Recipes We Like: Gluten Free Oat, Blueberry & Walnut Bars

This recipe is from my friend and cookbook author extraordinaire, Carol Fenster. Carol and I have crossed paths at many celiac events, back and forth across the country over the last decade, and it is always a pleasure to see her. This recipe is from her book 125 Gluten-Free Vegetarian Recipes. Her most recent book, Gluten-Free 101: The Essential Beginner’s Guide to Easy Gluten-Free Cooking, is also beautiful and full of family favorite recipes. Any of her half dozen or so cookbooks are essential to a good gluten-free cookbook library!

Blueberries, cinnamon, and walnuts team up with rolled oats to make a hearty, flavorful bar that is also quite versatile. Feel free to change the filling — it is equally delicious using raspberry, fig, or strawberry jam. Or, use your favorite nuts such as pecans, almonds, or pine nuts. These bars freeze and travel well.

GLUTEN FREE OAT, BLUEBERRY & WALNUT BARS

Ingredients
1/2 cup butter or buttery spread, melted
2 teaspoons pure vanilla, divided
1 cup GF Flour Blend (see below)
1 cup GF rolled oats*
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup walnuts, finely chopped
1 ½  teaspoons xanthan gum
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2/3 cup blueberry jam
*Check with your physician before eating gluten-free oats.

  1. Place a rack in the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Generously grease an 8-inch square nonstick (gray, not black) metal pan. Or line the pan with aluminum foil, leaving a 2-inch overhang for easy removal. Grease the foil.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine the melted butter and 1 teaspoon of the vanilla. Stir in the flour blend, oats, brown sugar, walnuts, xanthan gum, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon until thoroughly blended, then press 1 ½ cups of the mixture firmly on the bottom of the pan.
  3. Stir the remaining teaspoon of vanilla into the blueberry jam until smooth, then spread it evenly on top. Sprinkle the remaining oat mixture evenly on the jam, then pat to make it smooth and even.
  4. Bake until the top is lightly browned and firm, about 20 to 25 minutes. Cool the bars in the pan for 30 minutes on a wire rack. If using the foil lining, invert the pan onto a large cutting board and remove the foil before cutting into 16 squares. Otherwise, serve the bars directly from the pan.

Serves: 16

GF Flour Blend
1 ½ cups sorghum flour
1 ½ cups potato starch
1 cup tapioca flour

Whisk together and store in a dark, dry place.