Healthy oatmeal peanut butter bars are a chewy no bake recipe made in one bowl with 5 ingredients combining the creamy richness of peanut butter, and chewy texture of oatmeal and chocolate to make a delicious, nutritious treat.
My no bake oatmeal peanut butter bars are the best breakfast bars, so easy to make in one bowl with only 5 healthy ingredients, and no baking is required. The chocolate frosting is optional for these oatmeal cookie bars but simple, just melted chocolate chips softened with peanut butter and with an extra swirl of peanut butter on top.
Why You'll Love These
An easy no bake oatmeal bar. Mix up 5 ingredients in one bowl and press into a loaf pan and chill to set. These no bake chocolate oatmeal bars taste similar to a granola bar although much softer and with an explosion of chocolate both in the oats and the frosting top.
A delicious flavor combination. Who doesn't love this flavor combo, chocolate and peanut butter? Apparently, there is a science behind how the body reacts positively to the flavors of chocolate and peanut butter combined.
An easy, nutritious oatmeal bar. Rolled oats are the backbone of this oatmeal cookie bar recipe and oats are full of nutrition, making the bars filling, and full of fiber.
If you prefer a similar bar without peanut butter, check out my reader-favorite no bake chocolate brownies, my chocolate oatmeal bars, or my no bake chocolate protein bars. Like all the healthy no bake snacks on my blog, these cookie bars too are dairy free, vegan and gluten free.
1. Rolled Oats. Rolled oats add fiber and help keep these oatmeal peanut bars gluten-free and nut-free and give the oat bar structure.
2. Peanut Butter. Any nut butter can be used.
3. Maple syrup. Or make a date paste with Medjool dates.
4. Chocolate. This recipe uses both unsweetened cocoa powder and chocolate chips.
5. Milk. I used almond milk to keep the bars dairy-free, but any milk works, although I do not recommend sweetened condensed milk.
See the recipe card at the bottom for full information on ingredients and quantities.
Peanut Butter. I wouldn't entirely substitute peanut butter because it's the best binder for the bar, but you can split it in half (¼ cup) and use a banana (¼ cup) instead.
Maple syrup. Instead, you could use the date paste, or use honey if you don't need the bars to be vegan.
Rolled oats. Quick oats can also be used.
Step by Step Instructions
For more detail, visit the complete recipe at the bottom of this post, but here are general steps.
Step 1: Measure out ingredients. You can use maple syrup or if you have time make date paste. To do the latter, soak dates for a few minutes in just-boiled water, pit them, and blend up with water. I have detailed instructions in the recipe card below or read my date paste post here.
Step 2: Microwave peanut butter for 30 seconds to make it soft. Add it to a large mixing bowl.
Step 3: To the same bowl, add maple syrup (or date paste) and milk. And stir with a spoon. Then add the oats, salt and cocoa and stir.
Step 4: Press mixture into a parchment-lined loaf pan.
Step 5: If you are adding the frosting, melt the chocolate chips and peanut butter and pour the mixture on top. Then drizzle some melted nut butter on top and use a toothpick to make a design.
Step 6: Cover the pan with plastic and chill in freezer or refrigerator for 30 minutes or until you can cut them.
Step 7: Cut and serve, store frozen or refrigerated.
1. Make sure you use a peanut butter that is natural and made of just nuts and oil.
2. To use maple syrup, use ¼ cup. To use date paste, use ⅓ cup and make it by blending 4-5 Medjool dates in ¼ cup of water. Agave syrup would also work. Use the same amount or less since it tends to be sweeter than maple syrup.
3. To cut the peanut butter oatmeal bars, dip the knife in boiling hot water, wipe it dry, and then press the point and then edge of the knife on the chocolate for a moment to melt a cut before then pressing down to avoid the chocolate breaking.
Variations & Mix-ins
Nuts. Add ¼ cup chopped nuts of any variety.
Chia seeds. For added protein, add ¼ cup of chia seeds.
Raisins. Oatmeal and raisins go hand in hand, add ¼ cup. Add organic raisins to avoid sulfates.
Peanut butter banana. Use a fork to squash in half a ripe banana to the mixture to create the classic peanut butter banana oatmeal flavor with these bars.
Coconut oil. You can add a tablespoon or two of melted coconut oil to add more healthy fats. Melt the coconut oil in the microwave for 15 seconds first.
Chocolate chips. Add ¼ cup of mini chocolate chips for an additional chocolate crunch.
Granola. Sprinkle the top with your favorite crushed granola.
Room temperature & refrigerated. These no bake oatmeal peanut butter bars are fine at room temperature for 24 hours. After that, seal them in a container and refrigerate for up to 4 days.
Freeze. To freeze, put them cut into a sealed container and freeze for up to three months. Let them thaw in the refrigerator overnight for best texture.
Yes! Oatmeal and peanut butter provide fiber, healthy fats, protein and carbs that support nearly every cell process in the body.
Peanut butter oatmeal bars are healthy because of the fiber in oats and the protein in peanut butter. Oats have about 8 grams of fiber per cup. Peanut butter has about 22 grams of protein per 3.5 ounces, one of the highest protein levels in a plant-based food.
These bars themselves have a calorie count of 178, which is a modest level. Add the frosting, and the calories go up but so do the healthy fats, and magnesium benefits from chocolate.
More Healthy Chocolate Bars
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Healthy Oatmeal Peanut Butter Bars
- Measuring cups & spoons
- Mixing bowl
- parchment paper The parchment paper hangs over the sides so you can grab and lift out the bars.
Chocolate Oat Peanut Butter Bars
Chocolate Fudge Top
- ¾ cup chocolate chips
- ¼ cup peanut butter or nut butter
- Measure ingredients, and if using, make date paste by soaking 4-5 Medjool dates in just-boiled water for 2 minutes. Pit and blend with ¼ cup of water to make a paste.
- Melt peanut butter in microwave for 30 seconds until melted.
- Line a loaf pan with parchment paper hanging over the sides. That gives you handles to lift the bars out of the pan with.
Make the Oat Bars
- Put melted peanut butter into a mixing bowl.½ cup peanut butter
- Add maple syrup or the date paste, milk and stir.¼ cup maple syrup or ⅓ cup date paste, ¼ cup dairy-free milk
- Then pour in the oats, salt and cocoa and fold.2 cups rolled oats, ¼ cup cocoa powder, pinch of salt
- Press mixture into the pan. Press with spoon to even top.
- Refrigerate for 15 minutes while you make chocolate top.
Make Chocolate Top
- Prepare chocolate top by melting the chips and peanut butter in a pyrex measuring cup and microwave for 1 minute.¾ cup chocolate chips, ¼ cup peanut butter
- Pour on top of chilled oat bar in pan.
- Top with a drizzle of more melted peanut butter over the chocolate. Use a tooth pick or a sharp knife to create the swirl effect. To melt some peanut butter, microwave ¼ cup in a microwave safe cup for 5-10 seconds repeatedly until melted.
- Cover the pan with plastic wrap and chill until the chocolate is set - about 30 minutes in the freezer or refrigerator or until you can slice them. Then slice into 8 squares.
- The bars are fine at room temperature for 24 hours. After that, seal them in a container and refrigerate for up to 4 days.To freeze, put them in a sealed container and freeze for up to three months. Let them thaw in the refrigerator overnight for best texture.