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Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

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Gooey Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars:

True story:

I was once on national television… in my underwear. 😕

It was when I was 5 years old, on a popular children’s show similar to Sesame Street. The goal of the segment was to teach young children how to get dressed by themselves: this was in the early 90s, therefore footage is thankfully not immortalized online.

Gooey Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

Possibly even more fun than the filming process was when the show aired and everyone reconvened for a viewing party. One child’s mother brought in three plates of gooey chocolate chip cookie bars for the occasion, and not a single person left that day without having asked for the recipe. The bars would become a staple in my childhood home for many years afterwards.

Today’s recipe is a healthy makeover of those addictive chocolate chip cookie bars. I played around to find the perfect amount of applesauce to lower the fat, calories, and sugar while still maintaining the bars’ seductively gooey texture. The subtly-strong flavor of the surprise ingredient—molasses!—takes these bars completely over the top. They are sure to win you over!

Gooey Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

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  • 1 1/2 cups spelt or all-purpose flour (180g) (oat flour works; the texture is just a bit gummier)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup rolled oats (20g)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar or date sugar (90g)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup to 1 cup chocolate chips, depending on how chocolatey you want the bars to be
  • 1/2 cup vegetable or coconut oil (80g)
  • 1/2 cup applesauce (120g)
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract (9g)
  • pinch stevia, or 2 tbsp sugar of choice
  • 3 tbsp blackstrap or regular molasses (43g)


Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and line the bottom of an 8×8 pan with parchment paper, then set aside. In a mixing bowl, stir together the first 6 ingredients. In a separate bowl, whisk together all liquid ingredients, then pour wet over dry and stir to form a batter. Spoon into the prepared pan. Bake 25 minutes. Makes 15-24 squares, depending on how large you cut them. (The ones in the photos are cut from 24.) I love the unique molasses flavor in these bars, but you can always substitute pure maple syrup or agave or honey (vegans don’t use honey) if you’d prefer.

*View Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars Nutrition Facts*

Chocolate Covered Katie 2014

Completely unrelated: I can’t go any further without giving a long-overdue mention to Sara Kiesling, an extraordinarily-talented photographer and one of my favorite people in the world. I was lucky enough to work with Sara a few months ago when she came over to do some author photos, and we spent the entire day talking about basically everything under the sun.

When she sent me the images from our shoot, I was shocked at the incredible quality: the clarity, the sharpness, the white balance and brightness (especially the brightness, as they’d been shot on a cloudy day). Then Sara really shocked me by saying the photos weren’t even edited yet! I can’t say enough good things about Sara. You can check out her website here: Sara Kiesling Photography.

Healthy Blueberry Muffins
Link of the Day: Healthy Blueberry Muffins

Katie is the baker, photographer, and author of the popular blog Chocolate-Covered Katie. Her favorite food is chocolate, and she believes in eating a balanced diet that includes dessert every single day. More about Katie—> 
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  1. Katy says:

    That’s a beautiful photo of you Katie! These cookie bars look delicious and it’s so funny that you remember them even though you had them when you were 5. I love those oats poking out.

  2. Ahhh Katie these look awesome! What a great treat!

  3. These sound amazing, I love anything with oatmeal or chocolate and these bars sound like the perfect portable afternoon snack;)

  4. I guess being on TV in your underwear is a small price to pay for a delicious dessert recipe? 😛 These look amazing, can’t wait to try!

  5. Andrea says:

    First off, I cannot say how proud I am that you chose a Minnesotan photographer (Go Minnesota!!).

    Secondly, I cannot wait to try out this recipe. Multiplied by 4 or 5 batches, approximately.

    1. Alyssa says:

      I didn’t realize she was a Minnesota photographer! Whoa! CooL!

      1. I thought it was an extreme long shot to get her to come to Texas, but I was very lucky. Her work is amazing!

  6. I love the little oats shining through in these 😉 I love a good oat bar and of course chocolate chips are always mandatory 😀

  7. becauseHeloves! says:

    These are calling my name…I must make them sometime this week! Beautiful picture by the way.

  8. YES, bar cookies! No idea why they are so much denser and richer than normal cookies, but wow, awesome. Loving your take on them.

  9. Swiftie22 says:

    Katie, you look SO pretty! Beautiful picture. And I can’t wait to try the recipe! :)

  10. Jenna says:

    You look happy, healthy & gorgeous!

  11. That’s a really pretty picture of you!!

  12. Megan says:

    Oh yum! These look amazing, and so worth trying out!

