You guys, I don’t watch a lot of TV. I don’t have the time, and, by and large, most of what is on anymore is just junk. Stop watching everyone else live their lives on reality TV and YouTube and get your ass out the door and go live yours. However… there is one show that I do not miss without fail- “A Million Little Things.”
This show is EVERYTHING… There’s laughing, there’s crying. There’s friendship and love and loyalty and betrayal and it is such an astounding reminder of how real, real life is. Never perfect but always beautiful, even when the roller coaster starts to drop and you feel that lurch in the pit of your stomach. If you’re looking for your next guilty pleasure, this show is it. I look forward to it every week, snuggled into my cozy chair with a glass of red and a box of tissues nearby. Everyone needs a therapeutic cry once in awhile., and a reminder that no one really has it all together, no matter how much it may seem they do.
In other news, more specifically related to food and this blog and why you are all likely here, I made some ridiculously good banana bread bars last week! I found an oat-based bar I really like that makes a quick and yummy breakfast, but those little suckers are $2.50 apiece! Ummm… that’s a bit steep in the world I live in, so I set out to make my own. I got this idea on a random weekday and didn’t feel like making any extra trips to the grocery store, so I made do with what I had on hand and just kind of made it up as I went.
That turned out to be: oats (obviously), past-their-prime bananas, some dairy-free chocolate chips leftover from my no-bake cookies, some pecans, and some dried cranberries which I used in a scrumptious wild rice stuffing recipe for Thanksgiving. Throw in all the usual suspects and we were on our way.
I really like the portability of bars. Individually wrapped, they are just easy and effortless and make mornings easier to endure. It dawned on me that I had been gifted this awesome Brooklyn Brownie Pan for my birthday, and while it was meant for brownies, I thought it would work well for these purposes. Guess who was right? This girl. They were perfectly cut and perfectly baked and perfectly yummy.
Let’s dig in, shall we? Chocolate Cranberry Pecan Banana Bread Bars… I know that that’s a mouthful. But let’s just say they’re aptly name because they are a mouth-full of flavor… ha! 🙂
Chocolate Cranberry Pecan Banana Bread Bars
Chocolate Cranberry Pecan Banana Bread Bars
1 1/2 C GF old-fashioned oats
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp pink Himalayan sea salt
2 large eggs
2 bananas, mashed
1/3 C brown sugar or coconut sugar
1/4 C real maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla
3 tbsp coconut oil, melted
1/4 C each dairy-free chocolate chips, dried cranberries, and chopped pecans
- In the bowl of a food processor, add all ingredients except for chocolate chips, cranberries, and pecans. Pulse until well-blended, then use a spatula to fold in chocolate chips, cranberries, and pecans. Optionally, sprinkle a few extras on top.
- If you don’t have a special Brooklyn Brownie Pan, an 8×8″ square baking dish will work perfectly fine. If you are using a square baking dish, spray lightly with coconut oil then line with parchment paper, leaving excess on edges for easy lifting and removal to cut later.
- Pour your batter into your prepared pan. If you’re using the Brooklyn Brownie Pan, make sure to press the dividers in AFTER the batter has been poured into the pan.
- Bake at 350 degrees F for 22-28 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out mostly clean. Baking time may vary a little between pans- I would keep an eye on it closely after 25 minutes.
- Let cool completely, then remove divider for perfectly cut bars -OR- remove from pan using parchment paper and cut into squares.
- Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to a week. Enjoy!
These were a big hit all around. All the coworkers loved them and asked for more. Soon. The whole family really liked them, too, and the kids were stoked that they were healthy enough to have for breakfast. Who am I kidding… so was I! Breakfast, snack or dessert… we’re set with these banana bread bars.
Wishing you all a very Happy Friday and a wonderful weekend! Be back soon to share my Strawberry Apple Crumble with you… cheers till then!