Berry Bliss Oat Squares

by Angela (Oh She Glows) on March 31, 2011


My doctor’s appointment went well yesterday. After doing a physical exam (twisting and bending my back all around and also checking the back bones), the doc thinks that my bones and spinal discs are fine, but it is probably an aggravated sciatic nerve (given the location of the pain). Apparently this is fairly common and will just heal with time. While she can’t be 100% sure without an X-ray, she doesn’t like to do X-rays unless absolutely necessary and given that I am not in a ton of pain, she isn’t overly concerned. Apparently, sciatic nerves can be stubborn healers so if it doesn’t heal within another week or so, I’m going to look into seeing a physical therapist or chiropractor.

She gave me the go ahead for low impact exercise and I can start running when the pain is fully gone. It could be fine in 1 week, it could be 4 weeks, we really don’t know. I drove straight from my appointment to the gym and cranked out a refreshing 30 minutes on the elliptical. Love the elliptical! I left with happy sweat. Nothing like an injury to make you thankful for exercise again!

Breakfast was bright and cheery just like my mood…


I had some Vegan Overnight Oats in the fridge and instead of eating them straight from the bowl or in a parfait, I made a modified version of Kath’s Dough Boy smoothie. You simply add overnight oats (vegan or otherwise) into your smoothie to create a thicker and more doughy smoothie. It sounded like fun to me!


A Berry Doughy Smoothie

Adapted Kath’s Dough Boy smoothie.

Vegan Overnight Oats (modified version):

  • 1.5 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/4 cup oats
  • 3/4 cup non-dairy milk
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract (I like to pair almond extract with strawberries, but otherwise I use vanilla and cinnamon)


Directions: Mix together in a bowl and place in fridge overnight or for a couple hours until doughy.



Directions: Blend the above ingredients together and pour smoothie into a bowl. Top with desired ingredients. I added a few tbsp of raw buckwheat, 1/2 berry oat bar, 1 kiwi, and some Dark Chocolate Almond Butter on top.


Look what finally arrived in the mail on Monday- The long awaited Raw Buckwheat groats. I have been dying to try these since seeing them all over Ashley’s blog.


Many people believe that Buckwheat is a cereal grain, but it is actually a fruit seed related to rhubarb and sorrel making them an option for people sensitive to wheat. The best part is you can eat them RAW without cooking them. I saw Ashley eat them raw on her blog and I kept thinking, ‘Isn’t she going to crack her tooth on one of those things!?’, but they really are softer than they look. Promise!

They have perfect amount of crunch to sprinkle on oatmeal, VOO parfaits, salads, Banana soft serve, etc. The flavour is also much, much better than the toasted buckwheat (kasha) that I tried a few weeks back.

IMG_3755 IMG_3758

If you are in Canada, check out this amazing E-store called Upaya Naturals. It’s a vegetarian and vegan’s paradise, especially if you live in a small town like me and cannot find specialty products.


I topped the smoothie with buckwheat, 1/2 berry oat bar (below), 1 kiwi, and some Dark Chocolate Almond Butter. I did miss the chewiness of the vegan overnight oats, so next time I’m going to blend 2/3 of the VOO and then stir in the rest to get the best of both worlds.


Good to the last spoonful.


Now about those Berry oat squares!

I have been ogling this recipe on Susan’s blog for a long time now and I finally remembered to make them. They have no refined flour, no white sugar, no added fat, no soy, and can be made gluten-free too. I enjoy them with breakfast crumbled over oats, as an afternoon snack, or a light treat after dinner. So versatile!


The wholesome flavours of the oats, maple, and berries really shine through and aren’t hidden by too much sweetener. They are rustic, yet elegant and simple. I like that. Unfortunately, so does Eric.

And we’re running out!



Berry Bliss Oat Squares

Vegan, soy-free, refined-sugar free, no added fat, and can be made gluten-free if you use GF oats.

Adapted from Susan.

Yield: 12 squares


  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1 cup fresh strawberries, chopped
  • 1 ripe banana, chopped
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch mixed with 2 tbsp warm water
  • 3 cups regular oatmeal, divided
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 & 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup + 3 tbsp (6oz) unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup  + 2 tbsp water
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract


1. Preheat oven to 375F and line a 8inch square pan with two pieces of parchment paper. In a small bowl mix together cornstarch with warm water to form a paste. Make sure all clumps are gone. Set aside.

2. Berry Filling: In a small saucepan, combine the berries, banana, and maple syrup. Bring to a boil and stir well. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and the pre-mixed cornstarch. Whisk until all clumps are gone and set aside.

3. Base: Place 1.5 cups of oats into a food processor and process until a flour/fine powder forms. Add this processed flour, remaining 1.5 cup of oats, baking powder, and salt into large bowl. Stir. Now add in the wet ingredients (applesauce, maple syrup, water, vanilla) and mix well. Pour 2/3 of the batter into the prepared pan and push down firmly with fingers to smooth out. Grab the prepared berry filling and spread over the top of the oat base until smooth. Now crumble the remaining oat base mixture on top.

4. Bake for 30 mins. at 375F or until the top is slightly golden and firm. Allow to cool for at least 20 minutes before cutting into squares.



You are probably going to ask me if you can use frozen berries instead of fresh. I’m not sure to be honest. The original recipe didn’t mention anything about using frozen berries. My guess is that frozen berries would produce more water when cooking, so you would probably have to add more cornstarch to thicken it. In my experience, frozen berries tend to be less sweet than fresh, so you might want to add more sweetener too.

The main point is to make sure the berry topping tastes good to YOU before spreading it on top! If it doesn’t taste good, add a bit more sweetener and you will be fine.