  13. Sarah S. says:

    These look so delicious and you look STUNNING!!!

  14. Sara says:

    You are the absolute prettiest and such an incredible person, I’m so glad we met and became BFF <3 <3 <3

  15. Haha, that’s hilarious! And those bars look fan-freakin-tastic.

  16. Lily says:

    Wow, Katie! I was just thinking of how you should try making cookie bars! I have two questions, can I bake these in a 9×13? They seem very thick so I was wondering if that was possible. Also, can I use coconut sugar in the place of the brown sugar? Thank you so much for the recipe, and you are absolutely stunning!

    1. I’ve not tried the 9×13 idea, so if you try it be sure to report back. You can definitely sub coconut sugar; just be sure it is packed.

      1. Lily says:

        Thank you so much, Katie! Have a great day! :)

  17. Lauren says:

    Hi Katie!
    I was wondering if you have an alternative to molasses. I see it in many of your recipes, but I don’t think we have something similar here in Belgium (at least not in a regular supermarket).
    Very nice picture btw!

    1. Lily says:

      Hi, Lauren! Katie said in the post you can substitute pure maple syrup, honey, or agave for the molasses. :)

      1. Lauren says:

        Oh wow I did not notice that she already gave substitute options. Thanks!

        1. Caroline says:

          Hi Lauren! If you live in Vlaanderen, “keukenstroop” is probably what you’ll need. It’s exactly the same as molasses but we use a different name! Good luck 😉

    2. Lisa says:

      To The belgian woman: molasses are kandijsiroop in dutch. There in The oven now :-)

  18. Kathryn says:

    Katie, you are beautiful! And inspirational. Thank you for sharing your time and life with us.
    These bars look scrumptious (along with everything else on here…I am thinking about making the kale brownies this week. Of course, I will not share the secret ingredient until it is generally admitted that they are good! 😉 ).

  19. Molasses is such a wonderful ingredient to sneak in. It does wonders and you don’t need much. Can’t wait to try these! The chocolate chips on top look like they have the perfect amount of “melt.” :-)

  20. These look really good. The picture of you looks lovely too. You look so pretty and natural.

  21. Am says:

    These look great! I think I will try them with a gluten free mix that I make that I find works well in sub for AP flour and let you know how it goes :)
    The picture is amazing!

    1. Maria says:

      Please report back on the GF flour version.

      1. Am says:

        Hi! Reporting back on my gluten-free experience: I followed CCK’s recipe, except for the flour and sugar. For flour I used brown rice flour and cornstarch: a little more than 1/4 cornstarch and the rest brown rice flour. For sugar, I subbed 1/4 honey because I feel better when I eat “clean”. They turned out well, overall. The texture was a little crumbly, but the majority of them stayed in a firm bar shape. I wasn’t crash-hot on the taste, but it could be just because I don’t always like the taste of molasses in baked goods for some reason. :/ I hope this helps :) P.S. It was really fun to make; thanks CCKatie! :)

        1. Am says:

          Update: I shared them with my Mom and she loved them!!

  22. Isa says:

    Thanks Katie, I’m going to try those tonight to send in the lunch boxes tomorrow :)
    We have recently been told we can’t have eggs anymore (on top of wheat, dairy and various other things), so your site has become even more of a goldmine!!
    Thank you :)
    PS, picture is awesome (and you are truly pretty), I will check her website and share :)

    1. Thanks! The no-egg thing really does get easier the longer you do it. Good luck!

  23. You have no idea how much I am craving these now…

  24. I love that you were on Sesame Street! How fun!

  25. EVA says:

    Besides the brown sugar, I actually have ALL the ingredients to make these babies! I don’t know if it’s just your photography tricks or what, but that looks like a satisfying enough size to where I don’t think I’d want to cut it any bigger or I’d feel like I was eating one of those Mrs. Field’s cookie cake slices sold in the cases.

    1. EVA says:

      Oh, and by the way, the portrait is ridiculous. Ya look like a flippin’ model and I just want to sleep on your insane locks. I don’t know anyone that has hair that crazy beautiful, no matter how much healthy fat they’re consuming. I think you were just blessed.

      1. Aw Eva, thank you! That really means a lot to me :).

        1. EVA says:

          You’re quite welcome! I’m a self-proclaimed hair expert, so I NEVER give out compliments because I always seem to find a flaw. But yours, if only maintaining my curly blue hair could transform into your hair I’d be happy.
          We need a “create great hair” recipe, dasss what.

