Banana Walnut Bars

Banana Walnut Bars...the flavors of banana bread in a thick, soft bar! | Pick Fresh Foods

 

I don’t know why I do this, but I have a bad habit of over buying groceries. I almost always start off with a list, but I have a hard time sticking to it. I’ll walk down an aisle, see something, and think I’m out of that and grab one.

I justify it by saying I don’t want to make another trip. Smart, right?

 

Banana Walnut Bars...the flavors of banana bread in a thick, soft bar! | Pick Fresh Foods

Well, not so smart when that thing I thought I was needing actually has a replacement sitting at home. Then I end up with multiple packages of napkins, foil, ketchup, etc.

Those really aren’t that big of a deal, because they are nonperishable.

 

Banana Walnut Bars...the flavors of banana bread in a thick, soft bar! | Pick Fresh Foods

The real problem is I also do this with whole foods. Eggs, for example…I don’t want to run out of eggs. I thought I only had a couple left, so I want to pick up some more. I get home to find I already bought a dozen and a half a few days ago, but forgot. Now I have 36 eggs!

This same thing happens with asparagus. You surely don’t want to run out of asparagus. Haha :D I’ll end up with 2-3 bundles of asparagus. Who can eat that much asparagus in a week?

 

Banana Walnut Bars...the flavors of banana bread in a thick, soft bar! | Pick Fresh Foods

Bananas are another food I over buy. We consume a lot of bananas around here.  3 pounds of bananas at Costco are a great deal. 3 pounds of bananas at Sam’s Club…another great deal. Well, Cindy now you have 6 lbs. of bananas!

See I’m good at math, but not at remembering what I last purchased. Does this happen to anyone else or is it just me? Maybe I just need to slow down.

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Banana Walnut Bars...the flavors of banana bread in a thick, soft bar! | Pick Fresh Foods

 

Thankfully, when you have too many bananas you can always turn them into something wonderful. My recipe for Banana Walnut Bars uses 4 bananas. Woo hoo!

These bars are delicious! They bake up in a fourth of the time it takes to make a loaf of banana bread, with all the same flavors.  My son is a huge banana bread fan and said these are even better.  :D

These bars are thick and soft, with a delicious walnut streusel topping.  They are perfect for quick, filling breakfast!

 

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Banana Walnut Bars
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Ingredients
Topping
  • ¼ cup whole white wheat flour
  • ½ cup old-fashioned oats
  • 2 tbsp light brown sugar
  • ¼ cup walnuts, chopped
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
For Bars
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
  • ⅓ cup light brown sugar
  • ⅓ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 large bananas, smashed
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cup whole white wheat flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
Instructions
For Topping
  1. In a small bowl combine flour, oats, brown sugar, and nuts. Pour in melted butter and combine with a fork. Set aside.
For Bars
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a 9 x 13 baking pan with parchment paper. Coat bottom with non-stick spray.
  2. In a medium bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon with a whisk; set aside.
  3. In a small bowl smash bananas with a fork so there are no big chunks. Stir in 1 teaspoon of fresh lemon juice. Set aside.
  4. Use a mixer and cream butter and sugars together. Mix in eggs until combined. Add bananas and vanilla, mix until blended.
  5. With mixer on low, slowly add flour mixture. Blend until throughly combined and you don't see any flour.
  6. Pour batter into prepared pan. Spread out with a rubber spatula or spoon.
  7. Sprinkle evenly with streusel.
  8. Bake for 25 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean.
  9. Holding onto parchment paper remove bars from pan and place on a cooling rack.
  10. Cook for 10 minutes. Cut into 12-15 bars.

 

 

Comments

  1. haha I do the same thing – even though I have a strict list to follow! Mostly with things like eggs, oats, flour, etc. And then I get home and realize I already had an extra bag : ) Ah well.

    These bars sound delicious – I love that you used white whole wheat flour and lots of banana!

    • Thanks Ashley! It always feel like the cashier is rubbing it in when they ask if I found everything I was looking for. I see my list which as several items on it and then the cart is nearly full. Another reminder I can’t stick to my list :D

  2. Love this Cindy, I always tend to make banana bread when my bananas start to go bad, this is a great way to change it up! :)

    • Thanks Krista :D I love banana bread, but for a while I had a difficult time adjusting my recipe for high altitude. I finally figured that out and now realize that this recipe is even easier with no adjustments.

