Easy Pleasin' Oat Bars
2 cups ground oats (see note)
1 cup quick oats
1⁄4 teaspoon sea salt
1⁄4 teaspoon cinnamon
1⁄4 cup pure maple syrup
1⁄3 cup barley malt or brown rice syrup (see note)
1⁄4 cup vanilla or plain soymilk or other non-dairy milk
1 1⁄2 - 2 tablespoon canola oil
These are wonderful snack bars that are a little crunchy, a little chewy, and not too sweet. They’re a cinch to make, and also freeze well. For some different flavors and textures, try stirring in 1⁄4 cup of dried fruits and/or toasted nuts, such as dried cranberries and toasted pecans, raisins and toasted almonds, dried apricots and toasted walnuts, or some non-dairy chocolate chips or carob chips.
Preheat oven to 350°F (176°C). In a large bowl, combine all the dry ingredients. Add the wet ingredients into the dry mixture, stirring until well combined. Transfer the mixture to a lightly oiled 8"x12" baking dish and press it down until evenly distributed. Using a sharp knife, cut to mark out the bars before you bake them to make it easier to fully cut and remove the bars once baked. (I usually mark out 12 rectangular bars, but you can make whatever size you like.) Bake for 19-21 minutes, then remove and let cool in pan. Once cool, use a sharp knife to fully cut the bars, then remove with a spatula. Tip: The bars are softer if they are not overbaked. For even softer bars you can use a smaller pan to yield thicker bars.
Note: This recipe calls for “ground oats.” Ground oats can be made from quick oats, which are available in grocery stores. Use your food processor and process the quick oats for a minute or two. The consistency should be similar to coarse flour.