Peanut Butter Pumpkin Oatmeal Bars
These Peanut Butter Pumpkin Oatmeal Bars are the perfect snack or fun treat! Full of fiber from oats and pumpkin, healthy fats from peanut butter, and perfectly sweetened with a little brown sugar, applesauce + chocolate chips. These bars are perfect as part of meal prep, made from pantry staples, and are gluten free and dairy-free.
I stumbled upon this recipe while developing my Sweet Potato Banana Oatmeal Bars and have been patiently waiting for a socially appropriate time to share all the pumpkin things. Recipes with pumpkin puree are something near and dear to my fall loving heart. Not just because of the taste, but because canned pumpkin puree is such a handy pantry staple to keep on hand for quickly (and almost effortlessly) veggie-loading so many meals and baked goods. Like these legit amazing oatmeal bars!
These Peanut Butter Pumpkin Oatmeal Bars are the perfect thing to make as part of your meal prep! Perfect as a snack or feel-good sweet treat, they are easy to throw together in about 10 minutes, and they are done baking in 30 minutes. Made with oats and sweetened with applesauce, a little brown sugar and optional chocolate chips, the pumpkin adds a boost of fiber and fall flavor!
Naturally gluten free when you use certified gluten free oats, these bars are also dairy-free and vegetarian. Make a batch today and store them in your fridge or freezer for when you need one most! You’ll be so grateful to have them on hand to make life tasty and a little more veggie-loaded.
Where to find pumpkin puree
I love keeping canned pumpkin puree on hand for easily veggie-loading recipes. I kind of hoard it in the fall when it is easier to find since it can be saved for months or even years to come and allows me to make the pumpkin oatmeal bars year round!
I can easily find it here in the United States in most grocery stores in one of the following spots…
- with canned vegetables
- in the baking section during fall and into winter
- with the dog food. Weird, but true. Lots of people add orange vegetable puree to to their dog’s food and so some grocery stores keep it there. I also find butternut squash puree and sweet potato puree there too. Usually it is the same stuff you eat, just in a different section. Of course, double check to make sure what you are grabbing is meant for human consumption.
If you can’t find it, be sure to ask an employee. Also, I know readers in other countries other than the US have said they struggle to find it in stores. I can find canned pumpkin puree on both Amazon and on Thrive Market.
Difference between pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie filling
It can be hard to tell when you are in a hurry at the grocery store and glancing at cans, but there is a big difference between pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie filling. While they will likely be labeled differently, they can look very similar. To be sure of if you are buying pumpkin puree verse pumpkin pie filling, be sure to turn the can over and look at the ingredients.
Pumpkin puree: is just cooked, peeled, and puree pumpkin. That is it. The ingredients on the can should just read “pumpkin.”
Pumpkin pie filling: will have spices (like cinnamon, nutmeg, all spice) and often added sugar in it and will be listed on the ingredients next to the pumpkin. Since it has added spices and sugar, these pumpkin oatmeal bars would need to adjusted so that the sweetness and flavors are not over powering. And I would not suggest using pumpkin pie filling in any savory pumpkin recipes.
- Use mashed ripe banana instead of applesauce.
- Omit the chocolate chips.
- Use canned sweet potato puree or butternut squash puree instead of pumpkin. They can be swapped out in most recipes, including this one!
How to store these oatmeal bars
Because these pumpkin oatmeal bars are loaded with fruit and veg, they are moister than a granola bar. They are okay on your counter top for 24 hours, but to keep them fresh longer… I suggest slicing them and storing them in an air tight container in the fridge for about 5 days. If you stack them in a container, place a piece of parchment paper in between the layers to prevent sticking.
Other pumpkin loaded recipes you will love!
- 10+ Delicious Recipes with Pumpkin Puree
- Pumpkin Protein Muffins
- Pumpkin Brownies
- Pumpkin Chia Seed Pudding
- Easy Vegan Pumpkin Waffles
Loving this pumpkin recipe and are hungry for more?
Peanut Butter Pumpkin Oatmeal Bars
- 2½ cups rolled oats , or quick oats (not instant)
- ½ teaspoon salt, omit if peanut butter you are using is salted
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1½ teaspoons baking powder
- ⅓ cup chocolate chips, optional, but if you omit…up sugar to ⅓ cup
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8-inch square pan with parchment paper.
- In a medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Mix together and set aside.
- In another medium bowl, combine the wet ingredients. Stir until mixture is smooth. Pour wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients and stir until well combined. Mixture will be thick.
- Add chocolate chips and stir in.
- Scoop oat mixture into the prepared baking pan and spread in an even layer. Top with extra chocolate chips, if desired.
- Bake for 30 minutes or until slightly golden brown on edges and on the top.
- Let cool in pan for 10 minutes before lifting out of the baking pan. Slice into bars.