  3. I do the same thing, I swear I’m out of something and come home to realize I had it. Oh well, better safe than sorry!

    These bars look delicious too I love banana walnut, such a great combo!

    • Haha Danielle. I’ll say things like…I swear we need this or I’m 99% sure we need this. I just need a bigger pantry and refrigerator and it wouldn’t be a problem :D

      I love the streusel topping on these. You get the walnuts if you like them or can pick them off. Makes everyone happy :D

  4. Now these bars are the perfect reason to pick up some extra bananas! They look scrumptious!

  5. I do the same thing with bananas! I don’t know what it is about them, but we always seem to have a huge bunch of them but we never seem to be able to eat them all before they turn brown. Because of that, I also have a huge freezer full of black bananas, ha! Thank goodness things like banana bread exist! I’ve been looking for something to use them in and this recipes looks perfect! It looks so moist and delicious :)

    • Ha, the black banana. That can be scary if your not expecting it. My daughter thinks those are awful. She just doesn’t understand they become something delicious.
      I love these bars they bake up quickly!

  6. I try to stick to my grocery lists but there are plenty of things I fear running out of, too, so I can relate. It happens to me especially when I’m at Target but luckily, that tends to be non-perishable items. I do buy a ton of bananas because I don’t want to be caught without one but with the summer months, they really do ripen too fast so it’s handy to have as many ways to use them as possible. These bars sound really tasty and a great snack!

    • Super Target can be dangerous. I can fill a cart easily in that store. Not to mention they carry some things I can’t find at my grocery store, so I always feel like I have to get them when I’m there.
      You are right as it gets warmer those bananas are ripening so quickly. Thanks Monica :D

  7. I’m so bad at sticking to grocery lists! I get so excited once I’m in the store I always buy a heap of things I don’t need :) These bars look so yummy though! I love walnuts and banana together

    • I have found the only way I can stick to my list is to keep it short and to not use a cart. That cart…I just wanna fill it up! Thanks Lillian :D

  8. This seems like a common problem… I do the same thing too! It’s a total mental struggle… you know you likely already have it at home, but it would be such a hassle if you were wrong… so you buy it anyways… I’m so glad to hear I’m not alone!

    These bars look like a lovely breakfast treat. I have some bananas on my counter that are quickly ripening and these banana walnut bars look like the perfect way to use them!

    • I’m so happy to hear that I am not the only one. I’m starting to think I losing my mind. My kids are making fun of me. Saying things like don’t worry… in case of an emergency we have 3 bottles of syrup. Haha
      We are loving these bars. I’ve made them twice this week!

  9. I am a stickler for keeping to my shopping list so that I don’t double up. The banana bars sound great :)

    • Oh Tandy, I need your discipline. I can count the number if times I stuck to my list on one hand. I think I need to slow down and make a better list. Everything is always hurry, hurry, hurry.

  10. realfoodbydad says:

    I love what you did with these!! We are the same way at the store, I can totally relate:)

  11. Yes – this happens to me all the time! I will forget to buy milk which we’re desperately in need of but I will buy mustard thinking we’re out of it…just to get home and realize we have two unopened ones waiting in the wings in the pantry. It’s funny how the mind works! Love these bars – they look too good!

  12. We do this too. We are always buying too many bananas and although we eat a lot, we still have too many to eat before they go bad. But, we freeze lots of them to make banana “ice cream”. I love the stuff.
    These bars look yummy!

  13. Haha … yup, that’s me as well! My problem is that I ‘lose’ things in messy food cupboards and end up re-buying.
    These bars look fabulous. Love the idea of them baking up in a quarter of the time of banana loaf. :-)

    • My pantry is so small that everything ends up getting stacked and packed that it is hard to see what’s actually there. There you go my solution is to get a bigger pantry :D
      Thanks Helen. These bars are delicious and I do love that they bake up so quickly.

  14. Haha totally happens to me too. I always go in with my list and come out of the store with so much more and then have to find room to store everything. These bars look awesome Cindy, I have lots of bananas waiting to get used up so these are perfect:)

    • Thanks Kelly. Yep, that’s totally me. Thankfully, I have another small pantry to hold the bigger items. I keep saying I need to use everything we have before I buy more. Well it only takes one trip for milk and I’ve got more. Haha

  15. I just laughed when you said you over-buy groceries, me too Cindy! It’s like I think I’ll never get to the store again! I’ve been known to buy 10 boxes of cereal and 4 honeydew melons. Weido!!