      2. Marcie says:

        It’s a little late to reply, but you can make your own brown sugar with molasses and white sugar. That’s all it is! I haven’t used store bought brown sugar in years!

  26. Lisa B says:

    These look delicious and are a must try!! I must say that in you recent photos, you look absolutely gorgeous and happy!

  27. Ashley says:

    These look delicious! Are the nutrition facts based on cutting them into 24 squares?

  28. Jessica says:

    Just made these. What should the consistency be like when finished baking? Mine don’t seem fully cooked after 27 min.

    1. Have they set up for you yet? They should be a little undercooked when you first take them out, which prevents the bars from getting too hard an dry, as cookies/bars continue to cook while they cool.

      1. Jessica says:

        They did continue to cook and tasted great. I think I could have cooked them for a minute or two more as they weren’t cooked evenly throughout. Thank you!!!

  29. Steph says:

    Firstly- man those choc chip bars look to fie for, but the photo of you is even prettier! What a perfect author photo!

  30. Chamsalife18 says:

    I just made these and it was a real fail. I substituted white whole wheat flour because I was all out of Spelt and regular All Purpose. I could tell things were going down hill after I mixed the dry and wet ingredients because it was a crumbly mess. I added about 1/2 cup of almond milk and that made the dough into a cookie dough consistency. I pressed the dough into a 8×8 pan and cooked them first for 15 minutes and then another 5 minutes. I left them cool and I could tell when I started to cut them that it was a gummy mess. I really didn’t want to trash them and waste all those good vegan chocolate chips (the horror!) so I cut it all up into small pieces and put them on a cookie sheet. Maybe I could turn these into biscotti? No dice. I cooked them at 15 minute increments for a total of 45 minutes! They did harden up but they taste terrible. I was so disappointed. I guess the moral of the story is DO NOT USE WHITE WHOLE WHEAT FLOUR.

    1. Unfortunately, I can’t vouch for the results with any substitutions. I also tend to stay away from white whole wheat flour because I’m not a fan of how it acts in recipes.

    2. Sf says:

      Seems like you really wrecked a good recipe with that one substitution

  31. kris says:

    I tried these today with the oat flour and gf oats and they are wonderful! I did end up increasing the bake time by about 15 minutes because they just seemed too gooey after 25, but I really like the texture. They are a little gooey but still hold together as a bar. yum!

  32. Steph says:

    Wow, Katie, you’re gorgeous!

  33. Emily says:

    I am actually a bit offended by “vegans don’t eat honey”. I don’t like honey. So I do not eat it. I do, however, think it is rude to think of anyone as any less of a vegan if they do consume honey(as long as it is retrieved without harming, WHICH DOES EXIST). I think if you say things like that it should be, STRICT vegans don’t eat honey. Did you know some figs have bug remnants in them? Does that make people who eat figs not vegan? Some farms kill insects off from their produce, So does that mean eating fruits and veggies because of the insect harm makes us unvegan? I think it is a sensitive subject. If the point of being vegan is to cause less harm (and in my beliefs, spread the love), then why not except? Its not like they’re chowing on chicken.
    I can’t afford a lot of the “Vegan” clothing. So am i not vegan?
    Anyway. I believe if we were a bit more excepting and less mean to each other. Then more people would adopted a vegan style of living.

    1. Vienna says:

      She often references ‘strict vegans’ as not eating honey. There are the vegans who attack other vegans for eating honey, and now you represent those who are offended by people saying vegans don’t eat honey. Frankly there is no winning! Instead of vegans being portrayed as those who are compassionate, they certainly can come across as antagonistic. Read Katie’s pages on her approach to veganism. You will find she IS a vegan that tries to lead an example of a vegan lifestyle that others would be attracted to.

    2. k says:

      LOL this blog isn’t about you. Why can’t people do a simple thing like enjoy recipes without tearing it apart.

      1. Emily says:

        Well I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to make this ‘about me’.
        I happen to love chocolate covered katie, and thoroughly enjoy all of her posts. This is the internet. I’m allowed to speak my mind in anyway that I want. (as is everyone else).
        I had just come from a huge instagram debacle on this subject, and it really bugs me when vegans do that to each other. I’d almost rather have someone just say nothing at all. I just think’s it a tad rude, I don’t know why. It just irked me to read (vegans don’t use honey). I know she often puts (honey is not for strict vegans). I apologize because this wasn’t the place, and in the long hall I know it doesn’t really matter. ‘LOL’ though? really? how old are you?