It should have a thick jelly-like consistency:

IMG_3636 IMG_3640 IMG_3642

The whole process was very easy!


I really wasn’t expecting much from these squares because they just seemed too good to be true…but I was really blown away!


They remind me a lot of these squares I have made in the past:

Healthy Strawberry Oat Squares                  Buttery Apple Streusel Oat Squares

20101018IMG_7576_thumb 20101026IMG_8917_thumb

The only thing I might change next time is trying to replace the cornstarch with chia seeds. For some reason cornstarch doesn’t seem to agree with my stomach too much. I wonder if chia seeds could act in the same thickening manner? It might be worth a shot.


I am really excited to let you know that I received this awesome award from Best Health Magazine in the Eat Well category!


I can’t thank you enough for your support and votes over the past month! Be sure to check out all of the fabulous contestants and winners here.

Enjoy your last day of March Sun (PS- We woke up to a blanket of snow this morning! Guess it was an April Fool’s joke after all…)

Let's get social! Follow Angela on Instagram @ohsheglows, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest

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{ 162 comments… read them below or add one }

Jennifer @ March 31, 2011 at 9:12 am

Wow! These looks so bright and cheery! Perfect for breakfast or a snack! These would also be killer with cranberries or tart cherries.

Congrats on your win! You deserve it! :)


Lauren March 31, 2011 at 9:19 am

Congrats on the award!!! You deserve it! Also those bars look amazing and I love that it’s almost entirely regular pantry ingredients. Putting it on my to-make-list!


Presley March 31, 2011 at 9:20 am

Lovin the bright colors this morning! Glad to hear that you got some pretty good news from the doctor :)


Katty Lea March 31, 2011 at 9:23 am

Ohhhh this post is a sweet reminder that summertime is just around the corner :)

Congrats on the win! Your recipes are always inspiring.


Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg March 31, 2011 at 9:23 am

Oooh, these look so good!! I love the combo of berries and oats!


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 31, 2011 at 9:26 am

thanks guys!


Felicia (a taste of health with balance) March 31, 2011 at 9:26 am

ive been making these bars ever since she posted them, and they are my top favorite of all time. so easy and healthy, and extremely delicious!


Holly @ The Runny Egg March 31, 2011 at 9:26 am

Congrats on the blog award!

Your breakfast looks delicious and so do those bars! They totally reminded me of those other oat crumble bars you have made in the past. They are so bright and springy!


Alisha March 31, 2011 at 9:29 am

Or Arrowroot – apparently it can be used as a thickener in substitution to cornstarch – says Alicia Silverstone :P I haven’t tried it yet though.


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 31, 2011 at 9:33 am

good idea, I have arrowroot too!


RhodeyGirl March 31, 2011 at 9:31 am

This looks INSANE. Yummmmmmmmmm


Shanna, Like Banana March 31, 2011 at 9:31 am

What is it about berries and oats that taste so darn good together?


Jes March 31, 2011 at 9:32 am

What a wonderful idea for the smoothie from the overnight oats! I’ve been rocking out the overnight oats for several weeks now since I saw them on your blog (and LOVE them). I’ll have to try this and the berry bars out.

Congrats on the award! Well deserved :)


Sharon March 31, 2011 at 9:34 am

My mom eats buckwheat groats everyday for breakfast. I’m not sure what all she puts in them… water, egg, sometimes tops them with flax seeds/chia seeds. She thinks they taste like a warm pretzel. I don’t know how I feel about that description but I’ve tasted them a few times and they’re pretty good. I wouldn’t add the egg of course. I really have a hard time eating anything other than oatmeal for breakfast though. Food rut or food love?


Kath March 31, 2011 at 9:36 am

Forget the SIAB, those berry bars look amazing!! On my summer list :)


CathyK March 31, 2011 at 9:46 am

so glad to hear you did not need an xray (i like your doc’s philosophy about that!) and could elliptical! that is progress.
i’ve had sciatic nerve problems (from running!) and DO suggest massage or a visit to a chiropractor – mis-alignment is often an issue with sciatic troubles. and true, too, is that the healing time is so variable! i hope you’re 100% asap!


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 31, 2011 at 9:48 am

Thanks! I will look into that :)


Alayna @ Thyme Bombe March 31, 2011 at 9:47 am

Yum, berry season is on its way! Can’t wait until berries hit their peak of ripeness so I can make delicious things like this!


Peggy @ March 31, 2011 at 9:49 am

Fantastic, I think my son will be over the moon about those berry squares!


Alicia March 31, 2011 at 9:50 am

Hey Angela! Sorry to hear you are having sciatic nerve problems. I think you are totally due for a fabulous massage girl! I am a LMT and sciatic nerve issues really settle down with a few good massages! Treate yourself!! :)


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 31, 2011 at 10:27 am

i love that idea!


Allysia March 31, 2011 at 9:54 am

I love Upaya! That’s where I bought my juicer. I’m from Saskatchewan, which might as well be in the middle of nowhere when it comes to buying fun food stuff. Also, I loved the color of your breakfast! It made me happy just looking at it. :) And congrats job on the award!!


Lora March 31, 2011 at 10:09 am

Cannot wait to make these! If I use oat flour instead of processing the oats, how much do you think I should use? Since I have it on hand, it just seems like a way to make these bars even easier!!


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 31, 2011 at 10:19 am

Good idea. Hmm I just realized I should have measured the amount of oat flour it made from 1.5 cups! I would guess 3/4 cup?? Just an estimate though


Jenn from Much to My Delight March 31, 2011 at 10:09 am

Even though it doesn’t look like it out my window, it feels like spring when I look at your blog and for that I thank you! Your pastel plates and fresh berries just bounce off the screen.

