Lazy Granola Bars


Playtime with Ciaran now includes spontaneous reading which I am absolutely thrilled about. He randomly picks a book, gestures me to come over and laughs out loud when I start reading. His favourite is “Where’s Spot” which is a no-brainer as it has flaps to uncover the missing Spot. It won’t be long before he can join me in the kitchen to whip up treats for the family.

For now, it’s just me and my sturdy spatula. Quick easy recipes are what I look for these days. Our family loves oats and when I chanced upon this 5 ingredient no-bake granola bar recipe, I knew they had to be in our regular rotation.

Having made them twice since, these bars have proven to be a hit.


Even Ciaran can’t stay away from them. Sticky, slightly salty and with a nutty crunch, these are perfect for when you have the munchies.


So idiot-proof and so delicious. I will definitely try more variations soon.

5-ingredient No-bake Granola Bars 


  • 1 heaping cup packed (~220 g) dates, pitted (deglet noor or medjool)*
  • 1/4 cup (84 g) maple syrup or agave nectar (or honey if not vegan)
  • 1/4 cup (64 g) creamy salted natural peanut butter or almond butter
  • 1 cup (112 g) roasted unsalted almonds, loosely chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups (135 g) rolled oats
  • optional additions: chocolate chips, dried fruit, nuts, banana chips, vanilla, etc.


  • Process dates in a food processor until small bits remain (about 1 minute). It should form a “dough” like consistency. (Mine rolled into a ball.)
  • Place oats, almonds and dates in a large mixing bowl – set aside.
  • Warm honey and peanut butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir and pour over oat mixture and then mix, breaking up the dates to disperse throughout.
  • Once thoroughly mixed, transfer to an 8×8-inch baking dish or other small pan lined with plastic wrap or parchment paper so they lift out easily. (A loaf pan might work, but will yield thicker bars.)
  • Press down firmly until uniformly flattened.
  • Cover with parchment or plastic wrap, and let firm up in fridge or freezer for 15-20 minutes.
  • Remove bars from pan and chop into 10 even bars (or 9 squares). Store in an airtight container for up to a few days or keep in the freezer to keep them extra fresh.

Recipe from Minimalist Baker.

Posted on 17th Apr 2018 in granola, nutritious, nuts, oat, Uncategorized  |  Post a comment


Magnolia Oat Plus Milk Banana Bread

This year, I discovered two things – CrossFit, and that at 31, my metabolism has gone to whack. An overhaul was needed. I realise I am what I eat. These days I counterbalance equal doses of nutrient rich foods with my favourite sinful treats (think PS Cafe truffle fries).

Everything from almond milk, quinoa, and hemp seeds. I went out of my comfort zone and tried them all.

My recent love is Magnolia’s Oats Plus Milk. Magnolia’s version is a combination of milk AND oats. It’s not as thin as the dairy free oat milks. With a nice smooth silky finish, it was very satisfying. A few days ago, I had a glass for breakfast and it kept me full and energetic till lunch.

I was stoked when Magnolia approached me to create recipes using their health-ful milks. Today I share with you an easy recipe using their new Oats Plus Milk.

Daryl (my super hipster boyfriend and personal chef) suggested a whole wheat bread using the milk that would be perfect to make French toast with. As you all already know, I am one of those brunch loving folks who simply adore moreish slabs of goodness covered with crispy bacon and drizzled with honey.

How much are you paying for atas (upmarket) Banana Bread at your favourite hipster joint? Pfft. Now you can show off your baking skills.

Psst. There’s a contest at the bottom for you culinary inclined (even if you’re not, this is the reason to begin!)

Here’s the recipe:

Magnolia Oats Plus Milk Banana Bread


300ml Magnolia Oats Plus Milk

1 & 1/4 tsp Active Dry Yeast

2 tsp brown sugar

600g whole wheat bread flour (We used King Arthur)

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

1/2 tsp coriander seed powder

1/2 tsp salt

3 eggs

300g ripe bananas, mashed


1. Make sure Oats Plus Milk is tepid. If it’s straight from the fridge, put it in the microwave on 30s on high. Take it out and stir, to distribute the heat.