        1. Anna says:

          Some people are not aware that some vegans don’t eat honey (I never knew before visiting this blog a couple years ago). Perhaps Katie puts that note there for people who are not aware of it.

          1. Thanks Anna! That is exactly why I included it. :) The last thing I would want is for a non-vegan to make this recipe for a strict vegan who then refused to eat it because it had honey.

        2. k says:

          I’m 43 and I found your comment to be rude. It ‘irked’ me and this is the internet, I am allowed to speak my mind in anyway that I want. It also irks me when people nitpick Katie’s blog posts and recipes. She should also be allowed to post whatever she wants on the internet.

          1. Emily says:

            You’re right. It was rude. I’m allowed to have my opinions just as is everyone else. There is a time and a place and this was neither. I typed irrationally. I really should have thought about what I was complaining about. I love this blog and it doesn’t need added drama. I’m also sorry to sound so snarky. ‘k” I really didn’t mean to be so rude. And irked is just something my dad always uses. But you’re right, and I was wrong. This blog is suppose to be fun, light hearted, and delicious. Wether you want to use honey, maple syrup, agave, or sugar in general(and who uses it or not!) shouldn’t even be a matter of argument! from now on only positive reinforcement of how amazing these recipes are is what I will focus on!

          2. nuts4knits says:

            Well done. :)

  34. Stephanie Adkins says:

    Would the sugar amount per chocolate chip bar change if you subbed maple for molasses??

  35. Jls says:

    Rather than the oil, how do you think it would turn out with more applesauce or maybe plain yogurt? Thanks!

  36. Mike says:

    Everything is on the internet …

    1. Jacob says:

      She did say “SIMILAR to Sesame Street,” so perhaps you’re off the mark. Several of the little kids in that vid could have been Katie as a kindergartener, though, so we won’t know for sure until she responds yea or nay, if she chooses to do so. :-) Nice search work, Mike.

      Katie, thanks for all your recipes…I am looking forward to making the GF version of the cinnamon roll pancakes for my wife as a surprise Valentine’s Day breakfast (she has Celiac Disease), and possibly the recent molten chocolate lava cake to go with some decaf espresso and a board game after the kids are in bed!

      1. Yes, sadly that’s not me :(.
        I would love it if you happened to find it… but it probably won’t happen, as I couldn’t find it anywhere!

  37. Quinn says:

    Hi Katie! I adapted your recipe in my newest blog post(which will be up tomorrow morning). I’d love if you could check it out because your blog inspires me so so much! Thanks for sharing all your recipes with us.

    1. I will be sure to look out for it!

  38. Amina Imran says:

    Katie, you’re absolutely stunning! And not just in that photo, but just in general. You’re also so kind and so cute. :) And did you say “author”? I can’t believe you’re writing a book! Congratulations! Can’t wait to read it :)

  39. These bars look amazing! I’m totally going to have to try this recipe. soon.

  40. Beth says:

    Oh my gosh, I’m SO EXCITED TO MAKE THESE. One of my boyfriend’s favorite treats is cookie bars, but we don’t make them often because of how unhealthy most recipes for them are, and instead opt for lighter choices. Thanks, Katie!

  41. The Zen Kat says:

    You’re so beautiful Katie!! Great photo. And those bars…yum!

  42. Hedda says:

    I just made this! It was sooooo good! Moist and delicious! I subbed some of the oil for pnb. Next time I’m going to add a litte bit of walnuts and use less sugar.

  43. Oatmeal Chocolate Chip combinations are always a big craving in our household of treats!

  44. Erin says:

    Hi all! I just tried making these and wanted to make a note – if you use coconut oil, you need to melt it in order for it to be blendable – and this made my chocolate chips melt when I blended the ingredients together! lol.

    I still went ahead and baked these anyways, but they are kind of like gooey brownies now. So may be best to stay away from warm coconut oil and try vegetable instead!

    1. I’d recommend melting the coconut oil before even adding it to the recipe. That’s what I always do when using coconut oil in baked goods (unless it is so hot outside that it’s already melted… but sadly that is not the case right now ;)).

  45. Sandra says:

    OMG…these are the easiest, most fabulous tasting cookies EVER….THANK YOU Katie!!

  46. Mia (Mia in Germany) says:

    Katie, that’s a beautiful photo :)
    I made these bars today and love them! As I’m not really sweet toothed, I only used the 3 tbsp. molasses and 1 tbsp. of additional erythritol, and I made them with gluten free flour. They turned out absolutely perfect!
    The only thing I’m unsure about is how to store them? Can I keep them in a cookie jar? And if so, how long?