I’ve been reading so much about overnight oats and have yet to try them. Do you heat them up, or eat them cold? I’m not sure if I’d enjoy the texture of cold oatmeal, but maybe I should try it before making that call.


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 31, 2011 at 10:19 am

They are eaten cold. :) It took me a couple tried to get used to the texture but now I love them!


Katie @ Nourishing Flourishing March 31, 2011 at 10:12 am

Glad to hear you’re ok and that you were able to get your elliptical on ;) Those bars looks heavenly — I love the vibrance of the berries and the texture of the oats!


[email protected] March 31, 2011 at 10:12 am

Congratulations on the Eat Well award!


Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat March 31, 2011 at 10:15 am

CONGRATULATIONS ANGE!!!!! That’s fabulous news about the award! You totally deserve it. All of your photos look great this morning. If I were “testing out” that berry topping, I’m not sure there’d be enough left to cover the squares!


shana @100lbsandcounting March 31, 2011 at 10:15 am

Congrats Angela! I voted for you =)


jodie March 31, 2011 at 10:20 am

Have you ever tried acupuncture and cupping? I have had great success with Sciatic pain. I am sure there are some great acupuncturists in your area!
By the way I am making your beet carrot salad right now! Yum!


Moni'sMeals March 31, 2011 at 10:23 am

Congrats! We knew you would win though…”winning, DUH!” I had to say it. :)

What a lovely day of delicious food you have! Those bars…good lord.

Glad you had a good report from the Doctor.


Erin March 31, 2011 at 10:23 am

Hi Angela – I tried hot yoga the other day and the instructor had us hold pigeon position for a looooong time – apparantly it is supposed to help release a small gluteal muscle that helps with sciatic nerve pain. Not sure if you have already tried this but thought I would mention it :) Thanks for the great recipes, glad to hear your spine is good ;)


Julie @ Shining From Within March 31, 2011 at 10:27 am

boooya for exercise ! I have been looking all over the place for buckwheat… must prowl the internet I guess ;). Or stalk the Wegman’s shelves. Either way, I have to get my grubby paws on some!
Those bars look soo good. I love the color!


Rachel @ The Avid Appetite March 31, 2011 at 10:36 am

I love adding oats to a smoothie! So delicious. I haven’t tried it the overnight oats way, but I will now!


Heather (heathers dish) March 31, 2011 at 10:37 am

Oh my word please overnight these to me :)


Faith @ lovelyascharged March 31, 2011 at 10:37 am

Ah I made SO many oat squares at Thanksgiving (cranberry white chocolate crumb bars to be exact) that this is the first time the idea even appeals to me again! A berry version sounds amazing!


Sara March 31, 2011 at 10:38 am

Hey Angela!

I’ve been cooking with the buckwheat groats for a few weeks now (funny how timing works out) and discovered that they make absolutely delicious, easy, and (the best part) STORABLE porridge! I soak the buckwheats in water overnight- this releases a lot of the nutty flavour, and when you rinse them, they are clean and delicious. They’re good just like this, OR, put them in a pot, add water at approximately a 2:1 ratio, bring to a boil, and then turn down to simmer. If you’ve soaked them first they’ll only take 15 or so minutes to cook. Into my buckwheat porridge, I usually add grannysmith apple, some vanilla extract, cinnamon, sea salt (just a pinch) and almonds. I usually make a BIG pot on Sunday nights, and then separate them into individual servings for the week. In the morning I plop a serving in a small pot, add a big glug of almond milk, some fresh berries, cinnamon and sometimes nutmeg. It will re-constitute into a BEAUTIFUL texture, and the taste is delicious. They have a nutty, rich flavour profile, and keep you full for HOURS. Top with fruit of choice. I bet they’d be great cooked into a porridge casserole, too.

Try it out, I think you’ll like it.

Sending positive energy from my heart to your back,



Angela (Oh She Glows) March 31, 2011 at 11:04 am

Oh wow this sounds delish! Thanks for sharing. I will certainly try this out. Mmmmm. :)
Thanks for your healing vibes!


Lesley Lifting Life March 31, 2011 at 10:40 am

That is a very cheerful breakfast, I love it!! :)


Lindsay @ The Reluctant Runner March 31, 2011 at 10:45 am

I love the elliptical, too. I definitely appreciate/enjoy exercise much more after I can’t do it for some reason. Those bars look amazing–yet another recipe of yours to bookmark in case of potluck!


Kierstan @ Life {and running} in Iowa March 31, 2011 at 10:48 am

Colorful bowl of oats! I love using chia seeds to thicken things up as opposed to corn starch.

Congrats on the award!


Emma (Sweet Tooth Runner) March 31, 2011 at 10:49 am

Ohmy those bars look AMAZING!! I have been DYING to make your strawberry oat squares for AGES, but now I have a dilemma: make those, or make THESE?! I think both ;)

And CONGRATS on the award!! You deserve it SO much!! :D


Eliza March 31, 2011 at 10:51 am

I’ve already printed out this recipe and I’m so excited to try it tonight! I’m really looking forward to having one of these after I finish off your Roasted Sweet Potato and Black Bean Warm Salad for dinner! Yum!

And congrats on your award! You completely deserve it! You and chia seeds have changed my life!!


Heather @ Health, Happiness, and Hope March 31, 2011 at 11:04 am

I love all the berry-goodness in this post! The smoothie has such pretty colors, that alone makes me want to try it. :)

HUGE congrats on the award Angela! You deserve it with all the time, hard work, and effort you put into your food/blog/healthy lifestyle. It’s always nice to be rewarded for the work we do!


