I've probably told you this before, but I completely ruined my kid on oatmeal. When she was a baby, she LOVED it. And I loved coming up with new flavor combinations constantly. Apple cardamom was a favorite, so was pumpkin flax, and strawberry chia oatmeal! (Ever checked out my BABY FOOD RECIPES?)
But now? Camille will not touch oatmeal. I have to put sprinkles on it to get her to eat 3 bites. I'm overjoyed about those 3 bites, though. I'm such a believer in healthy whole grains, and I know how great oats are for you. If she just eats 3 bites of oats once a month, I'm happy.
But, I've been trying to dream up ways to include oatmeal in her breakfast in a more exciting way. Enter these mixed berry baked oatmeal bars.
They're pretty (Camille loves colorful food), delicious, and full of oats. I use rolled oats and oat flour (which is just oats that I ground up in the blender, by the way. No need for a second purchase!) So, bonus for being gluten-free, right?
Camille devoured these, and I smiled about it all morning. She thinks she had cake for breakfast, but I know the truth. She had antioxidant-rich mixed berries, fiber-ful oats, and grass-fed butter. There is no better breakfast, if you ask me. Speaking of the butter, it's easily swapped for coconut oil to keep things vegan, ok?
These bars pack a punch with a full pound of frozen mixed berries.
I'm so appreciative of the high convenience factor here---a healthy breakfast for Camille using berries that I can always keep in the freezer. Plus, these mixed berry baked oatmeal bars cut easily into squares and hold their shape in a lunch box. You’re looking at my new favorite recipe that’s going on the weekly meal plan list!
Tips for mixed berry baked oatmeal bars:
I recommend defrosting the berries for about an hour on the counter before using them for these mixed berry oatmeal bars. Drain off most of the liquid that accumulates under the berries (it's great in a smoothie or as a little juice shot for your toddler!)
- 16 ounces Sunkist Frozen Berry Medley
- 1 cup rolled oats
- ¾ cup oat flour (made by grinding ¾ cup of oats in a blender until flour-y)
- ½ cup coconut sugar
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon pink salt
- 6 tablespoons unsalted grass-fed butter
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- juice and zest from ½ a lemon
- Partially defrost the berries at room temperature in a large bowl for about an hour.
- Meanwhile, make the oat flour if you haven’t already.
- Preheat the oven to 375. Line an 8x8" square pan with parchment paper in two directions, so all sides are covered. Leave excess parchment paper so you have handles for removing the bars.
- In a medium bowl, stir together the oats, oat flour, coconut sugar, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
- Melt the butter in the microwave in a small dish.
- Pour the butter into the oat mixture and stir until everything is evenly mixed.
- Remove a heaping ½ cup of the oat mixture and reserve it for the top.
- Press the oat mixture into the prepared pan. Press it firmly and evenly to make the crust.
- Next, drain the juice from the berries (but don't toss it--either drink it straight or stir it into some sparkling water or a smoothie).
- Gently stir the cornstarch, lemon zest and lemon juice into the berries.
- Pour the berry mixture evenly over the crust.
- Sprinkle the reserved ½ cup of oat mixture on top of the berries.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the bars are bubbling and the top is golden brown.
- Let cool completely before slicing into squares and serving.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 242Total Fat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 3mgSodium: 89mgCarbohydrates: 48gFiber: 6gSugar: 16gProtein: 5g