Banana Walnut and Cranberry Bars

Soft vanilla notes from the banana, a punch of tartness from the fresh cranberries, and a nice bite of toasted walnuts creates a match in heaven! Ultra Gooey and Lightly Spiced, these Banana Walnut and Cranberry Bars can be the perfect morning treat or midday fuel to keep you going!

Banana Walnut and Cranberry Bars | URBAN BAKES

These banana walnut and cranberry bars came out exceptionally better than I could have imagined! If you prefer soft bars over the firm ones then, this is for you! Between the texture and flavor, they truly blow any store-bought brand out of the park. I think these are my favorite snack bars to date and now I’m starting to think I may never want to buy another box again.

Banana Walnut and Cranberry Bars | URBAN BAKES

Aside from being able to make these snack bars from the comfort of your home, the next best thing is if you’re missing the nuts or dried fruit (I used fresh cranberries), you can always omit them or substitute it for another of its kind. By doing this change, it should not affect the shape or hold of the bars. The base is made primarily of banana, oats and flour in which after baking, this is what holds all of the other ingredients together.

Banana Walnut and Cranberry Bars | URBAN BAKES

I was reluctant to make this recipe. Hoping with the two overripe bananas on hand that I could make use of something better, but had no luck. It was definitely a blessing in disguise because as you can see, I’m very satisfied and amazed by the outcome.

The only downside I can come up with to these bars is that it can be ultra gooey? You may question how that could be a problem and in most cases, maybe it isn’t. But if you happen to be on-the-go, these overly soft bars may not hold up well in your pocket or in a napkin. Unlike these cranberry pistachio bars or these coconut and nut bars, these have a sticky almost glutinous feel and texture; all-in-all, making them extra gooey. If you plan to travel with these bars, they can be easily mushed. I recommend carrying them in plasticware to avoid any damage.

Banana Walnut and Cranberry Bars | URBAN BAKES

One small detail I noticed after I made them is that this is a vegan snack! Yes, that’s right. Completely vegan! No eggs, honey or dairy products were used. I love when that happens because if I could be 100% vegan, I would. So the fact these bars are and I didn’t realize this until afterwards, just makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside like as if I did the right thing. And by trying these bars, you’d be doing the right thing too!

Banana Walnut and Cranberry Bars | URBAN BAKES
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Banana Walnut and Cranberry Bars | URBAN BAKES

Banana Walnut and Cranberry Bars

  • Author: URBAN BAKES
  • Total Time: 2 hours 35 minutes
  • Yield: 16 1x
  • Diet: Vegan


Soft vanilla notes from the banana, a punch of tartness from the fresh cranberries, and a nice bite of toasted walnuts creates a match in heaven! Ultra Gooey and Lightly Spiced, these Banana Walnut and Cranberry Bars can be the perfect morning treat or midday fuel to keep you going!


  • 3/4 cup (82 grams) chopped walnuts
  • 2 overripe bananas (162 grams), mashed
  • 1/2 cup (112 grams) vegetable oil
  • 1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups (144 grams) old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup (90 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup fresh cranberries or 3/4 cup dried cranberries



  1. Heat oven to 200°F (93°C). Generously coat the bottom and sides of an 8×8 inch (20×20 cm) baking pan with baking spray with flour; set aside. 
  2. Evenly spread walnuts over a small baking pan. Bake for 8 minutes.  Transfer walnuts to a clean sheet of parchment paper to cool back to room temperature.  Increase oven temperature to 350°F (175°C). 
  3. In a medium bowl, mix banana, oil, sugar, and vanilla until smooth. 
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together oats, flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and baking soda. Stir in the banana mixture and mix until just combined. Fold in the walnut and cranberries.  Be sure to not overmix.  Spread mixture into the prepared pan.
  5. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the top is browned and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow at least 2 hours to set and cool to room temperature before cutting. ENJOY!
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cooling time: 2 hours
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: banana nut, cranberry banana, energy bars, banana walnut bars, banana walnut and cranberry bars

Banana walnut and cranberry bars recipe adapted from Banana-Oat Energy Bars from p. 47 of The Runner’s World Cookbook.

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4 thoughts on “Banana Walnut and Cranberry Bars”

    1. Hi Mika,
      Though I haven’t tried using frozen cranberries in this recipe, I believe the wet nature of the frozen part could interfere the binding process during baking. If you decide to give it a try, I recommend allowing the cranberries to defrost over a strainer or paper towel beforehand to help remove the excess water. Hope this helps!
      – Connie

    1. Hi Patti,
      Because I haven’t tried it, I don’t feel confident enough in saying that it can be replaced. Applesauce is a great substitute for oil in cakes and so I can only imagine it might be just as good in this recipe. If you give it a try, I’d love to know what your thoughts are.
      Happy Baking! 🙂
      – Connie

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