Crispy corners. Soft, chewy centers. Mixed in one bowl. Salted Dark Chocolate Oatmeal Bars are the perfect antidote to the stay-at-home blues.
I have to admit, it’s been a long COVID-19 month at home. Practicing social distancing and being a good citizen has been more challenging than I thought it would be.
Yes, we are safe. Yes, we have food and shelter. Yes, there are worse things that can happen.
But I’m also grieving and mourning the way life used to be.
Through the ups and downs of staying at home (there have been plenty), I’ve been cooking all sorts of interesting things. Some days, I’ve gravitated toward the complex and different. Other days, I want simple, simple, simple.
That’s where this recipe comes in. Salted Dark Chocolate Oatmeal Bars are the easy, one bowl wonder that will make even the most novice baker feel confident and proud.
These little bars are sweet enough to feel like a treat. And sophisticated enough (hello dark chocolate + flaky sea salt) to feel fancy. Plus, there’s just enough oatmeal to feel wholesomely healthy.
This is not the spectacular, dramatic dessert that’s going to turn heads and inspire squeals of delight. And this will definitely not be at the top of your list during the frenzied baking magic of the holiday season.
But Salted Dark Chocolate Oatmeal Bars will show you, there’s a place and time for a simple and humble homemade dessert. In your life and my life, too. Especially now.
There’s a reason why stores are running out of flour and yeast. During this challenging time, baking has become the soothing balm to our collective grief; the nostalgic comfort to our otherwise anxious and unsettling days.
Scoop, pour, stir. Press into a pan. Slide into the oven. Ding! Cut into squares. Lift with a spatula. Take a bite. Sip coffee. Sigh.
Happy Quarantine baking, friends!
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter (softened)
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 Tbsp vanilla
- 1 cup flour
- 3/4 cup oatmeal (not the quick cooking kind)
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
- 1/2 tsp flaky sea salt (for sprinkling on top)
Preheat oven to 350F/175C. Generously butter an 8×8 baking pan and set aside.
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars with a hand mixer until fluffy and light in color, about 4-6 minutes.
Add egg and vanilla. Combine until just mixed.
Add flour, oats, baking soda, and salt. Beat until the mixture comes together. Add chocolate chips and mix well with spatula. The batter will be thick and stiff.
Spread evenly into the baking pan. Sprinkle with flaky sea salt. Bake until corners are slightly browned and crispy looking and the center is set, about 18-22 minutes.
Set aside to cool for 10 minutes. Cut into squares and enjoy!
*Cut into 16 smallish squares or 9 giant ones. Enjoy!