    1. I would store in the fridge after a day, due to the applesauce.

      1. Mia (Mia in Germany) says:

        Thank you!
        Have a wonderful day :)

  47. Cassie says:

    I am definitely making these!

  48. Those look so good and easy too!

  49. Melissa says:

    I just made these subbing ww pastry flour for the ap. I also used coconut sugar (slightly less and not packed) and they are real good. Tons of molasses flavor came through. Thank you :)

  50. Anu says:

    Looks scrumptious and healthy.. Amazing blog. Have tried few of your recipes. Thanks.
    I can’t be without saying about pictures. Beautiful clicks.

  51. Beth says:

    Made these for my girls tonight after they played in the snow. Very good. Nothing but good reviews. Will be making again.

  52. Michael W. says:

    Got halfway through the recipe before I realised we were out of molasses and parchment paper and only had a 9×9, ended up subbing buckwheat honey and adding about 1/2tsp of cinnamon and 1/4tsp cloves because that’s how we usually make our chocolate chip cookies and they turned out great. My dad went to pick a piece up off the cooling rack, but in the description I said the words, “low fat” and he put it down… Came back later and he’d eaten 3, so I figure it’s a keeper.
    Thanks for yet another delicious recipe!

    1. Michael W. says:

      ‘nother note: I snuck one while it was still warm and I could definitely taste the “made with oil and applesause” flavour I’m used to in healthy/vegan baking, but when they cooled completely the spice flavours really came out and I honestly couldn’t taste it anymore. (not that it bothers me, but for more finicky family members *cough*dad*cough* it made a difference)

  53. amy says:

    i love oatmeal – these look so delicious – you’ve convinced me to try these at home

  54. Marion says:

    Hey Katie!
    I just discovered your website and I think it’s amazing! This is the first recipe I’ve tried and I really enjoyed it! Mine only looks a bit dark brown chocolaty because I used warm coconut oil and hot home-made apple sauce. Maybe I should use the cold versions next time. Anyway, it tasted so good, I actually think this is the best sweet & healthy recipe I’ve made. (and I’ve been cooking healthy for a few years now) So thank you very much!

  55. Katherine says:

    I just made these for my studio for Valentine’s day! I doubled the recipe and used a 9×13. I used equal amounts of whole wheat, AP, and oat flour. I used half vegetable and half coconut oil. I also added a bit of cinnamon. They turned out wonderfully! Thank you Katie!!

  56. Jon Mark says:

    That’s a nice picture of you Katie! These cookie bars look delicious and these bars sound just like the good portable afternoon snack.

  57. Zoe says:

    I made the recipe and I didn’t have ALOT of the ingredients. I Did not have applesauce but I substituted a mashed banana, I also did not have molasses but I substituted honey. I put extra chocolate (my family hates too much chocolate, but who’s making the recipe here?) & 2 tbs of flaxseed.It came out very moist. Family loved it, will make it again.

  58. I did these few days ago. They are perfect! :)
    I replaced half of brown sugar with coconut sugar though. And used maple syrup.
    I maybe should have used something else than olive oil (it gives this “weird” taste to it) and neither of my parents liked it. So I have to eat it all alone. But that’s not bad thing I guess… 😉
    Thanks again Katie for awesome recipe! I had to show of your blog and my baking in my blog :)

  59. Laura says:

    I’m gonna make these with coconut sugar, gf flour blend, and pumpkin for applesauce. Should work, right? I don’t care if it tastes like fall. It’s still winter, after all!

  60. Emma of Zimt says:

    Just made these. WOWZA!!! I love them! Nice crispy top, gooey centre. Amazing. Thanks for yet another winner, Katie =) I will blog about them.

  61. Liz says:

    Thank you for the nice recipes.

  62. Jan says:

    Does the coconut oil need to be solid or liquid?

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:


  63. Emily says:

    I made these last night exactly according to your recipe, but they turned out super flat and seemed like they didn’t cook all the way. I even let them sit for quite a while afterwards but they didn’t change much. They are also much darker than the ones you photographed. The only difference I can think of is that I was having some issues with my brown sugar being clumpy, so it didn’t completely mix throughout the batter. Is this where I went wrong? I want to know for when I try to make these again!

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      The only thing I can think of is that maybe you accidentally omitted an ingredient or something. Have you checked out Katie’s FAQ page for troubleshooting at the top of her blog yet?

