butter, and dark chocolate–plus they’re made with better-for-you, wholesome ingredients — perfect for a grab-and-go breakfast on a busy morning.

Warm, chewy soft-baked oatmeal breakfast bars, cut into squares and ready to be eaten.

A delicious on-the-go breakfast

We love Soft-Baked Oatmeal Breakfast Bars–they’re our favorites for grab-and-go breakfast or snacks. They’ve got great ingredients, and are filling, tender, soft, and ultra chewy. These bars taste like a mash-up of soft granola bars and a bowl of oatmeal; you’ll get wholesome-tasting, surprisingly-filling oat-filled bars.

Thanks to the nut butter and plenty of oats, these bars have substantial protein and fiber,  and that helps your body feel fuller for longer.

How to make Soft-Baked Oatmeal Breakfast Bars

These bars are one of the easiest recipes ever. They’re made in one bowl and can be whipped together in minutes. 

  1. Combine all the ingredients (except the dark chocolate) in a large bowl and mix to combine.
  2. Coarsely chop the dark chocolate (we want some in every bite!) and add to the batter.
  3. Mix the batter and then transfer to a lined 8×8-inch pan.
  4. Bake until lightly browned at the edges and firm in the center.

Combining all the ingredients in a bowl, mixing them together, and transferring the mixture to a baking pan.

Soft-Baked Oatmeal Breakfast Bar ingredients

  • Old-fashioned oats: The oats make up the base of these bars and give them that soft chewiness. Make sure to use old-fashioned oats — quick oats are too processed and will make the bars overly dry; steel-cut oats won’t soften enough.
  • Oat flour: No need to buy specialty flour. Oat flour can be made with quick or old-fashioned oats; read more on this below.
  • Cinnamon: This spice adds a really nice complementary flavor to the oats, but it’s completely optional. If you aren’t a cinnamon fan, leave it out!
  • Salt: Salt helps balance all the flavors in these Soft-Baked Oatmeal Breakfast Bars.
  • Peanut butter: Peanut butter contributes structure and stability (as well as protein). 
  • Coconut oil: The coconut oil gives the bars a nice flavor and moistness.
  • Honey: We sweeten these primarily with honey, and natural sweeteners are always a great choice.
  • Light brown sugar: We’ve also got a little brown sugar in there; we found the bars needed a little more sweetness, and were too wet with 100% honey, so we added 1/3 cup. 
  • Vanilla extract: This ingredient contributes to a nice subtle flavor.
  • Egg + egg yolk: The egg provides stability to the batter and adds flavor and protein. The second egg yolk adds additional structure and flavor. Use the leftover egg whites in this egg wrap!
  • Dark chocolate: Dark chocolate has antioxidants in it, among other benefits. If you aren’t a fan of dark chocolate, you can use milk or semi-sweet chocolate, but it will make the bars a bit less healthy. Alternatively, chopped nuts can be added instead (or in addition).

How to make oat “flour”

If you have quick oats or old-fashioned oats, you can have oat flour ready for in flash.

  1. Place the oats (old-fashioned or quick oats–not instant or steel-cut ones) into the bowl of a food processor or a small blender jar.
  2. Pulse the oats until ground into a powder-like consistency that resembles regular flour.
  3. Stir the oats around if needed, to be sure all the oats are finely ground. 
  4. Make sure to measure your oat flour after it’s been turned into flour.

Soft baked oatmeal breakfast bars with one bar tilted up to reveal the flavorful inside.

Soft-Baked Oatmeal Breakfast Bar tips

  • Line the pan with parchment paper and leave an overhang for easy removal.  Sticky batter like this will be nearly impossible to remove without the parchment paper. If you don’t have parchment paper, I recommend thoroughly greasing the pan.
  • Let the bars cool. You may be tempted to eat one straight out of the oven (and hey — you do you!), but these bars are crumbly and a bit gooey while hot. They thicken up a lot as they cool and become easier to cut and serve.
  • Don’t overbake. Remove the bars when they are slightly browned on the edges;  the middle and top of the bars may look a bit wet or gooey, but as long as the bars don’t jiggle when slightly shaken in the pan, they’re done. Overbaked bars won’t be very soft or chewy and will also lack flavor.


