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Strawberry Pistachio Oat Bars (Vegan + GF)

There are some weeks where nothing seems to be going right. I find myself stuck in a creative block. I have no idea what to cook, I can’t figure out how to style or shoot my dish, or I don’t know what words to fill this blank page with. I begin to doubt myself, wonder if the creative flow will ever come back. And then I start complaining about little insignificant things, like not having enough space in my kitchen, not having enough nice props to work with, or struggling with poor light coming through my window. In those moments, every single thing I’m attempting seems to be working against me and I’m totally counter-productive.

I wake up one morning with the best intentions in the world, but then the day goes by and I end up way back to square one. It’s like I’m moving in the wrong direction, or facing a strong current and getting exhausted. These past few days have been just that for me. Nothing has been working the way I had planned.

I read something last night that said something along the lines of: “But what plan? There is no plan. Life is not a plan to follow. Life is an adventure and experience that makes us grow and evolve.” I tend to forget that too often and this week was the reminder I needed to soak that all back in. Accept what is, be gentle on myself and enjoy the journey, whatever it may look like at this very moment.

Strawberry Pistachio Oat Bars (Vegan + Gluten-Free) by The Green Life

Strawberry Pistachio Oat Bars (Vegan + Gluten-Free) by The Green Life

Strawberry Pistachio Oat Bars (Vegan + Gluten-Free) by The Green Life

Whenever I feel a bit down, I know that sweets will find their way to my heart. So I baked these bars and they were the little comfort I needed to get to a better, more gentle place.

These little squares are slightly sweetened, with fresh flavours from the lemon zest, and of course these delicious in-season strawberries. They’re perfectly crumbly, with a nice bite and some juiciness from the fruit. An unpretentious little dessert (or breakfast?!) that hopefully will too, brighten your day up a little.

Strawberry Pistachio Oat Bars (Vegan + Gluten-Free) by The Green Life

Strawberry Pistachio Oat Bars (Vegan + Gluten-Free) by The Green Life

Strawberry Pistachio Oat Bars (Vegan + Gluten-Free) by The Green Life

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Notes on the recipe: I used pistachios but I’m sure these bars would be delicious with other nuts such as almonds or pecans. Make sure you cool the squares completely before slicing them, otherwise they may crumble a bit. I placed the pan in the fridge to speed up the chilling process and it worked well.

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Strawberry Pistachio Oat Bars (Vegan + GF)

Servings 16 squares

Ingredients

Crust

  • 1 tbsp chia seeds + 3 tbsp water
  • 1 cup rolled oats certified gluten-free if necessary
  • 1 1/2 cup oat flour you can make your own by grinding oats in your food processor
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup raw unsalted pistachios, roughly chopped

Strawberry Filling

  • 2 cups diced strawberries
  • 1 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp lemon zest

Instructions

Make the crust

  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line an 8 x 8 inch pan with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the chia seeds and water and set aside to thicken while you prepare the rest of the mixture.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the rolled oats, oat flour, almond flour, baking powder, ground cardamom and sea salt.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together the melted coconut oil, maple syrup, vanilla extract and chia gel mixture. Pour into the bowl of dry ingredient and mix to combine. The mixture should be moist and slightly sticky. If it's too dry, add one or two tablespoons of water. If it's too soft add one or two tablespoons of oat flour.

Prepare the filling

  1. In a bowl, combine the diced strawberries, maple syrup, vanilla extract and lemon zest.

Assemble and bake

  1. Take about two thirds of the crust mixture and press it firmly with your hands into the prepared baking pan. Spread the strawberry filling evenly over the crust. Drop the remaining oat mixture in small chunks on top of the filling, covering as much as possible. Sprinkle with chopped pistachios and press down slightly with your hands.
  2. Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until the top is slightly golden. Let cool completely before slicing into squares. Enjoy!

“Be content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.”

Strawberry Pistachio Oat Bars (Vegan + Gluten-Free) by The Green Life

Leave a Comment

  • Ça à l’aire délicieux mais l’avoine est une céréale qui contient du gluten (ma soeur est intolérante au gluten )

    • Bonjour Clara,
      L’avoine ne contient techniquement pas de gluten. Par contre, c’est vrai qu’il y a un faible risque de contamination, puisqu’elle est habituellement cultivée sur des terres qui ont pu préalablement faire pousser des grains contenant du gluten. Les gens qui sont intolérants au gluten peuvent généralement consommer de l’avoine sans problème. Ceux qui ont la maladie coeliaque sont par contre plus à risque. C’est pourquoi je recommande d’acheter de l’avoine certifiée sans gluten à ceux qui ont des doutes. Il est important que la mention “certifié sans gluten” soit écrite sur l’emballage. J’ai omis de l’indiquer dans cette recette (je le fais généralement dans toutes mes recettes contenant de l’avoine), mais je l’ajouterai afin de clarifier. Je vous invite à lire les articles suivants, qui expliquent très bien le tout: http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/fn-an/securit/allerg/cel-coe/avoine-gluten-oats-fra.php et http://www.celiac.ca/?page_id=1458&lang=fr#.
      Merci et au plaisir!

  • Franchement je suis tombée en arrêt devant ta recette, c’est typiquement le genre de recette que j’aime! J’avais déjà fait un essai quand j’habitais à Londres mais c’était beaucoup trop riche, et les squares qu’ils font la bas ne sont pas du tout adapté pour une nourriture saine du matin, j’ai donc mis ta recette dans ma to do pour ce we 🙂
    A bientôt !