    I love your oatmeal bars…..what a great grab-and-go breakfast! And banana/walnut is such a winning duo. (Not to mention that I just read walnuts are great for reducing belly fat, yay!!)

    • Yes! Our store is just a few miles down the road. It’s not like I have to travel hours just to get food. Haha
      Thanks Laura! These bars are delicious. I love walnuts. They are really one of the healthiest nuts you can eat. I also love adding them in to salads :D

  16. I totally over-buy groceries too! Luckily I have a big appetite for veggies and rarely throw things away. I love to make soup or bake with leftover produce! In the summer I tend to over-buy more because everything looks so fresh and in-season. LOL I totally get you about the asparagus! I think, well, it’s only here for a limited time, better get it while it’s “hot.” I want it all!!! ;) Bananas are something I over-buy on purpose, just so I can throw them in the freezer or bake something delicious (like this recipe!) with them. Great recipe! I imagine they would be great with a cup of tea or coffee. Mmmmm.

    • The produce section is like a candy store for me. I get big eyes and want everything! It’s hard to pass up all those beautiful colors :D My family freaks when they see a black banana in the freezer. They don’t look so great, but they can become something delicious later. Thanks Allison.

  17. What a cool idea! Turn your normal breakfast breads into bars…I love it! (and for the record, you aren’t the only one with impulsive grocery habits…I can’t pass up a deal! Even if it means I have a cupboard of 24 boxes of cereal…)

    • Thanks David. A good deal always stops me. How can you pass up savings on something you regularly use. Thankfully, I do come to my senses when shopping at Costco. I’d need another house for all the good deals there :D

  18. Haha! It sounds like we both shop almost exactly the same way. I usually end up buying about twice as much stuff that was originally on my list! And these bars are awesome-looking! I LOVE baking with bananas especially if it involves nuts. I’d love one (or 5) of these bars for breakfast this morning!

    • Thanks Sarah! Bananas are so great and they add so much flavor to any recipe. I need some self control with these. I can eat several with one cup of coffee. haha

  19. I love your Banana Walnut Bars recipe, Cindy. It looks so delicious. I love bananas, so I must give it a try soon ;-)

  20. In the same way. I always overbuy especially if the produce looks really fresh and appealing. Cindy I love this recipe and I know my hubby will love to have some for Father’s Day.

    • Thanks Kathy. Isn’t so hard to not want all that great looking produce? Then the next challenge is timing in what order to prepare difference veggies. I could easily be a vegetarian :D

  21. I’m the same way, Cindy — I’m so bad about over-buying to save myself a trip, then I still forget things, go back the next day, and buy too much again. haha I can never run out of bananas, and if they get overripe, there’s always banana bread and these bars! These look incredible, and I need to try them with the overripe bananas on my counter right now. :)

    • Oh Marcie that sounds exactly like me. The worst is I have a list and forget to get what is on it because I’m so distracted by other things. Halfway home I realize I forgot what I went there for. Oops, now I need to go again. Crazy!
      I love these bars they are so delicious and easy. I’ve made the twice already just with all my ripe bananas :D

  22. I guess you are not alone in this Cindy we all fall in the same mistake. But as long as it is consumed before it goes bad then no harm done :). Your recipe look so good I need to try those.

    • You are so righ,t Amira. I’m going to start converting my not so fresh veggies into a broth. I can freeze that and use it when I need.

  23. Cindy, these bars look scrumptious!

    • Thanks Norma. They are so delicious! They have that great banana flavor and are so moist and tender. Perfect with a nice cup of coffee.

  24. consuelohoneyandfigs says:

    Then send me all of your bananas girl! We run out of them here so fast! ;–) These bars look lovely – I could do with a couple of them right now! ;-)
    Have a great weekend! xx

    • Haha, they would surely be very ripe by the time they got to you :D Therefore, perfect for making these bars. Great thinking :D
      Have a great weekend Consuelo!

  25. I do the same thing with groceries, too! I always feel like I buy too much butter and eggs and for some reason. These bars look amazing! Bananas are the perfect fruit for these!

