May 15, 2011

Granola Bars

It takes so much time to make food from scratch. I mean, a whole lotta time! Between work, swim class, homework and family time, when exactly are we to cook? It's really no surprise that no one takes the time to make things like crackers that you can just pick up at the store. There are so many options for convenience food to choose from - flavors, textures, colors. However, I do choose to make some things, like bread, from scratch.

Jordan is a huge fan of granola bars. She eats 2-3 a day. At that rate, I want to make sure she's not eating a candy bar disguised as something "healthy". By disguised, I mean when the box says "Multi-Grain", or something like that, and the bar is coated in chocolate. So, when my Mom brought over a recipe from Sunset Magazine for no-bake granola bars, I was delighted. Jordan and I made some the next day - WOW, so good and easy!

No-Bake Granola Bars
Servings = 12 bars

1/3 c roasted, unsalted almonds
1/3 c roasted, unsalted sunflower seeds
2 c rolled oats
1 c chopped dates
1/2 t cinnamon
dash salt
1/2 c raisins, currants, dried cranberries or any other dried fruit
2/3 c honey

In a food processor, pulse the nuts and seeds until broken up. In a large bowl, mix nuts, seeds, oats, dates, cinnamon, salt and dried fruit. Heat honey in the microwave for 30 seconds. Pour honey over oats and mix. Cover a cookie sheet with parchment paper or foil. Dampen your fingers with water. Scoop oat mixture onto cookie sheet. Press into an 8 by 12 inch rectangle, dampening your fingers if the mix starts to stick. Put in freezer for 20 minutes. Cut into 12 bars. Individually wrap with plastic wrap. Store in fridge for up to 2 weeks.

Notes: You can substitute any roasted, unsalted nuts and seeds. Try pecans and pumpkin seeds.

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