No-Bake Chocolate, Cranberry, Chia Oatmeal Bars

by Kelli H. on August 20, 2014

This week feels like it should already be Thursday, even though I set myself up for success over the weekend. David and I took care of a lotttttt of chores that had totally fallen by the wayside. It was so nice spending the weekend working on tasks that had been placed in the to-do basket located in the back of my mind. I won’t go into all the details of what we did, but one thing in particular that really helps me face another work week is having healthy snack options available for when hunger strikes at work.

I’ve made a board on Pinterest to pin snack recipes that I want to try out at work. I get in the habit of eating the same type of snacks day in and day out, so in an effort to mix things up a bit, I’m going to be trying out new snack recipes. I’ve always been good about making sure David and I have breakfast, lunch, and dinner, but snacks haven’t been something I’ve been so good about. I usually just buy fruits, nuts, and make David hummus and broccoli.

What I liked about this recipe was that it was no-bake. That’s always nice in my opinion. Just throw all the dry ingredients in the mixing bowl and then stir in the wet ingredients.

Once it’s all combined all you gotta do is put it in a loaf pan, freeze it, and then cut into bars. Super simple, right? This recipe is pretty awesome because it’s opening up so many doors for me to try new flavor combos. I keep thinking about using coconut flakes, dried blueberries, and more! So many flavor combos to explore — it makes me giddy.

Anyway, even with all my meal planning and convenient snacks available this week, I’m feeling a tad weighed down. Mostly due to the fact that I feel like there’s been all these very adult-like things to take care of. Monday morning I had to drop our truck off at the auto body repair shop to meet with an adjuster to assess the damage from the large tree branch that broke off and landed on our truck. Luckily, the damage was pretty minimal and we even got money off our deductible for choosing to live with two very unnoticeable scratches that they mostly polished out.

Then we started thinking about how we should probably get a quote for our front bumper that has been black for the last couple years, because shortly after we purchased the truck all the silver paint peeled off. We’ve been living with it but knowing we’ll be selling the truck in a couple years, we started thinking we should just get it repainted. Trying to discuss what to do and if we should spend quite a bit of dough on it through text while your husband is at his new job on a break isn’t the easiest. We finally came to the conclusion to get it done.

This morning I went to get some routine blood work done and I was a little disappointed with how much the lab at Kaiser seemed like the DMV. Call me crazy, but I used to enjoy when they’d come out and call out your last name when they were ready for you. It makes me sad that we’re all just reduced down to numbers now.

I’m not really trying to complain here, it’s just been a busy week of personal tasks to care of on top of work, trying to keep healthy by making dinners, and exercising. Of course, the nights come so fast now with David not getting home until 7. I’m just very thankful I had the weekend to relax and prepare for such a busy week.

These no-bake oatmeal bars are really freaking delicious. The mini chocolate chips melt down a bit and make them taste so decadent. I may have cut my bars a tad uneven but I’m sort of looking forward to the smaller bars. They are sooooo filling! David thinks they’re the best granola bars he’s ever had, and I have to agree with him! Like I mentioned up above, you could totally play around with all different mix-ins. Have fun with them!

No-Bake Chocolate, Cranberry, Chia Oatmeal Bars
Adapted from The Gracious Pantry

2 cups old fashioned oats
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/3 cup mini chocolate chips
2 tablespoons chia seeds
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/3 cup coconut oil
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1/4 cup honey
1 teaspoon vanilla

1. In a large bowl combine oats, cranberries, chocolate chops, chia seeds, and cinnamon.

2. In a small pot over low heat melt coconut oil, peanut butter, honey, and vanilla together.

3. Mix wet and dry ingredients together until fully combined. Place in a well oiled or parchment lined loaf pan. Pack mixture in baking dish and freeze for at least 2 hours. Remove from freezer and cut  into bars. Keep bars in freezer until ready to eat.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Made in Sonoma August 21, 2014 at 1:46 pm

I need to make these (or something similar) for Marty and I during the work week. I always end up eating the same snacks and I know that he goes for ‘not-so-great’ choices when he is at work. I especially like that these are no-bake 🙂

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Made in Sonoma August 22, 2014 at 7:16 pm

These bars look delicious! I’m not good at making snack foods either. I always have a banana and peanut butter on hand but Brandon goes for chips which is just awful. I should throw something a little healthier together.

And about the numbers thing- I work in an imaging office that operates with the same system and the point of it is to make things more private. It does seem kind of weird but there are so many legal issues involved in healthcare now- protecting patients medical records being one of them- that they seem to be taking every step possible. I agree though, it does feel less personal.

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Made in Sonoma August 22, 2014 at 7:39 pm

I think people are too dang sensitive/sue happy. I don’t see how it violates anyone’s privacy to call out your name while you’re waiting. It’s a strange time we live in.

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