First chop the dates into 1-inch pieces. Then, add the chopped dates and water to a saucepan. Turn on the heat and bring the mixture to a boil. Then, immediately emove the pan from the heat and add in the baking soda. The mixture will bubble quite a bit so make sure to stir after adding in the baking soda. Set the date mixture aside to sit for 10 minutes.
While the date mixture is cooling, preheat the oven to 350F and lightly grease a loaf pan or line it with parchment paper.
Once the date mixture has cooled, add it to a large mixing bowl with the oat milk, brown sugar, and oil and mix to combine.
Next, add in the all-purpose flour, baking powder, ground cinnamon, and salt. Make sure to add the flour first add the remaining dry ingredients on top so they get evenly distributed when mixed. Use a spatula to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl and mix together just until any large streaks of flour are gone.
Pour the date cake batter into the greased loaf pan and use a spatula to spread it evenly within the pan. Then, add to the oven and bake for 55-60 minutes until cooked through.
Remove the loaf from the oven and run a butter knife along the edges to help release the loaf. Let cool for about 5 minutes, then remove from the pan and place onto a wire rack to finish cooling.
If using the salted caramel sauce pour it on just before serving and enjoy!