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I hope everyone enjoyed their long holiday weekend. I feel as though we should have 4 day weekends every week, wouldn’t that make everyone’s life so much nicer. I spent much of my time cooking so by the time Sunday rolled around I didn’t want to cook at all. Times like this make me miss being able to put out a cheese platter and calling it a day. I looked through my recipe box for some inspiration and came upon a recipe from my teenage years, no-bake bars.  

In my opinion bars, cookies, and pies are the best desserts. I’ve never been much of a cake fan, they tend to be dry and boring and take far too much time and patience to make. Bars on the other hand are much quicker and easier to make and you don’t even need utensils to eat them with. These bars will bring you back to the days of school bake sales. If you really want to relive those days bring a batch to work and charge 50 cents a bar.

So what makes these bars so great? They’re fast and easy, feature the classic flavor combination of peanut butter and chocolate, they’re easily made allergy friendly, and they have oatmeal in them so they’re almost good for you (that’s what I told myself last night after my third bar). Feel free to use another nut or seed butter in place of the peanut butter if you have an allergy or would like another flavor combination. Be sure to make these in the morning or the night before because it takes 2-3 hours in the refrigerator to set. Enjoy!

Gluten and Dairy Free No-Bake Bars

  • 1 cup dairy-free butter   
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 cups gluten-free oats, quick cooking
  • 3/4 cup dairy-free semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup peanut butter, chunky or smooth

Grease the bottom of a 9×9 pan.

In a sauce pan melt the dairy-free butter. Stir in brown sugar, vanilla and oats. Cook over low heat 2 to 3 minutes, or until the ingredients are well blended. Press half of mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan. Reserve the other half for topping.

Meanwhile, melt the chocolate chips and peanut butter in a small heavy saucepan over low heat or in the microwave, stirring frequently until smooth. Pour the chocolate mixture over the oatmeal crust, and spread evenly with a knife or the back of a spoon.

Crumble the remaining oat mixture over the chocolate layer, pressing in gently. Cover, and refrigerate 2 to 3 hours or overnight. Bring to room temperature before cutting into bars and serving.

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