2. Add yeast and sugar to milk and let sit for 15 minutes until it starts to froth/bubble. 

3. Sift dry ingredients (flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, coriander powder, salt)

4. Beat eggs in a separate bowl.

5. Add mash bananas and yeast milk mixture to beaten eggs.

6. Mix dry mix to liquid mix.

7. Use hands to knead.

8. Line 3litre bread tin with baking paper.

9. Place dough in  bread tin and cover with a wet dish towel.

10. Let it proof for 1.5 to 2 hours until it increases in size by 50%.

11. Bake oat banana milk bread in oven for 8 mins at 200 degrees celcius.

12. Reduce temperature to 170 degrees and bake for another 20-25mins.

13. Remove from oven. Let sit in tin for 10 mins.

14 Remove from tin and place on wire rack to cool, turning once.

15. Once completely cooled, slice to door stop size.

Prep for French Toast.



150ml cream

Oil for frying

Sliced Magnolia Oats Plus Milk Banana Bread

Bacon (quantity to personal preference)


1. Lay bacon strips on lined baking tray and grill in oven (or under a salamander) till crisp.

2. Meanwhile, beat your eggs and cream together and soak slices of bread in the mixture.

3. Heat oil in a heavy skillet and pan fry bread till golden on both sides. 

4. Place Magnolia Oat Milk Banana French Toast on a plate, lay bacon on top, and cover a generous dollop of chilli greek yoghurt (mix honey and chili padi).

5. Your hipster healthy brunch is served!

Check out our Magnolia Oats Plus Milk creation below. Drool on.

Magnolia Oat Plus Milk Banana Bread

Magnolia Oat Plus Milk Banana Bread

Beautiful bread dough proofing. We used King Arthur Premium 100% Whole Wheat Flour because we could. Why have white flour when you can go whole wheat? More nutrition!

Magnolia Oat Plus Milk Banana Bread    

Magnolia Oat Plus Milk Banana Bread

The bread had just the right amount of banana and you can have it in more ways than just french toast. I had it for two breakfasts in a row – once with chorizo and scrambled eggs and another with goats cheese, crunchy peanut butter and chocolate.

Magnolia Oat Plus Milk Banana Bread  

Magnolia Oat Plus Milk Banana Bread

Crispy bacon. Just because life is too short not to have bacon.

Looking for bacon substitutes? Try turkey bacon or grilled chicken.

Magnolia Oat Plus Milk Banana Bread

Instead of the cream, you can use the Magnolia Oats Plus Milk in your egg mixture. 

Magnolia Oat Plus Milk Banana Bread

We used sunflower oil to pan-fry our french toasts. Or you could use other healthy oils such as avocado or coconut. Go all out and be healthy!

Magnolia Oat Plus Milk Banana Bread

One of the most surprising discoveries during my New York birthday trip last year was that of Mike’s Hot Honey in Brooklyn, a local artisanal brand of chilli infused honey. The chilli lover in me couldn’t resist adding a table spoon of this hot honey to the thick greek yoghurt. Are you a sucker for punishment? Yes? Then throw in some chilli padi for added heat.

Magnolia Oat Plus Milk Banana Bread

Assemblage – For easy plating, yes, use chopsticks 😉

Magnolia Oat Plus Milk Banana Bread

One of the benefits of this oat milk is the high soluble fibre content. This, coupled with the bananas used in the bread, makes for a power pre-gym (or post gym) meal (minus the bacon ;).

Oats are more powerful when combined with low-fat dairy. Not only will you have better bone, muscle and heart health, you will benefit from the magnesium. I learnt of these facts from Magnolia. For more reasons why you should drink oat milk, check out Magnolia’s informative fact sheet here.

Go forth and try the recipe and let me know what you think.

Magnolia is kindly giving away 5 Magnolia Oats Plus Gift Set (pictured) to five people

– Oat milk x 2

– Magnolia tote bag x 1

– Quaker oatmeal cookies (assorted) x 2 

– Magnolia plush cow x 1 

Magnolia Oat Plus Milk Banana Bread

How to take part? Follow the instructions below:

Post up a creative recipe using Magnolia Oats Plus Milk complete with photos to my Facebook page here.

Post it to Instagram if you don’t have Facebook (haha I doubt that) and tag me (@cherylovescake) and Magnolia (Instagram: @fnnmagnolia & Facebook: magnoliasg)

Please use the hashtag #thebakerwhocooksMagnoliaChallengeOatsPlus so I can keep track. I look forward to seeing what you all create.

Five most creative recipes win! Closing date: 31 Dec 2015.

Magnolia Oat Plus Milk Banana Bread

Magnolia Oat Plus Milk Banana Bread


Note: Complimentary milks from Magnolia F&N were used.

Stay tuned for an upcoming post on how to make a freaking delish and nutritious treat from Magnolia’s Omega 3 Milk.

Posted on 15th Dec 2015 in brunch, french toast, Magnolia, milk, nutritious, oat, Uncategorized  |  Post a comment

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