I get in breakfast rotations and inevitably, breakfast ruts. Smoothie, oatmeal, eggs, rinse and repeat. To mix things up, last summer I started treating myself to a weekly trip to my local cafe for a huge half oatmilk/half almond milk iced latte and a blueberry scone. That little habit started adding up ($$$) so I began making a weekly small-batch treat to enjoy with my homebrewed coffee. This morning ritual became something I looked forward to and quickly part of my weekly routine.
One part muffin, one part crumble, these morning oatmeal-inspired, maple-sweetened blueberry bars are going to be your new summer favorite! Paired with an iced coffee (or hey, treat yourself to one from the local coffee shop), a small batch of these bars are the perfect weekday breakfast treat or midmorning snack!
Oats are blitzed into a fine flour, then combined with almond butter, maple syrup and cardamom. This dough acts as both the base and crumble topping. They're not too sweet, packed with toasty oat and nut flavor and freeze like a dream!
For the blueberry-chia jam:
- 2 cups fresh or frozen (thawed) blueberries
- 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice, from about 1 large lemon
- 2 tablespoons chia seeds
- 2 teaspoons lemon zest, from about 1 large lemon
For the crust and crumble:
- 2 cups old-fashioned oats, divided
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/ 2 teaspoon ground cardamom (or cinnamon)
- 1/ 4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/ 2 cup natural almond butter
- 1/ 3 cup pure maple syrup
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons sliced almonds
- Flaky sea salt, to taste
Line an 8x8-inch baking dish with parchment paper. Set aside.
For the blueberry jam: In a medium saucepan, combine blueberries, maple syrup, lemon juice, chia seeds and lemon zest. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce heat to low and simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently and using the back of a spoon to smash the berries to release their juices. The mixture will look thin. Transfer to a bowl and let cool completely. This step can be done ahead of time, refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days until ready to assemble.
For the crumble: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a food processor, combine 1 3/4 cups oats (reserve remaining ¼ cup for later), baking powder, cardamom and salt. Blitz to a fine flour, about 1 minute. Alternately, blitz oats in a high-speed blender and then mix the dough by hand.
In a medium bowl, whisk almond butter, maple syrup, egg, olive oil and vanilla. Add mixture to food processor and pulse until a thick dough forms. Scoop out about ½ cup dough for the topping. Add remaining ¼ cup oats. Use a fork to combine, set aside.
Press remaining dough into the bottom of prepared baking dish in an even layer with a greased spatula. The dough will be sticky.
Pour cooled blueberry jam onto crust into an even layer. Scatter with oat crumble, using your fingers to break it up into small lumps. Sprinkle with almonds and a little flaky salt.
Bake for about 40-50 minutes until crumble top is firm and golden brown. Let cool completely before slicing into bars. Store in an airtight container on the counter for up to 5 days, or freeze for up to 3 months.