Sunday, July 22, 2012

Homemade Granola Bars

So we've been working to cut out processed foods and especially high fructose corn syrup from our diet.  Chris loves granola bars, but unfortunately most of them (at least the ones we had always bought) contain high fructose corn syrup.  Because they are an easy "ready-to-go" snack we had both been missing them.

I came across an easy recipe for homemade bars and Chris (who is always supportive but not always as excited about healthy food options as I am) loves them!

1/2 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup honey
1/4 coconut oil
1 cup oats
1 cup TOTAL of any combination of: walnut pieces, pecan pieces, almond slivers, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, dried fruit, (really whatever sounds interesting to you!)
Mini chocolate chips to sprinkle on top

In a medium sized sauce pan melt together peanut butter, coconut oil, and honey.

Remove from heat and stir in 1 cup of oats.  Choose your favorite combination of walnut pieces, pecan pieces, almond slivers, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, dried fruit, (whatever sounds interesting to you) to equal a TOTAL of ONE CUP.  Just toss what you are interested in into a one cup measuring cup and stir in.  For these particular bars I used sunflower seeds, walnut pieces, almond slices, and peanuts.

Spread mixture into a parchment paper lined 8x8 or 9x9 baking dish.  Chill.  Cut. Serve.

After the bars have chilled, you can add some mini-chocolate chip sprinkles on the top if you would like.  But make sure the bars are not too warm, otherwise the chips will melt.  (The first time I made these bars I mixed my chocolate chips into the batter in my 1 cup mixture.  They all melted.  It was a bad idea)

I have made these a few times and I think next time I will probably double the recipe because we tend to go through them pretty quickly.

Quick note on coconut oil.  I know I've mentioned it a couple times now.  There is a lot of good information you can find out there on coconut oil.  Here is a blog post about coconut oil  I ran across awhile ago that I thought pretty interesting and informative.  I have no relation to this blog and I really can't remember how I came across it, but if you're at all interested in some of the health benefits of coconut oil you should check it out.

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