Melissa March 31, 2011 at 11:19 am

I love the colour and freshness you captured in your pictures with this post. Beautiful.


Emily @ One Sweet Vegan March 31, 2011 at 11:20 am

Congrats on the award. :-) Those berry bars look amazing! Perfect for springtime. Speaking of which, it’ll be 80 degrees F here today. Yikes! It has rained nonstop for a couple weeks here. So much for gradually easing into warmer weather. Time to break out the shorts!


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 31, 2011 at 11:23 am

can I come live with you? I’ll bring squares :)


Melissa March 31, 2011 at 11:20 am

ps…congrats on the award! that’s awesome!


Sebrina March 31, 2011 at 11:24 am

Hi Angela: I found this article on yoga journal about Aggravated Sciatic Nerves with some advise :)


Freya March 31, 2011 at 11:25 am

Yum! And thanks for the buckweat suggestion. I was eyeing up some in the health food store on the weekend, but wasn’t sure how I’d use them.


Katy @ A Healthy Shot of Life March 31, 2011 at 11:28 am

We had snow today too.. ick! Your smoothie looks awesome! My blender broke a few weeks ago mid-green monster and I’ve really been missing my smoothies! I’m considering trying the food processor but I have a feeling it would be pretty chunky. ;-)


Amy April 1, 2011 at 1:36 am

My blender gave out the exact same way! However I have been using my food processor for smoothies, mine are okay as long as I let it run for a few minutes.


Stacy @ LoveDiscoveryGratitude March 31, 2011 at 11:35 am

Congrats on the award! And everything looks so incredible! Yummm :)


Heather @ Get Healthy with Heather March 31, 2011 at 11:37 am

Hehe that snow just can’t stay away from you.

Glad you can get back to some more exercise. Hope running can start once again for you!

Those bars look blissful :)


J3nn (Jenn's Menu and Lifestyle Blog) March 31, 2011 at 11:40 am

Your breakfast is so pretty!! I love the plate and bowl/cup.

Love the berry oat squares, too! They look nice and gooey. Yummmmmy!


Odette @ theonlyplanetwithchocolate March 31, 2011 at 11:53 am

So glad that you are able to get your sweat on for a bit!! I was only sick for a couple of days this week and I was so aggravated with not being able to get a great run and just sweat it out. It’s great that you’re able to start moving and shaking now :) Before you know it you’ll be in tip top shape!
And I woke up to the same sprinkling of snow…gotta love Southern Ontario!! :)


Andrea B. @ Vegvacious March 31, 2011 at 11:55 am

The smoothie & squares both look fantastic!! Thanks for the e-store link – I’m like you; I live in a small town where there is not alot of access to some specialty foods!


Lauren at Keep It Sweet March 31, 2011 at 12:00 pm

Love those berry bliss bars! They look so delicious and perfect for summer….


Lauren at Keep It Sweet March 31, 2011 at 12:00 pm

Love those berry bliss bars! They look so delicious and perfect for summer….


Roz March 31, 2011 at 12:04 pm

I’m going to make these bars sometime soon! BIG congrats on the Best Health Award! Very well deserved!


Anna March 31, 2011 at 12:12 pm

Congrats on the Health Blog Award! You definitely deserve it!


Stefanie @TheNewHealthy March 31, 2011 at 12:32 pm

Congrats on the award-it is well deserved!! :)


Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table March 31, 2011 at 12:50 pm

You had me at “doughy.” Dough is always a welcome breakfast. :)

Congrats to you!!!


Nicole @ Fresh & Fit March 31, 2011 at 12:59 pm

Congrats on the Best Health Blog Award!

Those squares look so yummy!


Baking 'n' Books March 31, 2011 at 1:16 pm

I’ve been yearning to bake something different – this is fantastic! Now the problem is this or your date squares!! I have a bag of frozen cranberries in my freezer…I wonder if they’d be too tart for this??

P.S: Is the smoothie thick? I’ve never been into smoothies because I prefer and thick texture.

Thanks for the link to the site! I’m not vegan – but new finds are good. Do you mind if I ask where you live in Canada? I’m in Ontario and not in a small town, but I find it hard to get much here often. (Or it tends to be downtown at specialty stores where I can’t get to often). Don’t answer if you don’t want to !! I understand privacy of course :)


Kathy March 31, 2011 at 1:31 pm

Wow – congratulations on the award! What a fantastic way to beat the snow :-)

I am kind of new to chia seeds and they are my favorite find of this year so far (yeah, I’m a little late to the game)

I think the idea of using them for this recipe would be great for even better nutrition – I just don’t really know how to go about adapting the recipe (quantity and method). Any suggestions you can make?

Thanks! And I agree with those who have mentioned massage for healing – helped me a lot with a similar issue.


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 31, 2011 at 3:04 pm

Well I would probably try adding chia seeds by the tbsp until the thickened consitency is achieved. You will also have to cook it on low for longer until the chia seeds thicken up and gel up. I hope it works! It might add a fun crunch to the berry filling too.


Kathy April 1, 2011 at 6:03 pm

Thank you!


bitt of raw March 31, 2011 at 2:03 pm

I’m from the raw food camp where we just don’t eat those raw buckwheats without soaking them. They can be rather harsh on the digestion, so be careful!


laura March 31, 2011 at 2:03 pm

So colourful!
The bars remind me of the apple bars – delish :)


Michelle | GOLD-HEARTED GIRL March 31, 2011 at 2:09 pm

I totally get appreciating exercise more – I just had to stop running because of an eye problem, and I miss it so much! Yoga is great, but I like a good sweat. :)


Kimberly March 31, 2011 at 2:26 pm

Have you ever tried arrowroot as a thickening agent? It’s gluten-free and it doesn’t upset my tummy like corn starch does.


