8:03 a.m. – The time that the bus rolls up at the corner to carry the aforementioned Princess off to middle school. (It used to be 6:50 a.m.: things are better now.)
Seven minutes. She has an average of seven minutes – to get dressed, check her face, comb her hair, check her face again, maybe put on a little make-up, gather her school supplies that were supposed to be together the night before, grab her clarinet, hug her Mama and run out the door…
Breakfast? Most often, it is in her hand – because if she can’t hold it and eat it before she gets to the bus stop, it won’t get eaten. Because, heaven forbid should anyone know that she actually eats breakfast. (“It’s embarrassing.”) And somehow, no matter how early she gets up, it doesn’t change the amount of time she allots for eating breakfast. Thirteen-year old girls are weird.
Any Mama or Papa who has children who hop on a school bus has at least a few mornings when there isn’t time to sit down and eat anything. Some of us more than others, I’m sure, but we’ve all been there. So when you press something into their hands as they bolt out the door, you hope it’s something healthy and delicious (and NOT full of weird chemicals and preservatives) – something that will stick with them for the whole morning. Something that might even remind them that they are loved. A few weeks ago, I threw a bunch of ingredients in a bowl, waved my magic spatula and came up with a new favorite – a soft, healthy, hand-friendly breakfast bar full of oatmeal and yumminess.
I like to wrap these individually and freeze them in gallon-sized Ziploc bags, then take out however many I need the night before. They’re great cold, but for a warm breakfast on the go, ten seconds in the microwave makes them even better.
Oatmeal-Banana Breakfast Bars
- 3 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 cups unsweetened applesauce
- 1 large banana mashed
- ½ cup honey
- 5 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
- ¼ cup ground almonds or ground flaxseed
- 1 Tbls ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground ginger optional: I love ginger!
- 1 Tbls baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 cups almond milk
- Optional additions:
- ¼ cup coconut
- ¼ cup golden raisins or craisins
- ¼ cup sunflower seeds
- ¼ cup anything else that sounds good ahem… chocolate chips, anyone?
Preheat oven to 375°.
Mix eggs, vanilla, applesauce, banana and honey together in a bowl.
Add in oats, ground almonds, ginger, baking powder, salt and and “optional additions” you choose, mix well with wet ingredients.
Pour in almond milk and stir combine. Set on counter for 15 minutes to allow the mixture to thicken slightly.
Line a large jelly roll pan with parchment paper. Spread mixture evenly over parchment paper.
Bake 1 hour, or until the top is slightly golden and it is “bouncy” to the touch. (Like a heavy quickbread.)
Cool and cut into 18 bars.
To store, wrap each bar individually in plastic wrap and then freeze them in gallon freezer bags.