Make sure the ingredients are gluten free. If you are gluten intolerant, make sure to check all the individual products to be sure they are indeed gluten free. Pay particular attention to see that they are processed in a facility that doesn’t have gluten; this will be indicated on the label. While these bars are naturally gluten free, some products aren’t processed in a strictly gluten-free environment.


Store Soft-Baked Oatmeal Breakfast Bars in an airtight container at room temperature, and they’re best enjoyed within 2-3 days of making. Feel free to warm individual bars for 5-10 seconds in the microwave if you like them warm.

To freeze: Wrap individual bars tightly in plastic wrap and then place in an airtight freezer-safe container. Thaw individual bars at room temperature, and if desired, warm through for 5-10 seconds in the microwave.

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Soft-Baked Oatmeal Breakfast Bars

4.70 from 52 votes
These gluten-free Soft-Baked Oatmeal Breakfast Bars are ultra chewy and loaded with flavor. They’re packed with oats, nut butter, and dark chocolate, and are made with better-for-you, wholesome ingredients. They're perfect for a grab-and-go breakfast on a busy morning.
Warm, chewy soft-baked oatmeal breakfast bars, cut into squares and ready to be eaten.
Print Recipe

Soft-Baked Oatmeal Breakfast Bars

Warm, chewy soft-baked oatmeal breakfast bars, cut into squares and ready to be eaten.
4.70 from 52 votes
These gluten-free Soft-Baked Oatmeal Breakfast Bars are ultra chewy and loaded with flavor. They’re packed with oats, nut butter, and dark chocolate, and are made with better-for-you, wholesome ingredients. They're perfect for a grab-and-go breakfast on a busy morning.
Course Breakfast, Snack
Cuisine American
Keyword Soft Baked Oatmeal Breakfast Bars
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 12 bars
Chelsea Lords
Calories 211kcal
Cost $5.64


  • 1 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1/3 cup oat flour (finely ground oats)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 large full egg
  • 1 large egg yolk (save the whites for another recipe or discard them)
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips, coarsely chopped


  • PREP: Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line an 8x8-inch baking pan with parchment paper, leaving an overhang (These will be nearly impossible to get out otherwise).
  • OAT FLOUR: To make oat flour, place old-fashioned or quick oats in a blender and pulse until they resemble flour. Measure after blending to make sure you have the right amount.
  • BARS: Combine the ingredients except for the dark chocolate chips in a large bowl and stir until smooth and well combined. Coarsely chop the dark chocolate chips and add to the batter. Stir to combine. Transfer batter to prepared pan.
  • BAKE: Bake for 23-26 minutes or until set at the edges (it will look slightly wet in the center, but as long as it doesn't jiggle it's done. The bars will firm up as they cool; be careful to not over bake).
  • STORAGE: Store these bars in an airtight bag or container at room temperature. These bars are best enjoyed within 2-3 days of making.
  • FREEZE: Wrap individual bars tightly in plastic wrap and place in an airtight freezer-safe container. Thaw bars at room temperature.

Recipe Notes

Note 1:Gluten-free: These bars are naturally gluten free, but make sure all the products you use aren't processed in an environment with other gluten products. This will be indicated on the label.

Nutrition Facts

Serving: 12bars | Calories: 211kcal | Carbohydrates: 25.1g | Protein: 4.1g | Fat: 10.8g | Cholesterol: 23.3mg | Sodium: 41.5mg | Fiber: 1.6g | Sugar: 16.6g

We do our best to provide accurate nutritional analysis for our recipes. Our nutritional data is calculated using a third-party algorithm and may vary, based on individual cooking styles, measurements, and ingredient sizes. Please use this information for comparison purposes and consult a health professional for nutrition guidance as needed.


