Fruit bars are a beloved friend of anyone who spends time outdoors. But most fruit bars are filled with overly sweet and sugar-filled jam; this recipe, however, is all about fresh fruit, because when fresh fruit is in season, there’s no excuse not to take full advantage of it.

Here we’re honoring one of summer’s best: blueberries. Since we’re nearing the end of blueberry season, I recently stocked up on a bunch and started making many batches of these bars. Don’t have any blueberries on hand? Experiment with other fresh berries, like cherries, strawberries, or raspberries.

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Because this recipe doesn’t use jam, the ground flax seeds are used to thicken the blueberry juice that inevitably comes from mixing them together with the lemon juice and honey, so don’t worry if you crush a few blueberries in the process of mixing the filling.

If you have ever made your own fruit bars before, you’ll know that recipes of this style are normally big on butter and brown sugar. I personally prefer olive oil and honey (support those bees!), making these bars not too sweet and letting the fruit speak for itself.

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Make a batch and take them out on the trail this weekend!

Blueberry Rye Bars
Makes: 16-20 bars

Dough:
1 1/2 cups rye flour
1 cup rolled oats
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup olive oil
3 tablespoons honey
1 egg

Filling:
About 1 cup fresh blueberries
Juice of 1/2 lemon (about 2 tablespoons)
3 tablespoons ground flax seeds or flax meal
2 tablespoons honey

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Preheat the oven to 400°F.

In a bowl, mix together the rye flour, rolled oats, and salt. Add in the olive oil and honey and stir together until a crumbly mixture forms. Crack an egg into a separate bowl and lightly whisk it, then add it to the mixture and work together with your hands until a dough forms.

Grease a 9×9-inch baking pan, or line with parchment paper. Take half of the dough and press it down into the pan.

I bake this recipe on a baking sheet because I don’t own a baking pan, if you’re also limited in your kitchen supplies as I am, just be sure to line with parchment paper or silicone baking mat first, and the form the dough into a square with your hands.

Spread the filling out over the dough so that it’s evenly covered. Lightly press the blueberries down.

Crumble the second half of the dough over the blueberries, then lightly press it down so that it’s evenly distributed.

Bake at 400°F for 15 to 20 minutes, until the edges are a deep golden brown.

Let cool completely before cutting into equally sized bars. Store in an airtight container.

Camp Notes is a big high five to the fun of sleeping outdoors and all that comes along with it. You know, camping and stuff.

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