This Cherry Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Bars recipe makes a great lunchbox treat and party snack! They’re quick and easy to make and a huge hit with the whole family!
Cherry Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Bars
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I can remember when I was a kid, my mom used to make some pretty delicious oatmeal cookie recipe. They had chocolate chips in them and I always looked forward to opening my lunchbox to find them (and also enjoying some as an afternoon snack with a cold glass of milk). So when the opportunity was presented to partner with Bob’s Red Mill and create a recipe using their oats, I knew I had to use the memory of those delicious cookies as inspiration.
Collaborating with Bob’s Red Mill was a natural step for me because I already use many of their products in my daily life. From an ingredient stand point, it was especially exciting because I learned a whole slew of fun facts about oats that I otherwise might not have known. Did you know that the difference between rolled and steel cut oats is in the processing? Rolled oats are rolled flat to produce those flakes you know and love. Steel cut oats are chopped into several pieces for a chewier oatmeal. You learn something new every day!
For these oatmeal cookie bars I opted to use the rolled oats. But unlike those cookies of yore, I decided to add some dried cherries into the mix. I love the sweet, fruity flavor the cherries add and the bit of sophistication so that Mom can enjoy them just as much as the kids do.
I decided to make these into bars instead of cookies to make this even easier. Though I’m sure they’d make excellent cookies, who has time to be spooning individual cookies onto a pan? It was so easy to simply spread the batter into a greased pan and pop it into the oven. This left me more time to spend playing with my girls and helps make this a great option to throw together on a busy school night as a nice surprise for the kids lunch boxes or after school snacks!
Tips for making chocolate cherry oatmeal bars
- Since I first made these, I’ve updated the recipe to include lining the pan with parchment or foil in addition to greasing it. The trick is to have some extra parchment or foil sticking out on the sides so that once they’ve cooled it’s super easy to pull the bar out in one piece for easy cutting.
- This batter tends to be more stick than pourable. Don’t be alarmed by this, it’s exactly how it should be.
Frequently asked questions about making Cherry Chocolate Oatmeal Bars
- Can I freeze these? Yes, just be sure to cool completely after baking and wrap them well
- How long do these last? They last for a week in an airtight container at room temperature.
- Can I use a different dried fruit instead of dried cherries? Totally! Dried cranberries or raisins works great. If you’re looking to use a large variety of fried fruit like apricots, chop them to be smaller, around the same size of dried cherries.
- Can I make these as cookies? Sure- drop tablespoons of the dough with about 2 inches between them onto a lined sheet pan and bake at 350 for 9-12 minutes (depending on your oven).
- How long do I bake chocolate oatmeal bars? Around 30-35 minutes- you want them to be golden brown.
This Cherry Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Bars recipe makes a great lunchbox treat and party snack! They're quick and easy to make and a huge hit with the whole family!
- 1 stick salted butter, softened
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup flour
- 3/4 cup Bob's Red Mill Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 generous pinch kosher salt
- 1/2 cup dried cherries, chopped
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8" x 8" baking pan and line with parchment making sure extra comes up over the sides. Set aside.
Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
Add egg and vanilla extract and mix until well combined.
In a separate bowl combine flour, oats, baking powder and salt. Add to wet ingredients and mix until just combined.
Stir in dried cherries and chocolate chips until just combined.
Spread the batter evenly over the bottom of the prepared baking pan. This is a batter that is more sticky (and less liquid-y).
Bake on the center rack for 30-35 minutes or until golden. Once cooled, remove the bar in one piece and cut into 2 inch bars.
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- Spread your batter evenly over the bottom of your baking pan. This is a batter that is more sticky (and less liquidy). Don’t be alarmed by this, it’s exactly as it should be.