I love hearing from you when you've made one of my recipes! Tag me on Instagram at @ChelseasMessyApron or leave me a comment below.

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Recipe Rating


  1. These bars look fab girl! My hubs LOVES the nature valley version so I love that I can make them and know what’s going in his body!

  2. I am obsessed with peanut butter…but I am also equally obsessed with cinnamon! So, these bars look heavenly to me. Definitely want to try them! 🙂

  3. These bars look fabulous — so soft and chewy-looking! I’m pretty sure my family would gobble these bars down in minutes if I made them for them. Which I totally plan to do. 😉

  4. These look awesome! I bought some storebought oatmeal squares (of a brand that I will not disclose), and they were so bad that I kept them around only as emergency food supplies! These, I’m sure, are far superior, and I’m excited to make some as an easy breakfast-to-go option 🙂

    1. Oh that’s the worst! I’ve bought some too that I did not like at all! Thanks so much 🙂

    1. Aww thanks Alyssa! So glad you found it and I hope you love it if you get the chance to try it!

  5. These look wonderful and I know my children are going to love them! Pinned to make later this week:) Thanks so much for the recipe!

  6. I’ve been eating the nature valley bars slathered with almond butter lately (amazing, and I’m sure just as good with peanut butter) and am looking for a healthier alternative that I can doctor up with some nut and flax seed. I think I found a winner! Thanks!

  7. I’m so excited by this find and am about to make them!
    I had a baby New Year’s Day and I pretty much lived off the nv bars for the first few weeks! They were yummy and easy while I was sleep deprived!
    Six months later I still love them and oats are good for breastfeeding so I have a valid excuse to eat them all myself!
    I don’t have parchment paper though….:(

  8. I just saw a commercial and googled this. Me and the kids will make them tomorrow! I dont have parchment paper though. If i made them in paper cupcake liners do you think they would be okay? I also have silicone liners. Would that be better?

    1. Love your ideas (especially raisins yum!) to change this in the future and so glad you liked the glaze! Thanks so much for your comment and review 🙂

  9. These look amazing, but when I was making them I totally left out the cinnamon because it wasn’t on the instructions 🙁

  10. This is awesome! I’ve been looking for peanut butter/nut free snacks like this for my son. He starts kindergarten in a few days, and his school is 100% nut free 🙁 Can’t wait to try these! But I don’t have oat flour….can I simply grind up more oats?!

  11. can you give us the calorie information compared to the store bought ones?? i am sooooooooooo going to make these because i love the nature valley ones .. just wondering how they compare calorie wise ??? thanks .. can you email the info in case i don’t see it here?? thank you

  12. wow, i just found another site with the nutritional and calorie count of these, why is it so much higher than the nature valley ones.. they are 150 calories, and it says these are 305??? what is the difference and why so much higher in calories???

    1. So weird it looks like it’s been removed. It also appears that was a spam site so I wouldn’t trust what you read. I can get you an accurate nutrition label for this recipe tomorrow as I’m away from my computer today. Thanks!

  13. thank you very much .. i will be watching for it .. i didn’t believe them anyway .. that is quite a difference in calories …

  14. thank you very much … i will be watching for it .. i was very leary of the info on that site, that is why i brought it to your attention .. that was quite a huge difference in calories from the nature valley ones so was very skeptical ..

  15. 4 stars
    Made these the other day, they are delicious, I’m thinking of putting in some add-ins next time (maybe chocolate chips or raisins. My 16 month old even gave me a thumbs up 🙂
    Thanks for sharing your recipe!

    1. Thanks so much for the comment and so glad to hear you liked these! Love the idea of adding in chocolate chips or raisins!!