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 31, 2011 at 3:03 pm

Yes I have and I totally forgot that I have some in the pantry too! :)


Richelle March 31, 2011 at 2:35 pm

Glad to hear your injury isn’t anything really serious. Those bas look great, just another reason why you won the eat well category!


Emma (Namaste Everyday) March 31, 2011 at 2:44 pm

wow those bars look awesome and they are so easy! I’m glad your injury isn’t too serious :)


Maryea {Happy Healthy Mama} March 31, 2011 at 2:51 pm

Congrats on the award!! I wish I had time to make those oat squares right now; they look so amazing!


chelsey @ clean eating chelsey March 31, 2011 at 2:54 pm

Those look heavenly!

Sorry about the diagnosis. Injuries are so irritating!!


Justeen @ Blissful Baking March 31, 2011 at 2:58 pm

The berry doughy smoothie looks so pretty – not to mention incredibly delicious! I’m going to try that tomorrow morning :)


Kat @ Cupcake Kat March 31, 2011 at 3:04 pm

Both these recipes are awesome. I’m going to try them out ASAP.
Thanks for the link to Upaya Naturals. I think I’m going to stock up on some great deals! So excited!


Sophia @ Raven Waves March 31, 2011 at 3:12 pm

I love that they’re called Berry Bliss Oat Squares! They’re little pieces of heaven I bet! :)


Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) March 31, 2011 at 3:23 pm

Growing up my dad was a huge gardener and for about 4 weeks in the summer there was an abundance of raspberries. Nothing all year and then more than we could ever eat all at once. My mom used to make raspberry cobbler type bars that look very reminiscent to these with raspberries. Great memories for me seeing this recipe, as they finished product looks similar but I guarantee my mom used butter and tons of it in her recipe :)

Your back. Well, thank god they have ruled out some really serious things and they are checking you for sciatica which is an awful, nagging, condition. Major hugs, sweetie. If you are open to it, I know many people who have been helped tons by acupuncture and yoga. I hope you find some relief!!


Audrey March 31, 2011 at 3:34 pm

Congratulations on winning the award! I voted for you. :)

I think chia might work for a thickener, especially if it was ground first. You might also want to try arrowroot powder. I have heard that it is a little more unprocessed than cornstarch.

I found this post ( on different vegan thickening agents that I thought was helpful.


Erin March 31, 2011 at 4:06 pm

I LOVE the idea of blending overnight oats into a smoothie. I use raw oats and raw chia sometimes, usually separate, so the voo sounds like a great combination of the two.

I didn’t know you can eat buckwheat groats raw! I like buckwheat a lot, and don’t eat it nearly often enough. Buckwheat is really easy to sprout too, if you’re into that sort of thing.


Jennie March 31, 2011 at 4:19 pm

Your photography is absolutely beautiful. Amazing. Love it.


JenATX March 31, 2011 at 5:05 pm

just look at pretty pictures of flowers and green trees to hold you over until Spring arrives…I think when it finally stars to warm up there it’ll be full on, unbearable heat down here in Texas :(


Mary (What's Cookin' with Mary) March 31, 2011 at 5:36 pm

That first picture is rediculously gorgeous Ange! I love the color of the berry filling.

“Nothing like an injury to make you thankful for exercise again!” – I’m recovering from a sprain/ stain in my left pec and am still healing, but have been gradually been able to add more activities in (besides walking) and get SO excited to do things I haven’t been able to do in WEEKS. …like really excited. lol

Glad to hear nothing is seriously wrong with your back… back issues are NO FUN!!! I should post a picture of the hardware in mine for fun… It’s crazy to think that I have metal in my spine.


A Teenage Gourmet March 31, 2011 at 5:59 pm

I had a pinching sensation in my low back a month ago, so I started going to a chiropractor. Even thought my parents don’t believe that it works, it helps me! When I go in for an adjustment, the pinching sensation is automatically relieved.


Jen (The Best Kitchen) March 31, 2011 at 6:01 pm

That looks amazing. Congrats on the award!


Shannon March 31, 2011 at 6:10 pm

Congrats on your award! And hope your sciatic nerve heals quickly – they can be stubborn, so hang in there. I just found your blog this week, and you’ve been inspiring me everyday since – I even wrote about it in my second blog post! :)


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 31, 2011 at 6:29 pm

thanks so much! I will check it out :)


Becca March 31, 2011 at 6:30 pm

I’m so glad that you won! I voted everyday for you :)

I love your breakfast bowl… err, mug… and matching plate! Oh so springy.


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 31, 2011 at 9:05 pm

seriously!? wow thanks Becca!


[email protected] March 31, 2011 at 7:14 pm

congratulations Angie!! you deserved it through hard work! :) yeahhh babyyyy VOOs~~had it this mornin’ with buckwheat too. I’m still really wanting to make your strawberry bars.


Elisabeth Klatt March 31, 2011 at 7:50 pm

I love your blog so much! You are such an inspiration in so many ways!!!


Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin March 31, 2011 at 7:50 pm

I’m glad your pain is nothing serious! I once hurt my tailbone too and I thought the pain would never go away, but it did after about 1.5-2 weeks. Hopefully yours will heal up quickly! :)

Is that mug/bowl from Pier 1? I have the same one in the same colour and I love it!


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 31, 2011 at 9:03 pm

Thanks hun!

Yup its from Pier 1…I want all the colours…love it!


