Well, I think we’re officially ready for baby to make its appearance as finally, wonder of wonders, last night we settled on baby names we agree on. It’s nowhere near what I thought we’d choose for a boy, I’m not entirely convinced it goes with our current names, but with only 9 days till due date, who the hamskamble cares anymore. I have about 25 hours of work left to complete, my husband is leaving me for 3 days for work 3 days before my due date, but my hospital list is written, the crib is up, my toenails are painted, and the countdown to serious no-fun pain is on :)
One thing left on the to-do list? Stocking the freezer. Forget meals, Carl can make those, but he isn’t likely to bake all the treats I’ll need to fortify myself through sleepless nights and panic attacks, so I’m stocking the freezer with those crucial things.
I am allll about the bars lately. If I can make any cookie in bar form, you better believe that’s what I’m doing. Poor Kristopher, whose favourite snack is straight-up chocolate chip cookies, finally asked the other day, “Can we just make chocolate chip cookies today? We haven’t done that in a LONG TIME.”
Unable to resist that earnest little face, I acquiesced, and I must admit they were fantastic and scooping all the dough wasn’t thaaat bad.
But then I was back to the bars.
These peanut butter oatmeal bars happen to be naturally gluten free as long as your oats are gluten free – no flour of any kind is involved in these! They taste great ooey-gooey warm with ice cream, and they taste just as good from from the fridge or freezer days later. On top of that, they’re mixed in one bowl and they make a giant pan full (did you notice how they go on for-evvvva in that picture?!), meaning you’ll have plenty to eat now and plenty to freeze for later, or the perfect quick recipe to feed a crowd.
I happened to have a handful (well, for a very small hand) of colourful sprinkles in the pantry that we threw on top before baking for some pizaaaazzzzz, but chocolate chips work just as well, or if you have any of your favourite colourful candies or toffee bits handy, they’re all fantastic. Full of oats, these are hearty, thick, chewy peanut butter oatmeal cookies in bar form…aka easier and peasier. You’re gonna loooooove them as soon as you try them :)
- ⅔ cup butter, softened to room temperature
- 2 cups regular or crunchy peanut butter
- 2 cups brown sugar
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 1½ teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 6 cups old fashioned oats
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- ½ cup additional chocolate chips, or toffee bits, Smarties, Reese's pieces...anything you like for topping
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a large 10x15 baking sheet or jelly roll pan and set aside.
- Beat together the butter, peanut butter and sugars. Add the eggs, vanilla, and baking soda. Add the oats, salt and chocolate chips and stir again until well combined.
- Press the dough into the bottom of the prepared baking sheet and top with the additional chocolate chips, lightly pressing them into the dough. Bake for 18-20 minutes, until the bars are lightly browned and just past looking wet on top. They will set further as they cool. Let cool completely before cutting into bars, or scoop out chunks while warm and serve with ice cream for a delicious monster cookie cobbler :)
- Store in the fridge or freeze for longer storage.
Slightly adapted (reduced sugar, increased baking time, added salt) from Mary at Barefeet in the Kitchen.