To say I’ve learned a lot since having William would be the understatement of the year. However, there are a few things that top the ever-growing list: first; I am way stronger and more patient than I ever thought possible (although the patient thing applies more to baby and less to my poor husband…lol). Second, it truly does take a village (which is why I am grateful every day for my amazing tribe of friends and family and friends that are family); and third, you can learn to eat just about anything with one hand while holding your baby with the other. But since even the most skilled solo hand eaters end up getting a decent portion of their meal on their shirt or the floor (and we don’t need more laundry or housework), it’s best to have a fridge stocked with fast and easy but healthy and energy boosting snacks that require just one of those always busy hands to enjoy. Which is why these Golden Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars are perfect for new mamas and any busy but hungry individual. So basically everyone. 😉
I know my last post was also technically a dessert but in my defense my recipes aren’t your typical nutrient deficient, inflammatory processed treats, and today’s is no exception. Plus, as a nursing mom whose kid literally just started sleeping through the night after 7 long months I understand the need to power a day via something delicious and comforting. And besides, these oat-based bars are full of b vitamins, which help combat stress and fight anxiety and depression (something I suffered from postpartum and will talk more at length in a post someday). They are also essential for metabolic function, which is how we convert our food into fuel; and are important for brain health, immune function, and nervous system function – all of which are especially important for new moms battling baby brain and trying desperately to keep themselves, their baby and the rest of their household from getting sick.
And of course, these cookie bars are also dairy free, refined sugar free and gluten free and full of those awesome healthy fats we chatted about last week – cause if you’re like me the last thing you need to add to your already crushing mom guilt is snack guilt. Although seriously, can’t we just give ourselves a break and eat a damn cookie bar while patting ourselves on the back for being awesome moms/women/sisters/friends/whatever!
The Natural Blonde
P.s. I’ve also learned that sometimes wine on a Tuesday is ok…..
Golden Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars
¼ cup coconut oil, softened but not melted
¼ cup pecan butter (or nut butter of choice – almond, walnut or pumpkinseed would be good!)
¾ cup coconut sugar (I’ve also used Xylitol – the bars will be a little looser and not as “golden” but sugar free! Extend cooking time by 5-10 mins. as well)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
½ tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. fine sea salt
½ tsp. cinnamon
¾ cup oat flour
¾ cup gluten-free rolled oats
¾ cup almond flour
½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
⅓ cup 70% cocoa chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350°F and line an 8-inch square pan with parchment paper.
In a large mixing bowl, beat the egg, coconut oil, pecan butter, and sugar and vanilla with electric beaters until combined (you can also do this by hand if you don’t have electric beaters).
In another bowl, mix together all the dry ingtredients except the coconut and chocolate chips. Then, add the dry to the wet ingredients and combine either by hand or with the electric mixer. Lastly, stir in the chips and the coconut.
Pour batter into pan and evenly distribute (I found using my hands necessary to get it even since the batter is sticky). Bake for 15-20 minutes (longer if using Xylitol), or until lightly golden and firm around the edges.
Allow the bars to cool in the pan for 20 minutes or so before gently lifting them out and letting them cool completely on a wire rack or counter. Slice and enjoy!
Note: The bars will crumble slightly if sliced warm, but they firm up when cooled so exercise some patience before eating ;). They are best out of the fridge! Store leftovers in the fridge in an airtight container for 3-5 days (then start to dry out) or you can freeze in an airtight container.