- Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line a 9x9 baking pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper and spray with cooking spray. Set aside.
- In a medium sauce pan, combine water, dates, and 2 tablespoons brown sugar over medium high heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about five minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in vanilla.
- While the dates cook, prepare the crust. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, oats, brown sugar, and baking soda. Add melted butter and combine with your hands until the butter is completely incorporated and the mixture is crumbly.
- Press half the flour mixture into the prepared baking pan. Pour the date mixture over the top and smooth evenly. Sprinkle evenly with the chocolate chips, then top with the remaining flour mixture, pressing it gently to even it out and hold it together.
- Bake for 20-22 minutes or until the topping begins to brown slightly. Let cool completely before using the aluminum foil to remove from the pan and cutting into squares.
- Water x 1 cup
- Pitted dates, chopped x 8 ounce
- Brown sugar x 1 cup
- Brown sugar x 2 tablespoon
- Vanilla x 1 teaspoon
- All purpose flour x 1 1/2 cup
- Old fashioned oats x 1 1/2 cup
- Baking soda x 1/2 teaspoon
- Butter, melted x 1/2 cup
- Semisweet chocolate chips x 1/2 cup