  16. 5 stars
    Hey Chelsea! Thanks for this recipe. I love it! I tried to make a higher protein version and I thought I’d share in case anyone else thought about making adjustments.

    I soaked the oats in a cup of milk for about 15 minutes while preparing everything else (I didn’t like the chewiness of the oats, though other people might prefer not to do this).
    I replaced a 1/4 cup of the wheat flour with vanilla soy protein powder.
    I used 1/4 cup + a tablespoon of brown sugar.
    I didn’t add the 1/2 cup of milk (because I’d use a cup in soaking)
    I added a quarter cup of applesauce.

    I also added a half cup each of walnuts and raisins (these reminded me up the raisin walnut clif bars so I thought I’d try it out).

    I am very happy with the end result! It’s cake-ier, more like baked oatmeal and not as sweet but I might actually prefer it! So thanks for the original recipe. It’s delish!

    1. 3 stars
      I just made these and they were a little too dry, even with some sultanas added. I did leave off the glaze (these are for car eating). Next time I’ll use quick oats and add maybe a quarter of a cup of apple sauce or half a stick of melted butter.

      1. Hmm these have never been dry for us, did you omit any of the ingredients or mis-measure? The applesauce or melted butter is a great idea though if needed! 🙂

  17. I’m looking for grab-n-go things for the kids to eat when school starts back up. This will be great and will be giving this a try.

    1. They are best within 2-3 days stored in an airtight container. The rest you can tightly seal and freeze 🙂

    1. I haven’t tried that so I can’t say for sure, but I don’t see why that wouldn’t work. You will, of course, have more batter and will likely need to cook it longer for it to be cooked all the way through.

  18. 5 stars
    Could you copycat the Banana & Dark Chcolate Soft-Baked Oatmeal Squares? I loved those ones but simply don’t have the time to try to make a copycat recipe for them.

    1. Hi August! I have my editorial calendar pretty booked and planned with recipes throughout the rest of this year but I’ll definitely put that on the list and see when I can get around to working on a recipe for them 🙂

  19. I made these as written, and they were very easy to make and had a fantastic flavour- the icing tastes amazing and the bars are not too sweet, so they pair well with the sweet icing. The consistency of the bars is a little too light/spongy- I think it would help to add some fat to the batter, either oil or melted butter. I might play around with fat ratios in order to keep the flavour the same but ideally to end up with a consistency more similar to that of a soft cookie.

  20. These are delicious!! Any chance you can come up with a copycat recipe for their banana bread & dark chocolate version of these soft baked oatmeal bars? 😉

  21. 5 stars
    Mmm, the smell of peanut butter from the oven while baking! It is beautifully baked – soft and chewy, to perfection! We enjoyed it with a cup of coffee or milk. Thanks for the recipe, I should try others too!

  22. 5 stars
    These bars are FANTASTIC!!! I use powdered peanut butter and changed the brown sugar to Stevia to reduce the calories, but it is still great! THANK YOU SO MUCH for sharing this recipe. I have tried a few different oat bars, but this one is getting printed out so I don’t loose it.

  23. 5 stars
    Soooooo goooood! The whole family is obsessed! They came out thinner than I thought though. Any ideas? Thank you for this! I will be making it often!

    1. Yay! So happy to hear that 🙂 Thank you! Did you use an 8×8 pan? As written I’d say they are pretty thin, the up close photos make them seem a little thicker I think!

  24. I made these and they were delicious. I substituted gluten free flour for the oat flour (because I was too lazy to make the oat flour, lol)! They are soooo good! I’m gonna add walnuts last time which I think would be an excellent addition!

  25. Just pulled these out of the oven and they smell amazing. Instead of oat flour, I used oat pulp left over from making oat milk. I also added some uncooked quinoa for added crunch and protein. I’m resisting the urge to cut one before it’s cool!

