Family baking: Banana & Oat cookies with peanut butter and dark chocolate

I love to involve my little ones in cooking. Well it’s more of a love/hate relationship to be honest! I love the result of what they learn from helping to cook, but the process itself can be a little stressful! For this reason they are not allowed in the bakery! So I try to make sure I do a bit of fun baking in our home kitchen with them, to keep them interested with a bit of indulgent cooking that isn’t just them helping to stir the dinner!

The only problem is sugar. It’s so easy for kids to eat tonnes of sugar, and mine are no exception. So if we are baking together I don’t want it to turn into another reason for them to overload on sugar. I want them to be able to tuck into what they have made!

Our quinoa bars are always a favourite, I’ve blogged the recipe for these before. But when looking for something else, a lovely customer in our Facebook recipe exchange group suggested banana & oat cookies. They are no added sugar, or very low sugar depending on what you add to them. So what else can you do on a snowy cold January weekend than give them a go.

The base of the cookies is literally banana and oats and then you can leave them plain or add whatever you fancy. We added meridian peanut butter (made with just peanuts, nothing else!) and a sprinkling of montezuma’s organic dark chocolate chips. I did add a splash of honey too. So they are not ‘no sugar’ but natural sugar.

The results? Both children happy! Daddy was happy to get home and try one. Mummy was happy that there was minimum cleaning up afterwards. And a cookie helped get that done!

So here’s what went into them…

3 small ripe bananas

2 cups of oats (I know, we are English, but it’s so much easier to measure in cups with children)

Half a tbsp honey

1.5-2 tbsp peanut butter

Half a cup of dark chocolate

How we made them delicious…

Mash the bananas. This created MUCH fun and they were more pulverised than mashed. Add the oats and stir in. It should have a quite firm consistency now, if not sprinkle a few more oats in. Mix the peanut butter with the honey in a separate bowl. I do this to loosen the peanut butter up a little so it blends in easier. Mix the peanut butter and honey and the chocolate into the banana and oats. Roll into cookie shapes on a tray topped with baking parchment. We made them into balls, assuming they would cook and go flatter like other cookies do, but they didn’t spread out hardly at all so next time I’d make the batter into flatter disks before baking. They were more like little cakes than cookies as I didn’t flatten them! Cake-ies!

Our mixture made 14. They were quite big, as it was easier for the children to do (and my patience)! We baked them at 180 for about 12 minutes. Everyone enjoyed. I’ve been told they freeze well. I wish I could say I tested this, but you guessed it, they didn’t make it that far. But maybe next time…there will definitely be a next time!

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