Soft and chewy Pumpkin Oatmeal Bars are hearty, easy to make, loaded with healthy ingredients and make a great breakfast or snack throughout the fall season. They are naturally vegan and gluten-free if using certified gluten-free oats.
Hello fall, and hello Pumpkin Oatmeal Bars! If you've been wondering what you can do with canned pumpkin that is not a pie then I'm here for you with this seasonal spin on my very popular Healthy Breakfast Bars.
These cake-y bars are an easy-to-make, super satisfying treat that's packed with pumpkin flavor and just perfect to add to your fall baking list!
Just like my healthy no-bake bars and my Banana Oatmeal Blueberry Muffins, these pumpkin oatmeal breakfast bars (or snack bars) are loaded with nutritious ingredients, come with a gluten-free and nut-free option, and taste amazing.
Here's what you need to make healthy pumpkin bars:
And a few ingredient notes:
- Pumpkin puree - Canned or homemade.
- Oats - Rolled oats or old fashioned oats for these pumpkin oat bars. Use certified gluten-free oats if necessary.
- Nut or seed butter - Any type is fine, whether it’s peanut, cashew, almond, pumpkin seed, or sunflower seed butter.
- Pumpkin pie spice - See the FAQs for how to make your own pumpkin spice blend if you can't find it locally.
- Chopped nuts - Any chopped nuts. Use seeds (like pumpkin or sunflower seeds) for a nut-free option.
- Pitted dates - Dates naturally sweeten these bars and also give the bars really divine little caramel-y chewy bits throughout once baked. Any type of dried dates can be used. Chop them by hand or pulse them in a food processor.
- Vegan chocolate chips - Replace with nuts, dried fruit or seeds to make the bars healthier.
Success Tip - The nut/seed butter you use should be soft and drippy or your mixture will end up too dry and the ingredients won't bind together well.
How To Make Pumpkin Oatmeal Bars
- In a large mixing bowl mix the dry ingredients together.
- Mix the wet ingredients together.
- Add the wet to the dry and mix together really well.
- Spoon the mixture into a pan, sprinkle over some chocolate chips or nuts then bake.
Enjoy my healthy pumpkin oatmeal bars just as they are, or top with some vegan yogurt for an extra special treat. Maybe pile on a few extra nuts or chocolate chips and some slices of banana? Or really push the boat out and turn them into pumpkin dessert bars! Warm one up in the microwave for a minute then top with dairy-free vanilla ice cream and a drizzle of date caramel for an amazing vegan dessert!
Sweet potato puree is an excellent substitute for pumpkin puree, as is squash puree. Or use banana and follow my healthy breakfast bar recipe instead.
Make your own pumpkin spice blend to keep in the pantry. Simply combine 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon, 1 teaspoon ground cloves, ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg, and 2 teaspoon ground ginger. Seal in a jar or container and use as called for in your recipes.
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Pumpkin Oatmeal BarsAuthor:
- 1 packed cup (245 grams) pumpkin puree , not pumpkin pie filling
- ¾ cup (192 grams) nut or seed butter , any type
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ cup (60 mls) maple syrup , or brown sugar
- ¼ cup ( 60 mls) non-dairy milk
- 2 cups (200 grams) rolled/old fashioned oats , Use certified gluten-free oats if necessary
- ½ cup (63 grams) flour wholewheat, all purpose (plain in the UK), spelt, oat flour or all purpose gluten free flour.
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon fine salt
- ½ teaspoon pumpkin spice , or ground cinnamon
- ½ cup (70 grams) chopped nuts , Walnuts, hazelnuts and pecans all work well or use seeds like pumpkin or sunflower seeds
- 90 grams (½ cup) chopped pitted dates , measured after pitting and chopping - (about 8 to 9 dates).
For Topping (optional)
- ½ cup (90 grams) vegan chocolate chips , or more nuts/seeds
- Preheat oven to 350°F (175 °C) and line an 8 x 8 inch pan with parchment paper.
- Whisk the pumpkin puree, nut/seed butter, milk, vanilla and maple syrup together really well until smooth and well combined.
- To a large bowl add the oats, flour, baking powder, salt and pumpkin spice and stir together to combine. Add the chopped dates and the nuts and stir them through. If the dates get a bit clumpy, break them apart with your fingers.
- Add the wet pumpkin mixture to the bowl of dry ingredients and stir them together until everything is combined and you can't see any dry flour.
- Spoon into the prepared pan, pack it down well and even out the top.
- Sprinkle over the optional chocolate chips, press them down just a little with your hands, then put into the oven and bake for 30 minutes.
- Allow to cool in the pan, then cut into bars.
This recipe was originally published on September 17th, 2020. I've since rewritten the post and now I am republishing it for you. I hope you enjoy it. Thank you for following A Virtual Vegan!
I will be trying this recipe, but since I am allergic to dates, I will use softened prunes, chopped. They work well in bars that I have made before.
Your recipes are most appreciated!!
Melanie McDonald says
Thank you Harriet! That should work fine. You can even omit them completely in this recipe if you want to. The bars would just be more cake-y without the chewy date pieces. Hope you enjoy them!
I made these last night and they are so good! I used almond butter since it had a nice, mellow taste, and for the nuts I used pecans. The bars are soft, but hold their shape. I skipped the chocolate chips, still amazing!