Banana chocolate oat bars

These chewy oat bars are flourless and plant-based.

Contributed by Linda Shiue, MD

Banana chocolate oat bars

Early in the COVID-19 pandemic, I wasn't able to stock my pantry with flour, so I decided to bake without any. I used soaked chia seeds as an egg replacer, and I think they add a nice chewiness that eggs would not.

You won’t need to add sugar if you use very ripe bananas (fresh or frozen — the kind you would use for banana bread); the small amount of honey is mainly to help with binding.

I added chocolate chips because I love the combination of bananas and chocolate, and I think we can all use a little treat right now. Enjoy for breakfast, snack, or dessert.

To store, refrigerate them in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

Servings: 18 as bars, 36 as bites


  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • Coconut oil, vegan butter, or cooking spray to grease the baking dish
  • 2 to 3 very ripe bananas (fresh or previously frozen); about 1 1/2 cups
  • 2 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened plant-based milk (oat milk recommended)
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
  2. In a small bowl, mix chia seeds together with water. Allow to sit for 10 to 15 minutes, until they form a gel.
  3. Generously grease an 8-by-8-inch baking dish or 9-inch round cake pan with oil.
  4. In a mixing bowl, use a fork to mash the bananas until smooth. If using frozen bananas, microwave on high for about 5 minutes, until softened, and then mash.
  5. Stir in the chia seed and water mixture, rolled oats, milk, cinnamon, honey, vanilla extract, and salt until well incorporated. Then, stir in chocolate chips.
  6. Spoon the mixture into the baking dish and gently use the back of the spoon to flatten and smooth the surface, as it will not spread.
  7. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes until slightly browned and firm to the touch. Cool completely before cutting into bars or bite-sized squares.

Nutrition Information (for 18 banana chocolate oat bars)

  • Calories: 80
  • Total fat: 2 g
  • Saturated fat: 0.5 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg
  • Sodium: 70 mg
  • Total carbohydrate: 14 g
  • Dietary fiber: 2 g
  • Total sugars: 5 g (includes 1 g added sugar)
  • Protein: 2 g