    2. Lily says:

      I know this is late, but with the color problem, you probably used dark brown sugar vs the light brown sugar that Katie probably used :)

  64. Leslie Paquette says:

    I just put these in the oven now. My 18 month old “helped” me make them and thoroughly enjoyed licking the spoon when we were done. Can’t wait for them to come out of the oven!!

  65. Eithne Eldred says:

    I love love love your recipes and have made two or three of them so far. I made these Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars and while they were delicious they were very moist. In your photo they appear more cake-like. Any thoughts?
    Thanks again, I’m addicted to CCK!

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      These bars are chewy and soft and gooey… Kind of like a soft chewy oatmeal cookie. I’m not sure if that’s the “moist” you meant, but if you want them drier you can always leave them out overnight barely covered.

  66. Dani says:

    I just made these and they turned out very oily and not right. I am confused as I followed the directions. Perhaps I was not supposed to use regular coconut oil – did I miss some piece of information?? Used Trader Joe’s Extra Virgin coconut oil…

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      You may want to check out the troubleshoot comments in the Recipe FAQ section at the top of Katie’s blog. Here’s the link:

  67. georgia says:

    Hi,thank you so much, for all those healthy and yummy recipes! georgia!!

  68. Kira says:

    First of all… Amazingly beautiful picture my dear! You are truly a natural beauty…

    Second, these are delicious!!! I did a little experimenting with a few ingredients and came out with some great results! I substituted the spelt flour for barley flour (I was out of spelt!) The other swap I made was on the brown sugar. I substituted the same amount(by weight) in dried pitted dates. Threw all the wet ingredients into my Ninja blender and pureed till it was super smooth. Results were AWESOME!! These remind me of those Keebler Soft Batch cookies I used to eat as a kid! Thank you for a delicious recipe Katie! You’re awesome…

    1. Thanks, Kira! And I absolutely love your date idea. Might have to try it! :)

  69. Julie says:

    I made these and loved them :) Definitely one of my favorite recipes of yours that I’ve tried!

  70. Mary says:

    I was wondering if I needed to melt the coconut oil before measuring. I made your quinoa chocolate chip cookies and they were delicious but melted into the pan. Want to try these and want to know if it’s more accurate to melt first. Thank you!

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      Melt first is best.

  71. BornToBake says:

    I made these Bars today and am pleased to report that they turned out moist and looked exactly like the photo – which is uncommon today on most food blogs. When it came to the ingredients – used all-purpose flour [as I could not find spelt flour] and went with vegetable oil instead of coconut oil [a matter of availability again]; I also used brown sugar vs. date sugar and regular molasses; and I substituted carob chips (using 3/4 cup). It is definitely necessary to use parchment paper too – the bars will stick if you don’t. As for the oven temperature – I found baking them at 350 degrees produced a less gummy bar for my personal taste buds; a temp of 325 yielded bars that seemed somewhat underdone to me. Overall, a nice alternative and yes, it does have a molasses flavor even though the recipe only calls for a mere three tablespoons.

    1. Suzanne says:

      Same here – baking at 325 didn’t seem to do it. I upped the temp and baked for a while longer, until it looked like the pictures here. They were great! So just go ahead and bake it a little longer if it seems underdone.

      (Note: my oven temperature isn’t off. I did a deep dish cookie pie afterwards at the temp listed in that recipe, and the baking time there was perfect).

  72. Cherie says:

    Hi Katie! These look amazing on your blog and I could not wait to try them! I just made these and instead of a “batter” I got a crumbly mixture. Do you have any tips? I feel like there wasn’t enough liquid or something to actually bake in the mix. But I’m not gonna lie that crumbly mix is still delishh!

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      You may want to check the troubleshoot comments in the Recipe FAQ section at the top of Katie’s blog. Here’s the link:

  73. Stassi says:

    Hello, I don’t have any applesauce in my kitchen (neither me or my kids like to eat it) so I was wondering if you think it would be o.k. to use 1 cup of coconut oil to make up for the other 1/2 cup applesauce? I have yogurt, maybe 1/2 cup of that would be better? Thanks!

  74. SGM says:

    So, I went on a CCK baking marathon this weekend. I made your healthy blueberry muffins, oatmeal muffins, banana bread doughnuts (as muffins because I don’t have donut pans…womp womp) and these…twice!

    I enjoyed them, as did my friends whom I invited over (not just the oatmeal bars but the other things as well) to help me eat all the baked goods (because I assure you I didn’t bake it all for myself, lol). The first time I made them with whole wheat pastry flour and they came out fine. Second time was with AP flour but I didn’t really try it (baked it too late to snack on it :).