Love&hope March 31, 2011 at 8:16 pm

yummm!!! I love oats of any kind, and they’re healthy too! Glad to hear it went well at the doctors. Those raw buckwheat groats remind me of a great snack at a all natural health grocery store I got once. It was called Pea’s Please, they where great, they’re probably real simple to make, they’re just dried pea’s!!!(so crunchy) Can’t wait to try out the squares!!!


Kim March 31, 2011 at 8:51 pm

Congratulations on the award! These bars look delicious.Your tropical coconut cranberry pistachio bars have become a staple at my house. I can’t wait to add a new bar into the rotation.


Tracy @ Commit To Fit March 31, 2011 at 8:58 pm

These look fantastic, I think I have everything I need to try them them this weekend :)


Pure2raw twins March 31, 2011 at 9:18 pm

sorry to hear about your back. my older sister has nerve problems with her back, she goes through periods were she is fine, and then it gives her pain. Back problems are one of the worst, because not much you can do. So thinking of you and your back :) haha that sounds funny, but I know it cannot be fun

love buckwheat!! and we noticed a few years ago we reacted corn, so we had to give it up. but arrowroot does pretty good, as I saw others mentioned. we have a ton of arrowroot if you ever need any


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 31, 2011 at 9:38 pm

Thank you! I have some arrowroot and I never thought to use it instead…will have to try it :)


Abby March 31, 2011 at 9:36 pm

These bars have got to go on my “to try” list–along with overnight oats! :)


Sophi March 31, 2011 at 9:50 pm

Hi Angela!
Just made the bars! They are fantastic!!! Sooo delicious and just the perfect amount of sweet! I had organic raw blue agave nectar, so I split that with the maple syrup, and it came out amazing! :)

I cannot thank you enough for your amazing recipes! I always love them. Although not a vegan, I always feel better about my food choices when cooking one of your recipes! Thanks for making vegan so accessible (and delicious)!

Good luck with your back!


Donna March 31, 2011 at 9:52 pm

Those squares look amazing and thanks for the link, us small town girls appreciate it!
I was going to suggest arrowroot but looks like a few people beat me to the punch :)


Lauren March 31, 2011 at 9:53 pm

Hi Angela, Congratulations on the Award. I always she Oh She Glows on my blog reader, but it hasn’t updated since March 26th. The other blogs I read seem to be fine. I am wondering if anyone else has expressed concern.



Angela (Oh She Glows) April 1, 2011 at 8:48 am

Hey Lauren, thanks for letting me know. I will look into it!


Hannah March 31, 2011 at 10:13 pm

That smoothie bowl is so incredibly gorgeous that I feel uplifted just looking at it. I bet I’d feel even better if I ate it :P


Kari @ bite-sized thoughts March 31, 2011 at 11:30 pm

Those squares look amazing :)

I had a pinched sciatic nerve last year, which made running rather difficult for a while. It’s certainly not a comfortable experience! I did find my physio to be really helpful though, so that might be worth pursuing. He was also able to suggest stretches to help, which might make you feel better about being less able to exercise! I hope it improves quickly for you.


Kate April 1, 2011 at 1:58 am

came across these brownies and thought I HAD to show up your alley!!! :)


Lauren April 1, 2011 at 5:05 am

I just made your banana oat bars a couple nights ago, and my boyfriend and I both love them! They are the perfect, not-too-sweet snack for any time of day. Thanks so much for helping introduce more wholesome foods into our lives. :)


[email protected] Caramel Cookie April 1, 2011 at 6:41 am

These bars look like the perfect snack food! Also, I would recommend seeing a chiropractor. I work for a chiropractor and it can really help sciatic pain!


Angela (Oh She Glows) April 1, 2011 at 8:47 am

thanks for the tip!


Char April 1, 2011 at 6:47 am

These squares look awesome. I’m totally wishing I had some fresh berries right about now! Your creations are amazing!


marla {family fresh cooking} April 1, 2011 at 7:21 am

These recipes are bright, gorgeous & I bet beyond tasty! So sorry to read that you have sciatic issues. I think everyone at some point gets that. I know it hurts like crazy & affects everything you do. The great news is it does eventually go away. I too kept up with excercise on the elliptical & anything that felt good. xxoo


kaila @ healthy helper! April 1, 2011 at 8:15 am

Those oat squares look delicious! I am happy your injury isn’t to serious! I’m injured right now (my knee) and I haven’t been able to do cardio in like a week and a half! It’s killing me….I want to get my sweat on! Hopefully it will heal up quick :)


Sam @ the neurotic yogini April 1, 2011 at 10:42 am

These look so simple and delicious! Definitely on my “to-try” list :)


Amber K April 1, 2011 at 11:28 am

Congrats on winning the blog award!

I don’t know if these will top the date bar recipe, but I am certainly willing to try :)


Christine April 1, 2011 at 1:36 pm

Congratulations on the win! You definitely deserve it – your site is awesome! :-)


Jill in Chicago April 1, 2011 at 1:46 pm

Susan’s blueberry bars are one of my absolute FAVORITE recipes — and now I can’t wait to try to make them with strawberries. Thanks!


Kathleen @ KatsHealthCorner April 1, 2011 at 2:09 pm

I am in complete AWWWHHH!!!! :D


ruba April 1, 2011 at 2:38 pm

Hi Angela, Congratulations for winning, I love your blog… and those look great! About the Cornstarch, I use a japanese substitute (that is actually very good for the stomach and is used in the macrobiotic diet to treat ulcers), it is called KUZU and is made of a plant root, amazing stuff, a bit on the expensive side, but you need less than half the amount of cornstarch to get the same gelling effect… let me know if you like it


sarah April 1, 2011 at 3:10 pm

I was also going to suggest Kuzu for thickening. I use it all the time. Learned about it from Alecia Silverstone’s book. It is a little expensive, but a little goes a long way. I’m going to try these bars tonight, thanks for sharing!
Congrats on your award and happy healing to your back!