  26. 5 stars
    These were soooo good, the cinnamon flavour was lovely and the texture was perfect, I’m never buying premade breakfast bar things from the store ever again! The only thing I did differently to the recipe was to use almond butter instead of peanut butter (boyfriend’s allergic) and they were delicious

  27. 3 stars
    Lots of the comments here are about how good these look. Has anyone tasted them? They are great if you’re looking for a chewy/gummy bar, that tastes strongly of peanut butter.

  28. 5 stars
    I’ve made these several times and each time I do I triple the recipe. I don’t add the sugar and they are plenty sweet, even for my picky eaters. Thank you for a keeper!

  29. 5 stars
    These were awesome!! Made them with the new protein Kodiak Oats since I needed something for post workouts and they are delish! Will def be making these again!

  30. I made these and the kids said they were really good! But-they’re about a third as tall as in your photos. Did you do a double batch and still put them in an 8×8?

    1. I didn’t! I think the photos are deceiving since it’s an up-close (macro) lens and I’m photographing the edges which are slightly thicker, but these bars are fairly thin!

  31. 5 stars
    These are SO good, I can’t get enough of them! I thought I might freeze some for later, but between my husband and I, they didn’t last long enough to make it to the freezer. I was a little short on honey, so I used what I had and then added a little extra brown sugar. I baked them in an 8×8 glass pan and they ended up needing closer to 30 minutes, and they came out perfect. I think they would be great with some shredded coconut added and can’t wait to try out some more flavors!

    1. I believe sunflower butter or another nut butter with similar consistency should work great!

  32. Hi, I would love to make these bars, but am allergic to peanuts, is there another ingredient I could use instead of peanut butter?

    1. Hey Kate! There actually isn’t any frosting with these oatmeal breakfast bars! They’re so flavorful, I think you’ll love them without! 🙂

  33. 5 stars
    These are so good!!!! I have already eaten 3. I made them just as the recipe called for. Delish!
    I did use organic oats, they weren’t as finely rolled as other oats so in the future I might let them sit for 20-30 minutes prior to baking so the oats will be a bit softer.
    Thank you so much for the great recipe.

  34. 5 stars
    Delicious,easy to make.
    Could baking soda be used to make a little thicker?
    I’m new to bakeing, thank you

  35. 5 stars
    These are delicious!! I even made them using all sugar substitutes!! For others who may want to get the same results…
    I doubled and made in a 9×13 glass pan and they ended up perfectly done at 27 minutes. I used a combo monk fruit/eryththritol blend. Keto approved 1:1. (Brand Monk Fruit in the raw)I also used a
    Keto maple syrup substitute by ChocZero brand and sugar free chocolate chips in the batter. I tasted when still warm out of the pan because I could not resist and I’m amazed how well the recipe came together with the sugar substitutes. Still moist, and so flavorful. I added a coconut oil and pb glaze on top

  36. 5 stars
    Love these! I substitute apple sauce for the oil and used 1/4 cup of brown sugar. Delicious!!! When I make these I double the recipe so I have breakfasts for a couple days! Kids love them too!

    1. We haven’t tested that yet, but typically maple syrup subs well for honey! Let me know if you give it a try!

  37. 5 stars
    Just made these for Sunday morning breakfast. I substituted applesauce for the coconut oil because it’s what I had on hand! So delicious. My girls will love this.

  38. These would be perfect for the kids school but they aren’t allowed nuts at all (so no peanuts or almonds), would applesauce work instead of the peanut butter?

  39. 5 stars
    These oatmeal bars are delicious!! Perfect texture and taste-not too sweet-perfect breakfast bar!

  40. 5 stars
    These are amazing. I’ve been making this recipe for over a year and my children LOVE them. I make a triple batch every week. Since making these we’ve discovered one of my kids has an egg allergy and adapting this to be egg free was super easy. these are a breakfast staple for us

  41. 5 stars
    These turned out great!! Love the soft texture. I reduced the sugar by 1/3 and they were still sufficiently sweet. Thanks for this recipe!

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