Dairy-free, Gluten-Free Spiced Banana Oat Bars

These hearty Spiced Banana Oat Bars are lightly sweet and just a touch cakey, and bridge the snack and treat divide. They are also a delicious way to use up those speckled bananas.

Our dairy-free sweet cream ‘cheese’ topping is delightful, but completely optional. Photo: James Tse

Makes: 16 bars
Free of: gluten and all top allergens


  • 1/2 cup (120 mL) + 2 1/2 cups (600 mL) gluten-free quick oats, divided
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground allspice
  • 2 cups (475 mL) mashed very ripe bananas
  • 1/2 cup (120 mL) honey or agave nectar
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) rice bran, grapeseed or melted coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) orange juice
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Sweet “Cream Cheese” Topping (recipe follows), optional


  1. Preheat oven to 350° F and grease a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.
  2. Place 1/2 cup oats and chia seeds in a spice grinder or food processor and process into flour, about 1 minute.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together oat-chia flour, 2 1/2 cups oats, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, ginger and allspice.
  4. In a mixing bowl, blend banana, honey or agave nectar, oil, juice and vanilla extract with a hand mixer until relatively smooth, about 1 minute. Add oat mixture and stir until thoroughly combined. Scrape dough into the prepared baking dish and evenly spread with a spatula.
  5. Bake 25-30 minutes, or until lightly browned around edges and beginning to pull away from pan sides. Place pan on a wire rack and let cook completely.
  6. Frost with Sweet “Cream Cheese” Topping, if using. Cut into quarters each way, to create 16 bars.
  7. If unfrosted, store bars in an airtight container at room temperature up to 3 days (may be frozen for longer storage). If frosted, eat immediately or refrigerate up to 3 days.

Sweet “Cream Cheese” Topping

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together 28 grams of dairy-free, allergy-friendly cream cheese style spread (such as Daiya), 1/4 cup honey or agave nectar, 1/4 cup coconut cream and 1 tsp pure vanilla flavoring (alcohol-free), until smooth.
  2. Taste and whisk in additional sweetener, if desired.
  3. Store topping in an airtight container in refrigerator up to 3 days.

is a contributing editor to Allergic Living magazine and the author of Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance and Casein Free Living, and founder of http://www.godairyfree.com