    If I had the proper ingredients, I would have made even more stuff. :)

  75. Lizzie says:

    I have a church get together Friday night – I’m thinking about making these and bringing them! Thing is, I don’t have parchment paper or a car with which to go get some (poor college student here)… would aluminum foil work instead?

    PS – I love all your recipes that I’ve tried! :)

  76. Holly says:

    These were insanely good! And you just might have made an applesauce convert out of me! 😉

  77. Christine says:

    Katie, I would love to make these but don’t want to use the 1/2 cup of oil. What would you recommend I substitute? Or can I just leave it out completely?

  78. AnnaBananaBelle says:

    Oh my gosh you look gorgeous in that photo! You have the prettiest smile!

  79. Jessica says:

    Hi there, I made these cookies and while they are delicious they have more calories than is posted, and I was just thinking it might not be a bad idea to correct your listing. I put the ingredients into my fitness pal, and with 1/2 cup of chocolate chips 1/24th of the pan comes out to 130 calories, not 77…that’s almost double! I worried it was too good to be true and now I am extra regretting eating half the pan yesterday. I have another batch in the oven now too….yes they are that good! This time I’ll have to work on my portion control. :)

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      The calorie count in the post is correct for the ingredients she used. Online calculator tools are very often inaccurate. See Katie’s Recipe FAQ page at the top of the blog for more details.

  80. Susie says:

    Yum! Made these today & they are beautiful.
    I used wholemeal SR Flour, vegetable oil & rice malt syrup
    (instead of molasses).
    I also ran out of Choc chips so had to use Mini M&M’s

  81. Sandra says:

    I made these today and they are delicious!! WOWEE! I can’t believe there’s no egg or dairy. I read all the comments and was concerned that these might turn out a little gooey. I tweaked the recipe slightly by adding an additional generous 1/8 tsp of baking soda. I was hoping to encourage the bars to take on a little more cake-like texture. I thought this might lighten it up and allow it to cook all the way through more thoroughly. The other thing I did different, following the suggestion of another commenter, was to cook the bars at 350’F for about 35-40 minutes rather than 325’F for 25. The reason I increased the cooking time was that the first 2 times I pulled the bars out they were still sticky in the middle. When I finally took them out of the oven I let them *cool completely*, then cut them with a serrated knife so I didn’t smush them. They turned out so yummy it’s really almost crazy. My son’s friend, a known junk food eater, ate one and fell in love with these. Just an fyi – I used AP Flour, vegetable oil and honey (instead of the molasses).

  82. JJ says:

    Wow, talk about easy to make, I just made these with my dominant hand in a cast! They are so good, too. Thanks Katie.

  83. maddy says:

    Can you substitute applesauce for another ingredient?

  84. Jennifer says:

    Oh my goodness, these cookie bars are delicious!!! I will definitely be making these again AND I will be recommending them to everyone I know. Great recipe, Katie! :)

  85. Jennifer says:

    I liked the recipe, but had to cook it longer as I had 2 pans cooking at once. but they worked great.

  86. Shannon says:

    I just put in raisins instead of chocolate chips…can’t wait ’til they are cool

  87. meghan says:

    Can you make these without the molasses?
    oatmeal chocolate chip cookies are my FAVORITE

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      You can try maple syrup. If you do, please be sure to report back here with your results.

  88. melissa taylpr says:

    Cck, I love your recipes and tell anyone who listens about how you are very talented, gifted in your creations. I’m a big fan, I am thankful that you decided to teach us all how to eat sweets, pancakes…stroganoff and lentil stew. I make a lot of recipes.

    One recent concern; the advertising banner. They advertise unhealthy things on there that go against your core value of eating less ingredients and sugar…and eating far more nutritients. Yoplait advertised as a healthy after school snack kind of cheapens things. Your site is beautiful to look at but the big red banner takes up my tablets screen when I first get to your site. Its really not your fault. Nestle and conagra can spend a lot more money than companies who pledge to use safe wholesome ingredients. And I know you don’t prescreen or control the banners. I wanted to give you feedback because I appreciate the great recipes and cooking instructions.

  89. Marilia da Silva says:

    I loved it

  90. Nancy says:

    OKAY I am sooo happy I found your website! Your recipes are easy and healthy! even better is that they taste AH MAZ ING!! THANK YOU SO MUCH for sharing your awesome recipes! I made this recipe with Pastry flour. I cant stop eating them! :)AGAIN THANK YOU!

