Oatmeal Sunflower Seed Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

These cookie bars are good enough to eat for dinner.  Let me explain…

On Friday, I spent the entire day at Ironman Florida in Panama City Beach doing research for school.  You know things could be worse in life when you’re talking to triathletes at the beach.  Anyway… by the time I got home, I was exhausted and starving, but Bill Clinton was in town speaking.  I won’t discuss politics here, but I think most of us can agree you shouldn’t pass up the opportunity to see a former president of the United States.  So I inhaled one of these cookie bars and grabbed 2 more for the road to tide me over.

For the record, I ate a ‘formal’ dinner of ice cream when I got home. 😉 #nutritionchampion

There really isn’t anything extravagant about these bars.  They’re simply my oatmeal raisin cookie recipe in bar form… but I omitted the raisins and added salted sunflower seeds (and a handful of pumpkin seeds, ’tis the season) which makes for the ultimate sweet and savory, on-the-go treat.

In addition to Friday night’s dinner, I’ve been snacking on these for the past week… they’re great on their own, crumbled over a cup of Chobani, etc.  You really can’t go wrong. 😉

[print_this]Oatmeal Sunflower Seed Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

Soft oatmeal chocolate chip cookie bars with a salty crunch from sunflower seeds.  If you’d like, you can add other mix-ins such as pumpkin seeds or dried fruit.

Makes about 30 bars

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 25 to 30 minutes

  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 (6-ounce) container plain or vanilla Chobani Greek yogurt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 cups quick cooking oats
  • 1 cup sunflower seeds
  • 3/4 to 1 cup chocolate chips

Heat the oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a 13×9-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.

In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and sugar until creamy.  Add the yogurt, eggs, and vanilla; beat until smooth.

In a separate mixing bowl, stir the baking powder, salt, flour, and oats.  Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing until blended.  Stir in the sunflower seeds.

Spread the cookie dough into the prepared pan.  Spread the chocolate chips over the cookie dough; press lightly into the cookie dough.

Bake 25 to 30 minutes, or until the bars are golden brown.  Allow the bars to cool completely before cutting.[/print_this]

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