Helen April 1, 2011 at 4:37 pm

sorry to hear about your sciatic pain. i’m sure you’re getting loads of recommendations, but i have to add mine as well if you don’t mind! i had sciatic pain associated w/ my first pregnancy. i saw two physical therapists over the course of a month who were just giving me strengthening exercises to do that weren’t helping at ALL. the second finally referred me to the clinic supervisor who specializes in strain/counterstrain and after TWO visits i was pain free. it was amazing!!! she never really acknowledged it was ‘sciatica’ but said i had some SI joint issues. it came back when my baby was a little over a year old, and again it only took two visits and i was pain free. good luck–i hope you find some relief!!


Angela (Oh She Glows) April 3, 2011 at 1:42 pm

Thanks for the suggestion Helen!


Jennifer Drummond April 1, 2011 at 4:39 pm

Congratulations on Best Blog!!!! I love reading your blog and making your recipes!! As I said before your an inspiration! Keep up the great work!! Oh and keep those stories coming. By the way in 2 minutes my Berry Bliss Bars will be done! Yum! I can’t wait to try them!! Looking forward to putting it in my oatmeal tomorrow morning!


Jennifer Drummond April 2, 2011 at 6:50 am

Oh, quick question. Do I refrigerate these bars or leave them on the counter?


Angela (Oh She Glows) April 3, 2011 at 1:41 pm

I refrigerated them :)


Angela Bonnell April 3, 2011 at 1:39 pm

Love this recipe. I tried using the chia seeds instead of the cornstarch and it worked perfectly. I used 2 tablespoons of Chia. Thanks for the great recipes!


Angela (Oh She Glows) April 3, 2011 at 1:41 pm

thats great to know, thanks!


Lesley April 3, 2011 at 2:15 pm

wow…lovely healthy recipes will definately be trying these out!


Kath April 4, 2011 at 5:56 am

I recently discovered your website and LOVE it! I started a health kick a few weeks ago, and trying out your recipes is making it quite fun. I made these berry bliss bars on the weekend and I also made the walnut bolognese sauce – both were delicious. Can’t wait to try a few more – thanks!


Sunshine Burgos April 4, 2011 at 10:35 am

Made these this weekend and they did not disappoint! My wife, who does not like bananas or oat flavor, loved them! Thanks a bunch!


Angela (Oh She Glows) April 4, 2011 at 10:45 am

Thanks for the feedback….glad they were enjoyed! :)


Jeanna April 4, 2011 at 10:00 pm

These sound fantastic. I can’t wait to try.You could use arrowroot powder or tapioca flour in place of the cornstarch, I’m not a fan of cornstarch either. I find tapioca flour makes a clear glossy sauce that looks really pretty as well. Thanks for an always interesting blog!!


Margo April 5, 2011 at 12:39 pm

I chose this recipe as I had all the ingredients on hand. Delicious! The parchment paper lining the baking pan made cleaning up a breeze, too. Thanks!


Pam April 11, 2011 at 8:06 pm

YUM!! I just made the Berry Bliss Oat Bars today and they were So good. Thank you for sharing!!


Jen July 21, 2012 at 11:58 am

Hi dear! So I just made these (delish!) and substituted the cornstarch for ground up chia seed + water. I used the same proportions (2 tbsp ground chia and 2 tbsp warm water), then mixed it up and it was super thick. I had to stir the sauce a ton and there were still some chunks in it, so I would suggest just adding the ground up chia seeds and then the water separately into the sauce. They still came out great though!


Radhika Sarohia August 22, 2012 at 7:07 pm

Great photos, these look so good
I wonder if there’s a way to make a low-carb version, maybe I can just decrease the amount of oats I mix in, to reduce the carb count
I love blueberries and we have tons right now, so I should make these squares soon :-)


Irene September 10, 2012 at 2:03 pm

Love your site! Just had to put in my 2 cents on sciatic nerve pain. I battled it for over a decade before someone told me to just stretch my hip flexors more. Seriously. It can be that simple. When I’m having sciatic nerve pain I obsessively stretch my hip flexors (like 10 times a day minimum) and it goes away in a day or two. I keep them well stretched (think a few times a day or after long sitting sessions) to avoid flare ups. No major problems for the last few years! Of course getting a massage or two never hurts :)


Rebekah October 26, 2012 at 8:43 pm

Can I use agar agar instead of cornstarch?


Angela (Oh She Glows) October 27, 2012 at 7:43 am

Im not sure as I haven’t tried it before. Let me know how it goes if you do try it out! enjoy


Rachel December 31, 2012 at 10:18 am

Just found your site and I love it!! Made the delicious oat bars over the weekend and they were great. I used cranberries and apples for the filling instead because it’s what I had on hand. I will definitely be making these frequently. Thank you again and I can’t wait to try more of your recipes.


shannon March 25, 2013 at 7:37 pm

Do you need to refrigerate these or just store them in an airtight container?


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 26, 2013 at 4:13 pm

I think I stored mine in the fridge due to the fruit spread. enjoy!


taylor May 8, 2013 at 3:02 am

Hi Angela, they look amazing!! are they fairly healthy?


Molly July 25, 2013 at 5:43 pm

I used psillium powder to thicken the fruit. It worked great.