    Much love from a small kitchen in California! – NANCY

  91. Jennifer says:

    Good morning, Katie!
    I made these bars last night and they turned out great. My husband was thrilled!
    Could they be cut and frozen, do you think?

  92. AL says:

    As a 23 year marathoner at age 61 and still registered for 5 marathons Oct. 2014-Apr. 2015, I can appreciate how continuous running isn’t for everyone. I find sugar intake to be the main ingredient to weight control, feeling good/bad, and enabling how strong we feel when exercising. Can you address how you control sugar intake and substitutes in order to keep your weight and appetite under control?

  93. Ann D. says:

    Lovely photos Katie! I always love having a look at your recipes, although, I wish you ate Paleo so I could enjoy more than a handful of your recipes. :0)

  94. Tina says:

    These look amazing! I try to do everything sugar free with stevia and Erythritol, do you think I could add a bit more molasses to the brown sugar needed to my Erythritol/Stevia mix? Do you have a recommendation on the amount of molasses to add? Can’t wait to try these!
    P.s. Beautiful photo!

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      You can always experiment! Edible experiments can be fun!

  95. Michelle says:

    I just made this recipe as a GLUTEN FREE VERSION. I used: 1/2 cup oat flour, 1/2 cup brown rice flour, 1/4 cup tapioca flour, 1/4 cup potato starch, 1/2 teaspoon xanthum gum. This is what we usually use for our generic gluten free flour mix. It turned out extremely well. It was gooey and cakey just like we like it. I think I will leave out the extra 2 tsp of sugar next time as it was a bit sweet and we are going to try it with Maple instead of Molasses as well. We are serious maple fans. THANKS FOR THE GREAT RECIPE!

  96. Blanca Zorn says:

    I love oats, and this recipe has it!

  97. Christina says:

    Would it ruin these to maybe cut the sugar in half? This would be great to send with my son as his snack at school, but I’m afraid with the chocolate chips, sugar, and molasses it will be too high in sugar.

  98. Christina says:

    Absolutely LOVE these!!! So yummy! Thanks for the recipe.

  99. Jennifer says:

    Have you tried making these with peanut butter in place of some of the oil? As I was adding the molasses it occurred to me that PB and oats and chocolate would be a good combo here.

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      You can always experiment, and please report back with results if you do!

  100. Mary says:

    These look so good!!! Do you think I can sub coconut sugar for the brown sugar?

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      You can. I’ve done it. But coconut sugar takes up more space than brown sugar (and weighs less) so you’ll need about 1.5 times as much. Hope that helps!

  101. Tara says:

    Hi Katie, can I sub coconut flour/arrowroot for the AP/Spelt flour? If so, what would the measurements be? Thanks so much…love your blog!

    1. Robin says:

      No, those would not produce a positive result. If you’re looking for something gluten free, I’m sure there are plenty of similar recipes online. Good luck!

  102. Robin says:

    This post is a year old now so I understand if I don’t get a reply, but I thought I’d ask anyway.
    I like to bake using gram measurements to ensure accuracy but my gram measurements are off from yours. My jar of coconut oil, olive oil, avo oil, etc. state that a tablespoon is 14g and since there are 8 tbs in 1/2 cup, it seems that there would be 112g of oil in this recipe, not 80g? 32g is a fairly large difference so I just want to be sure I’m using the right measurement. Any insight would be appreciated. Thanks!

    1. Unofficial CCK Helper says:

      Katie has said that she writes it this way because people using cup measuring spoons will find that when they measure out a tbsp of oil it actually is only about 12g because some stays in the spoon. if you have a scale it’s always best to go by the grams!

  103. Claudia says:

    Yay print button !!!

  104. Sara says:

    Help! I am making this recipe, but dont have applesauce? Any substitutions? Thanks!

  105. Rosie says:

    Hey all!

    In case any of you were trying to bake these with a 10×15 pan like I did, it will still turn out fantastic! Just double the recipe and bake for double the time. I had to bake mine for about 5 mins longer so 55 min total, as they were very soft and would crumble, but remember they also harden a bit while cooling. Mine came out so delicious, and just soft enough. Mmm so good! Thanks Katie! I’ve saved a bunch of your recipes but this is the first one I’ve actually tried to make and it definitely won’t be the last!

  106. I love all your recipes, this one included! I made one substitute and used
    Lighter Bake from Sunsweet ® in place of the vegetable oil as I’m trying to reduce my overall fat intake. It caused my bars to turn out darker, but they tasted great! I wrote a review of my success with this recipe and shared info on your cookbook in an article at