    • Now, butter is the one thing I never seem to remember that I need. I’m all set to make a recipe and it never fails that I’m out. Now that I recognize that I’m sure to be stocked up from now on. Haha.
      Thanks Gayle :D

  26. I am sssooo glad that someone else has an ‘over-buying’ problem. It justifies mine! Hahaha! These Banana Walnut Bars look amazing Cindy!

    • You guys make me so much better :D I was starting to think I have a real problem. Good to know I’m not the only one. Thanks for the support :D

  27. These bars sound delicious! Smart way to use up extra bananas beside banana bread. And I’m just the opposite! I always assume I have enough at home and am running out of ingredients or kitchen supplies. Last week I ran out of ketchup. Ketchup! It was the worst!

    • That’s is how I started off. Oh, I have that, then get home and sure enough I’m totally out. Maybe that’s why I am this way now :D Thanks Natalie!

  28. omg Cindy how good do these look!? they look like healthy-style rice krispie treats, I love how giant and thick they are! awesome recipe chica :)

    • Oh, rice krispy treats…yum. I can’t pass one of those up! Sorry, I get side tracked easily :D These are delicious, thick, and super satisfying. Thanks Christine !

  29. I definitely has this problem, but usually it is “OH I’ve never seen THIS before!” “I really need both goat cheese and feta cheese right now” then struggle to finish all this items! What can I say haha the supermarket is our candy store. These banana walnut bars look so good though Cindy! I love the texture on them.

    • Jessica, you are right! I feel like a kid in a candy store. I want it all and right then. It’s like I forget I can go back another time. Haha
      These bars are so good. They are great for a quick breakfast :D

  30. Impulsive grocery habits? Tell me about it…I keep buying and buying and buying.

    Btw, those bars look fantastic!

    • Haha, there might as well be a club for us impulsive, over-buying crazies. If I had a bigger family I could easily justify my shopping, but 4 people really don’t consume as much as I tend to buy.
      Thanks Mike

  31. Same problem with me, although sometimes I underbuy! There is never a week where I finish all of my groceries before the next shopping trip- there is always something I underestimated or some of my produce goes bad.

    • That’s the worst for me Tara. I’m always trying to think about how long certain vegetables last before they go bad so I can use them. Doesn’t always work. We get busy and next thing… I’ve got not so fresh veggies.

  32. I do the same thing – especially with bananas! I never go to the grocery store without buying them..I can’t imagine not having one with breakfast every day! My husband thinks I’m a little crazy especially when we have 4 bunches of bananas on the counter :)

    • See that is my fear…I’ll wake up and there won’t be any left. It always seems when I’ve figured out how many to buy, then everyone decide they too want bananas. That’s when it especially good to have extras :D

  33. I used to have that problem.. now with 4 kids I can never overbuy- they eat it all up! I love this variation on banana bread- awesome idea. Pinned to try soon!

    • I was just thinking that if I stop overbuying maybe they will stop eating so much. Ha I’ve done good at sticking to my list the last couple of trips. I’m trying to be more aware :D
      Thanks for Pinning Sherri :D

  34. I go wayyyy overboard at the grocery store, too!! I like these bars – they look delish!

  35. Oh Cindy, I’d say that I am the exact opposite! I always procrastinate!!!!! I’ll sit at home saying I’ll buy stuff later and then when I make the trip to the grocery store, I promptly forget all about it! Then when I get down to actually making a dish, I realize that half the ingredients are either missing or unusable in terms of the quantity! Time to get organized! haha! These bars look DELISH !!!!!!!!!!! I LOVE LOVE LUUURRRVVVEEE that walnut streusel topping!

    • See, I think that has happened to me too often that I start to worry it will happen again. That is just the worst to prep and see you are missing one ingredient. Ha
      Thanks Samina :D

  36. Say hello to my new favorite breakfast bar! Totally loving this!

    I’m that way when it comes to soy sauce or beans, I always stock up and then end up with 9 jars of soy sauce!

    • Pamela you have to be good at canning and preserving with your wonderful garden. Do you have a recipe for soy? I’d love to make my own.

  37. I love bananas. The recipe looks delicious. And it’s okay to overbuy bananas because they are so versatile and too many things you can end up doing with them.

  38. I’m a fan of anything that contains bananas! Looks great! :)

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