I initially was trying to make jam and i think it is a tad grainy for that purpose, so I used it in this recipe instead and I think it worked perfectly. The texture of the oats covers it up completely.


lauren September 1, 2013 at 2:15 am

Hey, Bars look amazing! I’m trying to find a breakfast recipe that includes fresh berries and will keep for 4/5 days as I am going away (without a fridge)… Would this recipe keep or do you have any other suggestions? Love the blog!


holly desantis October 28, 2013 at 10:09 am

this weekend, i made the berry bliss oat squares and they turned out great. i did use frozen berries (blackberries and whole strawberries) bumped up the cornstarch and they turned out great.


celimene January 20, 2014 at 11:13 pm

You can use Spanish arrow roots flour instead of corn starch
it is a good and natural thickener

Best regards.


ingrid June 15, 2014 at 9:51 am

I made these for fathers day because they looked like something that my whole family could enjoy- i defiantly plan on making them again but i think that i would use raspberries as well as some blueberries, i would like them to be more tart and a little less banana-y, let me know if you have any thoughts on how to get the right consistency well having them be less sweet. i also used half frozen half fresh blueberries and took out the maple syrup from the berries it turned out fine! i really liked them but in general just prefer more sour fruit desserts! thank you so much for the recipe, they really were a delight i would just change a few things and they would be perfect!!!


Katie June 18, 2014 at 1:38 pm

I made these last night and they are really good! I love how the banana compliments the berry flavor. I also like how they are vegan and refined sugar free. I would add less corn starch next time. Maybe 2 tb water and 1 tb corn starch. Thanks for this recipe!


faron July 10, 2014 at 2:46 pm

These turned out SOOOOO good. I might add some coconut oil to the oat base mixture to help firm it up for more of a crunch. Very yummy and fun to make with kiddos. Colors are beauty. Thx.


Angela May 21, 2015 at 3:17 am

I just made the oat bars they turned out fantastic! Just a few substitutions: I used blackberries because I only had frozen blueberries, I didn’t have applesauce so I used an extra banana, and I used chia seeds instead of cornstarch. I forgot to add the cinnamon in before I baked so I just sprinkled it on top. Maybe the pan I used was too big but I ran out of the oat mixture ( I couldn’t cover the whole top) so I just sprinkled some raw oats on top and it turned out fine. Pretty hard to mess up the recipe, I will definitely be making these again soon. Thank you!


Hannah June 8, 2015 at 1:52 pm

Do you think that I could substitute agave for some or all of the maple syrup?


Alexa August 4, 2015 at 12:20 pm

I made this recipe with a few tweaks. I had a problem with the amount of sugar in this recipe… 1/2 cup of maple syrup has a whopping 107 grams of sugar… 9 grams of sugar per bar, which doesn’t sound like a whole lot, but that’s only from the maple syrup. I wanted these to be less dessert-y and more of a breakfast grab’n’go item so i cut out the maple syrup entirely… still was totally delish. I used frozen mixed berries since they were on sale instead of fresh and it worked great. smearing peanut butter on these creates a snack reminiscent of a pb&j sandwich, delicious sustenance. cutting out the maple syrup and using frozen fruit cut the cost of this recipe down considerably also.


Jacque August 4, 2015 at 4:38 pm

These bars look amazing! As a celiac, gf oats are new to me and I love them any way but oatmeal.(can’t get over the soggy texture) Also, not a fan of bananas. Are they necessary in the oat bars? Is there a sub that you’d recommend?

Also, xanthan gum can work for corn starch sub, but you’d just need 1/4 of measurement


Alisha March 20, 2016 at 1:43 pm

have you tried clear jel? it’s derived from cornstarch, but I was wondering if it would still bother your stomach? Just a thought….. :)


Louisa September 9, 2016 at 11:03 am

These bars look sooo good! Do you think I could substitute frozen mixed berries for fresh ones? I have a ton of frozen berries in the freezer that I need to use up.


Angela Liddon September 12, 2016 at 3:41 pm

Hey Louisa! I haven’t tried it, but I know a couple people have used frozen berries with success. My guess is that frozen would produce a bit more water when cooking, so you might have to add more cornstarch to thicken it. In my experience, frozen berries tend to be less sweet than fresh, so you might want to add more sweetener too.


Jodie October 17, 2019 at 1:53 pm

I’m in Canada and I was a long time customer of Upaya Naturals until recently. I placed an order that included raw cacao powder. But when I received my order, I noticed that the cacao powder was not raw at all, it didn’t say so on the packaging like it said and showed on their website.

I contacted both Upaya and Sunfood and found out their cacao powder has not been raw for quite a while, at least 2 years. Upaya had old information on their website. Customers, like me, were buying it because they thought it was raw. Upaya continued to keep this incorrect information up for at least a couple of weeks even after I informed them of this, knowing their customers might still be buying it thinking it was raw! They clearly did not care.

Sunfood food was excellent and emailed me a very detailed explanation of why they don’t call their cacao products raw any longer. I’d still buy Sunfood products but never again through Upaya. If they had an entire line of cacao products listed incorrectly, how many other products on their website are not what we think they are?

I asked them for a list of all the manufacturers of the other products I purchased, so that I could verify for myself that they were indeed raw. They refused to give it to me. I’d be very cautious from buying from them again!

If all of that wasn’t enough reason to quit shopping there, they also refused to give me a $15 refund for the cacao powder unless I agreed to be extremely inconvenienced by having to run my vehicle for 45 minutes and pay for the cost of gas it would have taken me to mail the cacao powder back. I explained to them more than once how difficult it would be for me to get to the post office. They didn’t care about that either. I’ve literally spent thousands of dollars there and they didn’t care to lose a customer over $15. My sister also a longtime customer has stopped shopping there!


Josie November 12, 2020 at 3:29 pm

For some reason, my base came out really wet so I added lots more oat flour and it seemed a little dense.


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