I frequently put baked goods in the freezer, less so because I’m being organized and planning for a later date, and more so because then I can’t eat them all at one time.
Thankfully, this works well for certain things, including the giant bag of cheese curds my friend gave me the other day because #wisconsin. It does not, however, work well with others, most notably these oat and jam bars, which are maybe even more delicious cold. Just a pro-tip for you.
There are three components of these bars. First is the base, a sort of almond-coconut oil shortbread situation that’s nutty and crumbly and tender. Then comes the jam. Pick whatever type you want! Something sweet, something tart, all depends on you/your pantry. Fun fact: the kind I used was a strawberry jam I made with beer in it, because now that I live in Milwaukee I have to put beer in everything or else they’ll kick me out. (In case you’re wondering it is super delicious and if you’re nice maybe I’ll give you some because I canned way too many jars of it.)
Last is the oat layer. The quirk here is that we’re using quick oats, not regular. That’s because this isn’t a crumble or streusel situation in which the oats make chunks. Instead, the oats make a flat, full layer that toasts on top of the jam and is oh-so-good. If all you’ve got are regular oats, just give them a quick whirl in the food processor and you’re good to go!
These bars, in my opinion, might be the perfect snack situation. Sweet without a ton of sugar, full of whole grains without being dense, and much more complex than regular granola bars, they’ve got everything you could want. Plus you can always eat them straight from the freezer.
Oh! Also something important to remember, from my absolute favorite writer: Things Trump Hasn’t Ruined Yet because good golly do we need a reminder.
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Almond and Toasted Oat Jam Bars
Makes 8 bars
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup almond meal
1 Tablespoon brown sugar
pinch of salt
1/3 cup coconut oil, solid (it can be soft, just should be solid)
2 Tablespoons almond milk (or other milk of choice)
1/2 cup jam of choice
3/4 cup quick oats
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 Tablespoon brown sugar
1 1/2 Tablespoon coconut oil (solid or melted)
Preheat the oven to 350F. Line a 8×8-inch pan with parchment paper and set aside. In a food processor (or using a bowl and fork), pulse the whole wheat flour, almond meal, brown sugar, and salt until combined. Add the coconut oil and pulse until evenly distributed. Add the almond milk, one tablespoon at a time, and pulse until the mixture forms large clumps.
Press the dough evenly into the pan, using your fingertips to pat down until smooth. Spread the jam evenly across the top of the dough. In a small bowl, mix together the oats, cinnamon, sugar, and coconut oil. The mixture will not form clumps. Spread the oat mixture across the top of the jam until covered.
Bake for 40 minutes until golden brown. Let cool until slicing.