I am always looking for healthier dessert choices for my family and this is one that everyone loved!
These Chewy Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars are similar to a granola bar, but they are made with just a handful of ingredients that you can pronounce – no hidden sugars or corn syrups or weird chemical ingredients.
To be honest, they are kind of like a chewy granola bar topped with thin layer of dark chocolate. They are so simple to make and are perfect for an after-school snack, dessert, or even as a quick source of energy before one of your kids’ soccer games (or track, dance, basketball, baseball, golf, gymnastics . . . all the places parents are running their kids these days!).
Ingredients needed for Chewy Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars:
- quick oats – also sometimes called instant oats. You can use rolled oats or old-fashioned oats, but quick oats have been rolled and pressed thinner, making a smoother texture in your bars. But if you only have rolled oats on hand, use them!
- unsweetened shredded coconut – you want to be sure that you use UNSWEETENED – you don’t want the coconut that’s covered in sugar or these will be overly sweet!
- crushed plain pretzels – check the ingredient list when choosing pretzels and try to find the healthiest pretzels that have 6 or less ingredients. If possible, avoid pretzels that have corn syrup added. If available, opt for whole grain or whole wheat pretzels.
- honey – even if the front label says “pure honey”, you will want to check the back label and make sure that they haven’t added anything to it. Many times companies will add corn syrup or other fillers to their honey to make it less expensive, but then it really takes down the nutritional benefits.
- natural peanut butter – like the other ingredients listed above, be sure that you are checking the ingredient label! For natural peanut butter, the only ingredient listed on the label should be peanuts (and sometimes salt). The honey will sweeten these bars, so you don’t need sugar added to the peanut butter.
- dark chocolate chocolate chips – for this recipe, I used Enjoy Life chocolate chips. I prefer this brand (this isn’t sponsored, I am just sharing my opinion) because they don’t use any artificial ingredients, refined sweeteners, corn syrup, gluten, trans fats, or GMO ingredients. Chocolate in moderation is a good thing, especially when it’s dark chocolate made from ingredients you can pronounce!
Other variations to try:
- swap out the peanut butter for almond butter or another nut butter
- don’t add chocolate on top and swap chocolate chips for raisins
- swap chocolate chips for dried cranberries
- swap the pretzels for crushed almonds
How to store these bars
I would recommend keeping the leftovers in an air-tight container in the fridge. They tend to get kind of soft when kept out at room temperature.
They should stay fresh in the fridge for up to 5 days.
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More of our favorite healthier desserts:
- Greek Yogurt Chocolate Fruit Dip
- ABC Chocolate Pudding
- Sheet Pan Banana Cake
- Zucchini Oatmeal Cookies
- No Bake Coconut Bars
Healthier Chewy Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars Recipe
- 1 cup quick oats
- 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- ½ cup crushed pretzels
- dash of salt
- ½ cup Honey
- ½ cup natural peanut butter
- ½ cup sugar free chocolate chips melted
- 1 Tablespoon coconut oil melted
- In a large bowl, combine oats, coconut, crushed pretzels and salt.
- In another bowl, combine honey and peanut butter (if you find it hard to mix them together, feel free to warm them in the microwave for 10-12 seconds) and pour over dry ingredients. Gently mix together until completely combined.
- Line an 8 x 8 inch baking dish with parchment paper. Pour mixture into pan and press firmly with a piece of folded over parchment paper to avoid sticking to your hands (or spray your hands with nonstick cooking spray and push mixture into place).
- Place pan in freezer for about 30 minutes or until bars are firm.
- Mix melted chocolate chips and coconut oil together in the microwave or on the stove top.
- Remove bars from the freezer. Spread melted chocolate over the bars and cut into 12 pieces.
- Large Bowl
- Mixing Bowl
- 8×8-inch baking pan
- parchment paper
- Microwave Safe Bowl